Iron mail or
possible lorica hamata fragment.
has none of the known characteristics of Roman mail, which doesn't mean it
can't be Roman, but rather that there's no reason to believe it is.
The fragment does not appear to have any welded rings. The one that
has a clear rivet hole in it is no different than the others where just
the seam is visible, and the tiny size of the rivet makes recognizing them
very difficult. No rivet heads are clear anywhere. And the
fact is that Roman mail isn't alternating riveted/welded rings, it's
riveted/solid punched rings. There are definitely no solid punched
rings in the fragment.
Mail was originally of Celtic origin, however adapted by the Romans and improved upon. Instead of continuous rows of rings each "welded" together, there were alternating rows, one being riveted the other not. This added greater strength and ease of repair to the whole armor.
-painting by John Warry
Click on Pictures for higher resolution
(1) References to similar items: FEUGERE, Michel; Weapons of the Romans, page 100 & 101 2002
(2) References to similar items: COWAN, Ross; Roman Legionary 58 BC- 69 AD, page 33 2003
(3) References to similar items: CONNOLLY, Peter; Greece and Rome at War, page 237 1998.
(4) References to similar items: CONNOLLY, Peter; The Cavalryman, page 29 2000.
**Note on background. A Fresco from the ancient Roman City of Pompeii. The interior walls of a wealthy Roman's Estate 79AD. Picture taken July 2005.