(Greek, misthos, “wages”), hired workers in Byzantium. The term misthioi originated in classical times, when it denoted free but dependent workers, including both tenant farmers and hired laborers. In Byzantium misthioi were employed both in agriculture, mainly on the estates of secular lords and monasteries, and in the workshops of urban artisans. In the tenth century the term of hire for misthioi in workshops was limited to one month, and their wages were paid either by the day or one month in advance. There were cases after the 13th century where misthioi who received a small plot of land from a landowner were turned into dependent peasants (proskathemenoi).
REFERENCESSiuziumov, M. la. “O naemnom trude v Vizantii.” Uch. zap. Ural’skogo gos. un-ta, 1958, issue 25.
Siuziumov, M. la. “Trudovye konflikty v Vizantii.” In the collection Vizantiiskie ocherki. Moscow, 1971.
Kazhdan, A. P. “Raby i mistii v Vizantii IX-XI vv.” Uch. zap. Tul’skogo ped. in-ta, 1951, issue 2.