Concerning Rural Matters

Cam Grey

in The Oxford Handbook of Late Antiquity

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780195336931
Published online November 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Concerning Rural Matters

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  • Classical Studies
  • Classical Reception
  • Greek and Roman Archaeology


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This article examines the environmental, practical, and socio-economic aspects of rural life in Late Antiquity. It focuses on the period between the accession of Diocletian in the late third century and the establishment of the Rashidun Caliphate on the eastern fringes of the Roman world in the first half of the seventh century. The discussion springs from two seemingly contradictory assumptions. The first is that the rural landscapes of the late Roman world were almost infinitely diverse in terms of physical topography, economic structures, and social systems. The second is that peasant communities exhibit certain behaviors that are broadly congruent and comparable across time and space.

Keywords: rural life; late antique period; Diocletian; Rashidun Caliphate; Roman world; peasant communities

Article.  20874 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Classical Reception ; Greek and Roman Archaeology

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