Influence of the Greeks on the Slaves


Please write essay on the quesiton- my focus question is Analyse the influences the Greeks have on slavery in the Mediterranean. Font Time New Roman size 11


Identification of a broad topic area

The entire study will revolve around analyzing the influences the Greeks had on slavery during the Mediterranean period. It has been greatly observed and witnessed that the slavery in Mediterranean times by the Greeks has been quite bad and it was also a common practice by them. Furthermore, some of the writers in the ancient period of Greece mainly Aristotle regarded slavery as necessary and even natural. Furthermore, the academic literature of the slavery by the Greeks during the Mediterranean is beset by important methodological problems. There were also frequent colonization and wars that produced a lot of opportunities for the Greeks to seize the slaves during the Mediterranean. 

Research/ inquiry questions:

Discuss the slavery in the Mediterranean and how did the Greeks influence it? How was slavery during the ancient period in Greece? How did Greeks treat the slaves at that period of time? How slavery played an important part in Greece during the Mediterranean? What was the concept of slavery by the Greek people? is the number one assignment writing help service that has helped thousands of students by providing high-quality assignments. So if you also want a good grade, pay for our history assignment help. Our experts make sure that you receive perfectly structured history homework within your deadline.

A description of preliminary research 

After conducting primary research it can be said that it is not at all hard to find out information about the Greeks in the Mediterranean period about the slaves.  I will be using the secondary sources that will mainly include the books based on the Greeks and the slavery, and also some of the journal articles that are written by well-known scholars. On the other hand, I will also include primary source that will be maybe from the documents and texts written by the people who were the eye-witnesses at that period and it can be found mainly in the museum or I will also try to rely on some letters, speeches or diaries during that time for making my study accurate.  

Research intentions in relation to resources 

For answering my question I will be using secondary sources in form of the journal articles and books Rabinowitz, N. S. (2005). Slaves with slaves: women and class in Euripidean tragedy. In Women and Slaves in Greco-Roman Culture (pp. 68-80). Routledge. Finley, M. I., and Shaw, B. D. (1980). Ancient slavery and modern ideology (p. 86). London: Chatto & Windus. Cuffel, V. (1966). The classical Greek concept of slavery. Journal of the History of Ideas, 323-342. Hunt, P. (2002). Slaves, warfare, and ideology in the Greek historians. New York: Cambridge University Press. Hanson, V. D. (1999). The other Greeks: the family farm and the agrarian roots of western civilization. New York: Univ of California Press.

In the above-mentioned journal articles and books, they have discussed the relationship of Greeks and slavery in a distinct manner.

Influence of the Greeks on the slaves

It has been noticed that slavery played an important role in the ancient Greek civilization. On the other hand, the academic literature also supports the fact that there were also women slaves present in ancient Greece. The slave was considered to be a vital element with regards to the ancient world. Moreover, the male slaves in the Mediterranean were assigned to do the industrial and agricultural related work by the Greek men and on the other hand, the women slaves were made to do a large variety of domestic duties that included cooking, shopping, wool-working, taking care of the children, and serving the people with foods, etcetera. After some of the war, Greece became the leading force in the Mediterranean region (Rabinowitz, 2005). The Greek people used to play a crucial role in that area they influenced the slaves and mainly slaves were used in the agricultural part, but there were also some of the slaves who were used in the mines and quarries. On the contrary, slavery was also a strategic as well as a vital part for all the Mediterranean societies with regards to the Middle Ages. The merchants, peasants and the fisherman were in high threat at that time of becoming a slave. There were a lot of things which would happen to the individuals in the Mediterranean regions by the Greek peoples: If the captive individual had any type of influential supporters or they were wealthy they would have been ransomed. It would be one of the most advantageous plans by the Greek people as the exchange of money was direct and immediate not at all drawn out or long in the slave market business with regards to the Mediterranean. Secondly, the captive was also used by the pirate for the labor in the ship. Moreover, during that period the Greek people also influenced and used the slaves during the wars. Thirdly, the Greeks also used to take a large group of slaves parade them through the entire Mediterranean region in honor of their capture and parade diplomats in front of them highlighting the victory (Finley and Shaw, 1980). 
There are also a lot of studies that indicate that slavery was a fact of life during the medieval period in the Mediterranean region. The slave trade and the slavery are two different issues still both were highly encouraged and influenced by the Greeks. There was also a time when the majority of women were slaves in the Mediterranean. Furthermore, it has been also highlighted by a lot of historians that until the fifteenth century the most vital sources of slaves for the Mediterranean were the Caucasus and Europe. There was also continuous slave trade to the Mediterranean mainly from Africa. There were a lot of ways that Greek influenced other countries for trading the slaves in the Mediterranean such as The individuals were captured, they would also sometimes born into the slavery, the slaves would be also the enemy soldiers captured in the war and them would also be captivated by the pirates and sold into the slavery. Most of the slaves in the Mediterranean were mainly the foreigners. 
It has been observed and researched that the Greeks did not invent the concept of slavery it was mainly practiced by the Mesopotamians, Hebrews, and Egyptians. Arguably, Greeks coined quite a bad reputation in the slavery system because they used to be very literate as well as articulate and it has been displayed in a clear manner in terms of their influence in the Mediterranean region. It was in the culture of Greeks that every single person used to won a slave. On the other hand, not a single person from Greece ever spoke about abolishing slavery; in fact, prominent figures like Aristotle also encouraged slavery by every means. Throwing light on the above-mentioned statement it can be also said that one of the most controversial and shameful argument by Aristotle was looking at the bodies of the slaves and commenting that they had crooked and misshapen backs concluding that certain individuals are born as slaves. The Greeks were expert in making the slaves do whatever they wanted and that is also one of the reasons they had a strong influence on the slaves in the Mediterranean region. The slaves were employed as the miners, cooks, porters, craftsmen, and maids by the Greeks in the Mediterranean region in the medieval times (Cuffel, 1966). 

