Roman horses didn't wear horseshoes: They wore hipposandals.
|photo credit: Vindolanda|
BBC story. they were found near a fort for the Hadrian wall.
originally, the horses wore leather wrappings or shoes.
The hipposandal, which appears in the Celtic-Roman area north of the Alps around the mid-1st century AD, was the next step in the development of hoof protection, where the sole of the boot was made of metal. It included an oval-shaped cup of thick metal that enclosed and protected the hoof, complete with a fixation system. The device was fastened to the hoof by metallic clips and leather laces. ...
To further improve traction, the bottom of each hipposandal was grooved.
but what about the classic horseshoe?
There is speculation that the Gauls were the first to nail on metal horseshoes. The nailed iron horseshoe first clearly appeared in the archaeological record in Europe in about the 5th century AD when a horseshoe, complete with nails, was found in the tomb of the Frankish King Childeric I at Tournai, Belgium.