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The Origins of Business, Money, and Markets$
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Keith Roberts

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780231153270

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231153270.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM COLUMBIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.columbia.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Minnesota Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CUPSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

The Hellenistic Business Environment

The Hellenistic Business Environment

(p.101) 6 The Hellenistic Business Environment
The Origins of Business, Money, and Markets

Keith Roberts

Columbia University Press

This chapter focuses on the Hellenistic business environment. It describes the new conditions that increased Hellenistic wealth and made the performance of money, markets, and business more efficient and effective. The main changes took place in the role played by city-states, the use of technology, the amount and distribution of wealth, and the development of international trade law. These new conditions no doubt strengthened acceptance of the free-market system and thereby helped weave business into the economic fabric of the Western world. However, as business improved, its practitioners did worse. The greater concentration of wealth in Hellenistic cities, as compared to the democracies of classical Greece, allowed the few who could invest to capture most of the business profits available, leaving only the dregs for entrepreneurs. No longer did business lead to wealth or social advancement; instead it became an occupation for slaves and lowlifes.

Keywords:   Hellenistic business environment, business culture, city-states, technology, wealth distribution, international trade law

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