Archeologists discover ancient gymnasium near Egypt's Cairo This undated photo released by the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities shows an ancient gymnasium dating back about 2,300 years, from the Hellenistic period. (Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities via AP)
Archeologists discover ancient gymnasium near Egypt's Cairo
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Egypt's antiquities ministry says archaeologists have discovered remnants of an ancient gymnasium. It dates back about 2,300 years. That makes it from the Hellenistic period.

The discovery was made by a German-Egyptian mission at the site of Watfa. That is in Fayoum province. It is about 50 miles southwest of the capital. The capital is Cairo.

Watfa is the site of the ancient village of Philoteris. It was founded by King Ptolemy II in the 3rd century BC.

Ayman Ashmawi of the ministry says the gymnasium consists of a large meeting hall. It was once adorned with statues. It had a dining hall and a courtyard. It also had a racetrack that was nearly 200 meters long.

Cornelia Roemer is the head of the mission. She says the discovery clearly shows the impact of Greek life in Egypt/ This is not only in Alexandria, but also in the countryside.

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why would ancient people have a gym?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (51)
  • AutumnD-cha3
    11/27/2017 - 10:24 a.m.

    I think ancient people would have a gym because maybe they want to have some place to go if they are weak and there leader told them to get stronger or they are not going to be apart of this group.

  • JudeW-cha3
    11/27/2017 - 10:25 a.m.

    I think that they would have a gym to become stronger so they can perform their jobs more efficiently. I think they would also have them for recreation.

  • KendraM-cha1
    11/27/2017 - 10:25 a.m.

    I think that ancient people would have a gym because they needed to work out for the Olympics games. They need to be fit so that they could do good during the games. They had a track so that the runners could run to stay in shape or so they could be ready to run the track in the race.

  • CierraR-cha1
    11/27/2017 - 10:26 a.m.

    Ancient people would need a gym for the same reasons we have gyms today. People need to exercise. Having a gym shows the ancient people cared about their health.

  • ZinadiaB-cha1
    11/27/2017 - 10:31 a.m.

    I think that ancient people would have a gym because they need a place to store things like food and water and important things to help them survive!

  • TrinaB-cha1
    11/27/2017 - 10:32 a.m.

    Ancient people need a gym because they are people too. And not everybody needs a gym but, some people like to have a gym. It is important to give everybody the opportunity to do that and have that experience. Some people don't want a gym and that's okay. But, we need to make sure that people who want the chance to do that have that opportunity.

  • Isaacs-smi
    11/27/2017 - 01:23 p.m.

    Vary interesting that they would have souch a thing at the time.

  • DestinyC-cha2
    11/27/2017 - 01:34 p.m.

    I think Ancient Egypt would have a gym because they could train for a official game or sport that they would compete in. It also said that the gym held a large meeting hall, so maybe they could have a place to meet. Last, they could just want to get there work out in.

  • MyaB-cha2
    11/27/2017 - 01:35 p.m.

    I think ancient people had a gym because all Egyptians need there exercise. Also i'm sure it made there life more enjoyable being in that gym with other Egyptians, it probably made people happy.

  • RickyI-cha1
    11/27/2017 - 01:36 p.m.

    I think they would have a gym to get strong to run the 200 meter racetrack. They would also need it to strong for Olympics. Last they would want to do that to make more money from winning so they can build a bigger track so they can hold more races.

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