No ancient times were not more violent than now. History records the drama, the moments of impact and the morbid fascination we have for the dark side of human nature. No one ever wrote a book about a life of uneventful peace and eternal tranquility, well they might have but it's probably so dull no one else read it! Away from the politics and the battles I'm sure farming in some rural backwater somewhere was just as tedious as working nine to five is now. Neither is slavery dead, but this is the wrong place to bring that up without risking a storm of indignant justification, so forget I wrote that please!
Yes I suppose you are being realistic up to a point in describing how you visualise tearing apart a living human body but you can't know what that feels like, so to write a story for the sexual gratification of your audience, assuming you do know cannot be realistic. Worse, never in a million years can anyone who hasn't been tortured understand how it feels. Isn't the erotic power in being tortured in the fear before hand, in the journey from being caught stealing coins in the first place to being locked onto the whipping post where that end was a certainty all the way through. Would Gabrielle have known from the moment she was apprehended that she might be flogged to death? Her fear is where the thrill in her story lies, not in the gory detail of the sad and sorry death itself, if you ask me.
Well, as a matter of fact, ancient times WERE more violent than now. There are dozens of ways to put that in evidence, one has just to look at history. Or maybe you are compelled to go at war and kill your enemies by stubbing a sword in their guts and looking at them die? Or from time to time you bring your childern in the market square to wathc people being killed in the most horrible ways? How many times your city has been put to siege in the last twenty years and the whole population has been killed? Or maybe you live in a country where the ius primae noctis still hold? By the way, some of the greatest pieces of literature coming from the ancient world ARE about a quiteful life in the countryside (remember the "Bucolica"?)
About your personal tastes, nice, now we are aware of them, you are welcome to write any story you like, or anything else according to what you prefer. Personally I am not interested at all in those details about the fear, the "recoil from the sound of my cell door clanking open", or things like that, since I found all that stuff a big turn off for me. But it's my personal view, I would never write that in a thread where you or somebody wrote a story following the style that you like About my descriptions, well, I tried to write what I felt realistic, based on what I know, thanks for the appreciation...