Map AncientGreece was from 800 to 350 BCE. There for ancient Greece lasted for 450 years.
Background You may have heard some of the aspects and things that ancient Athens is known for. So you may have heard about their mythology, otherwise known as the famous Greek gods. Some of these famous Greek gods that were often included in the religion include Athena, Zeus, Hades, Hera etc. These gods played an enormous role in the religion of ancient Athens, and are still talked about today. Another thing that ancient Athens is known for, and has left for the world is the famous Olympics. Even today we still have the Olympics which are held every 2 years. So the art and poetry also had a huge role in ancient Athens, they were extremely known for their wonderful art work, such as tapestries, weaving and pottery. Not only were the arts very valuable in ancient Greece, but the architecture created a style, and historical artifacts that are shared to people in museums. Last but not least is the food that people made in ancient Athens. Mainly people loved growing their own healthy and nutritious food, such as olives. Olives were for sure one of the most popular types of food in ancient Athens, because it was healthy and fresh and they believed that Athena had granted them with an olive tree.
Social Structure So the social structure in Ancient Greece is quite simple to understand. So you may know what a social structure is, based on you experience in regular life. A social structure is really when a whole group of people are divided up into different categories depending on what they do and their appearance. A great example of this is in high school when each teenager is divided either in to the “cool” or “non-cool” category. It is quite similar in Ancient Greece as the people are separated into the groups of where they live. In other words they are divided into states, and each state is about 2500sq. km. Now next is the group of free people or slaves which is pretty simple. First of all the slaves are servants/labourers, and they have no legal rights, prisoners of war, bought from foreigners, and live with owners like belongings. Free people are also divided up into citizens or metics (foreigners). The citizens are just like they are now a day, they were born in Athens and are usually quite powerful, can take a roll in the government, and are sometimes forced to serve in the army depending on the situation. On the other hand the Metics (foreigners) are born somewhere else on the globe, are not able to achieve a citizenship, and finally they are forbidden to have homes, own land or speak in court. Women are not allowed to take part in regular day public work and life, and they got their social status from their husband’s status. Finally rich people usually had more rights, and families that owned and had more valuables were often respected more. Free Men Women, children and foreigners Slaves and Servants and criminals
Housing The housing situation in Ancient Greece is similar to the ones now a day. You may have noticed that in this modern time people with more money tend to have larger and fancier homes to live in; well it is pretty much the same in Ancient Athens. These massive homes included a kitchen, bathing room, men’s dining room, sometimes a women’s sitting room, on top of all of the other features of an average home. These homes were constructed of clay, stone bricks and sundried mud bricks. The sundried mud bricks were original and amazing, although after a couple years the small houses started to crumble away. Even though the that the women lived in the back and upstairs part and the men stayed in separate parts, they still loved each other, but it was just the custom back then. The reasoning for this was because the men tended to be valued a bit more over the women. The slaves and servants were extremely lucky because they usually lived in the home or sometimes in a separate part of the property. Finally kids lived with their parents in the home, and were also considered part of the family.
Houses for the Wealthy Just like in the social structure, the rich people had nicer and more valued houses than the average people. The wealthy had their home specifically designed to impress the guests and visitors. Often the wealthy had more features to their home, on top of the normal features. It was also common to have special additions or add-ons in the home. For example they often had a kitchen, bathing room, men’s dining room, and sometimes a women’s sitting room. Rich merchants would often have large properties and gigantic homes. These homes were often made to keep the heat in during the winter, and to keep the house cool during the summer. Overall if you were a rich landlord in Ancient Athens than you are one lucky person!
Food The Greeks, specifically the Athenians, lived in a very rocky environment with poor soil for growing. This limited their food to what could be grown in their surroundings. The food was always very healthy and fresh. Many types of fruit and vegetables were eaten such as olives, grapes, figs, beans, apples, and lentils. The Athenians did not have sugar so they used honey to sweeten food. Bread was made from types of grain like wheat and barley. Fish, squid and shellfish were the main types of protein as Greece is surrounded by oceans. Beef and pork were very expensive and most of the meat was sacrificed to the gods instead of eaten. Wine and water were the main drinks in Athens. Drinking milk and wine straight were considered wrong and appalling. An example of a day of meals in Greece would be: bread and wine for breakfast just after sunrise; bread, wine, olives, figs, cheese and dried fish for lunch and vegetables, fruit, fish and honey cakes for dinner which was the main meal of the day and eaten around sunset.
