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Roman UnderwearEmperor Hadrian



The Ancient Romans did not wear underwear.

There was no underwear for Roman Men or Roman Women as we know it today.

The closest article of clothing to modern underwear was a pair of shorts or loincloth called a subligaculum.

Both men and women wore the subligaculum or subligar, at least some of the time.

The subligaculum could be worn under a tunic but men who were standing for public office or those getting back to basics would sometime just wear the subligaculum and nothing else. So, really they were just posing in their underwear!

Roman Women also sometimes wore a band of cloth or leather around their upper body. (strophium or mamillare).

Ancient Roman old men would sometime wind strips of cloth around their legs for additional warmth - this cloth worked like a pair of Long Johns. However, the Ancient Romans would not like to have done this unless they were very old or weak and sick. Would you wear Long Johns?

Like everything else in Ancient Roman Society, the kind of clothes you wore depended on your status.

The Toga was a universal item. It was really just a long white sheet that was wrapped around the body. Many Romans complained about wearing the Toga and said they were cold.

The Roman Mens Clothes page and the Roman Woens Clothes page has more information on the kind of clothes a Roman Man or Roman Woman might have worn.

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A bust of the Emperor Hadrian (c)2000 Princeton Economic Institute justin Paola - Ancient Rome History Resource Hadrians Roman Life in the times of Emperor Hadrian

The Emperor Hadrian ruled for 21 years from A.D. 117 until A.D. 138, when the Empire of Ancient Rome was at its height.

The Emperor Hadrian consolidated and strengthened The Roman Empire. He was The Roman Emperor responsible for the building of Hadrian's Wall in England.

Hadrian was one of the most remarkable and talented of all the Emperors of Rome.... more about Emperor Hadrian
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Roman Woman's Underwear

Roman Woman's Underwear.

Women sometimes wore a band of cloth or leather to support the breasts (strophium or mamillare). Both these undergarments can be seen on the woman athlete at the left, from a fourth-century CE mosaic; she holds a palm branch signifying that she has been victorious in a contest.
Credits: Barbara McManus.
Source: www.vroma.org


Roman Girl's Underwear

Roman Girls Underwear.

Roman Girls Underwear, from a fourth-century CE mosaic.
Credits: Barbara McManus.
Source: www.vroma.org


Roman Underwear Bikini Pants

Roman Underwear Bikini Pants.

Roman Underwear Bikini Pants. An ancient pair of leather “bikini” pants found in Roman Britain. Probably worn by a gymnast.
Credits: Barbara McManus.
Source: www.vroma.org


Drawing of a Roman Woman's Tunic

Drawing of a Roman Woman's Tunic.

Drawing showing how chiton-style tunic was worn modern.
Credits: Barbara McManus, 1998.
Source: www.vroma.org


Roman Men's Clothes.



A statue of a Roman Man wearing a Toga, probably a Roman Senator.

A statue of a Roman Man wearing a Toga, probably a Roman Senator.



Roman Men's Clothes Go here for a very informative article on Roman Mens's Clothes and jewellery. By Barbara F. McManus, The College of New Rochelle.


Ancient Rome History Resource

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Ancient Rome History Resources relating to the daily life and times of the Emperor Hadrian plus Hadrians Wall History and Images and Hadrian's Wall Photographs

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