Ancient Roman Jewellery Essay

635 words - 3 pages

The ancient Romans indeed wore jewellery and lots of it. In some parts of ancient Rome it was considered status as to how many pieces of jewellery worn and how intricate it was.The wealthy ancient Roman men didn't wear much jewellery. In fact they left it to their wives to display the jewellery on behalf of the family. The men usually only wore bronze or gold rings. One ring worn of the left hand was considered good manners and good taste, though some men disregarded this and wore as many as sixteen rings on one hand! Romans were very superstitious and wore rings that were said to bring luck to the wearer. Some men also wore a bronze device called a frobella which was used to hold their toga (piece of cloth wrapped around the body) together.On the other hand though, upper-class women wore lots of ...view middle of the document...

They were often highly decorated. Pearls were particularly prized and also very costly. As gifts, the Romans often gave each other gold coins, aurei, which had been made in to necklaces, brooches or bracelets. They were mostly given as wedding presents. Women's hair styles varied, but the hair was usually quite long and pinned up on top of the head. It was held up in place by hair pins, and then wrapped in a scarf. Hats were only worn by servants or lower class people. Women had to tie their hair up when they went out doors or were in the company of men other than their husbands.Rings came in many different designs. They also had different purposes. The Ancient Romans believed in many gods and it was common for them to wear a ring bearing a symbol of any chosen God or Goddess such as the one pictured to the left. It is a bronzeseal ring depicting a stag which is a symbolic representation of the Goddess Diana, who was Goddess of the Moon and Hunting. Another popular ring design was the snake ring. In Roman times the snake represented the land. Pictured to the right is a replica of one of the many snake rings worn by Romans during the first century AD.Children wore no rings or brooches or bracelets. Instead they wore a special locket around their neck which was given to them at birth, called a bulla. Inside the locket is a special amulet which was used as a protection against evil. Girls wore their bulla until the eve of their wedding day. They never wore it again unless they were on their death bed. Boys wore their bulla until the day that he became a citizen. A boy became a citizen at the age of 16 or 17. Then his bulla was stored in a special place and he only wore it again if he gained a special honour, like becoming a successful general.In conclusion, the ancient Roman people wore plenty of jewellery and body adornments which were designed for both cultural significance and decorative wearing.

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