|First appearance||S1E01: The Red Serpent|
|Last appearance||S2E10: Wrath of the Gods|
|Relationships||Albinius (Father, deceased)|
Claudius Glaber (Husband, deceased)
Lucretia (Friend, deceased)
Domitia (Friend, deceased)
Segovax (Own-Gladiator, deceased)
Ilithyia's son (Son, deceased)
Caecilia (Friend, deceased)
Licinia (Friend, deceased)
Spartacus (Enemy, deceased)
Aemilia (Friend, deceased)
Thessela (Body Slave, deceased)
Amana (Body Slave, deceased)
Publius Varinius (Love Interest, deceased)
Seppia (Friend/Rival, deceased)
|Status||Deceased (Killed by Lucretia)|
Ilithyia is a major character in the Spartacus series. She is a wealthy Roman woman, the daughter of Senator Albinius, and the wife of Praetor Gaius Claudius Glaber. She is close friends with Lucretia, however, their lively relationship is more than meets the eye. In Vengeance, Ilithyia becomes pregnant and her pregnancy unknowingly plays a large role in the beginning stages of the war in which becomes a link between the two possible fathers: Spartacus and Glaber.
Ilithyia has long, wavy blonde hair and blue eyes and is of average height. Due to her father's wealth she is always seen wearing lavish dresses and extravagant jewelry, whatever is fashionable amongst the higher levels of Roman society.
Ilithyia is married to Gaius Claudius Glaber and shares many of his deceitful traits. She is a coquette and devious young woman underneath her more innocent appearance, individual and manipulative without aid of her husband. She, along with her husband, share a strong dislike for Spartacus and longs to see him dead. In contradiction, she is highly fascinated by the other gladiators, in particular Crixus. She admires their strength and ferocity in battle, after a suggestion from Lucretia, buys one of her own. She hopes to make some of her friends in high Roman circles jealous of this purchase, but is seen to still be the one trying to amuse them and gain their approval.
Ilithyia enjoys her friendship with Lucretia, if perhaps this is only to gain entrance to the world of the gladiators. However, she does not hold back from slighting Lucretia, by mentioning a piece of jewelry is out of fashion or her house is not acceptable to the upper class Roman standards.
Ilithyia has an interest in dangerous and socially dubious actions. For instance, enjoying watching Varro have
sex with one of the slaves, claiming he is like a beast untamed. She seduces Numerius at his birthday celebration to incite him to ask for a death-match against Batiatus interests, which results in the death of Varro. She is not afraid to risk others for her purpose. She instructs her gladiator Segovax to make an attempt on Spartacus' life because he slighted her husband, even though her gladiator is caught and crucified as punishment.
Despite the fact that she strongly dislikes Spartacus, She seems to grow an attraction based on lust towards him, as seen from when she begins to pleasure herself to the memory of the night she and Spartacus have sexual intercourse.
Blood and Sand
Ilithyia is introduced alongside her husband, Glaber, as he tries to persuade the Thracians to aid him in battle. Ilithyia surprises Glaber by arriving at the camp unannounced, claiming she brings him a "gift" - herself, completely
nude under a thick fur coat. She wishes to please her husband and promises that if he does well she can put good words in with her father to promote him. When the Thracian later known as Spartacus and his colleague report movement among the Getae armies, Ilithyia spurs her husband to abandon his post and his word, unknowingly inciting the Thracians into mutiny and desertion.
In Capua, Ilithyia entreats her father, Senator Albinius, to give her husband a chance at redemption for his disgrace with the Thracians, to which he grudgingly agrees. He warns Ilithyia, however, that he will not listen to further persuasions.
Glaber visits Batiatus' Ludus to humiliate Spartacus by informing him of his wife, Sura's enslavement. Meanwhile, Lucretia entertains Ilithyia, and despite Ilithyia's distaste for the food and drink (and the overall
environment), the two eventually form a sort of friendship as they both reveal a more devious and cunning nature. Ilithyia is intrigued to see what use Lucretia may yet bring her, and is fascinated by the gladiators practicing in the training area below.
Gradually they become closer friends, Ilithyia visiting the ludus more often and for longer periods of time. They are even seen exchanging kisses on various occasions that are rather more intimate than those between friends. Ilithyia decides to give a gift upon Lucretia, after learning that, despite many years of marriage, Lucretia has yet to produce a child, and brings in a priestess supposedly talented in helping cure infertility. The woman's questions lead to Ilithyia finding out about Lurcretia's secret lover, Crixus.
