The Main Duties And Responsibilities Of An Athenian Wife

562 Words3 Pages
The Main Duties And Responsibilities Of An Athenian Wife

Athenian wife's were expected to be disciplined and efficient in there

work and responsibilities. They had very hard lives and were demanded

by their husbands to stay indoors, except when going out to do chores,

e.g. collecting water.

Many of their jobs included knitting, weaving, bearing children,

cooking, cleaning and etc. The women had many jobs as they were nearly

always inside the house, sometimes some women were so hidden within

their houses that they were not known to exist.

Spinning was one of the wife's main duties as all the cloth in the

ancient world was hand-made, therefore making it expensive. If a local

man went down to the market to buy a toga or some sort of cloth, it

would be very expensive. For that reason, it was much more economical

to make your own.

We can be sure that women did this kind of job as we have evidence,

these being vases. On these vases were paintings of women with their

knee guards and wool. Although these paintings were rather worn out,

we could just make out that they were spinning. The women spun with a

distaff and spindle; again this was seen on the vases.

As well as making the cloth, the women sometimes dyed the cloth if it

was necessary; this was done by dyes made from lichen, onions,

berries, leaves and etc.

Women also washed the family's clothes; this depended on the size of

the house. If the house was big and consisted of many slaves, then the

slaves would do the clothes laundry. However if the house was small

with not so many slaves, then the women would do this. They did this

by beating the dirt out of the cloth with wooden sticks and water.

Other works were such as looking after the children, cleaning the

house, and teaching daughters respectable skills, (such as cleaning

and spinning).

Looking after the children would be vital; the women would need to

raise their children in a way so that they were suitable heirs for
Get Access