Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Psychopaths: brains in search of reward

A recent study realized by the University of Vanderbilt (USA) seems to have discovered new keys on the mechanism that governs part of the acts committed by the psychopaths. According to the investigation, which results have been published in the number of March of the magazine Nature Neuroscience, the brains of the psychopaths seem to be "connected" to keep on looking for a reward to any cost, what opens new routes to understand the mechanisms that direct the behavior of these individuals.

“The psychopaths are seen often like criminals of cold blood who do what they wish without thinking about the consequences”, tells Joshua Buckholtz, student of the Department of Psychology of the university and principal author of the investigation. “We have discovered that a reward system of dopamina hyperreagent might be the cause of some of the most problematic behaviors associated with the psychopathy, like the violent crimes and the abuse of drugs”.

Till now, the investigations realized on these persons had done major emphasis in the fear absence to the castiglo or the absence of fear or empathy, but the new study centers on the opposite, on what these individuals have in abundance: impulsiveness, risky behaviors and a big attraction for the reward. The results obtained during the experiments, in which they have been used tomografías of emission of positrons and other skills of control of the cerebral processes to examine the dopamina liberation, have revealed that these individuals have a strong need for reward, what overcomes any sense of the risk or fear the punishment.

“Our hypothesis is that the psychopathic behaviors are linked by a malfunction in the 'circuit' of reward of the dopamina”, tells Buckholtz. “In this sense, we have discovered that the people at high levels of psychopathic behaviors liberate four times more of dopamina like answer to the administration of amphetamine. It might be that due to this exaggerated dopamina answer, once they center on the possibility of obtaining a reward, the psychopaths are unable to alter his attention in nothing more until they obtain it”, added the investigator.

Source: Psycopaths’ brains wired to seek rewards, not matter the consequences (Science Daily)

I fly on Mars in 3D

Although the idea of traveling to Mars is for the time being little more than one sleep and let's not know even when it might turn finally in fact, the technology offers us little by little new ways of "visiting", although it is virtually, the surface of the red planet. Thanks to the initiative of the Briton Doug Ellison, an expert in animation in three dimensions, we have the opportunity to fly to 300 meters on the surface of Mars, and in particular on Naivety Chasma, one of the biggest cannons of Vales Marineris. Ellison has used the images in high resolution of the Martian surface taken the camerawoman HiRISE (a project of the University of Arizona) of Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and has created a few impressive conference that transport us to million kilometers of our Blue Planet.

Naivety Chasma animation / Doug Ellison

This is not the only creation of Ellison that Mars takes as a protagonist to the planet. If we throw a glance to his web page, we find other animations the same way impactantes. One of them moves us straight to Columbia Hills, a series of existing hills inside the crater Gusev. We leave also the video to you. As the previous one, it is possible to enjoy the images in high definition. Good trip!

Columbia Hills, 2009 – Doug Ellison

Source: Barnstorming Mars in 3D (Discovery News)

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Saturday, March 20, 2010

They find an Aztec temple for hazard

The recent beginning of a few works of reform in a building of Mexico D.F., very close to the cathedral of the city, it has extracted to the light a singular archaeological deposit: an Aztec temple devoted to the god of the wind Ehécatl. The investigators of the National Institute of Anthropology and History of Mexico have already initiated the excavation works, and have dated the remains in the XVth century, during the epoch of the emperor Ahuízotl. You will find more information in the following video spread by the British chain BBC.

Source: Mexico: they find Aztec temple for accident (BBC World)

More information:

- they find I moderate Ehécatl (INAH)

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Friday, March 19, 2010

Doctors nanorrobotizados

In 1966 the movies of half a world were releasing the movie Fantastic Voyage (An amazing trip), a movie of science fiction in which scientists of the USA and the USSR had managed to develop a system to miniaturize the matter to surprising scales. Only there was a snag: the process had expiry date, only sixty minutes. Nevertheless, a scientist of the communist block, Jan Benes, manages to overcome this temporary barrier, and decides to escape to American soil. In the huída it is on the point of perishing murdered, staying in comma as a consequence of a thrombus in his brain. The only solution to save his life and to recover his discovery is to miniaturize a submarine forward position, the Proteus, and to introduce it in the body of the Soviet scientist in order to treat his ailment.

