A Pompeian woman wearing a taenia girdle

In ancient Greek costume, a tainia (Ancient Greek: ταινία; pl.: ταινίαι or Latin: taenia; pl.: taeniae) was a headband, ribbon, or fillet.

Coin of Perseus of Macedon wearing a taenia or diadema headband

The tainia headband was worn with the traditional ancient Greek costume. The headbands were worn at Greek festivals.[1] The gods also bound their heads with tainiai.[2] Furthermore, cult images,[3] trees,[4] urns, monuments, animal sacrifices and the deceased[5] had tainiai wound around them. They were later adopted by the Romans.[6] A similar type of headband was the diadema, used as a symbol for kings.

See also


  1. ^ Pl. Symp. 212d.e, 213d; Xen. Symp. 5,9
  2. ^ Paus. 1,8,4
  3. ^ Paus. 8,31,8; 10,35,10
  4. ^ Theocr. 18,44
  5. ^ Lucian, Dial. mort. 13,4
  6. ^ "Tainia." Brill's New Pauly. Brill Online, 2013. Reference. 28 June 2013

The dictionary definition of taenia at Wiktionary