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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

If You Were Me and Lived in...Ancient Greece

Carole Roman's If You Were Me and Lived in...Ancient Greece is my second installment this week, and I'm having a blast with these books.

If we lived in ancient Greece, we would have lived almost two and a half millenia ago. That's almost 2,500 years. We would have lived in a society that set the paving stones for modern democracy, and yet we would have had slaves. Our family would have lived in small quarters, and we would have eaten what we know today as a Mediterranean diet: olives, figs, cheese, and fish. And wine -- so much wine. It was far more sanitary than water. Boys and girls were treated differently in regards to education. If you were me and lived in ancient Greece, life would be very different.

I found it so interesting that Roman mixed in the gods and goddesses throughout the book, and it really served to emphasize her point early on in the religion was everywhere for the ancient Greeks. Now, what we do know about their "religion" is that the gods themselves were worshiped, but whether or not is could be considered religion is a little dubious to many scholars. Other religions took hold during this time as well, and so it's a complicated subject. However, the incorporation of the many gods and goddesses throughout the book as they pertained to whatever subject she was writing about at the time was a really lovely and spot-on choice.

Roman also mentions more than just gods and goddesses -- Hippocrates is also mentioned, as is Alexander the great and both The Illiad and The Odyssey. There is a glossary as well as a reference page to the gods and goddesses. I am just super impressed with how this book turned out specifically, as I have a fondness for ancient Greece. While I am no expert in classical culture, I did spend a great deal of time with the subject in college as that was my major. I have always been more attracted to ancient Greece than Rome, which is funny considering I took more years of Latin than I want to admit and I'm Italian. Something about the ancient world, Alexander the Great, and the Mediterranean just draws me in. I can't wait for my child to be old enough to enjoy this book with me. 

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