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Testikles (died 428 BCE) was a Spartan pankratiast Olympic champion who represented his polis in the Olympic games during the 5th century BCE.

Testikles' half-brother, Testiklos the Nut, was a mercenary.[1]

Biography

During the 432 BCE Olympics, Testikles went out drinking with Paios, the Pankration organizer. Following this, Testikles made advances on both Paios' wife as well as his brother; something Paios remembered even four years later.[2]

Around 428 BCE, Testikles met the exiled Spartan misthios Kassandra after one of the two Kings of Sparta, Pausanias, ordered her to escort Testikles to the Olympic games in Elis as a condition for reclaiming Spartan citizenship for her family. Brasidas suggested she find Testikles by speaking to his trainer, Alkon at the dromos of Sparta. Training his other charges, Alkon told Kassandra that he had ordered Testikles to train at a small island in Messenia in order to prevent any further incidents with his volatile temper, for he had previously assaulted six men and a bull while on a simple errand to buy fruit at the market.[3]

When Kassandra first found Testikles at his residence, he was in a drunken stupor after having consumed several amphorae of wine, which he claimed was for training. It took some convincing before the athlete agreed to accompany the mercenary aboard her ship the Adrestia, and journey to Elis.[3]

During the voyage, two members of the crew, Barnabas and Herodotos, were in awe of Testikles, and delighted to be in the company of an Olympic champion, asking him to share stories of his past victories.[3]

Death

Upon arriving safely in Elis, Kassandra met with another friend, the Athenian socialite Alkibiades, who the still drunken Testikles promptly fell into a small row with. A freak accident followed this, when Testikles attempted to embrace Kassandra, only for the mercenary to evade him, which led to Testikles tripping on a bowl of fruit and falling off the and dock and into the sea. Either due to inability or drunkenness, Testikles was unable to swim and shortly drowned, before being attacked by sharks. While Barnabas and Herodotos expressed their shock and dismay at this tragic twist of fate, Alkibiades noted that Kassandra would have to take his place now.[3]

Personality and characteristics

Testikles was an extremely enthusiastic, wine-loving, passionate, and skilled athlete, despite his propensity to be violent, unintelligent, and crude at the same time. It was his manner to rambunctiously bellow every single word he spoke and to get himself into brawls over the course of mundane errands, habits which were not helped by his alcoholism. Nevertheless, he still brought Sparta no small measure of glory from his past victories in Pankration, so much so that even historians and sailors who travelled far and wide had heard his exploits and were awed by them. He was quite proud of his allegiance to Sparta, to the point where he gleefully shouted "SPARTA! WOO!" every time anyone within his earshot said the name, ignoring the context.[3]

His victories have mostly been to his brute strength than any measure of strategy or cunning, as in his own words, "Strategy is for people that don't hit hard enough". He was a highly impulsive and instinctive fighter, kicking an opponent in the head rather than wrestling them into submission because he "felt like it". He moreover harbored a a superstitious side to him, attributing his victories to a special brand of body oil, though he also stated that he merely enjoyed the sensation of being oiled.[3]

Trivia

  • The name is derived from Latin word testis, meaning 'witness'.

Gallery

Appearances

References

  1. Assassin's Creed: Odyssey
  2. Assassin's Creed: OdysseyThe Contender
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Assassin's Creed: OdysseyDelivering a Champion

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