Ancient Egyptian Families

Ancient Egyptian families were the center piece of the society’s success. Ancient Egyptians placed a high importance on family.

Ancient Egyptian families were encouraged to have as many babies as possible. Ancient Egyptians had the highest birth rate of any ancient culture or society.

They believed their children were gifts from the gods. Ancient Egyptians would have ceremonies to their gods and goddesses to help bring more children into the family.

They took very good care of their children. Ancient Egyptian families suffered death, disease and misfortune like all people in the world.


Ancient Egyptian families were based on morality. Children were raised initially by their mothers.

Ancient Egyptian mothers taught a strict moral code. The moral code included respect for elders and their gods, honesty as well as being trustworthy.

There were strict punishments for children caught stealing, lying as well as for not following directions.


Ancient Egyptian children were told to get married at a young age. Boys were taught in school to have as many children as possible after marriage.

Ancient Egyptian boys married around the age of 14 years old. Poorer girls in ancient Egypt married at a young age near 12 years old.

Girls from a rich ancient Egyptian family often married at a later age. Their marriage would be arranged by the families of both children.

Ancient Egyptian families issued contracts that were similar to a prenuptial agreement before getting married.

For instance, an allowance paid to the wife would be determined and the contract would outline what material possessions belonged to the wife during and after marriage.

Like any society, divorce happened in ancient Egypt. Upon divorcing the wife took the children and she could remarry in future years if she wanted.

Husband and wife roles

Ancient Egyptian families had specific roles for the husband and wife. The husband was expected to be the bread earner and place food on the table.

The wife was expected to raise their children and take care of household matters. Husbands and wives were often seen as equals.

Men and women of ancient Egypt had the same legal rights. Each played an important role in providing the necessary items for a family to survive.


Ancient Egyptian children were well taken care of by their parents and the family. Children would stay at home with their mother until seven years old.

At this age boys would start to learn how to read, write as well as other subjects like music and history. Girls stayed at home with their mothers learning how to take care of the household. Only the girls from rich ancient Egypt families learned how to read and write.

At 14 years of age boys went to learn the trade of their father. Most occupations in ancient Egypt were inherited. For instance, if the family were farmers, then the boys would learn how to become farmers.

Even though girls and woman could hold a number of jobs, their primary job was taking care of the family.

Facts about ancient Egyptian families

  • Families in ancient Egypt were very important.
  • Marriages were usually arranged by both the family of the boy and girl.
  • Prenuptial agreements were signed and enforced in ancient Egypt.
  • Husbands and wives were considered to be equals.
  • Children were taught a strict moral code that included severe punishments for lying, stealing and not following directions.
  • Boys were encouraged to marry at a young age and start families.
  • Only the females of rich ancient Egyptian families learned how to read and write.
  • Ancient Egyptians believed children were gifts from their gods and goddesses.


  • What age did most poor ancient Egyptian girls get married?
    12 years old
  • What did the children learn from their mothers at a young age?
    A moral code
  • What were husbands and wives considered to be?
  • What the primary job of the mother and females in ancient Egypt?
    To care for the household