Spartacusaufstand

Projekttitel: eManual Alte Geschichte
Modul [optional]:
Autor_in: Plutarch
Lizenz: CC-BY-NC-SA

Plut. Crass. 8-11 – Original

ἡ δὲ τῶν μονομάχων ἐπανάστασις καὶ λεηλασία τῆς Ἰταλίας, ἣν οἱ πολλοὶ Σπαρτάκειον πόλεμον ὀνομάζουσιν, ἀρχὴν ἔλαβεν ἐκ τοιαύτης αἰτίας. Λέντλου τινὸς Βατιάτου μονομάχους ἐν Καπύῃ τρέφοντος, ὧν οἱ πολλοὶ Γαλάται καὶ Θρᾷκες ἦσαν, ἐξ αἰτιῶν οὐ πονηρῶν, ἀλλ᾽ ἀδικίᾳ τοῦ πριαμένου συνειρχθέντες ὑπ᾽ ἀνάγκης ἐπὶ τῷ μονομαχεῖν, ἐβουλεύσαντο μὲν διακόσιοι φεύγειν,
[2] γενομένης δὲ μηνύσεως οἱ προαισθόμενοι καὶ φθάσαντες ὀγδοήκοντα δυεῖν δέοντες ἔκ τινος ὀπτανείου κοπίδας ἀράμενοι καὶ ὀβελίσκους ἐξεπήδησαν, ἐντυχόντες δὲ κατὰ τὴν ὁδὸν ἁμάξαις ὅπλα κομιζούσαις μονομάχων εἰς ἑτέραν πόλιν ἀφήρπασαν καὶ ὡπλίσαντο: καὶ τόπον τινὰ καρτερὸν καταλαβόντες ἡγεμόνας εἵλοντο τρεῖς, ὧν πρῶτος ἦν Σπάρτακος, ἀνὴρ Θρᾷξ τοῦ Νομαδικοῦ γένους, οὐ μόνον φρόνημα μέγα καὶ ῥώμην ἔχων, ἀλλὰ καὶ συνέσει καὶ πρᾳότητι τῆς τύχης ἀμείνων καὶ τοῦ γένους Ἑλληνικώτερος, [3] τούτῳ δὲ λέγουσιν, ὅτε πρῶτον εἰς Ῥώμην ὤνιος ἤχθη, δράκοντα κοιμωμένῳ περιπεπλεγμένον φανῆναι περὶ τὸ πρόσωπον, ἡ γυνὴ δ᾽ ὁμόφυλος οὖσα τοῦ Σπαρτάκου, μαντικὴ δὲ καὶ κάτοχος τοῖς περὶ τὸν Διόνυσον ὀργιασμοῖς, ἔφραζε τὸ σημεῖον εἶναι μεγάλης καὶ φοβερᾶς περὶ αὐτὸν εἰς εὐτυχὲς1 τέλος ἐσομένης δυνάμεως: ἣ καὶ τότε συνῆν αὐτῷ καὶ συνέφευγε.
[…] [10] ταῦθ᾽ ἡ βουλὴ πυθομένη τοὺς μὲν ὑπάτους πρὸς ὀργὴν ἐκέλευσεν ἡσυχίαν ἄγειν, Κράσσον δὲ τοῦ πολέμου στρατηγὸν εἵλετο καὶ πολλοὶ διὰ δόξαν αὐτῷ καὶ φιλίαν συνεστράτευον τῶν ἐπιφανῶν, αὐτὸς μὲν οὖν ὑπέμεινε πρὸ τῆς Πικηνίδος ὡς τὸν Σπάρτακον ἐκεῖ φερόμενον δεξόμενος, Μόμμιον δὲ πρεσβευτὴν ἄγοντα δύο τάγματα κύκλῳ περιέπεμψεν, ἕπεσθαι κελεύσας τοῖς πολεμίοις, συμπλέκεσθαι δὲ μὴ μηδὲ ἁψιμαχεῖν. [2] ὁ δ᾽ ἅμα τῷ πρῶτον ἐπ᾽ ἐλπίδος γενέσθαι μάχην θέμενος ἡττήθη: καὶ πολλοὶ μὲν ἔπεσον, πολλοὶ δὲ ἄνευ τῶν ὅπλων φεύγοντες ἐσώθησαν. ὁ δὲ Κράσσος αὐτόν τε τὸν Μόμμιον ἐδέξατο τραχέως, καὶ τοὺς στρατιώτας ὁπλίζων αὖθις ἐγγυητὰς ᾔτει τῶν ὅπλων, ὅτι φυλάξουσι, πεντακοσίους δὲ τοὺς πρώτους, καὶ μάλιστα τοὺς τρέσαντας, εἰς πεντήκοντα διανείμας δεκάδας ἀφ᾽ ἑκάστης ἀπέκτεινεν ἕνα τὸν κλήρῳ λαχόντα, πάτριόν τι τοῦτο διὰ πολλῶν χρόνων κόλασμα τοῖς στρατιώταις ἐπαγαγών. [3] καὶ γὰρ αἰσχύνη τοῦ θανάτου τῷ τρόπῳ πρόσεστι, καὶ δρᾶται πολλὰ φρικώδη καὶ σκυθρωπὰ περὶ τὴν κόλασιν ἁπάντων θεωμένων.
