contrary to nature: human plunder

” … in good health as required by ordinance, not subject to any legal charge, neither a wanderer or a fugitive, free from the sacred disease ( leprosy).” The seller guaranteed all this under oath to the gods Hermes and Hephaestus, and under penalty of returning the price twice over should any of it be untrue….( 151 A.D. bill of sale ) ….

Human nature being what it is, many individual slave-owners no doubt went right on wrapping themselves in their preordained superiority. But as an ideology the notion was abandoned, and in its place there developed one of the most remarkable  contradictions in all history. “Slavery,” wrote Roman jurist Florentinus, “is an institution of the law of all nations whereby someone is subject to another contrary to nature.” That definition became official: we find it enshrined in the great codification of the law by the emperor Justinian, a Christian emperor, early in the sixth century. Yet no one, at least no one of consequence, drew the seemingly ovious conclusion that what was contrary to nature was wrong and ought to be abolished.

—When Caesar conquered Alesia over a quarter of a million Gauls were enslaved. Slaves, particularly war captives, were economically more profitable than paid labour and were readily available, at least while the empire was expanding. At the empire’s peak, slaves accounted for 25-40% of the population of Italy, ie about 2-3 million slaves in Italy alone. Estimates for the whole Roman empire vary hugely between 10-18 million.
A wealthy landowner might acquire huge numbers of slaves to run his estates and businesses. The owner of Chedworth Villa owned 400 slaves who lived in slave barracks on site. Some ultra-wealthy people owned up to 20,000 slaves who did everything.—Read More:

War was the key to the whole operation. The ancient world was one of unceasing warfare, and the accepted rule was that the victor had absolute rights over the persons and property of his captives, without distinction between soldiers and civilians. This right was not always exercised in full measure; sometimes tactical considerations or pure magaminity intervened, and sometimes more money could be raised by ransom than by sale into slavery. But the decision was the victor’s alone, and a graph would show no more than occasional downward dips in the curve, never a long period, say fifty years in which fairly large numbers of captives were not thrown onto the slave market. No total figures are available, but there can be no doubt that in the thousand years between 600 B.C. and A.D. 400, the Greeks and Romans between them disposed of several million men, women and children in this way.

The defeat of the Jewish revolt altered the Jewish diaspora, as many of the Jewish rebels were scattered or sold into slavery. Josephus claims that 1,100,000 people were killed during the siege, a sizeable portion of these to illnesses brought about by hunger. “A pestilential destruction upon them, and soon afterward such a famine, as destroyed them more suddenly.”—Read More:

This is not to say that wars were normally undertaken simply as slave raids, though some surely were- as whn Alexander the Great’s father, King Philip II of Macedon, deliberately undertook an expedition into the Scythian regions north of the Black Sea in order to replenish his depleted treasury in 339 B.C. He is said to have brought back with him 20,000 women and children along with mch other wealth. Granted this was not a typical affair and that wars usually had other causes, it remains true that the prospect of booty, among which slaves bulked large, was never absent from the calculations- partly to help maintain the army in the field, always a difficult problem in antiquity, but chiefly to enrich both the state and the individual commanders and soldiers.

—The 99 percent has found an ally 2,500 years in the past. It just so happens that it’s with those that found themselves in the Ancient Roman plebian and slave classes.
According to research done recently by historians Walter Schiedel and Steven Friesen, the income inequality gap in modern day America is far greater than the separation within the societies during the days of Julius Caesar. During the Ancient Roman Republic, says the duo’s study published in Per Square Mile, the top one percent controlled 16 percent of society’s wealth. If you fire up the Delorean and go from the Diocletian Empire to twenty-first century USA, you’ll see that things are a little more uneven. Today, that one percent on top controls 40 percent of the country’s wealth.— Read More:

Caesar went off to Gaul an impoverished nobleman; he died a multimillionaire, a billionaire, and Gallic captives played no small part in briniging about this change of fortune. When he took the town of the Aduatuci, he himself reported that 53,000 were sold off; and after the battle of Alesia in 52 B.C. he gave one captive to each of his legionnaires as booty. Yet Caesar did not plunder to the limit; he often tried conciliatory tactics in the hope of dividing the Gallic tribes, as he did after Alesia when he restored 20,000 captives to the Aedui and Arverni. Half a century earlier, the Roman general Marius, with no reason to be generous to the Germanic Cimbri and Teutones who had penetrated to the south of France, sold all the captives taken at the decisive battle of Arausio. The figure we are given on that occasion is 150,000.

This may be an exaggerated number, but human plunder even in quantities only half that size created problems for an army on the march. It could become completely boggeddown, and sometimes in fact it was. In 218 B.C. King Philip V of Macedon invaded Elis in the northwestern Peloponnesus and soon

d himself so overburdened with booty, which included more than 5,000 captives and masses of cattle, that his army, in the words of his historian Polybius, was rendered “useless for service.” He therefore had to change his plans and march through difficult terrain to Heraea in Arcadia, where he was able to auction off the booty.


Color didn’t matter — Just money

The Irish were considered “Niggers turned inside out”

“Negro slavery was efficiently established in colonial America because Black slaves were governed, organized and controlled by the structures and organization that were first used to enslave and control Whites. Black slaves were ‘late comers fitted into a system already developed.’”
(Michael Hoffman, They Were White and They Were Slaves and Ulrich B. Phillips, Life and Labor in the Old South, pp. 25, 26)

Historian Oscar Handlin writes that in colonial America, White “servants (SLAVES) could be bartered for profit, sold to the highest bidder for the unpaid debts of their masters, and otherwise transferred like movable goods or chattels…The condition of the first Negroes in the continental English colonies must be viewed within the perspective of these conceptions and realities of White servitude.”
(Michael A Hoffman, They Were White and They Were Slaves, p. 39) Read More:

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