Although it sounds surprisingly, the argument of the movie – turned in novel for Isaac Asimov – it might be close to turning in fact. Logically without miniaturizing human beings, but by means of microscopic robots provided with medicines that, after being introduced in a sick body, would help to treat different ailments. A surprising system that is being developed by the scientists' help of the faculty of Computer science of the Polytechnical University of Madrid. In the science popularization channel Investigating TV they have realized a reportage on this matter, interviewing some of the persons in charge of the project, so we share with you the following video.

Microscopic robots will cover our organism

Loaded by IndagandoTV. – To Explore more science videos.

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A history of mute cinema in Spain

The recognition that today he greets to the Spanish movies out of our borders (Penélope Cruz already adds his third candidacy to the Oscar, which is trumped on seventh of March) contrasts with the insecurity of his first steps, which gave in 1896.

The clarity always comes from the movies. When the lights go out, the time remains suspended in a network by which there hang fibers of laughs or tears. Implacable, the anonymous jury waits in his armchairs to the testimony of the witnesses. In this occasion – it is a December 8 of 1930-, the public reads the following words: "On the ruins of Castile. They say that the Sky wanted to punish to the small Castilian village. That's why the ground will deny his fruit to him. On having seen his belfry, they all do the sign of the Cross”.

This way The damned village begins, one of the masterpieces of the Spanish movies, rolled by the Aragonese Florián Rey with a budget for twenty-two thousand pesetas. The damned village is one of the indispensable qualifications of our cinematography, as admit periodically the critics who surrender to the anxiety of preparing "his" list. In fact, it would be said that it is the only movie of the mute epoch that has amounted “to the altars”, although it would be necessary to tint that that December 8, 1930 the spectators attended the version sonorizada of the outstanding figure: after the fireworks of The singer of jazz, the first sonorous movie released in the Movies Callao in June, 29, such modernity was imposed; and, since then, the comics took the taste to the word.

But the movies had come to Spain a few decades earlier, specifically in 1896. The right-hand man of the Lumière in our country, young Alexander Promio, rolled this year Square of the port in Barcelona, one of forty six pieces that, on topics of the everyday life, filmed here the Gallic patrol. An observation of R. Cardona reminds to us that while the brothers Lumière “were tending to roll what was happening around him, Edison from his beginnings stretched to teatralizar what he was filming”, reflection that would serve to explain from his root the differences between the European and American cinematographies.

The Lumière cinematograph initiated his tour along the principal Spanish cities until our pioneers were raised to the car, onlookers, perhaps intrigued, like who he falls in love for the first time; also with this mistrust that there cause the mere “scientific curiosities” that do not have any future. It is considered that the first Spanish movie is an Exit of mass of twelve of the Prop of Saragossa, work of the businessman of ambulant spectacles Eduardo Jimeno, exhibited on October 11, 1896 in the Aragonese capital. “When I went to Saragossa with the flaming Lumière, as it had a device to obtain movies, I decided to prove fortune as operator”, confessed Jimeno in an interview. It him was not badly.

The movies saw the light in a society in crisis that would determine his development: close to seventy per cent of the population it was rural; the wars were provoking a considerable loss of influence in the exterior; and, in cities like Madrid, the small genre and the bulls imanaban all the interest and it was not possible to compete with the foreign industry.

The discredit that he accompanied to the first Spanish movies seems reasonable if we save the figure of two or three colossuses, one of which, Fructuoso Gelabert, it rolled the first movie with argument in 1907: Tiff in a coffee. In her two young people fights for a woman before being separated by his friends. Gelabert was answering to the typical film maker profile: inventor, occasional, governing, producing interpreter … your contributions to the seventh art were compiled in a series of autobiographical articles published in 1940, when everybody had already forgotten it.

