With the exception of banquets and Homeric heroes, meat-eating was fairly limited. In general, meat was festive fare, reserved for public or private special occasions. This was attributed not to a general, early tendency of the ancient people for vegetarianism, but to the same reason that forced Greeks in the early 20th century to virtually abstain from meat: extensive, abject poverty. Various species of birds, as well as rabbit, hare, wild boar. deer and domestic animals were major meat sources for the people of ancient Greece. Meat was prepared in a variety of ways: broiled over fires on spits or braziers, roasted in ovens, or stewed with vegetables and seasonings.