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Ancient Countries Essay

Ancient Rome Roman games were much like Greek games, but there was more physical contact sports such as Gladiator combats, man against beast, and water battles. Chariot races were the same as the Greek chariot races. Rome had many different types of chariots. Biage were chariots pulled by two horses,  and quadrigae chariots were pulled by four horses. Each race had 12 chariots going on one track at once. The racers would take 7 laps around the arena which would be a total of 5 miles long. Teams of four  chariots would be either red, blue, green, or red in the chariot racing.

Gladiators combat was where two men fought until one was dead. The gladiators would be armed with a weapon to make the battle more interesting. The gladiators were usually slaves or captives. Rich people would pay gladiators to go to school  that taught them to fight. Many gladiators had armor mostly on their arm area or their legs. Some gladiators didnt  have any armor but just a weapon and a shield. Some times they would flood the arena with water and have battles with ships. Alligators would be in the water so that when a gladiator fell off he would get eaten by the alligator.

Another reason why the arena would be flooded was because they would face crocodiles as well. Man against beast battle was when one man fights with a snake, a deer, a lion, a bear, or even an elephant. Roman Ball was more of a recreational sport. The rules as described by W. J. Kowalski on the Internet is :  There were 2 concentric circles on the ground, 5 feet and 20 feet in diameter. Players ( 3 or more ) stand or run anywhere outside the large circle. The ball must bounce in the inner circle and pass beyond the outer circle.

If the ball is not caught and hits the ground, the thrower gets a point. The player who catches or retrieves the ball throws it next. The first player to get 21 points wins. The player with the ball may run around the circle and try to catch his opponents out of position. The player who catches or retrieves the ball may return to the circle quickly and he becomes the thrower. The first throw may be taken by anyone, and should be thrown standing still. The game begins on the second throw. If the ball goes pass the outer circle the throw should be replayed.

Children and adults could play this game and it was very popular. They called the ! game ball or ball-playing. Towards the decline of the Roman empire, the Romans became good at archery and even kings began to enjoy it, but sometimes they were cruel. The story goes, that the Emperor Commodus shot ostriches with a special arrow and at gladiator combats, he sat in his royal box with a bow and arrow. From there he watched men being chased by wild animals, like lions, and leopards, and just when the animal was about to jump on the gladiator he shot his arrow and killed it.

To him, this was a sport. Page 1 Ancient Greece There were many sports in Greece such as foot racing, chariot racing, boxing, horse racing, racing, wrestling, javelin & discus, and the long jump. There were three different types of foot racing. The first was the long race or as they called it, a Dolichos. The runners would have to run two laps around a stadium. The second race was a stade race which was a sprint six-hundred foot sprint down the stadium. The third race was called the double stade race or Diaulos. It was the same as the stade race but was twice as long.

Instead of six-hundred feet it would double to one-thousand  two-hundred feet which was two times the length of the stadium. Chariot races were held in a Hippodrome which was an open, large, flat, rectangular shaped arena. The chariots were moved up to an aphesis or the starting gate. After the announcer announces all the competitors and the trumpeters signal the start, the chariots go off. They race real fast but collisions would rarely happen. The Greeks took chariot racing seriously such as in the story of a king named Oinomaos. He had a daughter named Hippodaneia.

Oinomaos was a great chariot racer and he said that who ever beat him at a race can have Hippodaneia in marriage. If the competitor lost then the Oinomaos would kill them. Hippodaneia fell in love with a suitor and didnt want him to be killed, so she sabotaged Oinomaos chariot. When the race began Oinomaos chariot fell apart and lost the race. He was then killed by the suitor and married Hippodaneia. In boxing the boxers were not classified by weights like modern boxers, so the bigger men had an advantage. There was no ring but just an open space.

The boxers hands were wrapped in long thongs of leather and the fingers  were left free. They didnt have sets or rounds in a match, but ended when it became very bloody or if one of the men fell. If one of the boxers was killed then the other boxer was the winner. Pankation which means all-powerful or all-strong was the most savage sport. Any part of the body could be used to fight and there were no rules. Some fighters gouged out eyes, bit each other, or dislocated arms or legs. To most spectators, Pankation was the  most popular sport to watch.

In wrestling there were two different types of competition, ground which was like Pankration and upright. Upright wrestling was one of the five events in the pentathlon. Unlike modern wrestling where the shoulders have to touch the ground, all you have to do is have the opponents knees touch the ground.

The word discus came from the Greek word diskos which means a thing for throwing. The contestant would stand around a small area called a balbis at one end of the stadium. The contestant can take as many steps as he can before throwing the discus. Each  contestant has five chances to throw it as far as they can. The judges marks distance with a peg that is inserted into the spot that the discus landed.

In the long jump the landing area is a raked smooth surface. The jumpers would hold weights which were like dumbbells and were called halters. When the jumper has jumps and lands the weights would help keep the jumpers balance and make a good foot imprint in the smooth surface. The halters were made out of lead, iron and some were even made of stone. They were made in different sizes, shapes, and weights. The javelin was very similar to the discus but instead of a discus being thrown it was a long pole about 6 feet long. The circumference of the pole fit the grasp of an average man.

Racing in armor or Hoplite race in armor was a race which required a lot of strength. The men had to run 1,200 feet in full armor. The competitors were usually soldiers. They didnt carry any swords or spears because in the excitement someone may get hurt. It was also funny to the spectators because they thought the runners looked silly running in armor like that. Hoplite was the last event in the Olympics. The victors were crowned with wreaths and was given their awards. The Olympics was  introduced in 632 B. C. and was ended in 146 B. C. when Greek lost its freedom and became a province of Rome.

Ancient China In horse racing the hardest part was to mount your horse quickly. They would usually mount it by using a spear or a pole, and leap on the horse. The other way of getting on was either mounting blocks ( of one kind or another ) was the alternate, obvious, and the simplest way of getting on. After a long period of time searching for yet another easier way,  Eventually man discovered the stirrup. That invention though was not added to the Roman saddle until the fifth century, when hordes of Hun brought it to Europe. In ancient Greece and Rome, wrestling was treated as a sport for the Olympics.

In ancient China it is very popular and was part of religious celebrations. Continuous practice gave their hands extraordinary powers by holding wet sand in their hand, then  tightly squeeze it as tightly as they can. Ancient Egypt Some of  the statues in ancient Egypt represent power and agility of man. Sporting pictures are on some Egyptian temples. Pharaohs and their nobles enjoyed sports but not as spectators but as participants. A hieroglyphic inscription praises the Pharaoh Amenophis II  as a perfect athlete : strong of arm,  long of stride, a skilled charioteer, an efficient oarsman, and a powerful archer.

In archery, bows and arrows were the earliest weapons of hunting for the Egyptians. Archers in chariots or on horseback were the first mobile artillery. Only when man learned to use the bow and arrow he confronted wild beasts in the jungle. Archaeologists have proof that archery has lasted from at least over 10,000 years ago from prehistoric beasts that had arrowheads found in the skeletons. Before the Egyptians pyramids, Egyptians had kept dogs. They would give individual names, or the names sound of the syllables b-w. By thousands of years, children would be calling a dog as a bow wow in the future.

Egyptians portrayed dogs as their companion of their master at home and in the field. Mummified bodies of dogs were found in Egyptian graves, showing how much they adored them. Dogs were here for supposedly for gods concern of man. They didnt have dog racing because of their fondness of dogs. A wall painting from the time of Pharaohs Ramses III (1190 B. C. ) shows a fencing match, not an actual dual but a practice match. The carvings dug up in a temple near Luxor, shows the points of the sword were covered. The fencers wore masks and were watched by groups of spectators, while the fight was judged by judges.

Saddles for horse racing were not known to Egyptians or the Greeks, but used a kind of cover onto the horses backs. Riders did not care about comfort so there for they didnt have better saddles. They soon realized the saddle would give them more security while galloping on the horse. Hunting was the ultimate for the Egyptians. The powerful kings would hunt and proudly record their success by bagging the amount of wild animals. They are still preserved on cuneiform tablets and in hieroglyphics inscriptions. The Egyptians also learned to train animals to chase down their quarry, and the Egyptians even used a lion to help them.

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