Along with this name, it shows that of Segundo de Chomón, prolific author who went so far as to roll up to five hundred movies, between which there have rescued Electrical Hotel and The hen of the golden eggs. Compared with the work of the illusionist Méliès the father of the special effects – that of Segundo de Chomón not desmerece, like test the one that was working for cinematographies as advanced as the French or the Italian. Between his milestones, he invented – or he perfected, according to others – the traveling in the movie Cabiria and realized part of the visual effects of Napoleón, indisputable outstanding figure of Abel Gance.

Electrical hotel (1905), Segundo de Chomón.

In Chaplin, the biopic of R. Attenborough, we do to ourselves a very complete idea of the barracks of fair that received the first spectacles. How to describe the puzzlement that the images were causing in movement? How to admit that Paris, suddenly, should stay to a span of the hand? Or: how not to tremble, as Ann Torrent in The spirit of the beehive, before the appearance of the monster of Frankenstein reflected in the water? Yes: so unstable and insecure barracks of fair as the images that were flowing of this sleep factory.

For a study of M. Palace we know that the fair movies could go so far as to have a capacity of five hundred localities. In Spain the prices were changing between approximately fifteen or twenty cents for the general entry and twenty-five or forty for those of preference, when the kilo of bread was costing in Castile approximately forty cents. Another fact: the first weekly magazine on movies, The Illustrated Cinematograph, which appeared in 1906, was costing twenty.

The public belonged to the popular and average classes, with children's abundant presence, and the previous censoring, which was exercised from Barcelona, was implanted in 1913. The Church took the most that it was offering him the system and did multiple exhibitions for catholic workers, while the royalty did not spend for high the invention either: in 1898, for example, Gelabert sold to Pathé the negative of Visit of Mrs Maria Cristina and Don Alfonso XIII to Barcelona; and, four years later, Lefèvre was impressing the ceremony of coronation of the monarch. Thanks to the copies, we can reconstruct episodes as the Tragic Week of Barcelona (1909) or the murder of Canalejas (1912), where Pepe Isbert was interpreting the killer anarchist.

Murder and burial of Canalejas (1912), of Aryan Adelardo Fernández.

After the fair barracks, the first rooms came in cities like San Sebastian, Barcelona or Valencia. In the last one, the phonograph Antonio Cuesta founded one of the alone producers of the epoch, Movies It Costs, responsibly for blind person for the village.

Barcelona turned into the engine of the incipient industry, with the companies creation like Movies Barcelona, where Gelabert opened all his skills, Studio Films or Hispanic Movies, which are remembered by his very advanced reportages on the war of Africa requested by his founder, Ricardo Baños, before the signature should disappear for a frightening fire in 1918. Madrid, on the other hand, would not initiate his consolidation up to much later.

To imitation of the movie d'art French, the producers threw quality pieces assigned to the historical drama or melodramas that the powerful company Barcinógrafo put to the service of Margarita Xirgú, his principal star. The first big mammoth production of our History was a biography of Cristóbal Columbus, released significantly on October 12, 1917 with French participation. The movie does not stop being a frightful thing for his bisoñez, but, simultaneously, meritorious.

Without our cinematography becoming an uncultivated land, one of his theoretical most brilliant, R. Gubern, admits that “until 1905 the Spanish production scarcely exists. From 1905 his volume climbs, but he suffers an important crisis in the period 1917-1920”. They skimp the proper names in a History of the one that, if it was small, scarcely keeps his memory. One of these names will be Benito Perojo defined as “the film maker of the bourgeoisie”. Although his most famous work was the sonorous one The verbena of the Pigeon, in the mute movies it gave samples of his talent in movies as Boy, The black who had the white soul, with Concha Piquer, The countess Maria or The wine vault, adaptation of a work of Vicente Blasco Ibáñez, who went so far as to do also career with the new discovery.

Cartel of the movie The black who had the white soul. Credit: Cartelmania.

