Freedom, Independence, and Rebirth

In ancient Rome, the Armilla was a form of wrist ornament. Based on the design, they might be worn on centurions’ upper arms, chests besides phalerae, or wrists. The fact that both women’s armilla and military are termed the same thing stems from the word armus, which means forearm. Armilla, in other terms, refers to something that hangs on the forearm.

It is a circle-formed metal with two snakes facing each other. While the snake was a sign of Hermes and Asclepius in Ancient Greece, it was principally linked with Apollo in Rome. The snake was thought to bring power, sexual appeal, health, and beauty to anyone who wore it.

Armilla as Military Decoration

An armilla was a military medal given to troops in ancient Rome for remarkable courage. Non-citizen troops were not eligible for this medal, as were non-commissioned and legionary soldier officers under the rank of centurion. Auxiliary common troops, unlike legionaries, did not get individual awards, although auxiliary officers did.

On the other hand, an entire auxiliary regiment may be recognized with a title, which in this instance would be armillat, or be awarded Roman citizenship en masse as a prize. This allowed an auxiliary unit to incorporate civium Romanorum into its list of honours.

Armilla as Women Adornments

Women in ancient Rome also employed Armillas as jewelry to display their social rank. They wore them on the shoulders of their arms instead of their wrists. Wealthy ladies might stack bangles on one arm. Surviving artistic materials, like frescoes and sculptures, demonstrate the manner of wearing and that this Armilla was for women.

Moreover, Armilla bracelets were popular among many social levels in Rome. Both enslaved people and aristocratic ladies adored them. A golden armilla with the inscription “from the master to his slave” was discovered at Mogerinum in Pompeii, implying a rich present to a concubine.

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