Aside from precious metals like gold, Romans also made jewelry using glass. Jewelry created by the Romans allows us to have insights into the culture of this ancient country.
Similar to other civilizations during ancient times, Rome had distinct social classes’ strata too. Jewelry was worn by people in Roman societies to indicate their status in the society. It adorned their clothes instead of making them beautiful. Gold was considered a metal of God and was utilized by artisans as well as jewelers to carve jewelry and other adornments. It was also believed that this type of precious metal descended from the sun. Aside from gold, the Romans also used materials such as bronze, bone heads, Roman glass and also precious gemstones that were excavated in places like Far East, Indus Valley, Persia, etc. Stones like diamonds, sapphires and emeralds were used to trade on the silk routes which ran towards the Roman land in order to appease their mighty and rich civilization.
Information About Roman Rings
The Romans loved to wear huge rings that drew the attention of the crowds as well as revealing their status in the society. Rings made from gold with Roman glass or huge gemstones were generally worn by bureaucrats and Senators. Plebeians or common people were permitted to wear rings that were made out of iron. Some common people were allowed to wear rings made from gold if they had shown bravery or rendered special services in the state. However these rules were prohibited when Justinian I was on the throne. Women from ancient Rome were inclined to wear more rings made from various materials to adorn their hands without any restrictions from the state.
Romans and the Byzantines as their successors, loved to wear jewelry such as bracelets on their upper arms as well their wrists, brooches, earrings, hair pins, pendants, belt buckles, intricate fibulae for fastening garments and of course rings.
After gold, another precious metal that was commonly used was silver. It was also used to make jewelry and other adornments because of its malleable property. In Ancient Sumeria, the oldest artifacts made from silver were found by archaeologists that dated back to roughly 4,000 B.C. In the history of ancient civilization, silver was considered more expensive than gold, such as in ancient Egypt. Silver nuggets were the native form of silver or an electrum which is an alloy mixed with gold, ores that contain sulfur, chlorine, antimony or arsenic. Most of the silver found in ancient times was alloy or silver and gold. Armenia or Anatolia which is ancient Turkey, was where the first silver mines on a large scale could be found. It was in early 4,000 B.C. that these precious metals were extracted with the use of an intricate process called smelting. The process was not perfect since extracted silver also had properties of gold, bismuth, lead and other metals. These impurities remain in extracted silver. There are also remains of these metals in slags helping forensic historians determine the date of these classical items.
Archaeological Treasure: Portable Antiquities Scheme finds at the British Museum