Economy of Ancient China, Greece, Israel essay

economy / ancient china / china / ancient greek / israel / agriculture / iron / trade / slavery / labor

Economy comparison

The present and future are not possible without the past. The development of given counties during the Ancient times has given the base for the level of development they demonstrate today. It goes without saying, that when we speak about the development of a state, we in the first place, speak about its economy.  The economy of a state is always an indicator of its stability and its influence of the world’s matters.  Of course, in the Ancients times different states were still a “rough” material and did have some common characteristics. The presence of such characteristics gives a developmental vector for such Ancient states like Ancient China, Ancient Greece and Ancient Israelites.

     The economy of Ancient China was a lot into agriculture as they assimilated the lands and worked hard on their hydration. Iron handicraft was also very developed as it allowed Ancient China to adjust of mass production of iron products. The intensive systems of agriculture lead to the growth of the population in such regions which gave no control over the distribution of the population.  The land was dry and this is the reason the majority of the human and financial resources were aimed at artificial irrigation. Despite the difficulties of internal and the foreign trade, connected with a customs policy of the Chinese kingdoms, the commodity market has strongly grown everywhere.  Usury developed greatly with with monetary circulation expansion. The basic contingent of a labour of this economy was made by the big amount of people, who were on the position of slaves. Among them there were condemned on slavery for crimes, but especially there were many persons grasped during war campaigns.

Ancient Greece is also characterized by strong economic development like Ancient China. Early economic growth was promoted by a convenient geographical position (trading ways), perfection of productive forces (copper manufacture, and then bronze is mastered). So just like tin Ancient China – one of the leading trends of the economy was metal handicraft and trade. The base of the agriculture was a completely new type of polucultural agriculture the so-called «Mediterranean triad», focused on simultaneous cultivation of three cultures – cereals, mainly, barley, grapes and olives. Aristocratic agricultures used the labout of temporarily employed workers – fets. Just like is Ancient China, enventually unsury developed and debt slavery as its main consequence. Similar to Ancient China, the classical slavery in Ancient Greece was aimed at the surplus value.Correspondingly the main slavery sources were: war campaighns captures and debt slavery.

Ancient Israelites first priority was agriculture due to the fact that the land was very dry being a desert. Cultivation of gardens and vineyards quite often demanded intensive irrigation which a huge necessity for Israel and wasbeen interfaced with long years of expectation of the crop.So just like Ancient China a lot of resources were dedicated to irrigation, and the argricultural cultures were cimilar to Ancient Greece – olives and grapes. A certain amount of Israelties were into trade, but trade was not as developed as in Ancient China and Greece. As compared to Ancient CHIna and Greece, the ecnomony of Ancient Israelites was characterized by insignificant participation of a slave labour in the course of manufacture. And though the King Solomon did  establish a labour duty for hundreds thousand free Israelis, nevertheless the slave resources were reduced due to the fact, that the country did not obtain much war victories. Therefore the slaves were used mainly as house servants or concubines.

     So agriculture, trade and slavery become the key elements in the analysis and comparison of the economy of Ancient economy: Ancient China, Ancient Greece and Ancient Israelites.




1.  Buckley P. (1993). Chinese Civilization: A Sourcebook. New York: Simon and Schuster.

2.  Rothbard, M.(2006). It all began, as usual, with the Greeks. Mises Institute. Retrieved 2006-06-22.

3.  Barnavi, E.(1992). A historical atlas of the Jewish people. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.


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