Ancient History: Greece : Legal and Social Structures

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for Ancient History: Greece

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Legal And Social Structures

The terrain of ancient Greece did not lend itself well to farming and agricultural pursuits. The craggy mountains and stony land of most of the country was unfit for farming and made travel long and arduous. The land in the valleys, while fertile and more suited for farming, could not support a large population of a few million people and did not lead to a luxurious lifestyle. However, geography had an influence on political life. The mountains divided the country into different regions. There was no single form of government. The villages in the mountain valleys were small and independent. Ancient Greeks were extremely loyal to their own community.  The ancient Greeks enjoyed a varied climate with temperatures at 48 degrees in the winter and 80 degrees in the summer. For the ancient world, this was a moderate climate conducive to an outdoor life. The outdoor events of the ancient Greeks influenced their world and world of the future. 

The lifestyle and politics of the ancient Greeks were influenced by terrain and climate to the extent that it encouraged what activities that would have a future effect on Greece and the world?

Possible Answers:

Public and civic events to discuss public issues and news

Building monuments to the gods

Sheep and goat farming

Painting and creating sculptures of the gods

Seafaring and trade

Correct answer:

Public and civic events to discuss public issues and news


The terrain and climate of the valleys was favorable to outdoor public events. The ancient Greeks, especially the men, were able to spend much of their time at these events discussing matters of importance to their community leading to the development of a democratic ideology. While the terrain did lead some of the ancient Greeks to a seafaring life, even sailors would gather to discuss news of their travels and issues of the community. The ancient Greeks did paint, sculpt and build monuments to their gods but this was not due to the climate or the terrain. Sheep and goat farming would be outdoor activities but were more of an occupation and source of food than an opportunity to meet and discuss public matters.

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