Roman dagger found

It would likely have been a private purchase item. It was quite common in medieval times for people to show off their wealth with elaborately decorated but fully functional daggers. I would not be surprised to see the same in Roman times. It quite likely belonged to an officer from a wealthy family who wanted to show off his social status and would have been carried on the battlefield as it looks perfectly serviceable.
Legionnaires blowing all their denarii at that Homoargentus shop, eh? Some things never change...
 
Since the Romans obviously knew a lot about stabbing people, I assume that the leaf shape of their later blades must have some function that made the process more efficient.
Fashion had a lot to do with it as well. As someone else mentioned, it has a resemblance to certain types of gladius as well as earlier leaf-shaped swords. They typically look like a scaled down gladius.
 
It’s a Pintleberry prototype
 
The emblem in the rectangular plaque looks a bit like the astrological symbol for the sign Pisces. There was also a popular cult of Luna (The Moon), which was apparently linked to agriculture and chariot racing (obviously)

I would guess that this was some sort of presentation or parade weapon. Functional blade, but certainly blinged up to the max with symbols important to the owner.
The crescent moon was also a symbol involved in the Cult of Mithras, which many Roman Equestrian class were members of. So that could be linked.
 
Beautiful metalwork, but odd shaped blade, is that normal, or does it have the look of a auxilia type arm from the late roman army ?

With that profile I expect it hurts more when pulling it out

...as the Vestal Virgin said to the Centurion...


Coatus, hatus, etc.
 

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