What Jewelry Did They Wear in Ancient Greece?

Jewelry has always been an integral part of human history, and Ancient Greece is no exception. The Greeks adorned themselves with various ornaments made of precious metals, stones, and other materials. Let’s take a closer look at what kind of jewelry was worn in Ancient Greece.

Greek Jewelry: Significance and Function

In Ancient Greece, jewelry was not just a decorative accessory; it held significant meaning and served various functions. It was considered a symbol of wealth, power, social status, and religious devotion. The Greeks believed that wearing jewelry would protect them from evil spirits and bring good fortune.

Materials Used in Greek Jewelry

The Greeks used various materials to make their jewelry. Gold was the most precious metal that they used for making jewelry.

It symbolized wealth and power and was reserved for the elite class. Silver was another metal used in Greek jewelry making, which represented purity. Bronze was also popular among the Greeks as it was readily available and easier to work with.

Apart from metals, the Greeks also used other materials such as shells, pearls, stones like amethysts, emeralds, sapphires, agate, etc., glass beads to make their jewelry.

Types of Greek Jewelry

There were different types of jewelry worn by both men and women in Ancient Greece. Let’s take a look at some of them:

  • Necklaces: Necklaces were worn by both men and women; they were made using gold chains or strings of beads.
  • Earrings: Earrings were popular among women; they came in various shapes such as hoops or studs.
  • Bracelets: Bracelets were worn on the wrist or upper arm; they could be simple bands or more elaborate designs.
  • Rings: Rings were worn on fingers, and they could be simple or have intricate designs. The Greeks believed that wearing rings on specific fingers could have healing properties.

Symbolism in Greek Jewelry

Greek jewelry was often designed with symbolic elements. For instance, snakes were a popular motif in Greek jewelry; they represented wisdom and rebirth. Owls symbolized knowledge and intelligence, while dolphins represented freedom and protection.

Conclusion

Greek jewelry was not just about decoration but also held significant meaning and served various functions. The Greeks used various materials to make their jewelry, including gold, silver, bronze, shells, pearls, stones, and glass beads.

Different types of jewelry were worn by both men and women in Ancient Greece. Symbolism played a crucial role in the design of Greek jewelry motifs such as snakes, owls, dolphins, etc.