In effect, the author of Between orange trees was one of the most related intelligentsia and that devoted himself with major passion to the seventh art. Also there came to the clapboard of this stallholders' pastime neither more nor less than the whole Nobel Prize winner of Literature, Jacinto Benavente, who directed the most famous version of his work, The vested interests, for Cantabria Movies before there founded her own producer, Films Benavente, for which collaborated with said Perojo.

Who does not remember the poem of Rafael Alberti sad Appointment of Charlot”? Or: who has not read any of the luminous reflections of Francisco Ayala in Investigation on the movie theater? They were, all of them, nice and "wild" praises that formalized the relation of the seventh art with the intelligence. Nevertheless, the frivolity of the genres was not lending in general to very wise reflections. In addition to the documentaries, there were triumphing newspaper serials as seven children of Écija (1911) or The mysteries of Barcelona (1916), so successful that it was not late in The testament of Diego Rocafort (1917) inspired the consequence.

We insist: there was no David Wark Griffith in our mute cinematography; there was neither an Erich Von Stroheim, nor stars as Rodolfo Valentino or Douglas Fairbanks. With the arrival of the sonorous one, the Spanish professionals set off towards the Mecca of the Movies to interpret the Hispanic versions of the movies that were triumphing in the American box office. Empire Argentina was Clara Bow, Maria Fernanda Ladrón of Guevara was getting into the skin of Norm Shearer; and, in another things order, the cabaret singer Raquel Meller, who was employed at nine movies, was inspiring Charles Chaplin the tender personage of the violetera in Lights of the city, one of the indisputable outstanding figures of all the times.

But these kudos, these honors often fruit of the need for an industry more flourishing than the Hispanic one, they continued to a long epoch of disappointments, like those of José Salvador Ropero, who did not go so far as to commercialize a device that was solving the tone of the cinematograph in the year 1906, or those of writer Alfredo Serrano, who in 1925 was denouncing the disastrous situation of a cinematography that was not going out of his instability.

“Again before the damned village”. Juan, the farmer, excuses his wife. The child kisses his mother. She cries, shamed and redeemed. Fading in black. The lights of the room ignite. The public gets up satisfied. The report of the jury cannot be more favorable. A masterpiece has been born. Perhaps the first one of the Spanish movies.


ONION STEW, P., AND BLOND GIL, L., Encyclopedia of the Spanish movies. Chronology. I take I, Editions of the Rowan, Barcelona, 1996.

MOIX, T., The Big History of cinema, Spanish Press, Madrid, 1995.

VV. AA., history of Spanish cinema, Cátedra, Madrid, 1995. Art. of GUBERN, R. (págs. 9-17); and PÉREZ PERUCHA, J. (págs. 19-118).

VV. AA., General History of the Movies, Vol. I, Santander, Chair, Madrid, 1998. Articles of CARDONA, R. (págs. 39-79); PALACE, M. (págs. 219-241).

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Spanish that 'initiated' the White House

On October 12, 1792, the bar Fountain Inn, in Georgetown, turned exactly of meeting for big part of the inhabitants of the future federal capital. The ambience was festive and continuously they were listening to toast and phrases of exhilaration. It was not for less. The group of men there gathered, between that nearby were, onlookers and masters of the locality, was preparing to be present at an act loaded with meaning for the new-born nation of the USA: the ceremony of laying of the first stone of the “House of the President” (in that epoch it was not known as a White House yet). When all the organizers of the act were present, the crowd was started towards his destination: a lot of the still nonexistent city of Washington A.D.

The group was preceded by a distinguished number of Freemasons of a lodge of Georgetown, the nº 9 of Maryland. And, precisely, it was his Big Teacher, Peter Casanave, who had the honor of informing the ceremony, placing the keystone and pronouncing a prayer.

The most singular of that ceremony fundacional – that was giving the exit gunshot to the construction of the first federal building of the city and that today is one of the most recognizable emblems of the USA – is that the man who directed it, said Peter Casanave, was Spanish.

