live in ancient Greece …or… live in ancient Rome

Ancient Greece and ancient Rome are two of the greatest civilizations in history.
If I somehow had an opportunity to alter time and space, which would I choose to live in?

I apologize* in advance for any discrepancy in historical information or any factual mumbo jumbo that is askew in this post.

Ancient Greece was a fountain spewing out philosophy, art, science, and mythology. Nearly every proceeding empire finds roots in ancient Greeks. Today their influence even extends into democracy, architecture, mathematics, and education. Hollywood has made them known through films such as 300, Clash of the Titans, Immortals, and even Hercules.
Their legacy is comparable to few.

The ancient Roman Empire is considered the greatest empire of history, and was the longest lasting. They constantly expanded their territory and embraced diversity and culture. Rome is one of, if not, the greatest influences on western society today. Modern law, politics, war, and religion all attribute something to ancient Rome.

Despite all this wondrous information there is only one thing that concerns me about either one of these civilizations. War.

I am no barbarian. I am a man and, as with every man, there is a suppressed inner warrior crying out  to be set free. War and warriorship maintained elevated priority in these civilizations. They were expanding in hostile environments and survival of the fittest was the supreme law of these sophisticated land.

Living in ancient Rome, fulfillment of my desire to be a warrior would be found in the Roman military as a centurion or in the colosseum  a gladiator. Life as a centurion would not be so bad. Rome, obviously, had the most powerful military force. Victory would always be in my hand and bragging rights would be a given. However, being a centurion would be cookie cutter. There were countless men in the Roman military and they were all the same.

If I were to be a warrior in Rome then I would strangely desire to fight for my life in the gladiatorial games.
Yes, I know, that means I would live as a slave and risk my life for entertainment. My fate would basically be sealed to end in a bloody death. But I’ve always admired the underdog who rises to victory in the end and that is something I could achieve as a gladiator.

In ancient Greece, the ideal warrior life would be found in Sparta. The Spartans were some of the greatest warriors that have ever marched on God’s green Earth. Greek culture idealized the human physique and the men of Sparta conformed to this image. They were trained in the art of war like no other military in their time. They were not just a military of men, they were a military of warriors. I would taste victory and know that I was not just a cookie cut-out but a true warrior.


Ancient Greece would be a much more ideal place to live if I wanted to be a warrior. But if I lived in either society there is no guarantee that I would live a life of a warrior and I must admit, ancient Rome is much more advanced and living in the greatest empire in history would be an adventure. There is one deal breaker though; I am a Christian and the Romans fed Christians to lions in the gladiatorial games. No thank you.

I would rather live in Ancient Greece, which would you rather?

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*I don’t really apologize. Obviously, my purpose is humor not historical validity. My sources are the movies 300 and Gladiator.