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Gladiator (Latin: gladius, “short sword”), warrior-entertainer of ancient Rome. Gladiators fought each other and wild beasts in public arenas with a variety of weapons, including swords, for the favor of the crowds. They were recruited from prisoners of war, slaves, criminals, and sometimes freemen. The tradition survived into the 5th century A.D.

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21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia21st Century Webster's Family Encyclopedia - Ghibellines to Grand Prix