What Did Kids Play in Ancient Greece?

When we think of ancient Greece, we may picture the great philosophers like Plato and Aristotle, or the mighty warriors like Achilles and Odysseus. But what about the children of ancient Greece?

What did they do for fun? Let’s take a look at some of the games and activities that ancient Greek kids played.

Athletics

Athletics were an important part of ancient Greek culture, and children were encouraged to participate in sports from a young age. Boys would often compete in foot races, wrestling matches, and discus throwing. Girls also participated in athletics, though their events were more limited.

Board Games

In addition to physical activities, children also played board games. One popular game was called “petteia,” which was similar to modern-day chess. Another game was called “kottabos,” which involved trying to hit Targets with wine dregs.

Dolls and Toys

Girls played with dolls made of clay or cloth, while boys played with toy soldiers and animals made of wood or bronze. Both boys and girls also enjoyed playing with balls made from animal bladders or leather.

The Olympics

Perhaps the most famous athletic event in ancient Greece was the Olympic Games. Held every four years in Olympia, the Olympics brought together athletes from all over Greece to compete in various events. While only adult men were allowed to participate, children would often attend the games as spectators.

Myths and Legends

Children in ancient Greece also learned about their culture through storytelling. Myths and legends about gods, heroes, and monsters were passed down through generations via oral tradition.

Conclusion

While the activities of ancient Greek kids may seem simple compared to modern-day entertainment options, they were no less engaging or important for developing skills like athleticism and creativity. From athletics to board games to storytelling, children in ancient Greece had a variety of ways to learn and have fun.