[ree-shee-air-ee-uh s]

noun, plural re·ti·ar·i·i [ree-shee-air-ee-ahy, -air-ee-ee] /ˌri ʃiˈɛər iˌaɪ, -ˈɛər iˌi/. Roman History.

a gladiator equipped with a net for casting over his opponent.

Origin of retiarius

1640–50; < Latin, equivalent to rēt- (stem of rēte net) + -i- -i- + -ārius -arius Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for retiarius

Historical Examples of retiarius

  • In the distance is the retiarius, who must fight Hyppolitus in his turn.

  • The arm of the retiarius was covered on a sudden with blood, and his net dropped.

    Quo Vadis

    Henryk Sienkiewicz

  • Everybody had recalled or been reminded of her rescue of the retiarius.

    The Unwilling Vestal

    Edward Lucas White

  • Everybody knew of my rescue of the retiarius, thousands had seen me rescue him.

    The Unwilling Vestal

    Edward Lucas White

  • An American football player in full armour resembles a deep-sea diver or a Roman retiarius more than anything else.

    The Land of Contrasts

    James Fullarton Muirhead

British Dictionary definitions for retiarius


noun plural -arii (-ˈɛərɪˌaɪ)

(in ancient Rome) a gladiator armed with a net and trident

Word Origin for retiarius

Latin, from rēte net
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012