Family Life Family life played a huge role in Ancient Greece, in other words it was extremely important to the civilization. The family life and daily life was quite simple for the children. They lived with their mother’s in the women’s section of the house until they were seven years old, and often slept in wooden cribs or wicker baskets. The families often got along, and though they had a few toys the children simply played with their imagination and their surroundings. In the family the husband would be the head person in charge and the female (Mother) would often be in charge of taking care of the children and watching the slaves. Because most families were so strict, they often arranged weddings for their daughters which led the girls to being married when they were around 13 years old! All in all the families had a very specific way of running things, and each family was different depending on the beliefs, and people.
Marriage The differences between marriages in Canada and in Ancient Greece are quite significant. For example did you know that in Ancient Athens you would normally get married in January, and started after dark? There was a complicated ritual that a young girl must go through before the ceremony. These rituals included bringing their childhood toys to sacrifice to the goddess Artemis to show that their childhood has finished and their adult life has begun. Depending on whether you were wealthy or not, you would either ride in a chariot or a wagon. Most often the friends of the bride and groom would lead the way while caring torches. Also the father of the bride was required to organize the weddings. These are just some of the basics to the Ancient Athens marriage; there are also lots of common rituals to be done by both the bride and the groom. Finally if you compare Ancient Athens marriages to the Spartans marriages, you will find that they are quite different in various ways.
Childbirth When the children were born in ancient Greece, they were normally delivered by midwives, and were most often born on a birthing stool. If a child was overdue, they used a simple and effective solution which was herbs. Herbs were the solution for almost everything in Ancient Greece, which is quite different too. Because women married young, they often had a child young which led to death because they were often not ready to take on a child at that young age. It was often believed that if the lady giving birth had trouble and difficulties, then the baby was a girl and on the other hand if the baby came out easily and the female had no troubles at all then it was believed the baby was a boy. Some different things that were used to birth a child were olive oil, soft tea sponge, warm cloth, different scents and a pillow. Finally the goddess of child birth was Eileithyia, and was extremely important to the people of Athens.
Childhood The childhood in Ancient Greece is actually quite interesting to learn about because there are so many cool facts! The children in Ancient Athens often kept pets that they found such as birds and rabbits. The toys that the kids played with were quite similar to ones today, although they weren’t as well made or fancy. Some examples of the toys were rattles, swings, dolls, wicker balls and their surroundings. Because the children lived in their mom’s section of the home for the first seven years, they were mainly raised by their mother. If you were a boy then you were lucky enough to get an education because in Ancient Athens they believed that the girls didn’t need an education. The reasoning for this was because people believed that boys were more important than any other children. Women had a difficult time in Ancient Athens because they were considered women when they were only thirteen, and then they would often get married and give birth.
Childhood: Ancient Greece vs. Canada Childhood in Canada Both Childhood in Greece - Not many Canadian - Small animals such as - Many babies died children died soon rabbits and birds soon after birth after birth were kept as pets - Children were mostly - Children are usually - Children had toys raised by their raised by both their such dolls, rattles and mothers mother and father swings. - Only boys went to - Boys and girls both - Sports, art and types school, girls stayed at went to school of grammar and home math are taught in - Boys and girls are - Girls were considered school considered adults woman at 13 and when they are 19 - Children often relied married around this on their imagination time - Children started for their school when they - Boys started school entertainment were four of five when they were 6 or 7 - Boys and girls are all treated equally - Boys were considered more important than girls
Education Education was very important to the Greeks. In Athens, the main topics students learned were grammar, music and gymnastics. Students were taught in the arts to train them for peace and war. The educations system in Athens was based more on the arts than athletics activities like in Sparta. Boys started going to school at the age of six. Before that they were taught at home by their mothers or males slaves. Until they were 14 boys went to primary school. There they were taught two main things, the words from the famous Greek poet, Homer and how to play the lyre. There were not many books as they were very expensive. Boys used writing tablets and rulers. The teacher was always male and he also taught subjects such as drama, public speaking, government, art, reading, writing, math and music. Parents had to pay for their children to go to school. After primary school, students went to a high school until they were 18. Then boys were sent to military school for another two years and graduated when they were 20. Girls were not allowed to go to school but lots learned things at home from their mothers.
Religion The Ancient Greeks were famous for their religion and mythology. They believed strongly in gods and goddesses and the afterlife in the underworld. The 12 main gods the Greeks worshiped were: Zeus, Poseidon, Hades, Athena, Artemis, Apollo, Hermes, Ares, Hera, Hestia, Demeter and Hephaestus. These gods and goddesses supposedly lived on Mount Olympus, the tallest mountain in Greece. It was also believed that the gods had human qualities and would make life better for the Ancient Greeks. There was usually a temple or statue for one god in every city and many things were sacrificed to them. Greeks also believed that Oracles could tell the future. The Oracle of Delphi is the most famous oracle given to the people by the god Apollo. Afterlife was very important to the Greeks. They believed that after you died you would move onto your next life and that for your soul get there you had to have a funeral. Otherwise, you would be a ghost forever. Priests were also very important. It was believed that they were the only ones who could talk to the gods. There were often ceremonies to celebrate and worship the gods which were held at temples, alters or shrines.