Although his neighbors of Georgetown were calling him Peter, that young catholic merchant who had gained himself the appreciation the confidence of all his name was in fact Pedro, and had been born in the Spanish region of Navarre. It is very possible that his surname was not Casanave either, since the scarce preserved sources that allude to his person quote it like Casaneva, Casenave, Cazenave and enclosed Casanova. Unfortunately, it is very little what we know about him, although, as we will see, it reached quickly the social and economic success in his adoption homeland.

Apparently, Peter Casanave (we will call him like that before the puzzler of his real name) came to the USA in 1785. In his pocket only 200 pounds were counted, and the young Navarrese scarcely knew the Shakespeare language. Fortunately, it was provided with unbeatable references: his uncle, Juan de Miralles, had practised like linkage between the Spanish Crown and the American insurgents during the War of the Independence, playing an out-standing role in the American revolution, and gaining him for it the appreciation and the friendship of the very same George Washington. And so, this kinship should have opened to Casanave some doors, and soon it established his first business: a store in which it was distributing oil, Spanish pork and dust for the hair. To that first prompt business others followed him, quite unusual some, like a “lounge of night dance for gentlemen who have not time during the day”.

Notley Young and his wife, in-laws of Peter Casaneva.

A few years later, in 1790, his situation had improved enough, and it turned into agent of the property, I motivate for the one that appears in several documents of the epoch, in which he is named like seller of areas of the future city of Washington.

With an already strengthened social position, his following step in the community was to ask for the hand of a young catholic of Georgetown, Ann Nancy Young, daughter of Notley Young, prosperous businessman of the city who also was devoting himself to the business of the sale of soils. The couple married in September, 1791, in a ceremony that there informed the bishop Carroll, uncle of the young woman. That marriage tuned in to Casanave to some of the most important families of the state of Maryland.

In those dates, the Spanish decided to extend moreover his commitments with the community, and turned into “agent“ and sponsor of the students who were coming to the Georgetown College (today turned into the university of the same name). In the above mentioned position he was in charge of administering the funds of the pupils and covering his expenses. In many cases, when the students were foreign or were lacking resources, he was in charge of paying himself the quotas of its own pocket, of completely altruistic form. Apparently, the proper Casenave was a pupil of the institution, to which it came to perfect his still deficient English, and later one of his children, also called Peter, he was registered there.

In 1793 the Navarrese gave a new step in his social advance, and joined the Common Council of the Corporation of the city. Only one year later, that Navarrese and catholic young man – who had come to the new nation nine years earlier without scarcely money and with a few minimal English notions – was elected a mayor of Georgetown, turning into the fifth person in occupying the charge.

A photo of Casaneva House (today eliminated), housing in which the widow of Peter Casaneva resided.

A few months earlier there had taken place the episode of the Masonic ceremony in the White House, therefore probably his belonging to the Brotherhood was beginning a few years earlier, being already in the USA Peter Casanave died in 1796, without we knowing exactly what his age was in this moment. Anyway, it had to be quite young, since some testimonies that describe his participation in the opening of the House of the President aim that in this moment it was about the about thirty.

Little more we know of his life. Some notes on him recount that he was the thirteenth son of a lawyer and Navarrese merchant. A copy of his testament rests from 1860 in the files of the Lodge nº 5 of Potomac (the ancient Lodge nº 9 of Maryland, of which he was a Big Teacher).

This is the blurry portrait of Pedro Casanave, the Spanish merchant who, at the end of the XVIIIth century, left Spain to end up by turning in a prosperous businessman of the USA., Main Freemason and fifth mayor of Georgetown (the "seed" of the current capital of the country). And also, it was his hand, which placed the first stone of the White House.


- WARNER, William W. At peace with all their neighbors: catholics and catholicism in the national capital, 1787-1860. Georgetown University Press, 1994.

- HOLMES, Oliver W. Suter's Tavern: Federal Birthplace of the City. 1973, Historical Society of Washington, D.C.

