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The Making of the Ancient Greek EconomyInstitutions, Markets, and Growth in the City-States$
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Alain Bresson

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780691183411

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691183411.001.0001

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The Greek Cities and the Market

The Greek Cities and the Market

(p.415) XV The Greek Cities and the Market
The Making of the Ancient Greek Economy

Alain Bresson

, Steven Rendall
Princeton University Press

This chapter examines the extent and the limits of the market system in ancient Greece. It begins with a historical overview of the center-periphery model that emerged during the period, predation as a defining characteristic of the ancient Greek market, and the divergence of prices from one region to another—often seen as a symptom of a lack of market integration. It then compares the overall performance of the market in the city-states with those of the cities of medieval and modern Europe before discussing the disequilibrium between supply and demand and the form of risk management adopted by individuals and by cities that made the market of ancient Greece far from being a “perfect market.” The chapter concludes with an analysis of the Nash equilibrium that characterized the market and the factors that limited the production of grain to be sold on the market.

Keywords:   market system, center-periphery model, predation, prices, Europe, risk management, perfect market, Nash equilibrium, grain

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