Batiatus purchases a new group of gladiators, amongst them Segovax, Duro and Agron. Ilithyia sees them as they come in and Lucretia convinces her to purchase one. Ilithyia, unable to decide, ends up choosing Segovax for his impressive physical attributes (meaning his larger than average penis, which she compares to th
at of a horse, showing how lustful she can be). In an attempt to make her friends jealous of her newest purchase, Ilithyia comes to the ludus with three of her acquaintances, Licinia, Aemilia and Caecilia. The three are unimpressed by Segovax but fascinated by Spartacus, to Ilithyia's disgust. She expresses her distaste for Spartacus by cutting the skin on his chest to take some blood, which, according to legend, gives a man an erection that will last for days when drunk with wine. Ilithyia gets angry when Licinia compliments Spartaucs by calling him a god she shouts "He is nothing more than a Thracian dog! His treachery dishonored Rome" Spartacus rebukes this by saying" It is your husband that bears the dishonor he abandoned defenseless women and children left them to be raped and murdered" She gets angry saying she would have him crucified if he were her slave but her three friends laugh at her for overreacting saying they all heard the rumors about glaber's dealing in Thrace they depart, leaving her alone with Lucretia. Ilithyia later offers Segovax his freedom if he takes Spartacus' life for her, but Crixus manages to save him (although he still counts Spartacus as an enemy). Segovax does not reveal it was Ilithyia to Batiatus, who is then emasculated and crucified.
One morning soon after, Ilithyia walks in on Licinia meeting with Lucretia, and figures out the meaning of the meeting; Licinia is arranging an intimate meeting with a gladiator, namely Spartacus. She confesses to having had similar desires herself, and Lucretia encourages her to the decision of fulfilling them. But when Ilithyia chooses to bed Crixus, Lucretia is driven into a visibly jealous rage. When Batiatus questions her, she lies to him that Ilithyia demanded Crixus in a disrespectful manner. Batiatus tells her that they must endure Ilithyia's bad manners and give Ilithyia what she wants to secure Glaber's patronage. Lucretia is still not moved, and devises a switch. Spartacus is painted and masked in preparation to meet Licinia, but instead is paired with Ilithyia, also masked. They are unaware of the swap. Lucretia plans it so that Licinia
walks in on Spartacus and Ilithyia in bed, revealing their real identities. Spartacus is enraged and begins to choke Ilithyia, but is quickly removed by the guards. Meanwhile, Licinia speaks of how scandalous it is that she would sleep with a gladiator - and Spartacus, nonetheless - and mocks Ilithyia so much so that she falls into a rage and attacks Licinia, smashing her skull multiple times into the marble tile.
When Ilithyia has calmed down, is shaken by the ordeal and terrified of going back in public, fearing somebody will see her and know what she did. Lucretia reassures her and offers her temporary housing in exchange for certain services. The Balance of the relationship changes, with Lucretia becoming the more dominant. Ilithyia fears what Lucretia could say about her and does as she asks when Lucretia wants the noblemen and -women of Rome to be invited to the ludus for Numerius' birthday party.
The party is the first social event Ilithyia attends after Licinia's death. She appears normal and mingles with the guests, whilst devising a plan to take her revenge on Spartacus. She finds Numerius relaxing in the ludus bath and seduces him by joining him, naked, in the pool. She tells him that he must choose Varro to fight Spartacus instead of Crixus, and that Varro must die. Numerius does as she asks, and the effect is as intended; Spartacus' spirit is
broken by the death of his closest friend.
As time goes on, the friendship between Lucretia and Ilithyia sours as Lucretia asks for more and more favors. Ilithyia points out that she is being treated like a slave, but takes comfort in the fact that Glaber will soon return and together they will leave for Rome. When Glaber arrives, Batiatus asks for his patronage, which Glaber has no interest in giving. Batiatus brings out a "gift", which turns out to be Licinia's severed, rotting hand, recognizable by the rings on the fingers. He tells Glaber of how Licinia met her end, and Glaber hits Ilithyia for doing something so atrocious. He leaves her in the care of Lucretia, knowing he is condemning her to servitude, until he can return to grudgingly confirm the patronage.