Gladiators: blood and death in the sand

Some threaten the regulatory stockades, others throw his networks and less they fix the tridents in the air during the warming. They are conscious of that are going to stake the life any minute now on the sand of the amphitheater. The fratricidal struggle that shortly is going to face two or more Roman gladiators is going to end in a cruel spilling of blood that will pour out the public at the edge of the delight.

Before sounding the trumpets that will give beginning to the combat, the contenders parade in military formation before the emperor and cry out to the unison: Bird Caesar, moritori you salutant! The glory will only reserve space to elected few ones that will try to erase an unworthy past as slaves, war prisoners condemned to death or simple malefactors. Also there were free men who devoted themselves voluntarily to an indecorous considered office. The charisma and the popularity of the gladiators were such that emperors of the size of Calígula, Nerón or Comfortable his workmanship tried to imitate with the sword. Julius Caesar for his part, used them like slaves. “The man was feeding on the blood of the man” he was sorry about Séneca, the intellectual only one that was detesting this type of spectacle.

The gladiators were facing almost always for couples, although sometimes they were fighting in groups. According to the type of armament that they were taking a skill of different struggle was imposed. There existed the samnitas, which were carrying closed helmet, shield, quilted sleeve and short sword, the retiari (armed with network and trident), oplomachi (I chat with visor, shield and cuirass), tracios, with small circular shield and curved saber, mirmillones (I chat in the shape of fish, rectangular shield and sword), provocator (round shield and spear), the équites that were fighting on horseback, essedari that were fighting on a war car or the andabates, which were doing it blindly and with a mesh level. The pairing of a type of gladiator against other was not capricious, but it was obeying a studied calculation on the advantages and disadvantages of every adversary to turn the struggle into a balanced and lasting spectacle.

Roman mosaic with gladiators' scene. Credit: Wikipedia.

The supreme luck, of dying worthily, must be memorably executed that by the defeated gladiator. The spectators who were thinking that, despite falling down defeated, it had fought well were extracting decoys and, with the thumb down (unlike what he believes), they were asking the emperor for his pardon. But if they were discontented they were demanding the death of the gladiator taking the thumb to the neck. If the decision was the death, the public was hoping that the fighter should confront it with dignity and value. For many spectators, this was the most important moment of the combat.

The sadism, instead of being something fortuitous, turned into something habitual. The emperor Claudio usually ordered to withdraw them the helmet from the gladiators hurt to be able to appreciate the expression of his faces when they were cutting the neck. An unknown gladiator could be excused if he was asking for mercy after a good combat. But the multitude was not helping a favorite that to be knocked down by the sword of a stranger, especially if he had bet for his victory. At once, a few diligent servants disguised as Caronte or Hermes were coming closer the gladiator who was lying in the sand and were making sure that was dead giving a few heavy blows to him in the head. Sometimes, the gladiators also were fighting against wild animals in the so called venationes. Pompeyo faced them with elephants and Claudio against leopards. Nerón forced them to fight against 400 bears and 300 lions. Between two men, the possibilities of perishing in the sand were leveled in 50 %; against these beasts they were increasing significantly. Also they turned out to be forced to take part in the water of the magnificent naumaquias (naval battles) that were carried out in the Coliseum.

A scene of the movie Gladiator, of Ridley Scott.

The origin of the gladiators' struggles is born in Etruria. His inhabitants usually sacrificed prisoners on the grave of the commanders to liberate his spirits and they will accompany them in another life. An evolution of this rite brought the ludi gladiatorii, which were secularized up to turning into a spectacle. The first one of this type in Rome took place in 264 before Christ on the occasion of the funeral of Gross June Perea, in which they fought three slaves' couples. In Hispania the inaugural one was organized by Escipión African in 206 B.C. Thanks to these combats, the emperor, the magistrates and consuls were managing to entertain the thirsty gullets of the Roman people, it was distracting them of the social problems and the political activity. Thus they were gaining themselves the popular fervor and were achieving votes.

