Events Surrounding the SpeechEdit
The massacre at the ludus of Quintus Lentulus Batiatus was the culmination of a series of events which would ignite the Third Servile War (Latin: Tertium Bellum Servile) of 73-71 BC. The event occurred following a celebration at the estate of Batiatus in Capua. The soiree was held to celebrate Batiatus' sponsorship for office by the Roman legatus Gaius Claudius Glaber.
After the initial gladiatorial bout between Spartacus and Crixus, the gladiators attacked in force and quickly gained entry into the villa, where most of the killing of the ludus' guests took place.
Content of the SpeechEdit
Spartacus' Pro Casus Rebellionis was delivered immediately following the killing of the guards and nobility that were in attendance. The speech was given by Spartacus to an unknown number of surviving gladiators and slaves while standing over the dead bodies of Batiatus and his wife Lucretia.
- "I have done this thing because it is just. Blood demands blood. We have lived and lost at the whims of our masters for too long. I would not have it so. I would not see the passing of a brother, for the purpose of sport. I would not see another heart ripped from chest, or breath forfeit for no cause. I know not all of you wish this, yet it is done. It is done. Your lives are your own. Forge your own path, or join with us, and together we shall see Rome tremble."
Spartacus’ argument was that of the circumstances surrounding the violent crime: that they (gladiators and slaves) existed as nothing more than mere fodder for the amusement of others; ergo, the lives of slaves were severely devalued when they were forced to kill each other for their masters’ entertainment.
Outcome and AftermathEdit
Spartacus' Pro Casus Rebellionis succeeded in securing the support of all who were audience to it, including slaves who held closer relationships to their now dead masters. The speech could be seen as the beginning of the Third Servile War.
With Spartacus in the lead, a large egress from the gates of the ludus and villa follows, which includes the house servants and surviving gladiators of Batiatus’ estate. Among them are Crixus, Agron, Mira and Aurelia.