For all of the glory and grandeur of Ancient Rome, the Roman economy never developed into anything terribly complex compared to modern economies. Ancient Rome was an agrarian and slave based economy whose main concern was feeding the vast number of citizens and legionaries who populated the Mediterranean region. Agriculture and trade dominated Roman economic fortunes, only supplemented by small scale industrial production.
The staple crops of Roman farmers in Italy were various grains, olives, and grapes. Olive oil and wine, outside of direct food stuffs, were among the most important products in the ancient civilized world and led Italy’s exports. Romans did use a limited form of two tier crop rotation, but crop production was largely low output and required a vast number of slaves to operate at any volume.
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Categories: Roman History