Sagula are the short military cloaks, apparently worn over the ‘vestes.’ These are ‘virgata,’ striped, an effect probably produced on the shield by inlaying. Serv. says that “virga” in the language of the gauls means purple: it is used however for a stripe by Ov. A. A. 3. 269, where by the way the epiethet happens to be “purpureis,” and ‘virgatus’ in this sense occurs several times in the later poets. In Catull. 62 (64). 319 it has its natural meaning, made of osier. The Greek metaphor is the same, ῥαβδωτός (see Lidd. and Scott). It is not said here that the stripes were of gold, as Sil. l. c. appears to think, though possibly they were so represented by Vulcan. The whole is a picture to the eye, wrought in metal: and so ‘lucent.’ ‘Lactea:’ the fairness of the skin of the Ganls was a natural object for an artist to seize on. Probably it was represented by silver.
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