The most intriguing feature regarding ‘exploitation’ in the ancient Greek world is that the ancient Greeks do not seem to have had a clear notion of it. If by ‘exploitation’ we mean ‘the extraction and utilisation of the product of unpaid labour of a person or a group of persons by others’ – which is only one of its several possible meanings – then, to begin with, we are in some difficulty finding an equivalent ancient Greek term. Aspects of this action were variously expressed, but the Greeks never really felt the need to denote it in a single and comprehensive word – let alone to define it.1