TRADE IN THE ROMAN WORLD:
REGIONAL, inter-regional and international trade was a common feature of the Roman world. A mix of state control and a free market approach ensured goods produced in one location could be exported far and wide. Cereals, wine and olive oil, in particular, were exported in huge quantities whilst in the other direction came significant imports of precious metals, marble, and spices.
Generally speaking, as with earlier and contemporary civilizations, the Romans gradually developed a more sophisticated economy following the creation of an agricultural surplus, population movement and urban growth, territorial expansion, technology innovation, taxation, the spread of coinage, and not insignificantly, the need to feed the great city of Rome itself and supply its huge army wherever it might be on campaign.