Edited by Errietta M. A. Bissa and Santangelo, Federico. Published 2016. ISBN: 978-1-905670-62-8
BICS supplement 133
The seven papers included in this volume, written by an international line-up of contributors, set out to make original contributions to the understanding of specifi c aspects of wealth in the Greek and Roman worlds, whether individual, collective, or state-owned. They aim to offer distinctive insights into the study of three overarching issues: the sources and maintenance of wealth; the implications for diff erently organized societies of the division between wealthy and impoverished individuals and groups; and the moral implications of that divide.
A variety of diff erent approaches is represented in this collection. Some contributions address general methodological issues and engage with developments in modern scholarly debates in sociology and economic theory; in others the focus is on specifi c historical problems and clusters of evidence, while yielding lessons of more general import. Several papers deal with the mechanics of wealth creation and distribution in specifi c historical contexts; others tend to focus on how wealth, or indeed some forms of wealth, were conceptualized and represented. There is some engagement with theoretical issues, as well as instances of close linguistic and literary analysis, and discussions of aspects of material culture. There are of course meaningful links and overlaps between individual contributions, as well as instructive diff erences in the approaches used and the evidence examined. The chief aim of this collection is to open up new perspectives on wealth in the ancient world, its complex relationship with power, and the tensions and contradictions it entails.