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I'm not questioning the main thesis. It seems obvious that the Roman Empire was far more unequal than a greek town.

My question is how typical is Pompeii for a roman town? The presence of elites from Rome and their slaves throughout the Bay of Naples would greatly increase inequality unless there was a way for studies to control for these categories. Otherwise it's like comparing the Hamptons with an Iowa farm town.

My guess is that an average roman provincial agricultural town would be far more equal than Pompeii, but not as much as Olynthus.

While a poleis didn't had much welfare in normal times, often they did had laws to prevent the concentration of farm plots because they relied on small farmers for their levy, plus they might have had some form of heavier taxes for the rich, like equipping a naval ship.

Romans were usually pro-aristocracy so imperial laws would do nothing to prevent land concentration and high inequality.

Anyway, I rambled enough. Great post.

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