οὕτω δ᾽ ἐπιστρέψας τοὺς ἄνδρας ἦγεν ἐπὶ τοὺς πολεμίους. ὁ δὲ Σπάρτακος ὑπεξεχώρει διὰ Λευκανίας εἰς τὴν θάλασσαν ἐν δὲ πορθμῷ λῃστρίσι Κιλίσσαις ἐπιτυχὼν ὥρμησεν ἅψασθαι Σικελίας καὶ δισχιλίους ἄνδρας ἐμβαλὼν εἰς τὴν νῆσον αὖθις ἐκζωπυρῆσαι τὸν δουλικὸν ἐκεῖ πόλεμον, οὔπω πολὺν χρόνον ἀπεσβηκότα καὶ μικρῶν πάλιν ὑπεκκαυμάτων δεόμενον. [4] ὁμολογήσαντες δὲ οἱ Κίλικες αὐτῷ καὶ δῶρα λαβόντες ἐξηπάτησαν καὶ ἀπέπλευσαν. οὕτω δὴ πάλιν ἀπὸ θαλάσσης ἀναζεύξας ἐκάθισε τὸν στρατὸν εἰς τὴν Ῥηγίνων χερρόνησον. ἐπελθὼν δ᾽ ὁ Κράσσος, καὶ τοῦ τόπου τὴν φύσιν ὁρῶν ὑφηγουμένην τὸ δέον, ὥρμησεν ἀποτειχίσαι τὸν ἰσθμόν, ἅμα καὶ τὴν σχολὴν τῶν στρατιωτῶν ὑφαιρῶν καὶ τὴν εὐπορίαν τῶν πολεμίων, [5] μέγα μὲν οὖν ἦν καὶ χαλεπὸν τὸ ἔργον, ἤνυσε δὲ καὶ κατειργάσατο παρὰ δόξαν ἐν ὀλίγῳ χρόνῳ, τάφρον ἐμβαλὼν ἐκ θαλάσσης εἰς θάλασσαν διὰ τοῦ αὐχένος σταδίων τριακοσίων, εὖρος δὲ καὶ βάθος ἴσον πεντεκαίδεκα ποδῶν ὑπὲρ δὲ τῆς τάφρου τεῖχος ἔστησεν ὕψει καὶ ῥώμῃ θαυμαστόν. [6] ὧν ὁ Σπάρτακος ἡμέλει καὶ κατεφρόνει τὸ πρῶτον ὡς δὲ τῆς λείας ἐπιλειπούσης προϊέναι βουλόμενος συνεῖδε τὸν ἀποτειχισμόν καὶ λαμβάνειν οὐδὲν ἦν ἐκ τῆς χερρονήσου, νύκτα νιφετώδη καὶ πνεῦμα τι χειμέριον παραφυλάξας ἔχωσε τῆς τάφρου μέρος οὐ πολὺ γῇ καὶ ὕλῃ καὶ κλάδοις δένδρων, ὥστε τῆς στρατιᾶς περαιῶσαι τὸ τρίτον.
[11] ἐφοβήθη μὲν οὖν ὁ Κράσσος μὴ λάβοι τις ὁρμὴ τὸν Σπάρτακον ἐπὶ τὴν Ῥώμην ἐλαύνειν, ἐθάρρησε δὲ πολλῶν ἐκ διαφορᾶς ἀποστάντων αὐτοῦ καὶ στρατοπεδευσαμένων καθ᾽ αὑτοὺς ἐπὶ Λευκανίδος λίμνης, ἥν φασι τρέπεσθαι διὰ χρόνου γινομένην γλυκεῖαν καὶ αὖθις ἁλμυρὰν καὶ ἄποτον. τούτοις ἐπελθὼν ὁ Κράσσος ἐξέωσε μὲν ἀπὸ τῆς λίμνης, ἀφῃρέθη δὲ τὸν φόνον καὶ τὴν δίωξιν αὐτῶν ἐπιφανέντος ὀξέως τοῦ Σπαρτάκου καὶ τὴν φυγὴν ἐπιστήσαντος. [2] γεγραφὼς δὲ τῇ βουλῇ πρότερον ὡς χρὴ καὶ Λούκουλλον ἐκ Θρᾴκης καλεῖν καὶ Πομπήιον ἐξ Ἰβηρίας, μετενόει, καὶ πρὶν ἥκειν ἐκείνους ἔσπευδε διαπράξασθαι τὸν πόλεμον, εἰδὼς ὅτι τοῦ προσγενομένου καὶ βοηθήσαντος, οὐκ αὐτοῦ τὸ κατόρθωμα δόξει. πρῶτον μὲν οὖν διαγνοὺς τοῖς ἀφεστῶσι καὶ κατ᾽ ἰδίαν στρατευομένοις, ὧν ἀφηγοῦντο Γάιος Καννίκιος καὶ Κάστος, ἐπιθέσθαι, λόφον τινὰ προκαταληψομένους ἄνδρας ἑξακισχιλίους ἀπέστειλε, λανθάνειν πειρᾶσθαι κελεύσας. [3] οἱ δ᾽ ἐπειρῶντο μὲν τὴν αἴσθησιν ἀποκρύπτειν τὰ κράνη καταμπέχοντες, ὀφθέντες δ᾽ ὑπὸ δυεῖν γυναικῶν προθυομένων τοῖς πολεμίοις ἐκινδύνευσαν, εἰ μὴ Κράσσος ὀξέως ἐπιφανεὶς μάχην ἔθετο πασῶν καρτερωτάτην, ἐν ᾗ τριακοσίους ἐπὶ δισχιλίοις καὶ μυρίοις καταβαλὼν δύο μόνους εὗρε κατὰ νώτου τετρωμένους, οἱ δ᾽ ἄλλοι πάντες ἑστῶτες ἐν τάξει καὶ μαχόμενοι τοῖς Ῥωμαίοις ἀπέθανον. [4] Σπαρτάκῳ δὲ μετὰ τὴν τούτων ἧτταν ἀναχωροῦντι πρὸς τὰ ὄρη τὰ Πετηλῖνα, Κόιντος τῶν περὶ Κράσσον ἡγεμόνων καὶ Σκρώφας ταμίας ἐξαπτόμενοι παρηκολούθουν. ἐπιστρέψαντος δὲ γίνεται φυγὴ μεγάλη τῶν Ῥωμαίων, καὶ μόλις τρωθέντα τὸν ταμίαν ἁρπάσαντες ἀπεσώθησαν. τοῦτο τὸν Σπάρτακον ἀπώλεσε τὸ κατόρθωμα, φρονήματος ἐπιγενομένου τοῖς δραπέταις. [5] οὐκέτι γὰρ ἠξίουν φυγομαχεῖν οὐδ᾽ ἐπείθοντο τοῖς ἄρχουσιν, ἀλλ᾽ ἤδη καθ᾽ ὁδὸν ὄντας ἐν τοῖς ὅπλοις περισχόντες ἠνάγκασαν αὖθις ὀπίσω διὰ τῆς Λευκανίας ἄγειν ἐπὶ τοὺς Ῥωμαίους, εἰς ταὐτὸ τῷ Κράσσῳ σπεύδοντες. ἤδη γὰρ ὁ Πομπήιος προσιὼν ἀπηγγέλλετο: καὶ δὴ ἀρχαιρεσιάζοντες ἦσαν οὐκ ὀλίγοι τὴν νίκην ἐκείνῳ τοῦ πολέμου προσήκειν ἐλθόντα γὰρ εὐθὺς μαχεῖσθαι καὶ καταλύσειν τὸν πόλεμον. ἐπειγόμενος οὖν διαγωνίσασθαι καὶ παραστρατοπεδεύσας τοῖς πολεμίοις ὤρυττε τάφρον, πρὸς ἣν ἐκπηδῶντες οἱ δοῦλοι προσεμάχοντο τοῖς ἐργαζομένοις. [6] ἀεὶ δὲ πλειόνων ἑκατέρωθεν ἐκβοηθούντων ὁρῶν τὴν ἀνάγκην ὁ Σπάρτακος ἅπαν παρέταξε τὸ στράτευμα. καὶ πρῶτον μὲν τοῦ ἵππου προσαχθέντος αὐτῷ σπασάμενος τὸ ξίφος καὶ εἰπών ὅτι νικῶν μὲν ἔχοι πολλοὺς ἵππους καὶ καλοὺς τῶν πολεμίων, ἡττώμενος δὲ οὐ δεῖται, κατέσφαξε τὸν ἵππον: ἔπειτα πρὸς Κράσσον αὐτὸν ὠθούμενος διὰ πολλῶν ὅπλων καὶ τραυμάτων ἐκείνου μὲν οὐκ ἔτυχεν, ἑκατοντάρχας δὲ δύο συμπεσόντας ἀνεῖλε. [7] τέλος δὲ φυγόντων τῶν περὶ αὐτόν, αὐτὸς ἑστὼς καὶ κυκλωθεὶς ὑπὸ πολλῶν ἀμυνόμενος κατεκόπη. Κράσσου δὲ τῇ τύχῃ χρησαμένου καὶ στρατηγήσαντος ἄριστα καὶ τὸ σῶμα τῷ κινδύνῳ παρασχόντος, ὅμως οὐ διέφυγε τὸ κατόρθωμα τὴν Πομπηΐου δόξαν. οἱ γὰρ διαφυγόντες ἐμπεσόντες1 αὐτῷ διεφθάρησαν, ὥστε καὶ γράψαι πρὸς τὴν σύγκλητον ὅτι μάχῃ μὲν τοὺς δραπέτας φανερᾷ Κράσσος νενίκηκεν, αὐτὸς δὲ τοῦ πολέμου τὴν ῥίζαν ἀνῄρηκε.

