Why Was Ships Important to Ancient Greece?

Ships played a significant role in the history of Ancient Greece. The Greek civilization was located in a region surrounded by water, and the sea was an essential part of their way of life.

Greek ships were used for trade, transportation, and warfare. In this article, we will explore the importance of ships to Ancient Greece.

The Geography of Ancient Greece

Ancient Greece was situated on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The mainland is a mountainous peninsula with many smaller islands scattered around it. With so much coastline and so many islands, it’s no surprise that Greeks became skilled seafarers.


The Greeks used ships for trade extensively. They traded goods such as olive oil, wine, pottery, and metals with other civilizations around the Mediterranean. The Greek city-states were also linked by sea routes that facilitated trade between them.


Athens was one of the most prosperous city-states in Ancient Greece. It had a large navy that protected its trade routes and ensured safe passage for its merchants.


Corinth was another important city-state in Ancient Greece that relied heavily on sea trade. It had two ports – Lechaion on the Gulf of Corinth and Kenchreai on the Saronic Gulf – which enabled it to conduct trade with other civilizations around the Mediterranean.


Ships were also used for transportation in Ancient Greece. People traveled by ship to visit other cities or go to war. Ships allowed Greeks to move troops quickly across long distances.

The Trojan War

The Trojan War is an example of how ships were crucial to ancient Greek warfare. It was fought between the Greeks and Trojans over control of Troy (located in modern-day Turkey).

The Greeks sailed across the Aegean Sea and landed their troops on the shores of Troy. Without ships, the Greeks would not have been able to launch the attack.


In conclusion, ships were essential to Ancient Greece. They allowed Greeks to trade with other civilizations, travel across long distances, and wage war. The sea was an integral part of Greek civilization, and the development of ships enabled them to expand their influence and prosper as a civilization.