Ilithyia is still in the ludus when Batiatus organize's a party to celebrate Glaber as a patron amongst the socialites of Rome and Capua. She reads a letter, which - although written by Batiatus - claims that Glaber has become a patron of the ludus. When the gladiators revolt, Lucretia orders Ilithyia to have her guards combat the Gladiators. Ilithyia smiles, saying she will do so, but instead leaves the ludus with her guards and slaves. Ignoring the pleas of Lucretia and Aemilia, she closes the door behind her and locks them inside.
In the beginning of Spartacus: Vengeance, we find Ilithyia apparently shifting from her scheming former self into the role of a forgotten wife and soon-to-be mother. Unfortunately for her, the trail of blood and destruction she left behind at Batiatus' Ludus when she barricaded the inhabitants within will not be forgotten. As her husband's desire for her wanes, she becomes ever more vulnerable. When Glaber begins his war against Spartacus, he orders Ilithyia back to Capua with him and his army and she is condemned by her husband to live in the bloody ruins of the House of Batiatus. Shortly after arriving, she is found by Lucretia, who has been presumed dead over a month. Although Lucretia appears to have gone crazy and lost all memory of what happened the ludus, Ilithyia is wary of her and grows distraught as her husband decides to use Lucretia to further his image with the people of Capua. She soon returns to her schemes as she shifts her attention from her husband Glaber to Varinius, a high ranking and wealthy Roman who is also a praetor. Ilithyia approaches her father with the aim of dissolving her marriage. Although her father never cared for Glaber in the first place, he refuses to dissolve her marriage. Ilithyia begins dropping hints of her intentions around Varinius, who reveals he is more than willing to marry her.
Pleased with this discovery, Ilithyia happily glides through the villa looking for her father, whom she finds in bed with Lucretia. Furious at Lucretia's apparent betrayal, she throws Lucretia to the floor and threatens to bash her head in on the tiles, just as she did to Licinia. Lucretia reveals that she remembers everything, but Ilithyia only releases her after Lucretia says she slept with Ilithyia's father in order to convince him to dissolve the marriage. So-called "friends" once more, Ilithyia discovers that Lucretia, as a "gift from the Gods", may be much more useful then she first realized.
As preparations begin to dissolve Ilithyia's marriage to Glaber, she decides she needs to get rid of Glaber's child as well, but she hesitates when the potion that will kill the child is in her hand. Lucretia arrives and manages to dissuade her, by saying the potion will make her sick and cause her to bleed for days, causing her absence at the games to come into question. Unfortunately for Ilithyia, the potion is discovered by Glaber, who was informed of its existence by Ashur. (Ashur acted under the advice of Lucretia - although not specifically what Lucretia asked of him.) Realizing his defeat, Glaber joins her at the games for one last display of supposed partnership.
While Glaber fumes throughout the event, Ilithyia joyously enjoys Varinius' presence in the pulpit. Her joy is brief, however, as Spartacus brings down the arena in flames in an attempt to rescue his captured comrades. In the ensuing chaos, Ilithyia's father gets caught in the falling debris. He is found by Glaber who promptly smashes his head in with a large beam before rejoining the others outside, thereby destroying the one person able to dissolve their marriage.
He informs Ilithyia of her father's death in front of Varinius and Lucretia, and says in a cold, harsh voice that she will be a wife to him and a mother to their child. Although Ilithyia looks to Varinius for help, he realizes there is nothing he can do, and he leaves her crying in a heap.
In the ensuing days, Ilithyia is disheveled (it was customary for those in mourning to remain unbathed until the mourning period was over) and upset, listening to her late father's will being read out while Glaber stands uninterested, scheming. He asks Ilithyia why she is crying - is it because her father is dead or because her plans were foiled? He commands her to bathe, despite tradition, and guard their child with her life - or he will kill her.
Her plans ruined, Glaber's love gone, and her life in constant danger, Ilithyia seeks out Lucretia. She tells Ilithyia to be a loving wife, and when the time comes, they will strike. As Glaber's attentions wander to the young Seppia, who shares his affections, Lucretia comes up with a plan to make it appear that the Gods are unhappy that Ilithyia is in Capua and that the Gods will it that she should be sent away. Glaber, fearful of his child's life, agrees to send her away, although not with Lucretia as they had both wanted.
