Recent research has called into question the orthodox view that the last two centuries of the Roman Republic witnessed a decline of the free rural population. Yet the implications of the alternative reconstructions of Italy's demographic history that have been proposed have never been explored systematically. This volume offers a series of in-depth discussions not only of the republican manpower and census figures but also of the abundant archaeological data. It also explores the growth of cities, especially Rome, and the changing distribution of the population over the Italian landscape. On the rural side it addresses the interplay between demographic, economic, and legal developments and the background to the Gracchan land reforms. Finally it examines the political implications of demographic growth and large-scale migration to the provinces. The volume as a whole demonstrates that demography is the key to many aspects of Italy's economic, social, military, and political history.
Luuk de Ligt is Professor of Ancient History at the University of Leiden. He is the author of Fairs and Markets in the Roman Empire (Gieben, 1993) and has published extensively on Roman economic history, the history of Roman associations, and Roman demography.
Simon Northwood is Research Fellow at the University of Leiden . He has published on Roman republican history and historiography.
Table of contents
Contributors include: Will Broadhead, Michael Crawford, Paul Erdkamp, Daniel Gargola, Maurizio Gualtieri, Saskia Hin, Geoffrey Kron, Luuk de Ligt, Elio Lo Cascio, Neville Morley, Henrik Mouritsen, Simon Northwood, Jeremia Pelgrom, Dominic Rathbone, John Rich, Saskia Roselaar, Nathan Rosenstein, Walter Scheidel, Rob Wither, and Douwe Yntema.
All those interested in the history of the Roman Republic, demographic history, survey archaeology, agrarian history, and the historial evolution of urban networks.