Spartacus Wiki
Season 2
Number Episode 05
Date Aired February 24, 2012
Writer Aaron Helbing & Todd Helbing
Director Rick Jacobson
Previous Empty Hands
Next Chosen Path

"Libertus" is the fifth episode of Spartacus: Vengeance. It is the twenty-fourth episode in the Spartacus series overall.

Plot Outline[]

Spartacus leads a bold mission to free Crixus from Roman captivity, but a storied gladiator from The House of Batiatus complicates matters. Ilithyia's scheming puts her marriage to Glaber at risk.


The episode starts with Oenomaus, Rhaskos, and Crixus about to be executed in the arena. A series of flashbacks to the previous day then begins.

While searching for shelter to spend the night, SpartacusMira, Naevia and Nasir were finally reunited with the other rebels. Agron apologizes about their decision to part ways, but Spartacus tells him that mistakes were made on both sides. Donar, Lydon and Fulco arrive, telling the rebels that they found something. Spartacus and Agron go with them to find out what, and they look upon an abandoned temple.

Donar and Fulco go into the temple to find weapons. Meanwhile, Agron speaks with Spartacus about their luck. Suddenly,

Lucius about to shoot at Spartacus & Agron.

a hermit appears, aiming a bow at them. From behind, two other rebels trap him. He is about to shoot Spartacus when Agron accidentally calls him by his name, causing the hermit to start laughing and joking. He reveals himself as Lucius Caelius, a Roman disillusioned with Rome since his family was killed because of the civil war Sulla waged years ago. Lucius tells Spartacus that since the latter has caused much horror to the Romans, he would see him as a brother. Afterwards, Lucius gives information to the Rebels, mainly of the abounding rumors that Spartacus and the Rebels are finished and all but slaughtered due to their defeat in the Mines of Lucania. He says that the survivors are to be executed in the Arena, to which Spartacus asks who. Lucius informs

Lucius telling Spartacus about the 3 Rebels to be executed in the arena.

Spartacus that only 3 of the rebels will be executed in the arena and that one of them is Crixus. Spartacus, unwilling to forsake Crixus and wanting to send a message to the Romans, hatches a daring plan of rescue, where they will destroy the arena in Capua.

In Capua, Crixus is in a cell with Rhaskos and Oenomaus until Roman troops led by Ashur walk in. Crixus angrily glares at the Syrian who in return gives the Gaul a smile. The Roman soldiers are shown carrying a stretch holding the dead Marcus who is brought before Glaber. Crixus says that Spartacus yet again evades death while Rhaskos remarks they are forced to embrace it. Crixus states even if he does die, he will embrace Naevia in the next life and tells Oenomaus "Where Melitta awaits you". Oenomaus still angered at his wife's bretrayal says "I long for reunion and the answers it will bring." Gannicus returns to Capua with the intention of giving his brothers an honorable death in the arena, but is unaware Oenomaus has learned the truth of his affair with Melitta. He asks Mercato for coin. Mercato wants to introduce him to the Magistrate and Varinius, yet the former champion refuses, wishing to visit a brothel instead.

Marcus's death by Ashur.

Back at the lupus, Glaber, looking upon Marcus' corpse asks, how he died. Ashur lies that that they came upon Spartacus who was the one that took Marcus' life. Glauber is suspcious to how his tribune is dead while Ashur yet lives. The Syrian says "I came to your tribune's aid pulling him away to staunch life." But Glaber, unmoved, says "A noble effort bearing no fruit." Ashur tries to says something but Glaber cuts him off telling Salvius to send word to Albinus that Spartacus will not be among the slaves presented in the executions. Salvius asks what to do with Ashur to which Glaber condemns him to death in the arena to be killed with the other slaves. Ashur again tries to speak against this but the guards pull him out the room leaving Glaber to mourn the death of his loyal tribune. Elsewhere Albinius receives the message that Spartacus eludes Glaber once again. Ilithyia tries to comfort Varinus who says he will be disappointed by her husband's failure to damper spirits. Illthyia says he won't be such for much longer.

Albinius with Ilithyia in divorcing Glaber.

Albinus comes up and says their plans lift his heart but says he will not have Glaber aware of their plans until the right moment. Varinus and Albinius begin to leave until Albinius stops by his daughter and tells her to "Remove encumberance as suggested and we shall this to bitter end." Lucretia questions this and Ilithyia tells her she must abort her child if she will marry Varinus. However, Lucretia manages to convince Ilithyia to delay the abortion and to accompany her to Rome as her counselor. Later that night, Lucretia visits Ashur in his cell and speaks of her wish to vouch for Ashur's life, handing him the key to the cell for his escape. 

Back at the temple, Naevia tends to Nasir's wounds. Agron says he owes her a debt for helping Nasir, but she insists that she is to blame for Nasir's current predicament which was in turn caused by Spartacus and his men coming to the mines. Further, she blames Agron for not doing enough to stop the Romans from capturing Crixus, stating that her hope for seeing Crixus again kept her alive and that her prayers to the gods was answered by Crixus' capture. Aaron says that Crixus and the Gauls wouldn't be swayed from attempting to save her, but Naevia regrets that Lucretia didn't take her life so that Crixus would be spared from the rescue attempt. Mira enters the room and says Spartacus has summoned Agron.

Spartacus waits outside spinning his sword and watching his fellow brethren until Agron and Mira greet him with news that Nasir is still alive. Spartacus tells them that Lucius has been spreading word of the rebels' supposed defeat and that they must make attempt to rescue the gladiators from Capua. Mira and Agron voice their objections to this based on their low numbers, but Spartacus sees this as an advantage because Glaber and his men wouldn't expect them to make such an attempt and the fact that he knows the arena better than anyone else. Aaron asks what Spartacus suggests. Spartacus responds by saying that their rescue shall send a message of hope to all enslaved by the Romans and so they begin to make plans to rescue their people.

