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Three Millennia of Greek Literature
 

William Davis, A Day in Old Athens

 

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The Athenian House and its Furnishings

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Page 5

Modifications in the Typical Plan

 

    These are the essential features of an Athenian house. If the establishment is a very pretentious one, there may be a small garden in the rear carefully hedged against intruders by a lofty wall.[7] More probably the small size of the house lot would force simplifications in the scheme already stated. In a house one degree less costly, the Gynæconitis would be reduced to a mere series of rooms shut off in the rear. In more simple houses still there would be no interior section of the house at all. The women of the family would be provided for by a staircase rising from the main hall to a second story, and here a number of upper chambers would give the needful seclusion.[8] Of course as one goes down the social scale, the houses grow simpler and simpler. Small shops are set into the street wall at either side of the entrance door, and on entering one finds himself in a very limited and utterly dingy court with a few dirty compartments opening thence, which it would be absurd to dignify by the name of "rooms." Again one ceases to wonder that the male Athenians are not "home folk" and are glad to leave their houses to the less fortunate women!

 

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