Artefacts unearthed from the amphitheatres of Rome and Pompeii will go on display at Queensland Museum this week.

Gladiators: Heroes of the Colosseum is exclusive to Australia, and will showcase unique pieces of history alongside interactive games and displays that will reveal who the gladiators were, where they lived and how they trained.

Queensland Museum CEO and Director Professor Suzanne Miller says the exhibition will feature a stunning array of archaeological treasures, including elaborately decorated bronze gladiator helmets and original arms and armour preserved in the ashes of Pompeii.

“This will be the first time many of these artefacts have been displayed in Australia and will give visitors to the Queensland Museum a unique opportunity to view more than 120 objects up close,” she says.

“As well as viewing these extraordinary antiquities, which include actual pieces of Rome’s famed Colosseum; visitors can learn the story of these armed athletes through interactive games and displays of historical armour.”

The exhibition will explore the origin and development of gladiatorial games; the lives of the gladiators themselves; the Colosseum and the amphitheatre of the Roman Empire; and a broader view of what life was like in this period.

Artefacts from eight Italian museums and institutions will be featured.


Gladiators: Heroes of the Colosseum will run at Queensland Museum (Grey Street & Melbourne Street, South Brisbane) from Friday 23 June 2017 to Sunday 28 January 2018. Tickets are on sale now at QTIX.