The earliest Greek civilization thrived around 4,000 years ago. Some of the things that
they had that we still use today are the arts, science, math, literature, and politics. The
Greeks were known for their great intelligence, military strategies, and their buildings.
All Greek’s spoke the same language. This made it easier to trade and to
communicate between different parts of the country. All Greeks believed in the same gods
and also shared some common heritage. The Greeks believed that there was a god for
everything on earth. A few examples of these gods are Zeus, ruler of the gods. Posidon
was the god of the ocean and Hades, god of the under world.
The Greek government was not a monarchy with a king and queen. Instead the
Greek government was a city-state. A city-state is when each city has its own separate
The men were a very important part of the Greek civilization because they were
the ones that ran the government. The men were also the ones who would plant and work
the fields or would oversee them. They would also spend time sailing, hunting, or
manufacturing things for trade. For fun, the men would attend drinking parties, would
wrestle, and enjoyed horse back riding. When the men held drinking parties for his friends
the wives and daughters were not aloud to attend.
The women in the Greek civilization were very limited to what they were allowed
to do. They were permitted to attend weddings, funerals, and visit female neighbors for
brief periods. The main responsibility for the women were to bear children and to watch
over the house and make sure it was cleaned by one of the slaves because women were
rarely ever responsible for cleaning the house. Women slaves were the cooks, cleaners,
and sometimes even worked in the fields. The male slaves would act as a guard and
would stand at the door and protect the women when the man was away. Only other
women were allowed to enter when the man was away. Women were not allowed to
participate in the Olympic games except for the chariot racing, which they were only
allowed to participate in if they owned a horse.
There were several different ways in which a person could be made a slave. If you
were captured in battle then you could be sold as a slave. If a child was abandoned and
then was found he could be kept by the person as his slave or could be sold. Sometimes a
poor family might sell their baby as a slave to earn some money and in hopes that the baby
might have a better life as a slave than with them. The worse thing that could happen to
someone that was then put into slavery was when the baby or child was kidnapped and
sold for money.
Many houses in Greece in the 5th and 6th century were made up of clay, stone,
and wood. They usually had two to three rooms and were built around an open air
courtyard. If you were richer you might have had a kitchen, men’s drinking area, and
maybe even a room for bathing.
The Greek’s used an irrigation system to get water to their crops which consisted
of olives, grapes, and figs. They would also keep goat to get milk and cheese. Many
Greek’s made their own wine which was a very popular thing in Greece. Meat was very
expensive and was rarely eaten but was often used for religious sacrifices.
The types of clothing that the Greek’s wore were wool in he winter and linen in the
summer. Since Clothing was very expensive to buy most families made their own clothes
and just bleached them white or a bright color. All cloths if made at home were made by
the mother, daughter, or female slave.
We use many of the things that the Greek’s have discovered today in our modern
society. We should be thankful that we have used merchant’s to create cultural diffusion.
If we hadn’t done this than we wouldn’t have many of the things that we considered
important or even vital to our society.