At the head of the army next to the centurion aquilifer.
Aquilifer was an higher officer carrying the banner of the Roman legion. The name was taken from the type of banner – aquila, meaning as much as an eagle. This type of banner was used from 104 BCE, and it replaced the previous designations: wolf, bull and horse. legionary eagle was the most important thing the legion had, and its loss was a huge disgrace.
The aquila emblem, or eagle, was generally depicted with raised wings surrounded by a laurel wreath. The eagle was mounted on a narrow trapezoidal base, which in turn was attached to the pole. Aquilifer held the banner high so that it was clearly visible to soldiers.
Aquiliferhad great prestige, and its rank was just below the centurion and optio. He received a large pay, twice the size of an ordinary legionary. Unlike the signifer, aquilifer, he probably didn’t wear animal skins and had a bare head without a hat. For defense, he had a small round shield, called parma, which was attached when he had a legion mark and a weapon in his hands.
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