In honor of our current giveaway of the Roman-inspired Thraex XII Tactical from US Gladius, we’re taking a more in-depth look at the swords and daggers from Ancient Rome.
When it comes to swords from history, it’s hard to think of better-known weapons than those from the Roman times. Due to the countless parallels with modern day society and the drama that took place during the time, our fascination with Ancient Rome is almost as old as Rome itself.
Before we venture into the swords and daggers, we’ll start with what Ancient Rome was like.
Life in Ancient Rome
Even though the peak of Ancient Rome was way back between 753 BC and 476 AD, Roman society was extremely advanced. Most of the wealthy Romans lived extravagant lifestyles with luxurious furnishings. The poor were on the other side of the spectrum. They didn’t have such lavish lives, but they did kill some time watching things like chariot races and gladiator fights.
After a hard day’s work, Romans from all backgrounds would head over to the public baths—where they would relax, gossip, mingle, and recuperate.
Rome wasn’t all fun and games, though. The Roman Empire—and the Republic to a lesser extent—were bent on expanding its territories through conflicts and conquests. Along with the gladiator events, weapons came in handy during battles.
Types of Roman Swords and Daggers
Maybe it’s just because of the countless movies set in Ancient Rome (such as Spartacus and Gladiator), but Roman weapons are very distinct. Let’s take a look at a few.
The gladius was the primary weapon for the foot soldiers of Ancient Rome. The name was derived from the words gladiator, which means swordsman, and gladiolus, which means little sword. In general terms, the gladius sword features a double-edged blade that’s meant for thrusting with a few slices. Its other discerning feature is a knobbed hilt, which was typically ornate.