The setting; Rome. The time; the reign of Nero. The Christians are being persecuted and Roman centurion Marcuss Viniceus (Robert Taylor) could care less. Then one day, while visiting a friend, he meets Lygia (Deborah Kerr), a beautiful girl who’s a Christian. After the burning of Rome, Nero (Peter Ustinov) decides if the people want someone to blame he’ll make it be the Christians. It is in the midst of the terror and the tragedy of the arena, that Marcuss’ lust for Lygia and his skepticism of christianity begins to change.