Everyday Life In Ancient Rome
In many ways the Roman family was like our modern day family, but some of their
practices we would think absolutely crazy. At the head of the household was the
paterfamilias; the oldest male member. This man ruled over everything until his death.
This included all property, earnings, the choosing of marriage partners, and the power of
life and death. Girls were married at a young age and had to supply a dowry that would
be returned if divorced. Like today, divorce, adultery, abortion, and birth control not
uncommon in ancient Rome. Although many of their methods were ridiculous.
Childhood ended at an earlier age than it does now. They would start school
around the age of six or seven. Secondary education was thought of mostly for boys
because girls should be married and taking care of a household by that age. This lasted till
about thirteen or fourteen, then they were finished with school.
Family slaves were fairly well off. They were allowed to eventually buy their
freedom from money that they accumulated but often would remain in the same house
with their family after freed. Some of the slaves that tutored the children were often more
cultured than their
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