Wildlife is a key and interesting feature of every society from the ancient to the present times. Flora and fauna are always necessary aspects to study. Ancient Greece was also no different in this regard. Ancient Greek animals were also no different than the animals found in the present day. Numerous stories, fables, tales, allegories, and myths are conveyed about these animals. In fact, some of the Ancient Greek animals are also featured in mythical and mystical stories. Ancient Greek mythology is rich in stories surrounding animals and finds a key place in their stories. Whether these animals were metaphysical or mythical or really existed is not the topic of discussion. But all of these animals were verily present in Greek culture.
Significance of the Animals in Ancient Greece
In regards to Ancient Greece animals, it can be said that animal husbandry was a major profession. Apart from agriculture, it was a major profession. It was a sign of wealth and immense power. Owning animals for household purposes was considered to be a wealthy sign for the Ancient Greek people. Thus, Ancient Greek people who had anything to do with animals were considered powerful and the Ancient Greek people who had anything to do with animals were considered to be powerful and were looked up to with respect. Thus it was a sign of social respect for the people of Ancient Greece. Household animals and their care and upkeep was key feature in the livelihood of Ancient Greece.
Geography of Ancient Greece
In fact, pork, poultry, goats, and cattle were used as a source of both meat and their services. Services like wool from sheep, and cattle were reared for milk, and poultry for eggs was quite prevalent in those days. So people who kept these animals made the best out of these animals. Thus the nature of the terrain, the geography, and the conditions of Ancient Greece was very important for the survival of the professional people in Ancient Greece.
Fodder used for the Animals
The knowledge about the food of these animals was also considered to be a part of the great understanding of these animals. For example, people used to feed the kitchen waste to the poultry, and fodder to the cattle was fed normally. There have not been many changes in their eating styles. Animals in Ancient Greece were not only very similar to the ones that are found today as well but also there is no difference in the way of their rearing! Even horses were found that were majorly used for military purposes.
Animals from the Ancient Greek Mythology
A centaur is a creature from Ancient Greece which is a half-human being and half-horse. They traditionally represented drunkenness and unruliness. They were aggressive and attacking in nature.
A minotaur is a creature from Ancient Greece which is half-man and half-bull. The minotaur was the guardian of the grand maze or labyrinth at Knossos. In a deadly battle with Theseus, it suffered defeat and was ultimately killed.
Cyclops is a unique creature from Ancient Greece. It is basically a one-eyed giant. Polyphemus is one of the most famous cyclops who detained Odysseus and his troops. But they were successful in escaping the detention and eventually blinded Polyphemus in the process.
The Sphinx is a winged lion that has the head of a woman. It is another important animal from the Ancient Greek mythological figure. The Ancient Greeks were considered to be troublesome creatures that created menaces for them. The most famous and popular of them set a riddle for Oedipus to solve.