What Jobs Did Slaves Have in Ancient Greece?

Slavery has been an unfortunate reality throughout human history, and Ancient Greece was no exception. Slaves in Ancient Greece were considered property and were utilized for various tasks. In this article, we will explore the jobs that slaves had in Ancient Greece.

Household Slaves

One of the most common roles for slaves in Ancient Greece was working in households. These slaves were responsible for tasks such as cooking, cleaning, and laundry. They were also expected to take care of children and often slept in the same room as them to attend to their needs throughout the night.


Slaves who worked as cooks had to be skilled in preparing a variety of dishes. They were responsible for sourcing ingredients and cooking meals for their masters and their families.


Cleaning was another essential task that household slaves had to perform. They swept floors, cleaned dishes, and tidied up rooms.

Agricultural Slaves

Ancient Greece was primarily an agricultural society, and many slaves worked on farms. These agricultural slaves cultivated crops such as wheat, grapes, and olives.

Wheat Cultivators

Wheat was a staple crop in Ancient Greece, and slaves who worked on wheat farms had to be skilled at planting, harvesting, and threshing wheat.

Grape Harvesters

Grapes were used to make wine in Ancient Greece, so grape harvesters played a crucial role on farms. They picked grapes during the harvest season and transported them to wineries or pressed them into juice.

Mining Slaves

Mining was another industry where slave labor was commonly used in Ancient Greece. These slaves worked in dangerous conditions deep underground extracting valuable minerals like silver and lead.

Silver Miners

Silver mining was one of the most profitable industries in Ancient Greece. Slaves who worked in silver mines had to dig tunnels, extract silver ore, and transport it to the surface.

Lead Miners

Lead was another valuable mineral that was mined in Ancient Greece. Lead miners had to work in hazardous conditions and were at risk of developing lead poisoning.

  • Conclusion:

In conclusion, slaves in Ancient Greece were used for a variety of tasks ranging from household chores to mining. They were considered property and had no rights, but their labor was essential to the functioning of society. By examining the jobs that slaves had in Ancient Greece, we can gain a better understanding of how their labor contributed to the economy and culture of Ancient Greece.