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500 CE (Superpowers)

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These historical statistics detail the demographic, economic and political facts on the year 500 CE of the Superpowers world. Many numbers are the kind of approximations a historian would be able to make given available records and do not flawlessly reflect reality. What they undoubtedly provide is a look at the relative strengths and weaknesses of states in different respects.

Global Statistics

  • Human population: 282 million people
  • Land area: 148.9 Million km²
  • Population density: 1.89 inhb/km²
  • Life expectancy: 27 years
    • by gender
      • Men: 22 years
      • Women: 33 years
  • Life expectancy (after age 15): 47 years

Global rankings

  • Wealth:
    • Wealthiest: Roman Empire
  • Population:
    • 1st - Roman Empire
    • 2nd - Yuan Wei (China)
    • 3rd - Maya Conglomerate
    • 4th - Gupta Empire
    • 5th - Sassanid Persia
    • 6th - Southern Qi (China)
    • 7th - Confederation of Germania
    • 8th - Kingdom of Aksum
  • Military:
    • Largest: Maya Conglomerate, for capacity, or Northern Wei, for a standing army
    • Most advanced: Roman Empire, for semi-automatic artillery and other advanced siege weapons
    • Fastest: Roman Empire
  • Land:
    • 1st - Roman Empire
    • 2nd - Rouran Khaganate
    • 3rd - Confederation of Germania
    • 4th - Sassanid Persia
    • 5th - Southern Qi (China)
    • 6th - Northern Wei (China)
    • 7th - Maya Conglomerate
    • 8th - Kingdom of Aksum
  • Science & Technology:
    • Mathematics: Chinese culture
    • Astronomy: Maya culture
    • Engineering: Roman culture
    • Medicine: Roman culture

Senatus Populusque Romanus

  • Capital: Rome
  • Population: 99 million people (35.1% of global population)
    • Citizenship: 46.3 million cives (46.8% of Romans)
  • Total area: 8,067,000 km² (~5.42% of all land)
  • Population density: 12.27 inhb/km²
  • Life expectancy: 36 years
    • by social class:
      • Patrician: 58 years
      • Equestrian: 52 years
      • Middle-class Plebeian: 48 years
      • Lower-class Plebeian: 40 years
      • Peregrini: 31 years
      • Slave: 24 years
  • Urbanization: 15-25%, varies from one province to another
  • Literacy rate: 19%
  • Emperor: Caesar Darius
  • Legislature: 600 senators

Demographic statistics (Rome)

  • Ethnicities:
    • Roman: 33 million cives (~33.3%), including mixed race citizens
    • Gallic: 12 million people (~12.1%​)
    • Phoenician: 11 million people (~11.1%​)
    • Ægyptian: 9 million people (~9.1%)
    • Greek: 9 million cives (~9.1%), including Helleno-Roman mix
    • Dacian: 4 million people (~4.0%)
    • Syrian: 3 million people (~3.0%)
    • Semitic: 2 million people (~2.0%)
    • Slaves: 7 million servi (~7.1%)
    • Other (Germanic, Armenian, Lydian, Mauri, etc.): 9 million people (~9.1%)
  • Religions:
    • Roman Christianity: 74 million people (~74.7%), including 43 million cives
    • Traditional Polytheism: 9 million people (~9.1%)
    • Unorthodox Christian: 4.7 million people (~4.7%)
    • Judaism: 2.3 million people (2.4%)
    • Other (Druidic, Germanic, Zoroastrian etc.): 9 million people (~9.1%)
  • Languages: (note: people may speak more than one language)
    • Latin: 71 million people (~70.8%), only 56 million people are fluent in even vulgar latin
    • Greek: 22 million people (~22.2%)
    • Celtic: 13 million people (~13.1%)
    • Phoenician: 13 million people (~13.1%)
    • Coptic: 11 million people (~11.1%)
    • Aramaic: 4 million people (~4.0%)
    • Syriac: 4 million people (~4.0%)
    • Parsik: 4 million people (~4.0%), mostly slaves
    • Hebrew: 1 million people (~1%)
    • Other (Germanic, Parsik, etc.): 8 million people (~8.1%)
  • Social classes:
    • Patrician: 24,600 cives
    • Equestrian Order: 1,750,000 cives
    • Middle-class Plebeian: 17 million cives
    • Lower-class Plebeians: 27 million cives

