The Roman Legionary Shield - From 507 BC to the End of the Empire

The Roman Legionary Shield - From 507 BC to the End of the Empire

MorBius
In the time between the founding of Rome (circa 753 BC) and the beginning of the Roman Republic (circa 509 BC), Roman soldiers often wielded round shields called aspidai (άσπιδαι) by the Greeks, in the style of Greek hoplites (soldiers). Exactly when the curved scutum came into use is unknown, having appeared sometime during the first half of the Roman Republic (509 BC to 27 BC). It was a large elongated oval and semi-cylindrical shield, approximately 24 in. wide by 44 in. long or more, probably derived from shields used by the Italian Celts or from the Greek Thureos of the time. Made from an early type of plywood, the shield acquired bronze or iron edging sometime before the start of the Punic Wars (264 BC), and a metal reinforcing plate over the central wooden boss (umbo) which enabled it to be "punched" at the enemy. This overall shape changed very little until the end of the Roman Republic and the rise of the Roman Empire (27 BC), at which time the scutum began a slow 75 year evolution, through several distinct stages, into the rectangular type commonly associated with the early Roman Empire, appearing around AD 40 to 50. This later rectangular form was to remain in common use until it was itself superceeded circa AD 150 by an oval shield that remained in use until the end of the Empire. This model shows the evolutionary stages of this legionary shield, including the final circular oval form. Thanks to FullOfIt for the use of his stage 4 shield #ancient_weapons #Armor #arms #army #empire #Legion #legionary #Legionary_armor #military #Republic #Roman #Roman_Army #roman_empire #Roman_Republic #Rome #scutum #shield #soldier #war #warrior #weapon
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