On the way, Ilithyia's carriage is attacked by Gannicus and her small group of guards are slaughtered. Ilityhia is brought to Spartacus as a way to end the rivalry between him and Glaber, but Spartacus is hesitant to kill her. Disheveled and heavily pregnant, she tells Spartacus that the child she carries is his. Spartacus seems unable to kill her, even if she is lying, but Mira is more than willing, although she is stopped by Spartacus.
Spartacus decides to use her as a bargaining chip in order to get more weapons for the Rebels. Unfortunately for Spartacus, Glaber reveals he wants nothing to do with his wife, and he is welcome to get rid of her. Spartacus realizes that Ilithyia is of no use to him, and she is released into the woods - not before telling her that Glaber had no plan in saving her, then kneels down saying 'He does not love you, as I love my wife'. As he walks away Ilithyia asks 'You let me live?', to which Spartacus turns and replys 'Do not think it in
kindness', and leaves her there, crying.
Ilithyia manages to walk back to the ludus, but tumbles and falls of exhaustion after throwing the gates open. When she awakens, Glaber questions her for details about where she was hidden, irritating her. Ilithyia then realizes that she is not in their bedchambers, for her place beside Glaber has now been taken over by Seppia. She asks her husband if there is any love left between them, to which Glaber replies that only a monster stands before her, thanks to what Ilithyia has done to him.
The only person who seems happy to see her returned is Lucretia, who tells her that Seppia now knows the truth
about who murdered her brother. Ilithyia then informs her that the child is Spartacus' and that she feels a strange form of attachment to it. The two devise a plan to murder Glaber, using Seppia's desire for revenge against her. As Glaber takes to his bath, Seppia arrives and soon smashes his head with a jar. As she pulls out a knife to kill him, Ilithyia steps in and takes it from her, stabbing her in the chest and then slitting her throat. Glaber is astonished that
the woman he cast aside would save his life, but she tells him that they are both monsters. The two rekindle their romance, making love in front of Seppia's corpse.
Ilithyia and Lucretia ride towards Glaber, with Ilithyia intending to sway her husband to return to Rome so she can have her child there. On the way, Lucretia reveals that she has been promised to Ashur, and both make plans to rid themselves of him.
After arriving, Ilithyia tells Glaber that Ashur gave Seppia her deceased brother's bracelet and led her on to attack him. Glaber is infuriated, and sends him on a mission to meet Spartacus at the top of Mt. Vesuvius with deals for a plea bargain. As Glaber expected, Ashur is killed, by Naevia.
The two women return to the House of Batiatus to make preparations to leave, but just as Ilithyia moves to push Lucretia off the side of the villa, her water breaks. The house is left empty, save for Ilithyia, her two slaves, and Lucretia, who takes it upon hers
elf to kill the slaves and cut the baby out of Ilithyia's womb with a knife. Lucretia takes the child - a boy - to the side of the cliff, and Ilithyia crawls after her, bleeding profusely from her slashed abdomen. Lucretia says that she and Batiatus finally have an heir and gazes lovingly at Ilithyia's child in her arms. Clutching the baby, she falls backwards off the side of the cliff with a smile on her face. Ilithyia, horrified at losing her newborn, falls to the ground, dying of the wounds inflicted upon her by Lucretia.
List of Appearances
- Ilithyia appears in the novel, Spartacus: Swords and Ashes.
- Ilithyia was the twelfth main character to be killed.
- She was intended to be killed along with Lucretia at the end of the first season. However, the writers changed their mind and extended their story to one more season.
- As her father was named Albinius, Ilithyia was a member of the Roman Gens Albinia, a political dynasty descended from one of the first Tribunes of the Plebs in Rome, named Lucius Albinius Paterculus. Albinia is derived from the Latin word Albus, which means 'white'.
- The name Ilithyia is derived from the name of the Greek goddess of childbirth, Eileithyia.
- As a daughter of Albinius, her full name would be Albinia Ilithyia.
"You really shouldn't have gone to the trouble, Lucretia. These common dishes leave my stomach unsettled."
—Ilithyia to Lucretia
[The gladiators are] like something out of a fever dream. I mean, what if they went insane all at once, clamoring for blood?!"
—Ilithyia to Lucretia
"That is how you sate desire. For love, or vengeance—without hesitation."
—Ilithyia, after her child is killed; her last words
- Spartacus: Blood and Sand Season 1; Episode 2
- Spartacus: Vengeance Season 2; Episode 10