Headstone of gladiator Myron
White marble. 2nd—3rd centuries CE. Inv. No. MA 154.Paris, Louvre Museum

Headstone of gladiator Myron.

White marble. 2nd—3rd centuries CE.
Inv. No. MA 154.

Paris, Louvre Museum.


Deutsch 197. Myron (arbelas).

Herkunft unbekannt, heute im Louvre (Inv.-Nr. MA 154).

Robert 1940, Nr. 299 [Taf. 14]; Carter 1999, Nr. 467; CIG 6971; Pfuhl — Möbius 1979, Nr. 1260 [Taf. 187]; Carter 2001a, 113 [Abb. 2].

Stele aus weißem Marmor, links oben gebrochen; 62 × 35 × 8 cm; 2./3. Jh.

Gladiator in Bildfeld nach rechts; er hält in der rechten Hand einen Dolch, in der linken die Waffe des arbelas mit halbrunder Klinge; er trägt einen Schuppenpanzer, der Kopf ist von einem Kugelhelm umschlossen; auf den seitlichen Rändern vier Kränze und zwei Palmzweige.

Inschrift unter dem Bildfeld.


Chr. Mann

For the gladiator scissor, see CIL 9.466, 26-7 = ILS 5083a = EAOR 3.68 = 1.4 (album of a gladiatorial familia from Venusia). A possible scissor is shown in the relief of the heavily armored gladiator Myron, of unknown provenance and now in the Louvre, whose left arm is covered in a device that ends in a crescent-shaped blade, clearly a very specialized piece of equipment. Robert (Gladiateurs, 235-6 (no. 299]), comparing this scene with a relief from Tomis that shows the same piece of equipment discarded on the sand, reasonably suggests that it was designed to slice through a retiarius’ net (the adversary in the Tomis relief is a retiarius). But it has recently been argued — on the basis of a relief from Satala in Lydia, two reliefs and accompanying inscriptions from Hierapolis in Phrygia, and a comment in Artemidorus (2.32) — that such gladiators were termed arbelai (after a semi-circular cobbler’s knife), at least in the Greek East; and the Hierapolis reliefs show them fighting each other, not retiarii; see M. Carter, “Artemidorus and the Arbelas Gladiator,” ZPE134 (2001), 109-15; Ritti and Yilmaz, Gladiatori e venationes, 469—79 (nos. 6 and 7). But there is no reason to expect that the armaments, the terminology, or the formats of gladiatorial bouts were perfectly consistent across the empire, so that gladiators of this type could surely be dubbed both scissores and arbelai and appear in diverse pairings.

Garrett G. Fagan
© Photo, text: M.E. Sergeenko. Prostie lyudi drevnei Italii. — Izdatel’stvo “Nauka”. Moskva — Leningrad, 1964.
Photo from: L. Robert, Les gladiateurs dans l’Orient grec (Paris 1940) 235 f. Nr. 299 Taf. XIV.
© 2011. Text of description (1): Chr. Mann, “Um keinen Kranz, um das Leben kämpfen wir!”: Gladiatoren im Osten des römischen Reiches und die Frage der Romanisierung. Göttingen, 2011. P. 271, cat. no. 197.
© 2011. Additional information (museum, provenance, description (2)): Garrett G. Fagan. The Lure of the Arena: Social Psychology and the Crowd at the Roman Games. Cambridge, 2011. P. 217, note 85.
Keywords: γλυπτική sculptura sculpture sculptural scultura skulptur ρωμαϊκό roman romana romano romani römisch römische römisches römischen römischer romain romaine romains romaines κηδεία funeral funerary funeraria funerario begräbnisskulptur beerdigung funéraire ανακούφιση relief rilievo tombstone gravestone lapide monumento sepolcrale grabstein pierre tombale white marble grave stele headstone of gladiator myron mirone miron gladiatorial games scissor arbelas helmet headpiece knife chain mail armour hauberk scaly lorica squamata wreath palm branch cig 6971 inv no ma 154