Roman MMA champion became army recruiter

Published on April 10th, 2012 | by Sevaan Franks

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A newly translated inscription has revealed that nearly 2,000 years ago a celebrated Roman athlete named Flavillianus became a Roman army recruiter.

His name was Lucius Septimius Flavianus Flavillianus and he was a champion at wrestling and pankration, the latter a bloody, and at times lethal, mixed martial art where contestants would try to pound each other unconscious or into submission.

Flavillianus proved to be so successful as a military recruiter that it was decreed that he be made a “cult figure in the band of heroes” after he died, with each tribe of the city erecting statues in his honor. The inscription, written in Greek, was engraved on the base of a statue found in Oinoanda’s agora (a central public space) and would have been erected by the people of the city. Discovered by a team in 2002, it wasn’t until now that researchers translated and published it.

[Full story]

Story: Owen Jarus, LiveScience | Photo: Timothy R. Nichols, Shutterstock

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2 Responses to Roman MMA champion became army recruiter

  1. JC says:

    It’s inaccurate to title this story “MMA” fighter, since the man would not have been doing any form of “mixed” combat style but the Roman one.

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