The City

Men and women led different lives, while social differences were also pronounced, especially between Athenian citizens, foreigners living in Athens and slaves.

Women would not leave the house, except very rarely, and only accompanied by one of the men of the house. Young girls were accompanied by their father, their brother or a trusted slave. One of the girls’ duties was to go to the public fountains2 (krene) and use hydrias3 (vessels with three handles) to fetch water for the house (hydria, [h]ydor: water). Some houses had wells that directly served the needs of the family, since they were located in the courtyard of the house.

Female figurine of the “Tanagra” type, 1st c. BC

Most houses have wells and cisterns to collect rainwater. In various parts of the city there are fountains, where the water comes from the springs of the Ilissos River through the aqueduct built by Pisistratus about 100 years earlier.

In this particular vase, we have a scene from the everyday life of a. women were the raising of children and housekeeping. One of the few opportunities they had to leave the house, except for certain religious festivals and ceremonies, was to carry water from the public fountains.

Black Figure lekythos depicting two women filling their water jars at a fountain. 6th century BC.


  • Pedagogue: The most trusted slave of the house, who took care of the boys. The pedagogue accompanied them on their walks and was responsible for their behavior.
  • Krene: Public fountain
  • Hydria: A vessel with three handles, used to carry water


Take a walk with your friends in the area around the Acropolis and take a photo of an ancient monument or one of the old houses that made an impression on you.

The City