One of the reasons why Spartacus is so difficult to assess is the scarcity and disparity of the ancient sources. Barry Strauss in The Spartacus War, our current read, discusses the issue on pages 218/219, and in more detail throughout the book. If only we had the contemperary Sallust's "Histories," but there are only a few tantalizing fragements left. The only other contemporary is Cicero with various speeches and the Orations Against Verres.
Here are the online sources I could find:
- Appian 1.7 scroll down to 116
from Civil Wars at LacusCurtius
- Plutarch on Spartacus
from Lives of Plutarch at LacusCurtius
- Florus on Spartacus
from Florus: Epitome of Roman History at LacusCurtius
- Periochae of Livy's History, 91-95, 96-100
From the sources discussed by Barry Strauss, there is also Frontinus: The Strategemata (LacusCurtius). Strauss writes:
The Strategemata are a collection of over 500 examples of devices, ruses, ploys, creative ideas from history, intended by Frontinus as a sort of checklist for the military commander. The work is an appendix to his work on the Art of War, which has not survived; I suspect the interesting "stories" appealed far more to medieval copyists and readers than the deeper theoretical work: it is a great pity.
I'd be gratefull for any other online links anyone can find.
I searched JSTOR for Spartacus but was rather disappointed with what I found.