Ancient Egyptians are well-known for creating complex irrigation systems and building fascinating structures, such as pyramids and tombs. Due to archaeological discoveries, much is also known about the daily lives of ancient Egyptians. Artifacts, such as tomb paintings and written documents, shed light on everything from gender roles to employment industries in ancient Egypt.
The typical Egyptian woman was primarily responsible for the home and raising children. Since it was common for extended family members to live together, women spent a great deal of time working together to prepare meals and gather necessary household items. It was also women's duty to teach these skills to their daughters. Although most women spent the majority of their time in the home, some women held public office or management positions in the textile industry. However, the majority of ancient Egyptian women did not work.
Ancient Egyptian men were responsible for providing for their families, so their daily life revolved around work. Most ancient Egyptians men worked as farmers, craftsmen and scribes. It was typical for male children to be taught the trade of his father, so generations of male family members usually had the same job. Aside from work, hunting was a popular form of entertainment for ancient Egyptian men. Using weapons made from wood, bronze and copper, men would wear camouflaged clothing and hide in ditches to hunt animals.
Childhood in ancient Egypt involved more work than play. Most children were educated in basic skills such as reading, writing and math. However, only privileged children received formal education. In addition to schooling, children as young as 4 years of age helped their fathers work. In fact, children began to work full time as apprentices around the age of 14. Marriage also occurred around this age because the average lifespan of an ancient Egyptian was only 40 years.
The Nile River
The Nile River significantly shaped ancient Egyptian culture. The river would flood each year, yielding rich silt that was used to plant crops. During harvest time, men, women and children would gather to collect crops that would feed the entire community. The Nile River also served other purposes aside from providing farmland. It was where certain festivals took place, such as Wepet Renpet, the Egyptian New Year. In addition, the Nile River banks were home to the pyramids, where ancient Egyptians recorded important events and traditions.
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