The extent, nature and causes of settlement change in the rural Peloponnese (Greece) in the last centuries of the Hellenistic period and the early centuries of Roman rule (c.200 BC to c.AD 200) are the focus of this study. Understanding the rural landscape has implications for our readings of certain aspects of cultural change and land use, and can help bridge the gap between necessarily elite-driven historiographical studies and related stratified deposits. This study is not meant to be either an historical narrative on the ‘decline and depopulation’ of Greece or a treatise on survey archaeology. Rather, it is meant to elucidate the complex nature of the rural landscape of the Peloponnese in these periods, and to identify some of the behaviours of the inhabitants of that landscape.
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