Ancient Rome has a long and interesting history. Founded around 753 BC it went through many changes transitioning from a monarchy to a republic, and then to one of the most powerful empires the world has ever known. Throughout their history Romans wore such jewelry (also spelled jewellery) as rings, necklaces, pendants, earrings, and bracelets.
On this page we supply interesting facts and information on the types of jewelry (also spelled jewellery) created and worn by the ancient Romans throughout their history. For more information on this ancient civilization visit Ancient Rome History Facts.
The archaeological sites at Pompeii and Herculaneum have supplied numerous pieces of well preserved Roman jewelry from the 1st Century AD. However archaeological discoveries of jewelry from ancient Rome are relatively rare when considering the vast reach of the empire and the fact that it existed for many centuries. Contributing to this is the fact that Romans generally did not bury their dead but rather cremated them. This meant that the Romans did not leave behind incredible burial sites teaming with jewelery and other artifacts as did the ancient Egyptians. However due to several discoveries and writings about all aspects of Roman life, including jewelry, there is much known about Roman personal adornment. The early Romans generally adopted the simple styles of the Etruscans and the people of Greece for their jewelry (also spelled jewellery) styles. As the empire and its wealth grew their jewelry became more elaborate and colorful and incorporated all types of materials.
The Roman Empire conquered most of the known world and also established relationships with numerous cultures throughout Europe, Egypt, Africa and the Mediterranean. Many of the civilizations they conquered and traded with influenced the style of the jewelry they made. These areas also made available many different types of materials for use in the Roman's jewelry. Some of these materials are listed below.