<iframe src="//www.googletagmanager.com/ns.html?id=GTM-K3L4M3" height="0" width="0" style="display:none;visibility:hidden">

Ancient and modern

What would the Romans have made of the Budget?

16 March 2024

9:00 AM

16 March 2024

9:00 AM

Accounting systems have apparently existed since the Mesopotamian period (c. 5000 bc). But what about ‘budgets’?

Early Romans had no such concept because, in the absence of a welfare state, self-reliance was the order of the day. They did however pay an annual tax, fixed by the Senate and collected locally, to refund (for days lost on the farm) every Roman who was either fighting to defend Rome (and so his own property) or growing Roman power on campaign, conquering others for their land, their resources and their manpower.

Already a subscriber? Log in

Get 10 issues
for $10

Subscribe to The Spectator Australia today for the next 10 magazine issues, plus full online access, for just $10.

  • Delivery of the weekly magazine
  • Unlimited access to spectator.com.au and app
  • Spectator podcasts and newsletters
  • Full access to spectator.co.uk
Or

Unlock this article

REGISTER

You might disagree with half of it, but you’ll enjoy reading all of it. Try your first month for free, then just $2 a week for the remainder of your first year.


Comments

Don't miss out

Join the conversation with other Spectator Australia readers. Subscribe to leave a comment.

Already a subscriber? Log in

Close