Below, we present some sketches of Armenian costumes, which date back at 2nd-3rd centuries. Drawn by Eugène Lacoste, these sketches depict ancient Armenian costumes made for use in an opera about Saint Polyeuctus.
According to Christian tradition, Saint Polyeuctus was an ancient Roman saint who lived in the early 3rd century. He was a wealthy Roman army officer and was tormented and beheaded in Melitene, Armenia, by order of Valerian.
These sketches illustrate Armenian costumes from before Armenia’s conversion to Christianity in 301. But the clothes demonstrate that Christian culture already made its way to the region. At the time, Armenia was a place of many coexisting religions, like the Armenian paganism, Roman cults, Persian Zoroastrianism, and growing Christianity.