четверг, 16 апреля 2009 г.

[Wikipedia] April 17: Retiarius

A retiarius was a Roman gladiator who fought with equipment styled on
that of a fisherman: a weighted net (rete, hence the name), a
three-pointed trident, and a dagger (pugio). The retiarius fought
lightly armoured, wearing an arm guard (manica) and a shoulder guard.
Typically, his clothing consisted only of a loincloth held in place by
a wide belt, or of a short tunic with light padding. He wore no head
protection or footwear. The retiarius was routinely pitted against a
heavily armed and armoured secutor. The net-fighter made up for his
lack of protective gear by using his speed and agility to avoid his
opponent's attacks and wait for the opportunity to strike. He first
tried to throw his net over his rival. If this succeeded, he attacked
with his trident while his adversary was entangled. Another tactic was
to ensnare his enemy's weapon in the net and pull it out of his grasp,
leaving the opponent defenceless. Should the net miss or the secutor
grab hold of it, the retiarius likely discarded the weapon, although he
might try to collect it back for a second cast. Usually, the retiarius
had to rely on his trident and dagger to finish the fight. Retiarii
first appeared in the arena during the 1st century AD and had become
standard attractions by the 2nd or 3rd century. The gladiator's lack of
armour and his reliance on evasive tactics made the retiarius the
lowliest of an already stigmatised class.

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Today's selected anniversaries:


French Revolutionary Wars: British Lieutenant General Ralph Abercromby
and a force of over 6,000 men invaded Spanish-controlled Puerto Rico.


The Empire of Japan and the Qing Empire of China signed the Treaty of
Shimonoseki to end the First Sino-Japanese War, with China agreeing to
renounce its claims on Korea; cede the Liaodong Peninsula, Penghu and
Taiwan to Japan; open various ports and rivers to Japanese trade; and
pay Japan a war indemnity of 200 million Kuping taels.


Armed Cuban exiles backed by the CIA invaded Cuba, landing in the Bay
of Pigs, with the aim of overthrowing the Cuban government under Fidel


The Khmer Rouge under Pol Pot captured Phnom Penh, ending the Cambodian
Civil War, and established the Democratic Kampuchea.


A new patriated Constitution of Canada, including the Canadian Charter
of Rights and Freedoms , a bill of rights intended to protect certain
political and civil rights of people in Canada from the policies and
actions of all levels of government, was signed into law by Elizabeth
II, Queen of Canada.

Wiktionary's word of the day:

knell (v):
1. To ring a bell slowly, especially for a funeral; to toll.

2. To signal or proclaim something by ringing a bell

Wikiquote quote of the day:

I am not a novelist, really not even a writer; I am a storyteller. One
of my friends said about me that I think all sorrows can be borne if
you put them into a story or tell a story about them, and perhaps this
is not entirely untrue. To me, the explanation of life seems to be its
melody, its pattern. And I feel in life such an infinite, truly
inconceivable fantasy.
--Karen Blixen

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