Lentulus Batiatus

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Gnaeus Cornelius Lentulus Batiatus[1] (or, possibly, Vatia[2]) was the Roman owner of a gladiatorial school in Capua. It was from this school that, in 73 BC, the Thracian slave Spartacus and about 70 to 78 followers escaped. The breakout led to the slave rebellion known as the Third Servile War (73–71 BC).[3]

Identity and origins[edit]

Shackleton Bailey noted that the name ('Batiatus'), as recorded by the ancient historians, could be a corrupted form of the cognomen Vatia. Cornelius Lentulus Vatia would then have been either a Servilius Vatia by birth adopted into the Cornelii Lentuli or else a Cornelius Lentulus by birth adopted into the Servilii Vatiae.[2]

Portrayal in media[edit]

Batiatus was played by Peter Ustinov in Stanley Kubrick's 1960 film, Spartacus, for which Ustinov won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.[4]

Ian McNeice played Batiatus in the 2004 television adaptation Spartacus.[5]

John Hannah played Batiatus (here given the first name Quintus) in the 2010 Starz television series Spartacus: Blood and Sand and the 2011 Spartacus: Gods of the Arena.[6]


  1. ^ McGushin, Patrick (1991) Sallust: The Histories, p.113
  2. ^ a b Shackleton Bailey, David. R. (1991) Two Studies in Roman Nomenclature, p.73
  3. ^ Plutarch, Life of Crassus, 8
  4. ^ IMDb, Peter Ustinov, Awards
  5. ^ IMDb, Spartacus (TV 2004)
  6. ^ Starz. "John Hannah on Spartacus: Blood and Sand". Archived from the original on July 17, 2011. Retrieved February 22, 2010.

External links[edit]