Text zum downloaden

 

Projekttitel: eManual Alte Geschichte
Modul [optional]:
Autor_in: Tobias Nowitzki
Lizenz: CC-BY-NC-SA

Übersetzung

The insurrection of the gladiators and their devastation of Italy, which is generally called the war of Spartacus, had its origin as follows. A certain Lentulus Batiatus had a school of gladiators at Capua, most of whom were Gauls and Thracians. Through no misconduct of theirs, but owing to the injustice of their owner, they were kept in close confinement and reserved for gladiatorial combats.
[2] Two hundred of these planned to make their escape, and when information was laid against them, those who got wind of it and succeeded in getting away, seventy-eight in number, seized cleavers and spits from some kitchen and sallied out. On the road they fell in with waggons conveying gladiators‘ weapons to another city; these they plundered and armed themselves. Then they took up a strong position and elected three leaders. The first of these was Spartacus, a Thracian of Nomadic stock, possessed not only of great courage and strength, but also in sagacity and culture superior to his fortune, and more Hellenic than Thracian. [3] It is said that when he was first brought to Rome to be sold, a serpent was seen coiled about his face as he slept, and his wife, who was of the same tribe as Spartacus, a prophetess, and subject to visitations of the Dionysiac frenzy, declared it the sign of a great and formidable power which would attend him to a fortunate issue. This woman shared in his escape and was then living with him.
[…] [Die Armee des Spartakus erringt mehrere Siege, darunter gegen beide konsularischen Heere und gegen den Statthalter der Gallia Cisalpina] [10] On learning of this, the Senate angrily ordered the consuls to keep quiet, and chose Crassus to conduct the war, and many of the nobles were induced by his reputation and their friendship for him to serve under him. Crassus himself, accordingly, took position on the borders of Picenum. expecting to receive the attack of Spartacus, who was hastening thither; and he sent Mummius, his legate, with two legions, by a circuitous route, with orders to follow the enemy, but not to join battle nor even skirmish with them. [2] Mummius, however, at the first promising opportunity, gave battle and was defeated; many of his men were slain, and many of them threw away their arms and fled for their lives. Crassus gave Mummius himself a rough reception, and when he armed his soldiers anew, made them give pledges that they would keep their arms. Five hundred of them, moreover, who had shown the greatest cowardice and been first to fly, he divided into fifty decades, and put to death one from each decade, on whom the lot fell, thus reviving, after the lapse of many years, an ancient mode of punishing the soldiers. [3] For disgrace also attaches to this manner of death, and many horrible and repulsive features attend the punishment which the whole army witnesses. When he had thus disciplined his men, he led them against the enemy. But Spartacus avoided him, and retired through Lucania to the sea. At the Straits, he chanced upon some Cilician pirate craft, and determined to seize Sicily. By throwing two thousand men into the island, he thought to kindle anew the servile war there, which had not long been extinguished, and needed only a little additional fuel. [4] But the Cilicians, after coming to terms with him and receiving his gifts, deceived him and sailed away. So Spartacus marched back again from the sea and established his army in the peninsula of Rhegium. Crassus now came up, and observing that the nature of the place suggested what must be done, be determined to build a wall across the isthmus, thereby at once keeping his soldiers from idleness,, and his enemies from provisions. [5] Now the task was a huge one and difficult, but he accomplished and finished it, contrary to all expectation, in a short time, running a ditch from sea to sea through the neck of land three hundred furlongs in length and fifteen feet in width and depth alike. Above the ditch he also built a wall of astonishing height and strength. [6] All this work Spartacus neglected and despised at first; but soon his provisions began to fail, and when he wanted to sally forth from the peninsula, he saw that he was walled in, and that there was nothing more to be had there. He therefore waited for a snowy night and a wintry storm, when he filled up a small portion of the ditch with earth and timber and the boughs of trees, and so threw a third part of his force across.
