Role of Women in Ancient Roman Society Essay

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Introduction: The role of women in ancient Rome is not easily categorized; in some ways they were treated better than women in ancient Greece, but in other matters they were only allowed a very modest degree of rights and privileges. One thing that does seem clear is that as the city-state of Rome evolved from its early days into a more complex society; women were not always limited to secondary roles. In some areas of Roman society, women were allowed more freedoms than in many other ancient civilizations. Research: This paper will explore the historical research that indicates what roles women were allowed to play in Rome, including the Ellis textbook for some of the basic facts. Additional research information comes from another…show more content…
Early Years during the Roman Republic The role of women in ancient Rome started out initially to be a limited one, primarily which consisted of being at home with the family. Furthermore, the man was the head of the household, and his authority was not challenged by his wife; she was expected to take a secondary role. This original role for women is often the lasting image that people have. Under original Roman law women went from the authority of their fathers to the authority of their husbands, and a woman was required to have a male supervise her finances. However, by about the beginning of the 1st Century BC women began to achieve greater freedom. Therefore, general assumptions to one extreme or the other on the status of women in the ancient world of Rome are difficult, because theory and reality were often far apart. For example, whereas Greek men usually regarded their wives as unimportant, Roman men placed a high value on marriage, home and the family and this made a difference in the way society treated of women. The kind of woman most Roman men wanted was one that was a loving wife that respected her husband and always followed his orders. She was usually expected to stay at home, and did not have much of a role outside the walls of her
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