Military statistics (Rome)

  • male citizens fit for military service: 15 million cives
  • Total armed forces: 454,764 milites
  • Legion: 244,764 professional soldiers (~6.4% of available manpower)
    • Infantry: 179,200 legionaries
    • Officers: 2,240 centurions, 280 signiferii, 28 duces, and 16 legates
    • Sagittarii: 44,800 archers
    • Ballistarii: 7,000 artillerymen
      • polybolos: 1,120 semi-automatic artillery pieces
      • manuballistae: 3,360 snipers
      • ceiroballistae: 280 mobile artillery pieces
      • additional: 2,240 support artillerymen
    • Kataphractoi: 11,200 heavy cavalry
    • Chirurgii: 2,240 surgeons
  • Auxilia: 210,000 auxiliary soldiers (~1.1% of available manpower)
    • Municipia: 45,000 milites
    • Valla: 160,000 milites
  • Classis: 32,000 crewmen and marines
  • Border fortifications: Vallum Alutanum; Vallum Magnum Judaecum; Vallum Vistillum; Vallum Tripolitanum.

Provinces (Rome)

  • Italia: 15 million cives, plus 2.7 million servi (~71 inhb/km²)
  • Sicilia: 1.7 million cives, plus 300,000 servi
  • Sardinia et Corsica: 1.1 million cives, plus 100,000 servi
  • Alpes Ulterior: 300,000 people
  • Alpes Maritimae: 600,000 people
  • Narbonensis: 2.3 million people
  • Lugdunensis: 4.6 million people
  • Aquitania: 3.2 million people
  • Tarraconensis: 5.4 million people
  • Baetica: 2.1 million people
  • Lusitania: 2 million people
  • Belgica: 1.5 million people
  • Britannia: 2.3 million people
  • Caledonia: 900,000 people
  • Hibernia: 800,000 people
  • Raetia: 1.5 million people
  • Noricum: 2.3 million people
  • Pannonia: 1.8 million people (two provinces)
  • Dalmatia: 1.9 million people
  • Dacia: 3 million people
  • Moesia: 2 million people (two provinces)
  • Macedonia: 1.6 million people
  • Epirus: 600,000 people
  • Achaia: 1.2 million people
  • Thrace: 1.1 million people
  • Bithynia: 3.2 million people, including 400,000 servi
  • Asia: 2.1 million people
  • Lycia et Pamphylia: 1.2 million people
  • Galatia: 900,000 people
  • Cilicia: 700,000 people
  • Cappadocia: 1.6 million people
  • Creta: 200,000 people
  • Cyprus: 300,000 people
  • Armenia: 1.2 million people
  • Mesopotamia: 900,000 people
  • Syria: 2.1 million people
  • Judaea: 900,000 people
  • Arabia Petrae: 1.1 million people
  • Africa Proconsularis: 3.6 million people, including 700,000 servi
  • Mauretania: 800,000 people
  • Cyrenaica: 1.2 million people
  • Ægyptus: 8.3 million people, including 400,000 servi
  • Nubia: 1.4 million people
  • Germania Inferior: 1.8 million people
  • Germania Superior: 1.2 million people
  • Gothica: 500,000 people (~1 inhb/km²)

Foreign relations (Rome)

(All vassals and allies are also trade partners)

  • Foederati (vassal states): Bosporan city-states; Kingdom of Ghassān; Kingdom of Iberia (Caucasia)
  • Socii (allies): Kingdom of Aksum
  • Trade partners: Gupta India; Sassanid Persia; Himyarite Kingdom; Berber tribes; Kadambas India; Moriyan Kingdom; Arab tribes; Yuan Wei
  • Historic Enemies: Sassanid Persia; Berber tribes; Jutes; Confederation of Germania; Garamantian tribes

Wealth (Rome)

As the wealthiest civilization of its day, Rome displayed unique economic characteristics. For the last few centuries, the value of the silver denarius relative to bread was stable, only steadily rising as emperors revalued the currency. Other regions of the world were constantly seeing new coins or remained in a barter economy. Technically, Rome was not on a gold standard as the price of gold could fluctuate and the gold aureus was worth more gold than was needed to mint the coin. Strangest of all, citizens of the Imperium Romanum received public welfare in the form of incentives for bearing children, free medical treatment at a public hospital, and a grain dole for the urban poor in certain major cities. Nearly a quarter of public revenues went toward such services while only a third of revenue went toward fielding a military for protecting the state.

