A chlamys is a cloak fastened with a brooch at the neck or shoulder and wrapped around the body like a cape. Ideal for riders, it was worn originally by soldiers but came to be used as well by travelers, hunters, and horsemen. Like the himation [see my blog of January 6, 2015], it consisted of a rectangular piece of woolen fabric. In fact, when doubled it formed a square.
In THE DEADLIEST LIE, Miriam realizes her brother will be leaving home to train as a gladiator when she enters his suite and sees his chlamys:
He’d been up for hours judging by the film on the food that remained on his breakfast tray, but the barber had yet to bathe and shave him. Barefoot and wearing only a bleached cotton robe, he’d set aside in one corner of the room a pair of boots, an embroidered linen tunic with a belt and matching sandals, his chlamys, and an Iberian leather travel bag crammed with sundries.
Seeing the chlamys was a stunning blow while the rest of reality dissolved around me as if I were viewing it through a tunnel. My fist flew to my chest as if it could plug the puncture in my heart and blunt the realization that today he would leave this house forever to kill or be killed for the cheap entertainment of a mob.
Can you comfort Miriam? She has other troubles too, you know. Like the disappearance of— Well, just click here.