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A birrus or birrus brittanicus was a rainproof, hooded woollen cloak (or simply a hood alone), characteristically worn in Britain and Gaul at the time of the Roman Empire and into the Middle Ages.[1][2]

A mosaic at Chedworth Roman Villa shows a Briton wearing a birrus brittanicus[3] there is also one shown on a statue of a ploughman at the British Museum.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ William Smith, D.C.L., LL.D.: A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, John Murray, London, 1875. quoted at [1] (retrieved April 29, 2008)
  2. ^ T.W. Potter, Roman Britain, 2nd edition (London, The British Museum Press, 1997) quoted at the British Museum website [2] (retrieved April 29, 2008)
  3. ^ BBC/OU - History - Locations - Chedworth
  4. ^ British Museum website (retrieved April 29, 2008)