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A strong and heavy shoe, or rather sandal, worn by the Roman soldiers. Although the use of this species of calceamentum extended to the centurions, it was not worn by the superior officers. Hence the common soldiers, including centurions, were distinguished by the name of caligati (Suet. Aug. 25). Service in the ranks was also designated after this article of attire. Thus Marius was said to have risen to the consulship a caliga, i. e. from the ranks. The emperor Caligula

Caliga. (Arch of Trajan.)

(q. v.) received that cognomen when a boy, in consequence of wearing the caliga, which his father, Germanicus, put upon his son in order to please the soldiers (Tac. Ann. i. 41). The triumphal monuments of Rome show most distinctly the difference between the caliga of the common soldier and the calceus worn by men of higher rank. (See Calceus). The caliga exhibits a number of straps, through which the foot is partially seen; while the calceus (q. v.) is an ordinary closed shoe. The sole of the caliga was thickly studded with hobnails.

The caliga speculatoria (Calig. 52), made for the use of couriers, was probably much lighter than the ordinary shoe worn by the soldiers. See Speculator.

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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Suetonius, Divus Augustus, 25
    • Tacitus, Annales, 1.41
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