Ancient Greek Everyday Life
Men if they were not training in military, or discussing politics went to the Theatre for entertainment. To watch dramas that they could relate to, including tragedies and comedies. These often involved current politics and gods in some form. It is thought that women were not allowed to watch theatre or perform at the theatre, although male actors did play women roles.
Lives of Women in Ancient Greece were closely tied to domestic work, spinning, weaving and other domestic duties. They were not involved in public life or in politics. The live were normally quite confined to the house although one public duty was acting as a priestess at a temple.
Children in ancient Greece usually occupied their time playing with toys and games.
Farming and Food
The majority of Ancient Greek people made their living from farming. Citizens often had land outside the city which provided their income. The Greek landscape and climate was difficult to farm.
Grapes were usually picked around September and either kept for eating or made into wine. Making wine was done by treading and kept in jars to ferment.
Olives were either picked by hand or knocked out of the tress with wooden sticks. Some were crushed in a press to produce olive oil and some eaten. This was an important product to the Greeks that had many uses including; cooking, lighting, beauty products and for athletic purposes. It is also believed that uprooting an olive tree was a criminal offence. The grain was usually harvest around October to ensure it would grow during the wettest season. A man drove the ox driven plough, as second man sowed the seeds behind. In Spring the Crops were harvested using curved knives (sickles). After harvesting the grain, it was then thrashed, using mules and the help of the wind to separate the chaff from the grain, the husks were then removed by pounding the grain with a pestle and mortar.
Ancient Greeks usually ate bread (barley or wheat) and porridge, accompanied with food such as cheese, vegetables, fish, eggs and fruit. Animal such as deer, hare and boars were hunted only as addition to the food supply. Seasoning usually involved coriander and sesame seeds. Honey was probably the only sweetening that existed at the time, importance this is shown as the beehives were kept in terracotta
Ancient Greek Games
Greek boys played games like hockey, which were not part of the Olympic Games. The Ancient Greek boys usually played games naked, so girls were forbidden to watch.
Ancient Greek women and girls were not expected to do much physical activity for recreation purposes. From this pot we can see a young girl, juggling three balls, but there is nothing to presume she was a performer, as she is dressed like an ordinary girl.
The Ancient Greeks also played games that did not involve much physical activity also, such as marbles, dice, checkers and knucklebones. Below is a famous vase from the Vatican museum depicting Achilles and Ajax playing ‘Petteia’ checkers. The Ancient Greek version of checkers was similar to what the current game of backgammon is where the Game backgammon is derived from. The Ancient Greek version of Checkers involved a board, stones and dice.