The Ludus Dacicus or The Dacian Gladiatorial Training School was one of the four gladiator training schools (ludi) in Ancient Rome. It was founded by Domitian (r. 81 - 96 AD), completed by Trajan (r. 98 - 117 AD), and was used to train gladiators drawn from among the Dacian prisoners taken by both emperors in their Dacian Wars. It was located east of the Colosseum, on the slopes of the Caelian Hill.
Dacian prisoners were taken many times by the Romans and very often they were forced to fight in the arenas. Dio Cassius mentions that around 31 BC, after the Battle of Actium, where the Dacian king Dicomes provided help to Mark Antony, Augustus took the Dacian prisoners and made them fight in the arena as gladiators, against Suebi captives, a spectacle that lasted many days with no interruption.
- Bouley 1994, pp. 31ff
- Plutarch; Antonius, 63
- Cassius Dio & 200 AD, LI, 22, 1-4.
- Bouley, Elisabeth, "La gladiature et la venatio en Mésie Inférieure et en Dacie à partir du règne de Trajan", Dialogues d'histoire ancienne, 1994, Volume 20, Issue 20-1, pp. 31ff. (French)
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- Ludus Dacicus at dracones.ro (in Romanian)
- Ludus Dacicus fragments of Forma Urbis Romae at Stanford Digital Forma Urbis Romae Project