First appearance S0E01: Past Transgressions
S1E02: Sacramentum Gladiatorum
Last appearance S1E07: Great and Unfortunate Things
Profession Gladiator (House of Batiatus)
Race Dacian (Possibly Getae)
Relationships Pietros (Victim, deceased)
Barca (Rival, deceased)
Gannicus (Friend, deceased)
Spartacus (Rival, deceased)
Crixus (Friend, deceased)
Hamilcar (Friend, deceased)
Status Deceased (Killed by Spartacus)
Actor/Actress Raicho Vasilev

Gnaeus is one of several gladiators in Batiatus' Ludus.


Gnaeus is a talented gladiator in Batiatus' ludus. He is big of stature, bald, and his body shows the signs of many past battles. He is known for his strength and experience, as a Retiarius he uses net, trident and dagger and hand to hand in battle. He is shown to have been converted to this style during the events of the prequel, Gods of the Arena.


Although Gnaeus has stable standing in the ludus as a Gladiator, he envies Barca because Barca humiliated him in the arena, and his lover, Pietros. When Barca vanishes, Gnaeus forces Pietros to his will and abuses him. Once confronted about it, Gnaeus shows no shame and mocks the slave in death.

Combat ProwessEdit

An aspiring gladiator of some renown, Gnaeus is a proven combatant in the arena. He is one of the more able gladiators of the ludus. While first using the standard shield and sword combination, he is forced to switched fighting styles due to not having much skill with it. When using a rope and trident, Gnaeus shows considerable skill in the arena, often finding himself in the Primus.

Gods of the ArenaEdit


Gnaeus as Thraex.

Gnaeus is characterized as one of the lesser men at this time. He spends most of his time training and socializing with the other gladiators.

He is excited when he gets the opportunity to fight Barca in the arena. During their fight, however, he is bested by the Hoplomachus, but is spared from death by the editor of the games. This leaves Gnaeus both spiteful and envious of Barca.

His inability to fight with sword and shield has his class changed to which he becomes a Retiarius. When informed of this by newly appointed Doctore, Oenomaus, he is angry and defiant. This leads Oenomaus to whip him, asserting his authority as Doctore over the gladiators. Gnaues then complies with his orders and switches to the Retiarius style.

Although he is made fun of for it often and dislikes it himself, he displays great skill with the net and tident and begins to climb up the gladiatorial hierarchy as one of the more skilled men.

During a contest in which Titus Lentulus Batiatus attemtps to rank the gladiators, Gnaeus faces off in his first fight against Pollux, the two verbally taunt one another before their fight but it is unknown which of them was victorious. He would later fight against Ashur who he is able to best and humiliate in front of the others.

Gnaeus 1

Gnaeus as Retiarius.

He is chosen as one of the many gladiators by Batiatus to beat and capture both Tullius and Vettius. Disguised with Ashur as Syrian traders, they quickly overwhelm Batiatus' rivals and defeat them.

He is given a place to fight in the opening games of the new arena and fights valiantly, gaining position to fight in the Primus.

During the Primus battle, he is successful in killing two of Solonius' gladiators before being knocked out of the ring by Caburus, surviving the overall battle, but losing the chance to become Champion of Capua.

He bids farewell to Gannicus alongside all the other gladiators after the latter gained his freedom, before returning to their regular day of training. 

Blood and SandEdit

Gnaeus is one of the higher tier gladiators and of great skill as a Retiarius. Varro faces him during the final test to which they end up fighting to a draw.

He is set to face Crixus in the Primus of the Vulcanalia. He overhears Spartacus' disrespect over the results to which Gnaeus insults the Thracian saying that one day he may prove himself, but for now he must fight "in the morning with the rest of the shits".

Spartacus later antagonizes Gnaeus to the point he is too injured to fight. He is then replaced in the Primus by Rabanus and then by Spartacus after the latter manipulated it into his favor.

After Barca's "departure" from the Batiatus' Ludus, Pietros is left to fend for himself. Gnaeus takes advantage of this vulnerability and Pietros unwillingly becomes his whore. Unlike Barca, Gnaeus beats Pietros and leaves visible marks on his face and body.


Gnaeus is thrown to his death.

This mistreatment, among other things, leads to Pietros’ suicide. Angered after Pietros took his life, Spartacus assaults Gnaeus in the courtyard, but the fight is stopped by Doctore. Gnaeus makes a few more snide remarks about Pietros, wherein Spartacus grabs him by the throat and sends him flying off the cliff.

He is last seen falling to his death, his body dashed on the rocks below.


  • Raicho Vasilev, the actor who plays Gnaeus, is 183cm tall and weighs 97kg (about 214lbs).[1]
    • Raicho has also played a Dimachaerus gladiator named Comodus in the 2004 film Spartacus, and fought against Spartacus in the arena.
    • Raicho is a native of Bulgaria. He shows experience in Kickboxing in past films.
    • Raicho Vasilev is also Liam McIntyre's stunt double thoughout Vengeance and War of the Damned.
    • In addition to playing Gnaeus, Raicho Vasilev also performed the roles of Ixion and Caratacus.
  • Gnaeus originally fought as a thraex but was forced to learn the retiarius due to his lack of skill with the sword and shield. He is the only retiarius in Batiatus' ludus, but Batiatus boasts that he is the top of that class in all of Capua. It is likely that Gnaeus never suited the thraex fighting style because his large frame took away the agility needed. As a retiarius, his long arms and strength are put to good use.
    • When he switches his weapons in Gods of the Arena, he shows a lot of skill as a retiarius in the inauguration of the arena of Capua, enough to burn an enemy gladiator with his net and survive the primus uninjured.
    • Gnaeus and Spartacus are the only two gladiators that switch their fighting style in the series.
  • Gnaeus is a dacian, therefore possibly related to the Getae. This might explain his aggressive attitude towards Spartacus, as the Getae and Thracians were enemies.
    • Though a, Gnaeus is a Roman name (Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus for example). This would mean that, like most slaves, his name was given to him.


  • (About his match up with Crixus) "I will fuck your corpse." [2]
  • (About his match up with Barca)"Yes, fuck you! Gnaeus fight Barca."
  • (About Spartacus' disrespect) "Did you hear this one? One day maybe you prove yourself, but until then, you fight at dawn with the rest of the shitholes."
  • (About Pietros' suicide) 'He will be missed...especially his lips around my cock.[3]


  2. Spartacus: Blood and Sand Season 1; Episode 3
  3. Spartacus: Blood and Sand Season 1; Episode 7

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