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Daily Life in Roman Society
1. An impluvium a shallow pool to collect rainwater from the opening in the roof.
An atrium where the Roman family would receive their visitors.
A lararium a small shrine where the family worshipped their household gods.
A perystilium, which was made up of a colonnade of pillars surrounding the garden.
2. The houses in the Roman times often came right up to the pavement, with no
garden or grass in front of them. There were very few windows which were small and
placed very high up. Some of the houses had shops on either side of them. The
houses were only one storey high. In some houses, there would be a posticum a
3. (a) The aediles supervised public matters and the grain of supply in their city/town.
They also controlled the municipal police service and organised festivities.
(b) The aediles might have been rewarded with executive power, and rank. They had
front row seats in different shows, or games, and have his name inscribed on the
wall. In addition, if he was particularly liked by the public, there may have been a
statue erected in honour of his actions.
4. Dates of processions and shows, as well as announcements of lodgings, might have
been advertised on the walls of a Roman town. Today, things are advertised on the
television, on billboards, in newspapers, or on the internet.
2. (a) In the forum, there would have been traders and merchants selling, and people
buying their goods; there would've been people worshipping in the various temples around
the forum , and orators giving out speeches or showcasing poems. There would also have
been people putting up notices and advertisements regarding spectacles, games or
vacancies in accommodation.
Many traders and merchants would go to the forum to sell, and buy products, and the
trader would seat his customers on stools while he showed them the goods. There was a
large, covered market which contained permanent shops, rather than temporary stalls. The
traders in the permanent stalls sold mainly meat, fish and vegetables.
There were also various important edifices grouped closely around the forum. The temple
of Jupiter the king of the Roman gods would've been placed in a prominent position at
the north end of the forum. The steps of the temple would've been used for political
speeches that were made at election times. Often, there would be other religious shrines
near, or around the forum. There was also the guildhall, the polling station which was an
open hall used for voting in elections and the basilica (the law court).
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The forum would've been a great square, always buzzing with life. Strangers visiting the
forum would've been amazed by its size, and the splendid buildings surrounding it, showing
its magnificent wealth.
(b) The forum was at the centre of Roman town life because it was where everything was
happening; it was the heart of the economic, administrative and religious life of the Roman