Roman Legionnaire Cingulum Militare Apron Belt
This belt is inspired by the cingulum militare Roman apron belts worn by Roman legionnaire soldiers.
The belt features a solid brass buckle and five hanging straps (called the baltea) with strap ends (known as pensilia) as well as 25 solid brass (bulla) belt mounts with an olive wreath design.
The belt (balteus) is 128cm in length and the total length of the longest apron is 34.5cm.
Such belts most likely had limited defensive armour capacity to the lower abdomen and groin. Historical re-enactment recreations have indicated that the straps could become an annoyance and possible liability by swinging between the legs in combat when running. The belt most likely offered limited protection against a slash to the groin as a sword or spear thrust would pass through the straps. However, when compared to nothing the apron would have certainly offered some psychological protection to the soldier’s groin.
Highly decorative military belts were most likely a sign of status in Roman military society and worn to represented rank or honours received as only soldiers were allowed to wear this style of belt which was also worn when off duty.
Apron belts are most appropriate for mid 1st century to late 2nd century Roman clothing and personas.
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