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Historical Question

Son says ancient Romans wore socks with sandals. I am now picturing them as dorkier than I thought. True?


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Nov. 10th, 2012 09:11 pm (UTC)
My guess is that they tended not to in Rome, but might have done so in winter in Britain.
Nov. 11th, 2012 07:29 am (UTC)
adaese has reminded me that there is evidence of this from Hadrian's Wall.
Nov. 10th, 2012 09:13 pm (UTC)
Don't think so. You could google statues of Roman figures and see, maybe.
Nov. 10th, 2012 09:19 pm (UTC)
You know how you see old guys on the beach wearing dress socks and carrying metal detectors? They are having a good time, but it is just not a good look.
Nov. 10th, 2012 09:46 pm (UTC)
Yes definitely! Son is spot on :)

There is a collection of scraps of letters and documents written on wooden tablets found at Vindolanda fort on Hadrian's Wall. One of the letters is from the family of a legionary and reads "I have sent you...pairs of socks from Sattua, two pairs of sandals and two pairs of underpants."

So yes, Roman legionaries were indeed dorks. Or at least the ones in Britain were! :P

Edited at 2012-11-10 09:47 pm (UTC)
Nov. 10th, 2012 11:31 pm (UTC)
Sounds like mothers have not changed very much either. She must have been picturing her poor boy shivering without his long johns. She must have missed him and worried about him. And he must have been so pleased to put the warm dry things on.
Nov. 11th, 2012 12:19 am (UTC)
Yes, some things never change :} I seem to recall that there is also a letter from a legionary complaining bitterly about the cold. Perhaps he was the one who asked for the socks!
Nov. 11th, 2012 12:23 pm (UTC)
*nods on both counts* Must have been flaming draughty up at Vindolanda.
Nov. 11th, 2012 10:38 pm (UTC)
Just a tad! I feel very sorry for any of the auxiliaries or legionaries that came from Rome's southern provinces. Imagine getting posted to Hadrian's Wall? To say nothing of the Antonine Wall!
Sep. 28th, 2016 09:08 am (UTC)
I seem to recall that some of the earliest socks were from Egypt. So Rome would make sense. But I think socks would look fine under those tall gladiator-type sandals. Like two-layer wooly boots, or like the way socks are worn with kilts. And think of the knees!
Nov. 11th, 2012 07:29 am (UTC)
Hah, yes, that is what adaese and I were thinking of.
Nov. 11th, 2012 03:32 pm (UTC)
hahaha even the Romans had Jewish mothers!

Nov. 11th, 2012 10:33 pm (UTC)
I'm sure some of them definitely did! Though if I recall correctly I think Hadrian's Wall was primarily garrisoned by auxiliaries from Dacia (Romania), Thracia (Bulgaria), Germany, Spain and Gaul.
Nov. 11th, 2012 06:31 am (UTC)
One of your comments got screened. i have no idea why.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )