Ancient Rome Women

Ancient Roman Girls

During the first eight days of a baby’s life, there were various religious ceremonies. Roman Girls were usually named on the eighth day of their birth. For recreation Roman Girls would play with rags dolls and dolls made out of wax or clay. Some of the Roman dolls even had jointed arms and legs that moved, which made them more realistic.

Ancient Roman Girls

Until the age of seven, boys and girls were taught by their mother to speak Latin correctly and do elementary reading, writing, and arithmetic. A girl’s formal education was cut short because a girl married early and there was much to learn about home management.

Ancient Roman Girls

From her mother, a girl learned to spin, weave and sew. Roman Girls were taught how to run a good household and how to be a good wife. They would have been taught how to run a kitchen, even if they did not have to cook themselves as this could be done by slaves in the wealthier Roman Households. Girls of poor families learned all of these things at home since they could not afford to go to school.

Roman Girls and Boys

Girls and boys from rich families, however, were not allowed to get romantic together. Most marriages among the upper classes were arranged by the parents. Women often were expected to marry men who were much older than themselves.

Ancient Roman Girls

They married whoever they were told to. Women found to have committed adultery could be put to death by their fathers or guardians when girls were 14 years old, their fathers planned a marriage for them. When they married the man chosen by their father, the girls left their house to live with their new husband and his family.

Ancient Roman Childbirth

Girls married very young and often died in childbirth or because they were weakened from having too many children without reprieve. Women were expected to have as many babies as they could because they were never sure how many of the children would reach maturity.

What was a bulla in ancient Rome

Girls wore a simple tunic with a belt at the waist. When they went outside, they wore a second tunic that reached their feet. Girls wore their bulla until the eve of their wedding day, when their bulla was set aside with other childhood things, like her toys.

Girls Wedding Dress

The wedding dress was long. It was tied around the waist with a belt in the “knot of Hercules”. Only the husband could untie the knot. A veil topped with a wreath of flowers was also worn.

Ancient Roman Girls

Women did have some personal freedoms, but they had little chance for individuality or personal choice. They were under the constant supervision of their fathers, male relatives, and husbands, who regularly kissed them on the mouth to find out if they had drunk wine.

Ancient Roman Girls

Drinking wine was strictly forbidden for Roman women and they could be punished by death. It was believed that wine caused women to have adulterous relationships, which were very common because so many of the marriages were for political or economic reasons, and not for love or passion.

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