login   |    register
Young Miniatures [ MORE REVIEWS ] [ WEBSITE ] [ NEW STORIES ]

In-Box Review
Gladiators 1st century A.D
Gladiators 1st century A.D
  • gla20

by: Engin Kayral [ GRAYWOLF ]

Originally published on:
Historicus Forma


Young Miniatures from Korea added another high quality resin bust to its 1/10 historical bust series. Besides the talented sculpting of Young B.Song, the quality of resin casting is worth to notice.

YM – 1812 represents a Gladiator on the 1st century A.D.

brief info about gladiators

Gladiator means "swordsman" or "one who uses a sword," from gladius,-sword in Latin. They were professional fighters in ancient Rome who fought against each other, wild animals, and condemned criminals, sometimes to the death, for the entertainment of spectators. These fights took place in arenas in many cities from the Roman Republic period through the Roman Empire.

Different gladiators specialized in different weapons and tactics. Here is a few examples ;

Mirmillones (or murmillones) : They wore a helmet with a stylized fish on the crest (the mormylos or sea fish), as well as an arm guard (manica). They carried a gladius and an oblong shield in the Gallic style. They were paired with Hoplomachi or Thraces.

Andabatae : (1st cent. BC) Clad in chainmail like eastern cavalry (cataphracti), wore visored helmets without eye holes. They charged blindly at one another on horseback as an ancient precursor to the medieval joust.

Bestiarii : (beast fighters) originally armed with a spear or knife, these gladiators were condemned to fight beasts with a high probability of death. In later times, the Bestiarii were highly trained, specializing in various types of exotic, imported beasts.

Dimachaeri : Used two-swords, one in each hand.

Hoplomachi (heavily armed) or Samnite : Fully armored, and based on Greek hoplites. They wore a helmet with a stylized griffin on the crest, woollen quilted leg wrappings, and shin-guards. They carried a spear in the Hoplite style with a small round shield. They were paired against Mirmillones or Thraces.

Laquerii : Laqueatores used a rope and noose.

Provocatores : Paired against the Samnites but their armament is unknown and may have been variable depending on the games.

Retiarii : Carried a trident, a dagger, and a net, a larger manica extending to the shoulder and left side of the chest. They commonly fought secutores or mirmillones. Occasionally a metal shoulder shield, or galerus, was added to protect the neck and lower face.

Secutores : They had the same armour as a murmillo, including oblong shield and a gladius. They were the usual opponents of retiarii.

Thraces : The Thracian was equipped with a broad-rimmed helmet that enclosed the entire head, a small round or square-shaped shield, and two thigh-length greaves. His weapon was the Thracian curved sword, or the sica. They commonly fought mirmillones or hoplomachi.

Velites : Fought on foot, each holding a spear with attached thong in strap for throwing. Named for the early Republican army units of the same name.


The figure comes in standard Young Miniatures black color heavy cardboard box inserted in a transparent sleeve. The front cover of the box shows the photo of bust painted by Young B.Song that can serve as a painting guide. A small photo of Murmillo helmet is also shown on the top right.

Parts are carefully placed between 2 thick slabs of polyfoam to avoid any kind of damage.


This 1/10 scale bust is sculpted by Young B.Song and comes in a total of 7 cream color resin pieces. The casting is superb and there is no need for a serious cleaning process except removing the resin casting blocks and a small process the clean the visor of helmet.

The parts are ;

  • Torso : Muscles, breasts, a few blood vessels on the right shoulder are very well represented. The horizontal strap holds the armguard and details of the strap like rings and studs on both sides are well defined.

  • Head : 2 alternative heads are supplied in the kit. One is a bare head and the other is the same head with the top part is cut to replace the helmet. Facial details, moustache, beard and the scar on the right eye are extremely nice sculpted.

  • Helmet : He wears a Murmillo helmet with its high angular crest like a fish and broad curved brim. The decoration on the crest and the lion symbol on front of the helmet are very well defined.

  • Visor : Grillwork eye pieces and other details are well represented. An easy but careful cleanwork wil be needed for this part.

  • Armguard : He wears a Manica, a segmental metal armor to protect shoulder and arm. A thick cloth or leather piece between the arm and metal armor support the manica. The straps, details of cloth parts and a face symbol decoration on the metal part are all very well represented.

  • Pedestal : A cylinderical pedestal is supplied in the kit.

    casting & details

    Besides the fine quality of Young Miniatures white metal figures, the quality of 1/10 resin busts is incredible. Casting is flawless with no air holes or minor mistakes. All you should do is to cut and clean casting blocks. You will need a small clean up process for the grillwork of visor on this figure.

    The box shows a photo of the bust that can be a painting reference. Unfortunately, there is no other painting guide included in the kit but Young Miniatures website offers many nice photos of the painted bust. Please visit Gladiators 1st century >A.D .


    For all bust painters and especially for the fans of the period, this bust is definitely a must with superb sculpt of Young B.Song and high quality casting with nice details.

    Very Highly Recommended

    Highs: Superb sculpt and cast.Alternative heads give the chance to build it as Murmillo or other.
    Lows: An A4 paper with the photos in the website supplied in the kit could be helpful as a handy painting guide.
    Verdict: A very unique bust to paint. Perfect small details.
    Percentage Rating
      Scale: 1:10
      Mfg. ID: YM-1812
      Suggested Retail: 56 €
      Related Link: 
      PUBLISHED: Jul 29, 2008
      THIS REVIEWER: 92.20%
      MAKER/PUBLISHER: 92.14%

    Our Thanks to Young Miniatures!
    This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.

    View Vendor Homepage  |  More Reviews  

    Click image to enlarge
    • gla21
    • gla22
    • gla23
    • gla24
    • gla25
    About Engin Kayral (Graywolf)

    Born in 1962,married and having 2 sons. I started modelling about 8 years old building USS Fletcher with mom. It was a model dad brought from USA., I think in those days only a few people in Turkey had info on scale model kits. Grown as an AF officer son , I built many aircraft models in years. Som...

    Copyright ©2021 text by Engin Kayral [ GRAYWOLF ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AeroScale. All rights reserved.


    What's Your Opinion?

    Click image to enlarge
    • gla01
    • gla02
    • gla03
    • gla04
    • gla05
    • gla06
    • gla07
    • gla08
    • gla09
    • gla10
    • gla11
    • gla12
    • gla13
    • gla14
    • gla15
    • gla16
    • gla17
    • gla18
    • gla19