The césares did not want that the Roman peble was yawning either of famine or of boredom. In the Ist century, Juvenal gathered the sense of the spectacle in his famous expression panem et circus (bread and circus). The calendar they was propitious to celebrate these spectacles, since the holiday in the imperial Rome were occupying more than half of the year between sacred days and the ludi. The combats been celebrated usually in the first hour of the evening in a few games that were getting longer the whole day.

The gladiator was living at the edge of the knife-edge of the razor. It was foreseeable that his career was short. Although some of them were living through the sufficient thing to do a name to him and to turn into personages idolized by the public, especially by the feminine one. The checkers of the high society were feeling an enormous passion for them. Magnificent mosaics and grafiti this way they testify it. They even could recover the freedom and move back from the office with an acceptable fortune. At the end of a glorious career the wooden sword was delivered to him (rudis), that was indicating his definitive retirement and the most valued achievement of his desire.

The gladiators' struggles took the amphitheater as a stage, although they started by being celebrated in the forums. The originals were of wood, like the constructed one by Pompeyo Big in the Ist century B.C. The stone first one ordered it to build Octavio Augusto 29 B.C. in the field of Mars. But undoubtedly, the principal struggle enclosure without truce was the Coliseum inaugurated by Tito in 80 A.D. It had four apartments and his graderíos could lodge up to 50.000 spectators. It is anticipated that in his sand they died between 500.000 and a million persons. The most magnificent games that are remembered the Hispanic emperor Trajano organized in the IInd century. They lasted three months and took control of 4.912 gladiators' couples.

Exterior sight of the Coliseum (Rome). Credit: Wikipedia.

The essential piece for the organization of the struggles was the lanista, which was dealing with hiring gladiators and acquiring the wild animals. He was usually a man of past dark but enriched by the office. The professional gladiators usually received in his schools a very strict ethical code. As was affirming Talker, “they preferred to receive a blow to avoid it against the rules. They are ready to allow to murder to satisfy his owner”. The schools of major reputation were located in Capua, although also they were in Hispania, Egypt and the Gauls.

The emperor Cómodo (161-192) was an unusual case. Once in the throne it left aside the government matters to center on his love. He devoted himself to train and took part in numerous combats, in which, of course, it was always winning. He made be called “a winner of thousand gladiators”. The people reproached him that it was reducing his imperial dignity with a slaves' office. Of between the most famous gladiators the figure of Espartaco stands out, but for his actions out of the sand. Deserter of the army Roman and limited to the slavery, formed in the Capua school. In 72 before Christ he organized a rebellion with 78 gladiators, whom hundreds of discontented slaves joined. After conquering four Roman generals, the Senate agglutinated eight legions (approximately 40.000 soldiers) to squash the insurrection. Espartaco died riddled of wounds in the battle of Silaro, in 71 B.C. More than 6.000 prisoners were crucified then in the Route Apia.

The popularity of the gladiators also reached the intellectuals, who never condemned of incisive form the games. Only the Hispanic Séneca despised them. They were admiring the example of nobility of the shower and the scorn to the death. Only the spread of the Christianity, which condemned this combats, and the economic difficulties of the end of the empire led progressively to his prohibition decreed by the emperor Honorio in 404 A.D. The Roman people was guilty of having had a good time publicly with those cardinal executions and of having done of the Coliseum a demencial stage of tortures and a bloody slaughterhouse.

Trailer of Spartacus, the new series on the famous gladiator.

Documentary Gladiators (Channel History). Part 1 of 4.


- Slav LADY'S MAN, Juan. Rome of the Césares. Booket, 1998.
- Imperial Rome, the power and the glory. National Geographic, 2009.
- MANNIX, Daniel P. Brief history of the gladiators. Nowtilus, 2004.
- CARCOPINO, Jêrome. The everyday life in Rome in the climax of the empire. Ed. Topics of today, 1989.

© You Photograph opening and front: Starz.com