Chain mail is the name (called mail or maille, but also called chain mail or chainmail) of a type of armour consisting of small metal rings linked together in a pattern to form a mesh. It was in common military use between the 3rd century BC and the 16th century AD in Europe, and longer in Asia and North Africa. A coat of this armour is often called a hauberk, and sometimes a byrnie.
The earliest examples of surviving mail were found in the Carpathian Basin at a burial in Horný Jatov, Slovakia dated in the 3rd century BC, and in a chieftain's burial located in Ciumești, Romania. Its invention is commonly credited to the Celts, but there are examples of Etruscan pattern mail dating from at least the 4th century BC. Mail may have been inspired by the much earlier scale armour. Mail spread to North Africa, West Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, India, Tibet, South East Asia, and Japan.
Herodotus wrote that the ancient Persians wore scale armour, but mail is al