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View Poll Results: Most livable part of the Roman world?
Egypt 11 18.64%
Italy 28 47.46%
Asia Minor 11 18.64%
Gaul 2 3.39%
Hispania 3 5.08%
Britannia 1 1.69%
Syria 3 5.08%
Voters: 59. You may not vote on this poll

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Old January 11th, 2017, 03:00 PM   #61

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Coastal Asia Minor in my opinion- access to everything citizens in Rome had, slightly nicer weather, less swamps, good access to trade routes, more cosmopolitan, longer period of stability compared to Italy though Africa might beat it there.
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Old January 12th, 2017, 04:03 AM   #62

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Who the hell voted for Britannia?
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Old January 12th, 2017, 04:15 AM   #63

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Who the hell voted for Britannia?


Just to be clear, it wasn't me, despite my admissions to mild to moderate Anglophilia...
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Old January 12th, 2017, 01:18 PM   #64
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One interesting thing to note about Egypt are the Fayum mummy portraits (around 800-900 have survived). Most of the portraits depict the deceased person at a relatively young age, and many show children. CAT scans revealed a correspondence of age and sex between mummy and image. That's a good indication on how low the average life expectancy was. I'm not saying it was lower in Egypt than elsewhere in the Empire, but even in one of the richest regions of the empire life wasn't that great (compared to today).
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Old January 12th, 2017, 11:58 PM   #65

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One interesting thing to note about Egypt are the Fayum mummy portraits (around 800-900 have survived). Most of the portraits depict the deceased person at a relatively young age, and many show children. CAT scans revealed a correspondence of age and sex between mummy and image. That's a good indication on how low the average life expectancy was. I'm not saying it was lower in Egypt than elsewhere in the Empire, but even in one of the richest regions of the empire life wasn't that great (compared to today).
Life may have been fantastic. Just not for very long!!
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Old January 13th, 2017, 12:09 AM   #66

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Illyria - Emperor Diocletian chose to retire there and farm oranges
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Old January 13th, 2017, 04:44 AM   #67

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Illyria - Emperor Diocletian chose to retire there and farm oranges
Oranges possibly, but I always heard cabbages.

"If you could show the cabbage that I planted with my own hands to your emperor, he definitely wouldn't dare suggest that I replace the peace and happiness of this place with the storms of a never-satisfied greed."

Those were some fine cabbages indeed.

-Dave K
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Old January 14th, 2017, 05:55 PM   #68

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Egypt was poorer than the average though. Thanks to the high population density and warm climate, Life expectancy in Egypt was only 25 years long and wages in Egypt were much lower than wages in Italy or Asia Minor (1.2 grams of silver a day in Egypt versus 3-4 grams of silver a day in the rest of the empire).

Egypt lacked the institutions the allowed for the existence of a large middle class since the province worked under the old Pharaonic system where the bulk of the population were peasants without political (citizen) and individual rights. The good parts of the Roman Empire were those with city states that had large citizen bodies who had political rights. Like Italy, North Africa and Asia Minor.

Last edited by Guaporense; January 14th, 2017 at 06:18 PM.
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Old January 14th, 2017, 05:59 PM   #69

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Egypt was poorer than the average though. Thanks to the high population density and warm climate, Life expectancy in Egypt was only 25 years long and wages in Egypt were much lower than wages in Italy or Asia Minor (1.2 grams of silver a day in Egypt versus 3-4 grams of silver a day in the rest of the empire). Egypt lacked the institutions the allowed for the existence of a large middle class since the province worked under the old Pharaonic system where the bulk of the population were peasants without political (citizen) and individual rights. The good parts of the Roman Empire were those with city states that had large citizen bodies who had political rights. Like Italy, North Africa and Asia Minor.
Please show the source on wage rate/life expectancy for Asia Minor and North Africa during Roman rule. Did anyone make consumption baskets for these regions of the period? Rates in silver don't reveal much unless one also knows the cost of local products in silver.

Last edited by HackneyedScribe; January 14th, 2017 at 06:11 PM.
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Old January 14th, 2017, 06:37 PM   #70

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Well, unskilled daily wages measure in calories of grain were 12,000 in Egypt compared to the range of 30,000-40,000 for legionaries, in Roman Italy or in Classical Athens. That difference in wages was similar to the differences in wages between Paris and London in 18th century and India and Japan (26,000-30,000 calories compared to 10,000 calories).
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