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Urban Craftsmen and Traders in the Roman World$
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Andrew Wilson and Miko Flohr

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198748489

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198748489.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 22 January 2022

Fashionable Footwear: Craftsmen and Consumers in the North-West Provinces of the Roman Empire

Fashionable Footwear: Craftsmen and Consumers in the North-West Provinces of the Roman Empire

Chapter:
(p.132) 6 Fashionable Footwear: Craftsmen and Consumers in the North-West Provinces of the Roman Empire
Source:
Urban Craftsmen and Traders in the Roman World
Author(s):

Carol van Driel-Murray

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198748489.003.0007

This chapter focuses on the footwear economy and uses consumer theory to sketch the economic landscape in which shoemakers operated in, particularly, the Roman Europe. Starting from the observation that there were empire-wide trends in footwear design, the chapter argues that shop-bought shoes were widely accessible for men, women, and children alike, and that the footwear economy of Roman Europe should be seen as a consumer economy, with craftsmen adapting their strategies to diversified and changing consumer demand, sometimes customizing their designs to specific needs of individual consumers, but more often following standardized decorative patterns that allowed for a reasonably high productivity. It is also emphasized that the leather economy seems to have remained an economy of outsiders: after the collapse of Roman rule, leatherworking technology seems to have disappeared.

Keywords:   Roman craftsmen, Roman traders, Roman economy, shoes, footwear, leatherwork, Roman Europe

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