Ancient Roman Soldiers Life: Soldiers had to carry a huge amount of gear. Marching with so much to carry was hard on the men. After a long day’s march, the men would have to make camp. This consisted of digging a ditch around the outside of the camp. The extra dirt from digging the camp was thrown around the outside of the camp.
Ancient Roman Soldiers Life
Next, the soldiers put up a wall of stakes on the pile of dirt. The stakes were often carried from camp to camp. This protective wall of wooden stakes was useful when marching through enemy territory. The soldiers were always looking for a fight. Fighting was easier than all the marching and camp work.
Roman soldier dressing
The helmet was bowl-shaped with a neck guard. The inside was lined with leather to protect the soldier’s head. The helmet also had cheek guards to protect the face.
Many helmets had fittings for crests. The mail breastplate of the Roman soldier was made from iron. The shoulders were reinforced. Rings ran horizontally around the body. These rings were wired together then sewed to a fabric or leather backing.
Leg and arm guards were used. These mainly consisted of iron plates sewn to leather. The metal leg protectors were called greaves.
The soldier’s tunic was probably red and white although historians are unsure of this point. It was made from linen or wool. The tunic was worn above the knee. Only soldiers and slaves were allowed to show their knees. Around the waist, the soldier wore a belt. The belt’s main purpose was for holding the daggers and swords. Sometimes two belts were worn, one for the sword and one for the dagger.
The boot looked more like a sandal. The upper portion consisted of one piece of leather cut into many narrow strips. The top was attached to a sole. The sole contained a nail design. The boot was laced up the front.
Roman Soldier’s shields
The Roman soldier carried shields, swords, daggers, spears, and javelins. The Roman shield was made from double or triple plywood and edged with copper. They were curved and usually oval or rectangular. Shields were carried in the soldier’s left hands.
The soldiers learned to lock their shields together to make a formation called a tortoise. This made a protective barrier against the enemies’ arrows and stones. The soldiers used a long, double-edged sword.
This sword was carried on the soldier’s right side. The spear was cone-shaped so the soldier could stick the head into the ground without causing damage to the spear. Javelins were used with a throwing strap to improve the distance it could be thrown.