How Did Geography Influence Greek Development?

Because of the agricultural advantages of living by the sea, many Greeks chose to develop their farms there. In addition, the mild climate allowed for many Greeks to become traders and pirates, which made ancient Greek society cosmopolitan.

Ancient Greece was made of hundreds of small islands and mainland regions that spanned across the Aegean, Mediterranean and Ionian seas. As the climate inland was arid and difficult to work with, whereas the coastal climate was mild, many communities formed around the coast. Due to Greece’s land being rugged, many of the cities were interspersed and became insular.

Living by the coast influenced jobs in ancient Greece. Many people became sailors, pirates, traders and fishermen, and there were opportunities for colonization. This meant that society was contemporary overall, with many cities becoming independent states. Such cities were referred to as “polls,” and, in addition to having their own area, they became the government for local towns and villages.

While a lot of people lived in these cities, many also resided in more rural areas and commuted for work and trading. Because of their economical influences, the cities became political centers. When land away from the coastal cities was arable, families would spend a lot of time working there to develop crops.