portrait of Fuscus

I am Fuscus, top charioteer for the Greens; I'm sure you've heard of me, since I'm celebrated all over Rome as the first driver ever to win the palm of victory on his very first race. I was born a slave in North Africa and worked as a stable-boy in one of the ranches where horses are bred for the Green stable, but the owners soon saw how talented I was and sent me to Rome to train as a driver. When I started my training with the Greens they named me Fuscus ("dark, dusky"), probably because of the color of my skin. All the girls say that I am very handsome, the best-looking of all the charioteers (I'm not bragging, just telling you what they say). I may be a slave, but my cash stash (peculium) is very healthy, since the stable owners give me a substantial portion of the prize money I win. Anyway, these stables are rolling in money (just look at the sarcophagus one of them had made--notice all the moneybags--he certainly wanted everybody to know how rich he was). One of the owners always wears this gold ring with a scene from the Circus Maximus; he gave me a special bonus when I won a race after two false starts (revocati). Wherever I go, I carry the amulet my mother gave me before I left Africa. The Anguipede is a powerful magic totem with a rooster's head and snake legs. I need it to ward off the black magic and curses people conjure up against winners like me. I once had a "shipwreck" (naufragium) on the track when my lead horse hit the turning post (meta) and I fell from the chariot. We all wrap the reins around our bodies to steer the horses, but now I was really in trouble. I whipped out my dagger and cut the reins before my horses dragged me to my death.

My good friend and fellow-slave Machao has promised to commemorate me when I die. But I don't plan to check out any time soon. Life is too good and I have a lot more races to win!


Scroll for Fuscus