Barbarians and Romans, A.D. 418-584: The Techniques of Accommodation

October 31, 2020
Barbarians and Romans, A.D. 418-584: The Techniques of Accommodation

Despite intermittent turbulence and destruction, much of theRoman West came under barbarian control in an orderly fashion.Goths, Burgundians, and other aliens were accommodated within theprovinces without disrupting the settled population or overturningthe patterns of landownership. Walter Goffart examines thesearrangements and shows that they were based on the procedures ofRoman taxation, rather than on those of military billeting (theso-called hospitalitas system), as has long been thought.Resident proprietors could be left in undisturbed possession oftheir lands because the proceeds of taxation,rather than landitself, were awarded to the barbarian troops and their leaders.