https://www.reddit.com/r/MapPorn/commen ... a_966x603/In a nutshell demonstrates why the Eastern Roman Empire lasted so much longer than the Western Roman Empire. The ERE had an immense tax base from both local and foreign industries, in addition to being more urbanized and established. The WRE had Italy, which was enriched by itself but much credit to it being the home province of the empire. Carthage, Narbo, and Baetica were exceptions to the rule for urbanization, and still not as developed as the East. The rest were undeveloped, agrarian/pastoral, and often considered a backwater.
What's your artifact doing in Boss Kean's ditch?
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More History than Archaeology, but interesting anyway: