Ancient Greece, although in general it was animal sacrifices which were made, as opposed to human. The Romans had more of a reputation for sacrificing humans, but it did occasionally occur in Ancient Greece as well – the victims would usually be young virgins. The aim of a sacrificial ritual was to appease the Gods or gain favour for a particular event, such as a war. The animal would be slaughtered on the altar, the offal burnt as an offering to the Gods and the rest eaten by the worshippers along with wine.
The most important instance of human sacrifice in Greek mythology is that of the attempt of King Agamemnon to sacrifice his daughter Iphigenia before the Trojan War. In some versions of the story he is successful, in others the goddess Artemis spares the girl and leaves a deer in her place – thought perhaps to be a sign that the Greeks wished to move away from human sacrifice entirely and use only animals in their place. In 1977 a Greek film, Iphigenia, was made of the myth.