Archaeologists have uncovered a well-preserved fresco of two fighting gladiators in the ancient Roman city of Pompeii.
It depicts two gladiators in action, one wielding a short sword, the other cowering as blood spurts from wounds all over his body.
The defeated soldier is lifting his finger to beg for mercy.
Dario Franceschini, Italy’s culture minister, said the discovery showed Pompeii was “an inexhaustible mine for research and knowledge for archaeologists”.
The city is undergoing a new phase of excavation, the “Great Pompeii” project, funded by the European Union and Italy. It has already unearthed villas decorated with frescoes and mosaics as well as the remains of human skeletons trapped beneath the rubble.
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