Athena Athena was the goddess of wisdom, civilization, warfare, strength, battle strategy, household arts, crafts and justice. Her symbols are the owl and the olive tree. Zeus’s favourite child was born in the most interesting of ways. Zeus had a horrible headache and Hephaestus cut open his head to relieve the pain. Athena then came out in full body armour. The companion of heroes, Athena has helped many such as Jason, Odysseus and Heracles. Athena was one of the few goddesses who never married or had children. Athena was also famous for her creation of the spider. After challenging the gods, the foolish mortal Arachne was turned into spider by Athena. The city of Athens was very important to Athena. The Athenians built the Parthenon on Acropolis in her name and the city was also named after her. Athena became the patroness of Athens after a competition with her uncle Poseidon. Both of them granted a gift to the city of Athens. Poseidon a salt water spring and Athena an olive tree. The people chose Athena.
Clothing Men and women wore more or less the same thing in Ancient Greece. All of the clothing fitted very loosely around the body. The main article that people wore was a tunic like garment called a peplo or chiton. Men’s tunics were shorter than women’s. The chitons were often held on with a belt and made of heavy fabric for the winter and light fabric for the summer. Cloaks called himations were worn in the winter. The Athenians wore sandals on their feet but many of them went around barefoot. Many Greek women wore jewellery such as necklaces, bracelets and earrings. At one point men wore jewellery too. Women all wore their hair long. It was considered shameful to cut it so lots of interesting ways to put hair up were created. Hair was often braided curled or put into a bun. Headbands were also worn to hold hair up. Only young, unmarried girls were allowed to wear their hair down.
Art and Music There were many different types of art and music in Ancient Greece. One of the main types of art in Ancient Greece was architecture. One of the most famous Greek buildings is the Parthenon in Athens. A replica has even been made in Nashville, Tennessee. The Greeks were very famous for their pottery. Vases were made and used for everything from cups to trophies to funeral urns. Very few of them were used for decoration. Other forms of pottery were statues and figurines. Painting was another form of art in Greece. Many scenes from everyday life and mythology were painted on panels or canvases and walls. The paint was also used increase the look of architecture, sculptures and vases. Music was very important in Greek culture. The first musical instrument invented was the lyre given to Apollo by Hermes. The lyre is string instrument originally built with a tortoiseshell. Some other instruments include kithara, aulos, pan pipes and hydraulis. Music was often played at festivals, marriages, funerals and religious festivals and enjoyed by all citizens.
Thesmophoria The Greeks celebrated many types of festivals throughout the year. Thesmophoria was held in honour of the goddess Demeter and her daughter Persephone. It celebrated the third year of grief Demeter had while mourning for the loss of her daughter to the Underworld. This was a women’s only festival. No men were allowed to come and only married women. The festival lasted for three days. On the first day all of the women hiked up to the sacred space where they would celebrate, on near the hill of Pnyx. This day was called anodos. The next day, nesteia, was a day of fasting and meant to be a day of grieving. Women would only eat pomegranate seeds. All of the seeds that were dropped were not picked up and left behind for food for the dead. On the last day, usually at night there would be a great feast of meat in celebration of the goddess Kallengeia, the goddess of childbirth. The sacrifices in this ceremony mostly consisted of pig and pomegranate seeds. These items supposedly sunk into the ground. Not much else is known about this festival as no journals were kept or letter sent. Many mysteries surround Thesmophoria.
Conclusion Ancient Greek daily life was very interesting. We have gotten much of our art, government, architecture, sports, food and language from the Greeks. They have given us many important things. Our lives may seem the same in some ways but Ancient Athens and modern Canada are very different. Women have as many rights and value as men, girls are allowed to go to school and children are considered adults at a much later age. Though different from nowadays, the Athenian culture has certainly impacted much of our life in the western world. Greece may be different from what it was in ancient times but the culture is still there and just as interesting to see and learn about.
