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Ceremonial or symbolic sword, made often of brass or bronze and wood, awarded to a fighter or gladiator after surviving a great number of battles in the Colliseum. Practice believed to be started by Roman gamesmen to salute those who freed themselves by struggle and their own efforts. Symbolism lies in struggle to earn one's freedom. Motifs include violence leading to redemption and ultimately freedom.
Proximo(Oliver Reed) from Ridley Scott's "Gladiator" told Maximus(Russell Crowe) how Marcus Aurelius(Richard Harris) gave him his rudius after he touched him on the shoulder..

Proximo: Listen to me. Learn from me. I was not the best because I killed quickly. I was the best because the crowd loved me. Win the crowd and you will win your freedom.
by Ismail Sabbah June 20, 2008
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