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The present invention's stratified composite material system of armor, as typically embodied, comprises a strike stratum and a backing stratum. The strike stratum includes elastomeric matrix material and inventive ceramic-inclusive elements embedded therein and arranged (e.g., in one or more rows and one or more columns) along a geometric plane corresponding to the front (initial strike) surface of the strike stratum. More rigid than the strike stratum, the backing stratum is constituted by, e.g., metallic (metal or metal alloy) material or fiber-reinforced polymeric matrix material. Some inventive embodiments also comprise a spall-containment stratum fronting the strike stratum. The inventive ceramic-inclusive elements geometrically describe any of various inventive modes, including: first mode, having a flat front face and a textured back face; second mode, having a pyramidal front section and a prismatoidal (especially, prismoidal, e.g., truncated pyramidal or prismatic) body section; hybrid mode, combining features of first and second modes.