Back at the rebels' hideout, Naevia asks if it is possible to rescue Crixus and the others to which Spartacus confirms it so and that he would make it so or die trying to save them. Nasir appears to them asking if he can join them, but Spartacus cautions him to remain behind so he can recover from his wounds to which Nasir agrees with sadly. Spartacus gathers the rebels in the temple and announces his plans to raid the arena in Capua, saying that if he and his group fail in the attempt that Lucius will lead the rebels to safety through the land. He rouses the rebels with his desire to bring freedom to the slaves of the Roman Republic as they have been freed themselves.

In a brothel at Capua, Gannicus has just finished up having sex with a prostitute and shares a drink with her along with his plans to fight in the arena. She realizes from his ludis that the man she is with is none other than the legendary Gannicus and asks to touch it. Although the prostitute is enamored by it, Gannicus is not as proud of it as he once was because of his past involving Melitta and leaves the brothel to get some rest for the upcoming games.

Ilithyia telling Glaber their love and marriage is over.

At the ludus the next morning, Crixus, Rhaskos, and Oenomaus are being prepared for delivery to the arena for their execution. She, through Ashur, reveals the abortion attempt to Glaber. Ilithyia admits upon confrontation that their love and marriage is over and reveals her plan to marry Varinius to Glaber and tells him "Come, let us present ourselves as husband and wife for the last time."

When the two arrive at the arena, Glaber and Ilithyia apologize for the delay that caused the crowds to turn negative. The games begin with the first round of gladiators fighting. Lucretia notices Glaber's stare and asks Ilithyia about it. Ilithyia tells her that Glaber found the abortion vial much to Lucretia's shock. Before the final round begins, the three gladiators are led by the guards unaware that Spartacus' rescue attempt is underway with he and his men killing the Roman guards stealthily and wearing their uniforms in disguise. By now, the scene has returned to the present day.

Spartacus and Agron, wearing the guards' uniforms reach the gates to the arena in time to see Gannicus arrive beside them. When Spartacus notices the mark of Batiatus on Gannicus' arm, the latter confirms his past as a gladiator and his reason for returning to the arena.

Spartacus burns down the Arena.

When the primus fight starts, Oenomaus viciously attacks Gannicus despite the latter's pleas to reason with him and Mira is tasked to set the arena's foundations on fire. During the duel, Rhaskos is the only prisoner to die against Gannicus and his men while Crixus is close to his end. When the arena finally collapses, Spartacus and Agron attack the remaining gladiators and guards and escape with Gannicus, Crixus and Oenomaus, but not before Spartacus throws a spear directly at Glaber and nicks his cheek killing Cossutius instead. Albinius says "Spartacus once again makes fool of you. Your days in the Senate have found their end!" and leaves. Glaber is the last to leave the pulvinus, he finds Albinius trapped beneath a fallen beam and Albinius begs Glaber to help him. Glaber grabs the beam and lifts it off the senator who lets out a cough, Glaber looks upon Albinius and says "I'm not the fool you and your daughter think me". Glaber then slams the beam on Albinius' head repeatedly, before he leaves the Arena and

Death of Albinius by Glaber.

finds Ilithyia who asks where her father is. Glaber tells her that her father was killed by Spartacus. In grief, Ilithyia collapses to the ground, he tells his wife they will survive this as husband and wife, but Ilithyia looks to Varinius who realizes he can't do anything and leaves.

Characters in Order of Appearance[]

  1. Publius Varinius
  2. Albinius
  3. Gaius Claudius Glaber
  4. Ilithyia
  5. Lucretia
  6. Seppia
  7. Seppius
  8. Mercato
  9. Cossutius
  10. Masonius
  11. Strabo
  12. Crixus
  13. Retiarius Gladiator
  14. Oenomaus
  15. Mycter
  16. Abiron
  17. Rhaskos
  18. Gannicus
  19. Spartacus
  20. Agron
  21. Donar
  22. Secutor Gladiator
  23. Lucius Caelius
  24. Naevia
  25. Nasir
  26. Mira


  • The ending credits changes after this episode, now featuring Gannicus instead of the Gauls, Rhaskos, Liscus, Acer and Fortis. This is due to their deaths and the introduction of Gannicus.
  • This episode marks the first time that all five of the principal Rebel Leaders appear on screen in the same episode. 
  • This episode marks the first and only time that all four of Batiatus' champions were on the sands of the arena together.
  • In the previous episode, Lucretia told Crixus that the crowd would detest him, this happens here.
  • Oenomaus references his time out of the arena by remarking "For many years I have dreamed of my return to the arena". This statement also refers to his last fight with Theokoles.
  • This is episode is the last where any of the rebels have interaction with Lucretia and the last where they see the House of Batiatus.
  • In Missio, during his talk with Melitta and Oenomaus, Gannicus jokingly remarks about one day having to kill Oenomaus in the arena. This is referenced when Gannicus approaches his former friend and states "We at last face each other upon the sands as Melitta always feared."
  • Libertus literally means "free man" referring to gannicus' title as the only gladiator in Capua to be free.
  • At the end of the fight between Oenomaus and Gannicus, Oenomaus manages to disarm Gannicus of one of his swords. Seconds later, Gannicus disarms Oenomaus of his sword and kicks him to the ground but when he is about to perform the killing blow, Gannicus somehow holds two swords in his hands again.



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