The ‘fasce’, a contraption consisting of a battle axe bound together with a bunch of wooden rods, was carried into battle by a standard bearer in the Roman army. The dumb son of a bitch was the first to die since he was up front, staggering along under the weight of the fasce, while a deadly hail of arrows zinged all around him
The gladiators were now 120,000 strong. The city of Rome itself was short of available battle-ready troops and able commanders. The most experienced generals, Quintus Metellus and Gnaeus Pompeus Magnus (otherwise known in history books as Pompey the Great, the other member of the future Triumvirate), were out quelling rebellions in Spain, while another general, Lucius Lucullus had his hands full in Asia Minor, fighting the Parthians.
Other consuls and generals shied away from accepting the challenge with excuses like `my mom-in-law is unwell` or `my richard got the clap in Antioch` or simply `f–k you, I`m just back from Germania and have a month of orgies lined up. I have to hang up now’ or ‘my shipment of nymphs just arrived. What, baby? Hey, anybody here speak Eejipshun? I need ta know what this broad is talkin’ about.`……….