THIS spectacular fresco of two Roman gladiators has been unearthed in Pompeii, just days before the anniversary of the 24 October 79 AD eruption of Vesuvius.
The gruesome fresco shows one gladiator standing triumphant as his opponent staggers ... one arm having been hacked off ... blood spurting profusely from numerous horrific wounds.
He has raised his index finger in the gesture known as "missio" ... "mercy" ... to spare his life.
Culture Minister Dario Franceschini expressed delight after archaeologists uncovered the fresco of what he described as "Two gladiators at the end of a fight."
"It is an unprecedented discovery by Pompeii archaeologists who, for the first time since 79 AD, are excavating an area of Pompeii never investigated before.
"It is a wonder that the whole world will admire."