apuleius - Freddie Dorgler Professor Williams Hist 105...

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Freddie Dorgler Professor Williams Hist . 105 Women in the Greco-Roman era were treated much differently and had considerably different mind sets than the women of today’s day and age . Women were inferior to men in almost every sense, except for the household . Women behaved far from the chaste lives they were supposed to be leading . They were sneaky, seductive and willing . Adultery was common; ruining marriages and peoples’ lives . Men sometimes feared women because of their ability to entice and manipulate them, especially witches . Some women were even considered so evil they were called “cows of Satan” or “the devil’s snare” (Cohen p . 153) . Women of the Greco-Roman age were seen as the caretakers of the household . Women were in charge of the cooking, cleaning, maintaining the garden, and taking care of the livestock . The men took care of bringing home the income and providing for the family . Photis took care of Milo’s house and Lucius during his stay . She took Lucius’s baggage, prepared his room, got the oils and towels for his trip to the baths, cooked for everybody, and even sexually satisfied Lucius (Apuleius p . 15) . However, she was not just secluded to the house like Mediterranean women were thought to have been . Many women worked as midwives or sold produce at the markets . There were many other occasions where women would leave there homes other than for “exclusively economic” reasons . Some would leave to participate in religious sacrifices and religious festivals . They were also held responsible for bringing home water from the well and
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washing the clothes of the family . Some just went into town to gossip with other women who otherwise were stuck in their homes for the majority of the time (Cohen p . 157) . Many of the women portrayed in Apuleius’s The Golden Ass were involved in the dark art of witchcraft . Witchcraft alone is enticing to people, but that was not enough for some of the witches . When a witch saw a man she was attracted to she would put her full effort into captivating him to the point where they would sleep together .
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