David L. Stone

in The Oxford Handbook of Cities in World History

Published in print February 2013 | ISBN: 9780199589531
Published online April 2013 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in History


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This article examines the impact of the arrival of cities on the economy — and most importantly on the farmers, landowners, craftspeople, merchants, and managers, whose labour constituted it. It first considers theories about the economy of early cities. It then examines the results of new scientific research and the development of new theoretical approaches, both of which are making a profound impact on the study of early cities today. It explores these in relation to five areas of importance to the economy: stratification, the countryside, prestige goods and long-distance trade, specialist production, and decline.

Keywords: cities; urban development; economic impact; early cities; stratification; countryside; prestige goods; long-distance trade; specialist production

Article.  8928 words. 

Subjects: History

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