Roman Baths

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  • Created by: MaaB
  • Created on: 12-06-16 17:17

Introductions And Exercise

  • The emperors built thermae (luxury bathing establishments).
  • These included baths, an open-air exercise area, surrounded by fountains, gardens, shops, restrooms, massage parlours, and libraries.
  • Emperor Hadrian believed in bathing publicly and would attend the public baths - despite having his own at home, to allow him to meet people.
  • Baths would open around noon.
  • After a light lunch, a Roman citizen would set off for the baths.
  • On arrival, they would pay a small entrance fee (though some baths were free) and walked to the palestra, where they would exercise in various ways to work up a sweat for the baths.
  • They would run, throw discus, wrestle, box.
  • They also played ball games such as trigon where small hard balls were thrown at each other.
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Bathing And Other Activities

  • When they had exercised enough, the Romans would enter the apodyterium where they deposited their clothes and an attendant would guard them.
  • The sequence of bathing would depend on how good the baths were best baths offered dry and wet heat.
  • Bathers would begin in the sudatorium, a dry sweat room and moved to the caladium where there was a large heated bath.
  • After this, slaves would scrape their master's skin with a blunt metal scraper called a strigil to remove dirt.
  • Some Romans would then have a massage before going to the tepidarium and frigidarium to cool off.
  • People who didn't bathe could stroll in the garden of the baths or relax in shady spots.
  • Some would play games like checkers and dice.
  • Brothels and bars were often joined onto the baths.
  • Many Roman men would visit either before or after bathing.
  • In Pompeii, there is graffiti on the walls of the baths: "wine, sex and the baths destroy our bodies. But what makes life worth living is - wine, sex and the baths."
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