Pirates of Ancient Greece

The Mediterranean and Aegean seas were home to the pirates of Ancient Greece.


The Aegean was full of tiny islands where pirates could easily hide their ships. In Ancient Greek times ships did not cross the open ocean, so all the pirates had to do was wait by the coast for trade ships to come past.


Pirates also attacked villages, kidnapping people for ransom, or to sell as slaves.


Greek pirates favoured light, shallow-bottomed galleys that were fast and easy to steer. If their ships were pursued they could sail over rocky areas close to the shore where large ships were unable to follow.


Piracy continued right through the reign of the Roman Empire, and through to Viking times in the 9th century. Vikings practised piracy in the North Sea.


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8 Responses

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