Alexandra is an ancient historian specialising in sports and public spectacles in the ancient Mediterranean. She is passionate about sharing her knowledge with people who, like her, did not follow the traditional route of higher education but have an unbridled passion for all things ancient. With 20 years experience as a tour guide at world-class attractions, Alexandra has recently graduated from Birkbeck University and is currently a postgraduate at the University of Leicester.
Were the physiques of ancient combat sports athletes ultra-ripped? They certainly had very active professions that required them to be incredibly strong, but did they look the same as modern bodybuilders?
We all think we know that Christians were regularly fed to lions by pagan Romans, and this likely did happen. But is it an isolated phenomenon specifically targeted at a new and radical sect?
We are used to the idea of men fighting as gladiators in the Roman arena. But did women fight in a similar manner? In other words, did female gladiators exist in ancient Rome?