Information Bibliography Doyle, Susan and Tountant, Arnold. “Ancient Worlds”. Canada: Oxford University Press, 2000. Macdonald, Fiona. “How Would You Survive as an Ancient Greek?”. Belgium: The Salariya Book Co Ltd., 1995 Ancient Athenian Education http://hrsbstaff.ednet.ns.ca/mcallip/Hist10/Greece/athenian_education.htm Ancient Greece http://www.ancientgreece.com/s/Main_Page/ Ancient Greece Food http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/Homework/greece/food.htm Ancient Greece Gods http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/Homework/greece/greekgods.htm Ancient Greek Religion http://library.thinkquest.org/28111/newpage2.htm Ancient Greek Daily Life http://greece.mrdonn.org/dailylife.html Ancient Greeks http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/primaryhistory/ancient_greeks/ Athena- Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Athena Athens http://www.sikyon.com/athens/athens_eg.html Children of Greece http://www.historylink102.com/greece3/children.htm Clothing in Ancient Greece- Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clothing_in_ancient_Greece Daily Life http://library.thinkquest.org/CR0210200/ancient_greece/daily_life.htm Education in Ancient Greece http://greece.mrdonn.org/education.html Fashion in Ancient Greece http://historylink102.com/greece3/fashion.htm Food in Ancient Greece http://www.historylink102.com/greece3/food.htm Houses in Ancient Greece http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/Homework/greece/houses.htm Life of the People http://library.thinkquest.org/6132/Lifeofthepeople.html Pregnancy and Childbirth http://www.womenintheancientworld.com/health%20in%20greece.htm Religion in Ancient Greece- Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_ancient_Greece The Goddess Athena http://www.goddess-athena.org/Encyclopedia/Athena/ What clothes did the Ancient Greeks wear?? http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/Homework/greece/clothes.htm
Picture BibliographyAncient Athens Map http://www.usu.edu/markdamen/ClasDram/chapters/051clasgk.htmAncient Greek House http://blog.richard-potter.co.uk/tag/materials/page/2/Athena http://themovieoracle.blogspot.com/Artemis http://www.teenwitch.com/divine/greek/artemis.htmlChildbirth http://www.hsl.virginia.edu/historical/artifacts/antiqua/women.cfmDemeter and Persephone http://www.epilogue.net/cgi/database/art/view.pl?id=68545Family http://cwest-domesticconfusion.blogspot.com/2011/02/lot-of-stuff-on-my-mind-this-is-just.htmlGreek Flag http://www.greekliving.net/greek-culture/Greek Flag (2) http://www.burdosclassroom.org/worldhistorywiki/index.php?title=Greek_GeographyGreek Tiles http://www.hvmag.com/Hudson-Valley-Magazine/Hudson-Valley-Home/Fall-2008/Frieze-Frames/Hairstyles http://www.fashion-era.com/ancient_costume/ancient-greek-dress-chiton.htmHermes Greek God http://xfilexplore.com/2011/gods-and-goddesses-in-greek-mythology/Jewellery http://www.allaboutgemstones.com/jewelry_history_ancient_greek.htmlMan in Chiton http://karenswhimsy.com/ancient-greek-clothing.shtmMap http://sljglobal.wikispaces.com/ieshiatravisMount Olympus http://sb.westfordk12.us/pages/6mweb/6mss/travelpages/blue10/bamy/index.htmlOlive Tree http://www.watchmanscry.com/forum/showthread.php?p=22992Olive Tree (2) http://fineartamerica.com/featured/olive-tree-thomas-darnell.htmlOracle of Delphi http://www.marketoracle.co.uk/FAQ-id_cat-6.htmlOwl http://www.factzoo.com/birds/owls.html
Pictures Bibliography (Cont.)Parthenon http://www.columbia.edu/cu/gsapp/BT/EEI/HEATLOAD/heatload.htmlParthenon (2) http://www.howstuffworks.com/parthenon-and-the-acropolis-landmark.htmParthenon in Nashville http://public-domain-images.blogspot.com/2010/06/parthenon-in-nashville-usa-replica-of.htmlRabbit http://www.dgsgardening.btinternet.co.uk/rabbits.htmRich Person House http://janeaustensworld.wordpress.com/2011/04/09/classical-influences-that-shaped-the-regency-world/Sandalhttp://etc.usf.edu/clipart/galleries/people/costumes_footwear.php?page=2&termSculpture http://www.ancientgreece.com/s/Sculpture/Toy http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ToyVase http://vasesglassvases.com/Wedding http://www.richeast.org/htwm/Greeks/marriage/marriage.htmlWedding Carriage http://www.solvinglight.com/features/37NoahsPartVI.htmWomen Sewing http://www.art.com/products/p14390652-sa-i3030685/women-occupied-with-sewing-spinning-and-other-household-chores-in-ancient-greece.htm