Types of slaves in Greece

It has been also observed that there were various types of slaves present in ancient Greece and their expectations, as well as living conditions, were highly linked with the occupation.  Moreover, the slaves deployed in mining were considered to be the most unfortunate ones because they lead an unhealthy life and also suffered from the early death. On the contrary, other slaves were not subjected to be such unfortunate ones. Even it was noticed in case of the Mediterranean region when the Greeks influenced the slaves that are the specialized slaves as the craftsmen would live and work separately from their masters and would engage themselves in commerce and produce income via a portion of what they would have earned from the pockets of their masters. The healthy standard of living in the Mediterranean was also noticed in the Spartan slaves as they had a high standard of living and enjoyed with their family. 

The banditry and piracy provided the consistent and significant amount of supplying the slaves. The slave trade was also encouraged between the states and kingdoms of the expansive region. The slaves were also some of the low ranking individual in Greece with a little number of rights. The women slaves present in the Mediterranean region were considered to be less important and intelligent than the man and it is also a reason the Greeks used to influence them a lot to perform their duties well by constantly telling them that they are of no use. The women slaves were not even allowed by the Greeks to do certain tasks such as money-changing, medicine, learning crafts, and also teaching (Hunt, 2002).

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Slaves in the Mediterranean

During the medieval time slavery was an important fact of life, mainly in the Mediterranean region. The history have also witnessed that the slavery was one of the most common practice and also vital part of the Greece throughout the history. It has been also noticed that in the Mediterranean they had many degrees of enslavement. Furthermore, there are a lot of categories that ranged from the free citizen to the chattel slave and it also included helots or Penestae, bastards, freedmen and metrics. Most of the slaves in the Mediterranean who were influenced by the Greeks were the property of their master. The masters used to rent and even sell the slaves. Under the strong influence of the Greeks the Mediterranean’s made sure that the slaves could have spouse and children but their family was not at all recognized in that region and it was also an illegal right of the masters ranging from the Mediterranean region that they used to scatter the family members of the slaves at any point of time. Despite of the torture in the trials the slaves in the Mediterranean region were protected in an indirect manner. If the slaves were mistreated in the Mediterranean then the immediate master could initiate litigation for interest and damages. On the contrary, the master who treated a slave in a brutal manner could be prosecuted by any citizen and this was not set up to enact the slave but to avoid the excessive violence in the Mediterranean region that happened because of the Greeks. The slaves in this particular region also belonged to the household of their masters. The slaves that were bought in the Mediterranean region were mainly welcomed by fruits and nuts like they were the new bride in the household. 
The historians and some of the studies also suggest that slaves could never own a property but if their masters were not influenced by the Greeks then they used to let the slaves save for purchasing. The slaves in this region were also restricted by the Greeks in terms of sexual obligations. It was strictly mentioned by the Greeks that they should not get involved in the matter of love with the freemen or else they will receive severe punishments. On the other hand, it can be concluded saying that the condition of the Mediterranean slaves were difficult to appreciate and as per Aristotle the day-to-day routine of the slaves can be summed up in three main words that was discipline, work and feeding. 


  • Cuffel, V. (1966). The classical Greek concept of slavery. Journal of the History of Ideas, 323-342. 

  • Finley, M. I., and Shaw, B. D. (1980). Ancient slavery and modern ideology (p. 86). London: Chatto & Windus. 

  • Hanson, V. D. (1999). The other Greeks: the family farm and the agrarian roots of western civilization. New York: Univ of California Press.

  • Hunt, P. (2002). Slaves, warfare, and ideology in the Greek historians. New York: Cambridge University Press. 

  • Rabinowitz, N. S. (2005). Slaves with slaves: women and class in Euripidean tragedy. In Women and Slaves in Greco-Roman Culture (pp. 68-80). Routledge. 

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