Meanwhile, the price of slaves was rising as they gradually became more scarce after a brief peak following the expulsion of the Hunnic Empire. Other industries were in a similarly transitional period as access to nearly a million square kilometers of fresh land for the empire was fueling an unprecedented growth of the lumber and mining industries. Tens of thousands of colonists were annually moving to Magna Germania, often with the motivation of free land and a colonization subsidy from the public purse. Rome's economy would see drastic changes from this source in the coming century.

  • 1 Denarius (Dn) = ~$11 US
  • 4 Sestertius (HS) = 1 Dn
  • 5 Ases (As) = 1 HS
  • 1 Aureus = 25 Dn
  • 1 Libralea = 635 Dn
  • Price of gold: 2.8 Dn (~$30.80) per gram
  • Gold content: 8.45 grams per aureus coin
  • Silver purity: 95.2% for a 4.12 gram denarius coin

(All currency equivalences are approximations)

  • GDP: 8,065,950,000 Dn ($88,725,450,000)
  • Government revenue: 468,576,000 Dn ($5,154,341,000)
    • Taxes: 330,665,000 Dn (~4.1% of GDP)
    • Public services: 39,850,000 Dn
    • Public land: 104,910,000 Dn (~1.3% of GDP)
  • Government expenditure: 479,986,000 Dn
    • Municipal stipends: 18,580,000 Dn
    • Provincial stipends: 23,610,000 Dn
    • Legion expenditure: 166,795,600 Dn
      • Legionary wages: 65,408,000 Dn
      • Officer wages: 8,250,000 Dn
      • Praetorian wages: 12,000,000 Dn
      • Other wages: 17,100,000 Dn
      • Praemiae: 44,800,000 Dn
      • Legionary equipment: 3,537,600 Dn
      • Artillery: 6,200,000 Dn, including maintenance
      • Supply costs: 9,500,000 Dn
    • Naval expenditure: 14,120,000 Dn
    • Health care: 66,800,000 Dn
    • Grain dole: 44,980,000 Dn, as 500 million kg of grain
    • Census:
      • Salaries: 340,000 Dn
      • Writing Materials: 9,000,000 Dn
    • Tax collection: 7,850,000 Dn
    • Postal service: 3,190,000 Dn
    • Street cleaning: 1,480,000 Dn
    • Bureaucracy: 3,889,000 Dn
      • Proconsular profits: 2,164,000 Dn
      • Assistants's wages: 1,725,000 Dn 
    • Child incentives: 54,400,000 Dn, at 6 Dn per natis civilis
    • Colonization incentives: 28,000,000 Dn
    • Public works: 37,000,000 Dn, spent in Italy
    • Other expenditures: 6,000,000 Dn
  • Treasury: 16,500,000 Dn
  • Balace of the budget: -7,810,000 Dn
  • Income distribution:
    • Patricians: 257 million Dn (~3.19% of GDP for the top 0.01%)
    • Equestrians: 1.85 billion Dn (~22.96% of GDP for the next top 1.82%)

Wealth by the numbers

  • Average annual income:
    • peasant farmer - 30 Dn, mostly non-monetary (non-citizens)
    • plebeian farmer - 58 Dn, partially non-monetary
    • unskilled laborer - 60 Dn
    • skilled craftsman - ~120 Dn
    • baker - ~160 Dn
    • litterator (elementary school teacher) - 212 Dn, per student
    • philosophy teacher - 5500 Dn
    • rhetoric teacher - 16,000 Dn
    • town guard - 150 Dn
    • legionary - 365 Dn
    • praemia, for ending a term of military service as a legionary - 5000 Dn
    • sagittarius - 200 Dn
    • ballistarius - 400 Dn
    • praetorianus - 1200 Dn
    • centurion - 2000 Dn or 8000 Dn for a primus pilus
    • signiferius - 16,000 Dn
    • dux (commander of a legion) - 44 000 Dn
    • latifundium, covering 350 acres (small) - 12,000 Dn, before expenses
    • income of Gaius Licinius Calvus (owner of over 80,000 acres of latifundia) - 4 600 000 Dn
    • argentarius (banker) - ~1800 Dn
    • medicus (doctor) - ~3000 Dn