[11] Crassus was now in fear lest some impulse to march upon Rome should seize Spartacus, but took heart when he saw that many of the gladiator’s men had seceded after a quarrel with him, and were encamped by themselves on a Lucanian lake. This lake, they say, changes from time to time in the character of its water, becoming sweet, and then again bitter and undrinkable. Upon this detachment Crassus fell, and drove them away from the lake, but he was robbed of the slaughter and pursuit of the fugitives by the sudden appearance of Spartacus, who checked their flight. [2] Before this Crassus had written to the senate that they must summon Lucullus from Thrace and Pompey from Spain, but he was sorry now that he had done so, and was eager to bring the war to an end before those generals came. He knew that the success would be ascribed to the one who came up with assistance, and not to himself. Accordingly, in the first place, he determined to attack those of the enemy who had seceded from the rest and were campaigning on their own account (they were commanded by Caius Canicius and Castus), and with this in view, sent out six thousand men to preoccupy a certain eminence, bidding them keep their attempt a secret. [3] And they did try to elude observation by covering up their helmets, but they were seen by two women who were sacrificing for the enemy, and would have been in peril of their lives had not Crassus quickly made his appearance and given battle, the most stubbornly contested of all; for although he slew twelve thousand three hundred men in it, he found only two who were wounded in the back. The rest all died standing in the ranks and fighting the Romans. [4] After the defeat of this detachment, Spartacus retired to the mountains of Petelia, followed closely by Quintus, one of the officers of Crassus, and by Scrophas, the quaestor, who hung upon the enemy rear. But when Spartacus faced about, there was a great rout of the Romans, and they barely managed to drag the quaestor, who had been wounded, away into safety. This success was the ruin of Spartacus, for it filled his slaves with over-confidence. [5] They would no longer consent to avoid battle, and would not even obey their leaders, but surrounded them as soon as they began to march, with arms in their hands, and forced them to lead back through Lucania against the Romans, the very thing which Crassus also most desired. For Pompey’s approach was already announced, and there were not a few who publicly proclaimed that the victory in this war belonged to him; he had only to come and fight and put an end to the war. Crassus, therefore, pressed on to finish the struggle himself, and having encamped near the enemy, began to dig a trench. [6] Into this the slaves leaped and began to fight with those who were working there, and since fresh men from both sides kept coming up to help their comrades, Spartacus saw the necessity that was upon him, and drew up his whole army in order of battle. In the first place, when his horse was brought to him, he drew his sword, and saying that if he won the day he would have many fine horses of the enemy’s, but if he lost it He did not want any, he slew his horse. Then pushing his way towards Crassus himself through many flying weapons and wounded men, he did not indeed reach him, but slew two centurions who fell upon him together. [7] Finally, after his companions had taken to flight, he stood alone, surrounded by a multitude of foes, and was still defending himself when he was cut down. But although Crassus had been fortunate, had shown most excellent generalship, and had exposed his person to danger, nevertheless, his success did not fail to enhance the reputation of Pompey. For the fugitives from the battle1 encountered that general and were cut to pieces, so that he could write to the senate that in open battle, indeed, Crassus had conquered the slaves, but that he himself had extirpated the war.

