Oenomaus (rebel slave)

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Slave leader
Personal details
Born Gaul
Died 73/72 BC
Southern Italy
Nationality Gallic
Military service
Battles/wars Third Servile War

Oenomaus was a Gallic gladiator,[1] who escaped from the gladiatorial school of Lentulus Batiatus in Capua. Together with the Thracian Spartacus and the fellow Gauls Crixus, Castus and Gannicus, he became one of the leaders of rebellious slaves during the Third Servile War (73–71 BC)

Oenomaus was involved in one of the first major successes of the slave army, the rout of the army of the praetor Gaius Claudius Glaber, who had tried to lay siege to the slave army near Mount Vesuvius.

Oenomaus fell in an early battle, possibly during the winter of 73–72 BC when the slave armies were plundering cities and towns in the south of Italy.[2]

In popular culture[edit]

  • Oenomaus appears as a character in Jeff Wayne's Musical Version of Spartacus.
  • Oenomaus is portrayed by Peter Mensah in the Starz television series Spartacus.[3][4] At first, he is known simply by the title of "Doctore" (which means 'teacher') and is the trainer of gladiators for Batiatus' ludus. In the series, the character is re-imagined as a Numidian, rather than a Gaul.
  • Oenomaus appears as a named Legendary spear-type gladiator in the Freyr Games mobile app Call of Arena.
  • Oenomaus appears in the Ubisoft game "Spartacus Legends" as a sword and shield fighting type, who can be unlocked after his defeat.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Orosius, Histories 5.24.1
  2. ^ Orosius, Histories 5.24.2; Bradley 96
  3. ^ Starz. "Peter Mensah in Spartacus: Blood and Sand". Retrieved April 16, 2010. 
  4. ^ Starz. "Peter Mensah in Spartacus: Gods of the Arena". Retrieved April 16, 2010. 

Ancient sources[edit]

  • Orosius, Histories 5.24.1-2
  • Appian, Civil Wars 1.116
  • Florus, Epitome 2.8.20

Secondary literature[edit]

  • Bradley, Keith. Slavery and Rebellion in the Roman World. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1989. ISBN 0-253-31259-0