Roman Scale Armour

(photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of the main reasons the Romans were able to conquer so much is that when they came to a new land, they saw the armour, weapons, and battle strategies used by the people living there, and so the Romans modified their army to have the advantages that their enemy has, resulting in an army that could take on the civilized world. One of the armour variants they copied was a type called “scale armour”.

Scale armour was used mostly by the peoples in the east; such as around Canaan and Egypt, as in these areas the nations relied on skirmishing and maneuverability, and so they (and their horses) needed good flexible armour.

Anyway, how scale armour was made is actually very simple, and consisted of some sort of cloth material. Whatever any people had most of, like the shepherd warriors would use wool, or the keepers of cattle would use leather, and so on. It would consist of this material and some sort of metal plates. This is how it was made. First, plates shaped like fish scales would be punched out of metal plate, whether it be iron or bronze, and two holes made at he top of each scale. Then the material would be sown into a sort of simple tunic, to which a row of scales is sown at the bottom edge. Now a second row is sown just above and overlapping the first, and a third overlapping the second, and so on until the tunic is covered in overlapping scales, which was flexible and easy to move around in.




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