Min menu

Pages

Family in Ancient Egypt society


The Egyptians highly valued marriage and family. The basic family unit was the nuclear family of father, mother, and children. Households often included unmarried or widowed female relatives, providing support for them and gaining extra hands for childcare and housework. Couples wanted as many healthy children as possible. If a married couple was unable to have children, they often divorced. Childless couples sometimes adopted children. Women had a great deal of freedom, independence, and status under law and custom. 
 
Ancient Egyptian Family
 
Ancient Egyptian Family
 

Women and Ancient Egypt Family life


Unlike women of most ancient societies, they could own or rent property, inherit wealth, own slaves, leave property to their children, take legal cases to court on their own, operate businesses, work outside the home, and live alone without a male guardian. Their lives were not easy, though. Girls were married by age 12 to 14, as soon as they could have children. Many babies died in infancy, so it was important to make the most of a woman’s fertile years. Marriage was an agreement between a man and a woman to live together and have children. There was no official ceremony.

Ancient Egyptian Family

Divorces, separations, and remarriages all occurred. Adultery was punished harshly, especially in women. Polygamy (a man taking multiple wives) was accepted, but in practice only wealthy men had multiple wives. Polygamy was too expensive for the average working man. A married woman was called “mistress of the house.” She was responsible for child care, cooking, hauling water, grinding grain, baking bread, brewing beer, spinning and weaving, making and repairing clothing, and tending the shrines of domestic gods and goddesses. Wealthy woman supervised many servants.

 

Child-bearing in Ancient Egypt

 
Pregnancy and childbirth were extremely dangerous for both mother and baby. Physicians could offer little help. Pregnant women recited magical spells and prayers, made offerings to Bes, Taweret, and Bastet, and wore protective charms and amulets. A woman gave birth in a squatting or kneeling position, balanced over a platform. A midwife stood by to help. Afterwards, the woman and her child had to leave home for several days for purification in a special “birth tent.” Similar practices are still enforced in many societies around the world.
 
 

 Ancient Egyptian Family pictures


Ancient Egyptian Family

Ancient Egyptian Family

Ancient Egyptian Family


reactions

Comments