Why did the Romans wear sandals?
What did Roman shoes look like?
The Romans differentiated between sandals (soleae / sandalia), shoes (calcei) and boots (caligae). Wearing sandals in public was against common decency.
With one exception, however, one was allowed to wear the soles fastened to the foot with soft straps: On the way to the banquet they were allowed as "shoes" - whoever lay down at the table took off the sandals or let them be by a slave (demere soleas ) lose weight. Otherwise the sandals served as slippers in the home.
The go-out shoe that went with the toga was the calceus, a sturdy, closed shoe made of soft upper leather that reached over the ankle. The simplest version for the "little man" was called pero. As a badge of rank, patricians and senators wore particularly striking shoes in red or black, which they tied on with straps up to about the middle of the tibia (calceus senatorius). Men usually wore natural-colored shoes.
The shoes for women differed not in shape, but in color.
These could be white or colored. Wealthy women also wore calcei set with pearls, gold or precious stones.
The third type of shoe, the boot, was mostly worn by farmers, carters and, above all, soldiers. These boots were made stable by a mesh of belts that reached well above the ankles. The soles consisted of about eight millimeters thick cowhide and were each studded with 80 to 90 hemispherical iron nails. It took three to four minutes to put these boots on! As helpful as the scissor nails were in the field, they were just as unsuitable for society:
In the crowd of the streets of Rome they were a horror for civilians!
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