Sunday, February 18, 2007

Echoes in eternity

Gladiatorial games, the bloodiest of ancient Rome's traditions, were probably held in the heart of genteel Cheshire, archaeologists say.

Experts have unearthed evidence in the remains of Chester Amphitheatre which suggests gladiators appeared there. It was previously thought the arena was only used for ceremonial activities.

But archaeologists have found a stone block with iron fastening, suggesting that victims - human or animal - were chained up for gladiatorial spectacles.

Further evidence was uncovered in the form of a pair of giant cotton buds.


Peter Burnet said...

Mr Wilmott said the findings would change historians' understanding of Roman Chester.

Having viewed hundreds of these "scientific breakthrough" announcements in the past few years, I've come to skim quickly looking for one of two inevitable boasts. With anything remotely connected to the bio-medical, they will hold out the promise of curing this or that affliction. With anything historical or in the field of biology/paleontology, the discovery will completely and momentously "change" our understanding of something.

It is pretty hard to beat the puffery in the second to last paragraph of this one.

Brit said...

It's an obligatory journalistic convention.

If the discoverer/scientist/researcher himself won't say it, the journalist just calls someone who will.