Notes: Nobility includes civil and military nobility. The average household size estimated at 4.3 (see Lefort, 2002).
Income distribution data: Taken directly from Milanovic (2006: Table 5, p. 465). Rural incomes are based mostly on Lefort (2002) who quantifies population shares and incomes of several classes; rural population is divided into tenants (pariokoi); farmers that include both landowning peasants and (not very numerous) hired farm workers and slaves working on large estates; and large landowners. Urban population is, following Morrisson and Cheyney (2002), divided into four classes plus nobility (both civilian and military). Additional explanations given in Milanovic (2006: pp. 461-8).
Other incomes and wages (for comparison and illustrative purposes):
Amount in nomisma
Amounts in terms of the estimated average annual income
Heads of themes (administrative units) annual wage (around year 900)
Population and area: For population, see Milanovic (2006, p. 461). It is a compromise estimate (15 million) based on Treadgold (2001), Andreades (1924) and Harl (1996). Area: Treadgold (2001, p. 5).
Urbanization rate: See Milanovic (2006, p. 461), based on Bairoch’s (1985) cut-off point of 5,000 inhabitants.
Mean income in $PPP: Average income (6.22 nomisma) divided by the estimated subsustence minimum (3.5 nomisma), and the latter priced at $PPP 300 at 1990 international prices. This gives (6.22/3.5*300) mean income of $533 in $PPPs. From Milanovic (2006, pp. 456-7).
REFERENCES Andreades (1924), “De la monnaie et de la puissance d’achat des metaux precieux dans l’Empire byzantin”, Ext. B.N., pp. 75-115.
Bairoch, Paul (1985), De Jėricho à Mexico: villes et economies dans l’histoire, Paris: Arcades, Gallimard.
Harl, Kenneth H. (1996), Coinage in the Roman Economy, 300 B.C. to A.D. 700, Baltimore and London: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Lefort, Jacques (2002), “The rural economy, seventh –twelfth Century” in Angeliki Laiou (ed.), The Economic History of Byzantium: from the Seventh through the Fifteenth Century, Washington DC: Dumbarton Oaks, pp. 231-310.
Milanovic, Branko (2006), “An estimate of average income and inequality in Byzantium around year 1000,” Review of Income and Wealth 52 (3).
Morrisson, Cecile and Jean-Claude Cheynet (2002), “Prices and wages in the Byzantine world” in Angeliki Laiou (ed.), The Economic History of Byzantium: from the Seventh through the Fifteenth Century, Washington DC: Dumbarton Oaks, pp. 807-870.