The Roma Victrix Beaker is made of solid pewter, the mould has been engraved by the finest artisans in Europe and made exclusively for Calix Imperium.. This is a high quality product, and took over one year to produce. It is not only an ornament of exact historical detail, but also the perfect drinking vessel. The beaker was designed for enthusiasts of the Roman epoch, whether it be readers of Roman history, war gamers, or military modellers.
Inside the arch, as if looking through a window in time, first and foremost is the Centurion, the backbone of the Legion. He is depicted wearing the Imperial Gallic helmet (Cassis) surmounted with the insignia of his rank, the transverse crest.
His body armour is mail (Lorica Hamata) with strips of leather (pteruges) protecting his upper arms and groin.
Over his mail he wears a harness, on which are attached his various medals (phalarae).
The large shield (Scutum) with a central boss is adorned with the Legion emblems, the CAPRICORN and the edge of the PEGASUS. These shield emblems where found on the Arch of Orange in France and deemed to be associated with Legio II Augusta.
The Centurion is seen wielding his principal weapon, the short sword (Gladius); his secondary weapon, the dagger (Pugio) is shown on his right side.
To complete his body armour he is wearing greaves (Ocrea), in this case with decorative embossed Lion heads.
Immediately behind the Centurion and to either side are three legionaries wearing laminated armour (Lorica Segmentata).
The foremost figure in this panel is the AQUILIFER, a single position within the Legion. The Aquilifer was the Legion’s Standard or Eagle bearer; it was an enormously important and prestigious position. He was ranked immediately below the Centurions, receiving twice the pay of an ordinary Legionary. He wears a Lion skin pelt over his helmet, and scale armour (Lorica Squamata) the rest of his equipment is more or less of the same pattern as a Legionary.
In his right hand he carries the Imperial Legion Eagle standard (AQUILA). This fearsome and elegant bird of prey was a perfect symbol of the legion’s fighting prowess; more so, it was the sacred Sign of Jupiter, God of war, King of the Gods and patron of the Roman State.
The Legion felt that the Aquila embodied their spirit and dignity. The standards were utilized in various festivals and ceremonies, in particular the anniversary of a Legion’s founding. To lose the Aquila was the ultimate disgrace.
The Legionary honour guard behind the Aquilifer are shown armed (in addition to the Gladius and Pugio), with a heavy javelin (Pilum). Normally they were armed with two javelins, one light and one heavy. Their shield emblems are taken from Trajan’s column in Rome
The prime figure in this panel is last but not least, the Legionary, the basic element in the formidable Roman war machine, extremely fit and highly trained. The Legionaries armour consists of the Imperial Gallic helmet and laminated body armour (Lorica Segmentata). Attached to his belt (the Balteus, a prized possession which is highly decorated with brass silver or tin plates) is the Gladius sheath (on the right side) and Pugio (not shown, left side) also a protective groin apron consisting of strips of studded leather.
He is seen here in the front rank engaging the enemy in a classical fighting stance. Behind him in the second rank, his comrades are about to launch their second Pilum into the rear ranks of the enemy, before drawing the Gladius
Height: 140mm = 5.5 inches
Weight: 400 gr. = 14ozs
Volume: 33 cl. = Imperial = 0.6 pint = US pint = 0.7
GENERAL CALATHUS DESIGN
The general design of the Beaker is based on the Ancient Roman Calathus (from the Greek word Kalathos, meaning basket). This type of drinking vessel was used by the Romans to serve wine. It is now becoming more apparent, that the Romans especially the Equestrian class, used pewter table ware and drinking vessels on a far grander scale than is previously thought
The Calathus is dedicated to the II Legion, LEGIO II AUGUSTA in the mid first century AD and its most notable Commander VESPASIAN (the future Emperor, ruled AD69-AD79) at the time of the Invasion of Britain in 43 AD
There are three subject panels depicting: in panel I a Centurion, in panel II an Aquilifer and in Panel III a Legionary (miles).
In the spandrels two winged victories can be seen carrying the laurel wreath Crown. The laurel wreath was a symbol of power and victory. In the centre of the arches, placed within a corbel, is the head of VESPASIAN. The arches are supported by two columns with the Roman version of a Corinthian capital.
The base is in the form of a Triumphal laurel wreath. Beneath panel I and embedded in the wreath, there is a plaque with the title ROMA VICTRIX.
I’m very fussy about putting any ornaments on my shelf, because anything on there blocks sight of my books. This beaker is an obvious exception to that rule. Nicely weighted, a pleasure to hold. It really is a beautiful item at approx six inches tall impressively sculpted it really stands out from anything else i have seen on any museum visit or gift shop item. There are three very detailed images, one depicting a Roman centurion charging , the second a legionary advancing and finally a standard bearer in front of a formation of legionaries. Each one of the images is bordered by columns capped with high arches, with a keystone bearing the likeness of Vespasian finally it stand on a base decorated to look like a triumphal wreath detailed with a plate with the inscription Roma Victix. So when i look at the beaker i no longer need to question the price, i have paid much more for much less in the past. This is an item that would grace then shelf of any reader or collector of historical fiction.