Daily Life of Women in Ancient Rome
by Sara Elise Phang
March 2022, 297pp, 6 1/8 x 9 1/4
1 volume, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-7168-9
$70, £54, 61€, A96
Please contact your preferred distributor for pricing.
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-7169-6
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

The average life expectancy of Roman women at birth was very low (20–30 years) due to very high infant and child mortality. However, if a Roman woman lived to age 15, she could expect to live another 30–50 years … as long as she didn’t die in childbirth.

This book provides an invaluable introduction to the social, economic, and legal status of women in ancient Rome.

Daily Life of Women in Ancient Rome is an invaluable introduction to the lives of women in the late Roman Republic and first three centuries of the Roman Empire. Arranged chronologically and thematically, it examines how Roman women were born, educated, married, and active in economic, social, public, and religious life, as well as how they were commemorated and honored after death. Though they were excluded from formal public and military offices, wealthy Roman women participated in public life as benefactors and in religious life as priestesses. The book also acknowledges the status and occupations of women taking part in public life as textile producers, retail workers, and agricultural laborers, as well as enslaved women.

The book provides a thorough introduction to the social history of women in the Roman world and gives students and aspiring scholars references to current scholarship and to primary literary and documentary sources, including collected sources in translation.


  • Provides students of classical or women's history with a chronologically and thematically oriented introduction to the demography, legal and social status, life stages, social and public roles, occupations, and leisure activities of women in Roman society
  • Emphasizes primary literary and documentary sources and provides accessible references to further reading and research
  • Focuses on the diversity of Roman women's experiences across the social hierarchy
  • Discusses both the limitations that women faced (e.g., in Roman law and custom) and how they negotiated or transcended these limitations
  • Includes visually interesting images that enhance the text
Sara Elise Phang, PhD, received a doctorate in Roman history from Columbia University (New York) and is currently employed as a librarian. She is the author of The Marriage of Roman Soldiers (13 B.C.–A.D. 235): Law and Family in the Imperial Army, a social history of Roman soldiers' wives and families in the early Empire. She is a contributor to the forthcoming collection Women and War in Antiquity. She is a coeditor and contributor to ABC-CLIO's Conflict in Ancient Greece and Rome: The Definitive Political, Social, and Military Encyclopedia.

Daily Life

What was life really like for ordinary people in other cultures throughout history? How did they raise their children? What did they do for fun? From sexual mores in ancient Egypt to resistance music in modern Latin America, and from the fashion sense of the Mongols to the importance of film in modern India, the world comes alive in the indispensable hands-on volumes of this award-winning series. A truly interdisciplinary resource, the Daily Life series covers arts; religion; food; literature; language; romance; rites of passage and coming of age; marriage customs; social and government structure; sickness and cures; warfare; sports and games; holidays; festivals; and more. Supported by the most current research, these authoritative volumes provide an in-depth exploration of daily life throughout history.

Each volume provides:
• An exploration of complex eras in history on a level accessible to students and general readers
• Authoritative coverage stemming from the most current scholarship and recent discoveries
• A focus on social rather than political history in key curricular areas, providing an in-depth understanding of the nuts and bolts of daily life
• Interactive, exciting details such as recipes, sheet music, rules for games, song lyrics, and more
By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.
Accept All Cookies | Decline.