Harvesting the Sea: The Exploitation of Marine Resources in the Roman Mediterranean

Harvesting the Sea: The Exploitation of Marine Resources in the Roman Mediterranean

Hardback Oxford Studies on the Roman Economy

By (author) Annalisa Marzano


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  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Format: Hardback | 384 pages
  • Dimensions: 164mm x 242mm x 30mm | 800g
  • Publication date: 15 October 2013
  • Publication City/Country: Oxford
  • ISBN 10: 0199675627
  • ISBN 13: 9780199675623
  • Illustrations note: 46 in-text black and white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 1,019,129

Product description

Harvesting the Sea provides the first systematic treatment of the exploitation of various marine resources, such as large-scale fishing, fish salting, salt and purple-dye production, and oyster and fish-farming, in the Roman world and its role within the ancient economy. Bringing together literary, epigraphic, and legal sources, with a wealth of archaeological data collected in recent years, Marzano shows that these marine resources were an important feature of the Roman economy and, in scope and market-oriented production, paralleled phenomena taking place in the Roman agricultural economy on land. The book also examines the importance of technological innovations, the organization of labour, and the use of the existing legal framework in defence of economic interests against competitors for the same natural resource.

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Author information

Annalisa Marzano is a Professor of Ancient History at the University of Reading. She focuses in particular on the social and economic history of the Roman world and is author of Roman Villas in Central Italy: A Social and Economic History (2007).

Review quote

an excellent study ... Marzano is to be praised for going beyond the 'usual suspects' of Pliny the Elder, Oppian, Athenaeus, and the like. Kenneth Kitchell, Classical Journal Marzano's book demonstrates the prominent role large-scale fishing and fishery by-products played in Roman social and economic life. Robert I. Curtis, American Journal of Archaeology The whole volume is a superb achievement. Peter Jones, Joint Association of Classical Teachers

Table of contents

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ; LIST OF FIGURES ; INTRODUCTION ; 1. Fishing ; 2. Large-scale Fishing ; 3. Fish-salting ; 4. Salt production ; 5. Murex, purple dye production, and other fruits of the sea ; 6. Oysters and shell-fish ; 7. Aquaculture ; 8. The sea and fishing in Roman law and juridical thought ; 9. Demand, prices, and distribution ; 10. Conclusions ; APPENDIX ; APPENDIX II ; BIBLIOGRAPHY ; INDEX