Article

auctions

Jean Andreau

in Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Classics


Published online February 2018 | e-ISBN: 9780199381135 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acrefore/9780199381135.013.8237

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An auction is a type of sale consisting of a public competition between several buyers; whoever bids the highest price obtains the object being sold. Such auctions existed in the Greek as well as in the Roman world. Some were organized by the public authorities, while others were organized by individuals selling some of their goods at auction. In Roman Italy, these private auctions served a commercial function. In addition, they facilitated the sale of guarantees for unrepaid loans; likewise, they facilitated the management of private inheritance and estates. Between the 2nd century bce and the 3rd century ce, professional bankers regularly participated in these private auctions by providing credit to the buyers.

Keywords: auction; banker; Campania; commerce; estate; inheritance; loan; Pompeii; public auction; publican; Puteoli; trade fairs and markets; will and testament

Article.  2524 words. 

Subjects: Economic History ; Ancient Roman History

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