Text zum downloaden

 

Projekttitel: eManual Alte Geschichte
Modul [optional]:
Autor_in: Tobias Nowitzki
Lizenz: CC-BY-NC-SA

Plut. Crass. 8-11

Leitfragen:

1) Wie schildert Plutarch den Verlauf und die Gründe des Spartakusaufstandes?

2) Wie wird Spartakus selbst von Plutarch dargestellt?

3) Welche Gefahr stellte der Aufstand für die Römer in Wirklichkeit dar?

Kommentar:

Plutarch, ein griechischer Autor des ersten und zweiten nachchristlichen Jahrhunderts hat uns, neben einer großen Menge anderer Schriften, eine Reihe von Parallelbiographien berühmter Römer und Griechen überliefert, wobei er jeweils einen Griechen und einen Römer miteinander vergleicht. In diesem Fall Nikias und Crassus; aus der Biographie des Letzteren entstammt diese ausführliche Beschreibung des berühmten Spartakusaufstandes, der im Jahr 71 v. Chr. sein Ende fand und zu den bekanntesten Begebenheiten der Antike überhaupt gehört.

Spartakus war nach Plutarchs Schilderung ein thrakischer Sklavengladiator, der mit einigen anderen Gladiatoren einen Aufstand begann, weil sie von ihren Eigentümern zu schlecht behandelt wurden. Ihnen sei es gelungen zu fliehen und sich zu bewaffnen, daraufhin hätten sie drei Anführer gewählt, darunter Spartakus. Anschließend besorgten sie sich Waffen, indem sie einen Transport überfielen. Ein Heer wird gegen sie ausgesandt und belagert die Aufständischen, die jedoch ihre Belagerer in einen Hinterhalt locken und besiegen, wobei sie bessere Waffen erbeuten. In der Folge beschreibt Plutarch, wie mehrere römische Heere von Spartakus‘ stetig wachsenden Truppen aus Sklaven und Hirten geschlagen werden, darunter ein prätorisches und ein konsularisches Heer und das des Statthalters der Gallia Cisalpina. Der Senat begann, ungeduldig zu werden und entsandte Crassus mit einem weiteren Heer gegen Spartakus. Crassus will zuerst den Feind nur beobachten, aber einer seiner Untergebenen eröffnet gegen den Befehl den Kampf und erleidet eine Niederlage. Crassus diszipliniert seine Truppen, indem er jeden zehnten Mann hinrichtet (decimatio). Crassus belagert Spartakus und will ihn aushungern, jedoch marschiert Pompeius mit einer weiteren Armee heran, Crassus will seinem Kollegen den Ruhm nicht überlassen, beginnt die Entscheidungsschlacht und besiegt unter Verlusten schließlich die Aufständischen, die nach Plutarch alle im Kampf und nicht auf der Flucht fallen.

