Tiberius Claudius Marcianus, a Fearsome Greek

“Tiberius Claudius Marcianus was a renowned wrestler in the ancient Olympics… We don’t know what he looked like, because no artwork survives… But we do have an indication that he must have been an extremely impressive and intimidating fighter… In one competition… it is reported that ‘when he undressed, all his opponents begged to be dismissed from the contest.’ (Poliakoff 2004, 44)” (Wrestling Tough, 16)

I laughed out loud at this passage as I was reading Wrestling Tough, but if you think about it… how in the world did this guy intimidate his opponents so much? And the fact that no surviving artwork has ever been found concerning this guy really bothers me. You’d think that a legend such as this would have artwork everywhere concerning his figure. I guess he was simply too big of a legend to fit onto pottery.

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