As in many ancient societies, jewellery was an important social marker used to demonstrate wealth. Following the spread of the Roman Empire, Roman jewellery became more and more elaborate in the designs and in the materials used, such as precious and semi-precious gemstones. Pearls especially were highly treasured by the Romans, worn as a public display of richness and prestige. Roman jewellery reflected the culture the Romans entered in contact with, and testified the prosperity and the power of the Roman Empire. Jewellery such as this fine example, were worn by Roman aristocracy, but not exclusively: some gold adornments were worn by the middle classes, soldiers and even freed slaves.
To discover more about jewellery in the Ancient World, please visit our relevant post: Jewellery in Antiquity.