Front Page Titles (by Subject) 9.: DIOCLETIAN'S TARIFF OF MAXIMUM PRICES — ( P. 178 ) - The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, vol. 2
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9.: DIOCLETIAN’S TARIFF OF MAXIMUM PRICES — ( P. 178 ) - Edward Gibbon, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, vol. 2 
The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, ed. J.B. Bury with an Introduction by W.E.H. Lecky (New York: Fred de Fau and Co., 1906), in 12 vols. Vol. 2.
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DIOCLETIAN’S TARIFF OF MAXIMUM PRICES — (P. 178)
The most celebrated work of Diocletian in the field of political economy was the edict (referred to by Lactantius in De Mort. persecutorum, 7; partial copies of it have been discovered since Gibbon wrote, in the form of inscriptions) fixing maximum prices for provisions and wages, 301 See Corp. Insc. Lat. iii. 801 sqq. and ib. Suppl. p. 1910 sqq. It had been found that, notwithstanding plenteous harvests, prices and wages went up. The soldiers especially suffered, and, unable to purchase their provisions from their pay, were obliged to draw upon their savings. It is probable that the law was not universal, but applied only to those provinces which were ruled directly by Diocletian; it is also probable that it was enforced only for a few years. For a full discussion see Mommsen’s paper in the Berichte der könsächsischen Ges. d. Wissensch., phil.-hist. klasse, 1851. The text is published in a convenient form by Mommsen, with notes by Blümner, 1893.
The monetary reforms of Diocletian, though they were not permanent, have some interest in connection with this edict. He coined a new aureus of 60 to a pound of gold; he restored the denarius of silver; and introduced some new copper coins. The relative value of silver to gold seems to have been determined at 14·27 to 1. See Finlay, Hist. of Greece, vol. 1, App. 1.