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The invention of chain mail in medieval armor in the middle ages had a number of distinct advantages. It was lightweight and allowed more freedom of movement than more solid metal coverings allowed. A primary disadvantage was that the point of a lance or the edge of a sword could penetrate it. During the 12th century, knights added a padded jerkin underneath chain mail to help cushion the blows, although it did not prevent penetration. Medieval chain mail is an awesome addition to any warrior, knight or Roman soldier costume.