Ancient Greek Men for Kids and Teachers Illustration

Greek Men

Although some money was used in ancient Greece, most payment was in the form of barter. The ancient Greeks loved to crack deals. Occupations included what you would expect like farmers, fishermen, warriors, artists, and craftsmen. But occupations also included barbers, charcoal burners, matchmakers, dance teachers, pearl divers, tutors, oracles, writers, actors, poets, sailors, inventors, textile designers, blanket makers, shawl makers, athletes, government officials, pottery makers, storytellers, money changers, traders, and store owners. There was even the occupation of pirate! Ancient Greece was a busy place.

Keep in mind, Ancient Greece was not one country with one ruler. It was a collection of many hundreds of city states, each with its own government and its own way of doing things. At one point, there were over 2,500 city-states, most of which were tiny villages surrounded by farmland. Over time, these tiny villages were scooped up and included under the control of bigger city-states, but even after many city-states combined, there were still over a thousand city-states remaining, and each was famous for something! Although most people in ancient Greece were farmers, even in the tiny villages you would find a barber, a matchmaker, a priestess, and merchant or two.

Occupations and Professions for Men:

  • Although all men in ancient Greece were warriors as needed, there were many occupations in ancient Greece for men.

  • Very rich men owned estates and villas in the city and countryside. They had slaves to do the work. They might serve in government.

  • Some men were professional warriors - either on land or sea.

  • Some men were merchants, with stalls in the marketplace.

  • Some worked on ships that brought goods from one city-state to another, or from countries and settlements around the Mediterranean.

  • Some men were barbers and shop owners.

  • Some worked in government as leaders in their community or as assistants to kings.

  • Some were bankers.

  • Some men were pearl divers.

  • Some men made beautiful jewelry and metal ware.

  • Some were writers and poets. Some wrote plays. Some were actors.

  • Some were athletes or trainers.

  • Some were teachers.

  • Some were inventors.

  • Some were charcoal burners. The burners mined coal in the mountains and sold it in the towns, where it was used in outdoor cookers in homes.

  • And of course, there were the artists, many of whom worked in clay to make pottery and some who sculpted marble or rock to make beautiful statues, and some who worked with metals to make all kinds of things including weapons.

Occupations and Professions for Women:

  • Most women were housewives. Some helped their husbands in the fields.

  • Some became a priestess, the woman in charge of a temple.

  • In rare cases, a woman might become an oracle (a fortune teller.)

  • Some became matchmakers, a highly respected profession in ancient Greece.

  • Many sold goods they grew, made, or collected in the marketplace