Find the word definition

The Collaborative International Dictionary

Gladius \Gla"di*us\, n.; pl. Gladii. [L., a sword.] (Zo["o]l.) The internal shell, or pen, of cephalopods like the squids.


n. 1 (context historical English) A Roman sword roughly two feet long. 2 (context zoology English) A pen, the internal skeleton of squid made of chitin-like material.


Gladius (; , ) was one Latin word for sword and is used to represent the primary sword of Ancient Roman foot soldiers. Early ancient Roman swords were similar to those used by the Greeks. From the 3rd century BC, the Romans adopted swords similar to those used by the Celtiberians and others during the early part of the conquest of Hispania. This sword was known as the gladius hispaniensis, or " Hispanic Sword".

A fully equipped Roman legionary after the reforms of Gaius Marius was armed with a shield ( scutum), one or two javelins ( pila), a sword (gladius), often a dagger ( pugio), and perhaps, in the later Empire period, darts ( plumbatae). Conventionally, the javelins would be thrown to disable the shields and disrupt the formation of the enemy before engaging in close combat, for which the gladius would be drawn. The soldier generally led with his shield and thrust with his sword. All types of gladius appear to have also been suitable for cutting and chopping motions as well as for thrusting.

Gladius (video game)

Gladius is a tactical role-playing video game developed and published by LucasArts and Activision. It was released in for the GameCube, Xbox, and PlayStation 2 video game consoles.

Gladius (disambiguation)

The word gladius can mean:

  • Gladius, a Roman sword
  • Gladius (cephalopod), a hard internal bodypart found in certain cephalopods
  • Gladius (video game), a tactical role-playing video game
  • Suzuki SFV650 Gladius, a motorcycle
Gladius (cephalopod)

The gladius (plural: gladii), or pen, is a hard internal bodypart found in many cephalopods of the superorder Decapodiformes (particularly squids) and in a single extant member of the Octopodiformes, the vampire squid (Vampyroteuthis infernalis). It is so named for its superficial resemblance to the Roman short sword of the same name, and is a vestige of the ancestral mollusc shell, which was external. The gladius is located dorsally within the mantle and usually extends for its entire length. Composed primarily of chitin, it lies within the shell sac, which is responsible for its secretion.

Gladii are known from a number of extinct cephalopod groups, including teudopseids (e.g. Actinosepia, Glyphiteuthis, Muensterella, Palaeololigo, Teudopsinia, Teudopsis, and Trachyteuthis), loligosepiids (e.g. Geopeltis, Jeletzkyteuthis, and Loligosepia), and prototeuthids (e.g. Dorateuthis, Paraplesioteuthis, and Plesioteuthis).

Usage examples of "gladius".

Grabbing the gladius from lifeless fingers, he leaped to his feet and charged a Roman who was pulling his sword out of a fallen clansman.

The instructor was easy to spot, for he was tall, powerfully built, wore a heavily armored leather tunic, and was the only one carrying a gladius, which remained in the sheath at his belt.

Tharacus drew his gladius and slammed the flat of it against Atretes, cold steel pressed against his abdomen.

To that end, he became expert with the gladius, though Tharacus assigned him more frequently the trident and net of the retiarius.

Adrenaline still raced through his body, and he threw off one guard and drove his fist into the abdomen of the other, yanking the gladius from his scabbard as he fell.

Tangled in it like a thrashing wild animal, he was pinned face down in the sand, and the gladius was pried from his hand.

Atretes looked the young aristocrat over as he was making practice swings with his gladius, then grinned at Bato.

The Roman, having salvaged enough of his pride to dust himself off, strode back into the small arena to pick up his gladius with an air of dignity.

Atretes stared back coldly, wishing his wrists were unshackled and he had a gladius in his hand.

Atretes leaped back as the gladius flashed, opening a six-inch gash on his chest.

Gripping his gladius tighter, Atretes rose to his feet and made ready to fight again, knowing this time he would die.

When the others finished their preening for the mob and joined the formation, Atretes drew his gladius and held it up with the others.

With brute force, Atretes battered the retiarius with scutum and gladius until he found an opening.

The crowd gasped and grew quiet, but he used his gladius and pushed himself up again.

He dropped quickly into a crouch and drew the gladius inch by inch, to avoid sound.