Darin zeigt sich bereits die wohlwollende Darstellung des Spartakus durch Plutarch. Er wird als geschickter Feldherr beschrieben, der aus diversen Kämpfen durch Listen siegreich hervorgeht und damit zu einer Gefahr für die Römer wird. Deren Demütigungen werden von Plutarch ausführlich aufgezählt, auch die Schuld für den Aufstand bekommen die Sklavenhalter: Nur durch ihre unnötig harte Behandlung der Sklaven sei es zu dem Aufstand gekommen. Dieses Argument ist interessant, da es nicht alle Sklavenhalter, sondern nur die besonders brutalen in die Schuld nimmt und auch nur ihnen somit Gefahr prophezeit. Interessant ist dies besonders deswegen, weil Plutarch, wie alle anderen wohlhabenden Menschen der Antike, Sklavenhalter war.

Sklaverei war etwas Alltägliches und Allgegenwärtiges, und in der späten Republik gab es aufgrund der vielen gewonnenen Kriege eine riesige Zahl an Sklaven, die die der Freien um ein Vielfaches überstieg. Daher hatten die Sklavenhalter verständlicherweise immer Angst vor einem Sklavenaufstand. Diese waren auch keine Seltenheit, der des Spartakus ist nur der bekannteste und einer, der besonders stark mythisch verklärt und aufgeladen wurde. Sicherlich war der Aufstand gefährlich, weil die Gladiatoren unter den Sklaven durchaus kampferfahren waren und immer mehr Kampferfahrung sammelten. Doch die Kampfesweise von Gladiatoren, der Einzelkampf, lässt sich nur bedingt auf ein Schlachtfeld übertragen. Außerdem schreibt Plutarch die Niederlagen der Römer eher ihrer Ruhmsucht zu. Memmius, der General des Crassus, erleidet nur eine Niederlage, weil er sich dem Befehl widersetzt – wohl weil er selbst Ruhm einheimsen will. Und Crassus verliert viele Soldaten, weil er nicht einfach den Gegner aushungert und abwartet, sondern unbedingt vor Pompeius‘ Ankunft siegen will. Gefährlich war an dem Aufstand der Sklaven in besonderem Maße: Durch die lange Dauer und die Erfolge der Sklaven wuchs die Gefahr eines Flächenbrandes; wir erfahren ja auch von Plutarch, dass Spartakus beabsichtigte, nach Sizilien zu gehen, wo gerade erst ein großer Aufstand unter hohen Verlusten niedergeschlagen worden war. Und da auf Sizilien in der Landwirtschaft besonders viele Sklaven tätig waren, die auch noch das Korn für Rom produzierten, wären größere Kampfhandlungen dort brandgefährlich für die Hauptstadt geworden.

Text zum downloaden

Podcast-Hinweise
Sehen Sie zu dieser Quelle auch den Podcast „Sulla und das Zeitalter der Bürgerkriege“. Um einen breiteren Einblick in das Zeitalter der Römischen Republik  zu erhalten, sehen Sie auch die Podcastreihe „Römische Geschichte I – Republik“.
Hier geht’s zum Podcast

 

Siehe zu Aufständen gegen Rom auch den Bericht zur Heeresreform des Marius (http://emanualaltegeschichte.blogs.uni-hamburg.de/heeresreform-des-marius/), zur Blutvesper von Ephesos (http://emanualaltegeschichte.blogs.uni-hamburg.de/blutvesper-von-ephesos/), dem Ausbruch des Bundesgenossenkrieges (http://emanualaltegeschichte.blogs.uni-hamburg.de/gruende-des-bundesgenossenkriegs/) und dem Gegensenat des Sertorius (http://emanualaltegeschichte.blogs.uni-hamburg.de/sertorius-und-der-gegensenat/).