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Asterix the Gladiator
Asterixcover-asterix the gladiator.jpg
French title
Astérix gladiateur
Story René Goscinny
Illustrations Albert Uderzo
French edition 1964
Preceded by Asterix and the Goths
Followed by Asterix and the Banquet

Asterix the Gladiator is the fourth volume of the Asterix comic book series, by René Goscinny (stories) and Albert Uderzo (illustrations). It was first serialized in Pilote issues 126-168 in 1962.


Plot summary

Prefect Odius Asparagus wants one of the indomitable Gauls as a present for Julius Caesar, so his men capture Cacofonix the bard. By the time the other Gauls know he is gone, he is on his way to Rome. But Asterix and Obelix are hot on his heels, taking ship with Ekonomikrisis the Phoenician merchant.

Highly unimpressed by his present, Caesar decides to throw the bard to the lions. Asterix and Obelix enlist as gladiators in order to rescue him, and, in the course of their training, teach their colleagues some interesting tricks. The next Games in Circus Maximus turn out to be the most unusual yet...

This book is noteworthy in the Asterix series as the first in which Obelix says his famous catchphrase "These Romans Are Crazy"!

An audiobook of Asterix the Gladiator adapted by Anthea Bell and narrated by Willie Rushton was released on EMI Records Listen for Pleasure label in 1988.


  • Geriatrix (unnamed) - Obelix asks him to run his menhir delivery service while he is away. His strong personality wasn't shown at this time, neither the fact he is married.
  • Ekonomikrisis - Provides transport to and from Rome
  • Brutus - Featuring an amusingly ironic exchange with Julius Caesar at the circus.
  • The Pirates - parodying French comic "Barbe-Rouge" which was also serialized in Pilote at the time.
  • Obelix' helmet game - for the first time he collects helmets from the Romans he bashes, trying to outdo Asterix (who never has much interest in it).

Film adaptation

This story was blended with Asterix the Legionary for the animated movie Asterix Versus Caesar.

In other languages

  • Afrikaans: Asterix die Gladiator
  • Bengali: Gladiator Asterix
  • Catalan: Astèrix Gladiador
  • Czech: Asterix gladiátorem
  • Dutch: Asterix als Gladiator, formerly Asterix en de gladiatoren
  • Esperanto: Asterix la Gladiatorio
  • Finnish: Asterix gladiaattorina
  • Francais:Asterix le gladiateure
  • German: Asterix als Gladiator
  • Greek: Αστερίξ ο μονομάχος
  • Hungarian: Asterix, a gladiátor
  • Italian: Asterix Gladiatore
  • Norwegian: Asterix som gladiator
  • Polish: Asterix gladiator
  • Portuguese: Astérix o Gladiador
  • Serbian: Астерикс гладијатор
  • Spanish: Asterix Gladiador
  • Swedish: Asterix som gladiator
  • Turkish: Asteriks Gladyatör


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