Prices:

  • one amphora (26.2 L) of water - Free!
  • one modius (6.67 kg) of grain in Italia - 0.6 Dn, enough for twenty pounds of bread
  • one modius of grain in Ægyptus - 0.25 Dn
  • two pounds of bread - 0.25 Dn, enough food for one day of low labor
  • one amphora of olive oil - 37 Dn
  • a half-liter bottle of aged Italian wine - 2 Dn
  • a half-liter bottle of new Gallic wine - 0.6 Dn
  • a rough wool tunic - 3.6 Dn
  • a donkey - 75 Dn
  • a draught horse - 175 Dn
  • a small fishing boat - 80 Dn
  • an average male slave - 1200 Dn to 2800 Dn
  • an average female slave - 2500 Dn to 4000 Dn
  • a beautiful female slave - 10 000 Dn
  • light leather shoes - 5 Dn
  • silk shoes - 500 Dn
  • a parchment scroll - 0.5 Dn
  • an iron gladius - 35 Dn

Tlahtocaque Maya

  • Capital: Teotihuacan
  • Population: 31.7 million people (~11.2% of global population)
    • Maya population: 25 million people
  • Total area: 1,810,000 km² 
  • Population density: 17.1 inhb/km²
  • GDP: n/a, higher individual productive capacity than Rome
  • Life expectancy: 42 years
  • Urbanization: ~12.5%
  • Federal King: Kuhul Ajaw Chan'ka
  • Bureaucracy: 281 lords of the Grand Maya Council
  • Military reserves: 940,000 trained men

Eranshahr

  • Capital: Ctesiphon
  • Population: 12 million people (~4.2% of global population)
  • Total area: 3,766,000 km² 
  • Population density: 3.18 inhb/km²
  • GDP: 542,144,000 Dn
  • Life expectancy: 29 years
  • State religion: Zoroastrianism (~33.3% adherence)
  • Emperor: Shahanshah Bahram VII
  • Religious leadership: Mobadan
  • Legislature: Ministry of the Persians

Demographic statistics (Persia)

  • Ethnicities:
    • Persian: 5 million people
    • Arab: 4 million people
    • Indian: 1 million people
    • Other (Roman, Semitic, Scythian, etc.): 2 million people
  • Religions:
    • Zoroastrianism: 4 million people (~33.3%)
    • Manichaeism: 3 million people (~25%)
    • Traditional Polytheism: 3 million people (~25%)
    • Judaism: 1 million people (~8.3%)
    • Other (Roman Christianity, Arianism, etc.): 1 million people (~8.3%)
  • Social classes:
    • Bozorgan (nobles): ~150,000 people
    • Atorbanan (priests): ~250,000 people
    • Arteshtaran (warriors): ~1,230,000 people
    • Dabiran (secretaries): 4 million people
    • Vasteryoshan Hootkheshan (laborers): 7 million people

Military statistics (Persia)

  • males fit for military service: 2 million people
  • Armed personnel:
    • Paighan Light Infantry: 120,000 conscripts
    • Daylamite Heavy Infantry: 18,000 soldiers
    • Clibanarii: 32,000 armored horsemen
    • Azatan: ~6,000 nobles
    • Zhayedan: 10,000 immortals
    • War Elephants: 1,200 riders, two per elephant

Mangiśta Aksum

  • Capital: Aksum
  • Population: 15 million people (~5.3% of global population)
  • Total area: 1,422,000 km² 
  • Population density: 10.5 inhb/km²
  • GDP: 975,000,000 Dn
  • Life expectancy: 30 years
  • State religion: Roman Christianity (~78% adherence)
  • Monarch: Negūs Zaqahwas
  • Legislature: royal council
  • Standing army: 68,000 soldiers
  • Royal navy: 176,000 crewmen
Reign of Draco:
1205 (452)-1238 (485)
Draconian Dynasty:
1238 (485)-1290 (537)
Comptian Dynasty:
1290 (537)-1348 (595)


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