Chinese produced first paper money ("flying money") - Tang standardized the currency
What was traded:
Silk, paper-making, printing, compass, gunpowder, Bubonic plague
Cotton, sugar, Buddhism, number system (zero)
Linked China, India, Southeast Asia, Arabia, East Africa
Trade made easier with Dhow ships
Favored by Indian, Persian and Arab sailors
Could carry 400 tons in 1500
Allowed traders to go further out to sea and take advantage of monsoons.
Use of emporia and warehouses
Because monsoons required traders to stay and wait for currents.
Hellenic period (after Alexander the Great)
Roman period - looking for spices
Buddhist period - "Cinnamon Route"
Muslim Period after 600 (spices, silk)
Islam valued merchants (Prophet Muhammad was a caravan leader)
And Muslim cities created demand for luxury goods.
Chinese dynasties emphasized trade and industry along Silk Road & maritime routes
Song rulers created a powerful imperial navy to control piracy on east end of Indian Ocean route.
Yongle Emperor sent Admiral Zheng He on seven expeditions into the Indian Ocean to establish diplomatic relations (not really a commercial venture)
Chinese emperors left Indian Ocean merchants alone to manage their own affairs.
India (300s BCE - 1279 CE)
Chola Empire (Southern India)
Great wealth and luxuries (ex. elephants covered with gold cloth and jewels)
Srivijaya Empire (650-1377) (Indonesia)
Boomed by taxing trading vessels that moved through the narrow Malacca Straits.
Khmer Empire Cambodia (802-1431)
Used Mekong River as a highway tying capital Angkor to the Indian Ocean
Vasco da Gama 1497 went from Portugal to Calicut, India
Portuguese were eager to join Indian Ocean trade because of European demand for Asian luxury goods - but there was no demand for European goods (wool, fur, iron pots)
So Portuguese entered as pirates using cannons and seizing port cities., extorting other traders.
1602 the Dutch East India Company (VOC) entered Indian Ocean and sought a total monopoly on spice trade (nutmeg, mace)
1680 the British East India Company challenged the VOC for control of trade routes.
Europeans turned Indonesia, India, Malaya and rest of SEA into colonies.
no more reciprocal trade.
Asian empires got poor and collapsed while Europeans thrived.
Indian Ocean trade network was crippled.
Trade on Indian Ocean was self-governing - merchants made rules, established prices etc. until the Europeans arrived.
SILK ROAD (2nd c. BCE to end of 14th c. CE)
Name given by German geographer in 1877 because of Chinese silk
Route: From Chang'an (Xi'an) in China to Mediterranean in west
Linked China with Roman Empire
Began during Han Dynasty (206 BCE - 220 CE)
Route expanded from 139 BCE to 129 BCE because of Zhang Qian
Imperial envoy to world outside China 2nd c. BCE
1st official diplomat to bring info about world to China under Emperor Wu (Han)
Accounts of his travels recorded in "Records of Grand Historian" by Sima Qian in 1st c. BCE
Relations indirect -- cam through intermediaries (Parthians and Kushans)
From Rome: High quality glass, manufactured goods from Alexandria and Syria
From China: Porcelain, Silk
Silk was so popular in Rome that prohibited - too many sesterces coins lost to China to buy silk.
Fall of Han Dynasty (221)
Trade along Silk Roads and Indian Ocean declined because of political unrest and instability - travel was riskier.
Kushan Empire (India) under Kanishka (127-150) Buddhism from India to China
Fa Xian (399-414), Chinese monk
To India via Central Asia to find Buddhist books
Visited Buddhist sites (stupas etc.)
Inspired other Buddhist monks (like Xuanzang)
Tang Dynasty (618-904)
Silk Road rose to most flourishing period in history
Capital at Chang'an (Xi'an)
Xuanzang (602-644), Chinese Buddhist monk, inspired by Fa Xian's visit to India, studied Buddhist sutras
An Shi Rebellion (755-762)
Caused weakening of Tang dynasty and loss of western regions
Resulted in decline of Silk Road traffic
1206-1227 Genghis Khan built Mongol Empire - Silk Road becomes prosperous again
No more toll-gates, corruption, violence, travel is safer than ever before
Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368)
Capital in Dadu (Beiing) reinstated Silk Road's vigor
Welcomed foreigners like Marco Polo (see below)
Descendent of Genghis Khan
Established empire in Samarkand
After his empire collapse the road gradually fell into disuse
Yongle sent Zheng He on voyages 1405-1433
Compass (invented in China 221-206 BCE, became common 850-1050)
Glass, gold, olive oil
From Central Asia (to east and west)
Dates, almonds, fruit, camels
From South Asia (India) (to east and west)
Buddhism from India, esp. under Kushan Empire 30-375
Began in China
To Crimea 1346
Then to Europe by Genoese traders from Caffa
Killed 30-60% of the population.
Salt (from Mediterranean) traded for gold (Sub-Sahara)
West African Empires
Went on pilgrimage to Mecca in 1324
Brought hundreds of camels and caravans bringing gold.
Built capital at Timbuktu, Islamic scholars came to teach and study at the university
Songhai (1450s -1600)
Trans-Saharan slave trade
Smaller than Atlantic slave trade
Supplied slaves for personal save army of Moroccan rulers
And slaves for sugar plantation labor, servants and artisans
Most were women who became concubines
Spanish settlers introduced sugar-cane cultivation after 1500
After 1600 French and English colonies based on tobacco cultivation
And indentured servants for labor
But mid 1600s competition from Virginia tobacco
And expulsion of Dutch sugar producers from Brazil
Turned production from tobacco to sugar
Shift from indentured servants to slaves
Fewer Europeans willing to come
Profits from sugar made it easier to buy more expensive slaves.
Sugar caused soil exhaustion and deforestation
New European and African plants and animals crowded out indigenous species
Portuguese introduce sugar-cane production
Dutch West India Co. took control of Brazilian sugar-producing region
Brought slaves from Elmina and Luanda
Portuguese reconquered Brazil 1654
Dutch brought Brazilian system to French and British Caribbean
MUSLIMS/ARABS (see post)
Came from Arabia
Spread to Africa, Europe and the Middle East (see map below)
Dar al-Islam = Islamic world
Spread by conquest, conversions, trade, missionaries
Strong military, in part used slaves
Poor were attracted to Islam because of focus on charity and equality of the umma (Islamic community)
Christians and Jews ("People of the Book") were allowed to practice their religions as long as they paid "jizya"
Islam's Prophet Muhammad was a trader
Arabs traded on the Indian Ocean because Arabia was largely desert.
Converts in Africa and Southeast Asia among traders.
Language (Arabic) to northern Africa, Middle East (not Persia/Iran)
VIKINGS (800-1100 CE)
From northern Europe (Scandinavia: Norway, Denmark, Sweden)
Cause of Migration
Population growth because of increased agricultural production
Search for weaalth through trading an raiding.
Good shipbuilding techniques and seafaring skills.
Boats - rugged, shallow-draft with sails which allowed them to travel in the ocean and with oars up rivers.
Some were Norse merchants looking for commercial opportunities
Some were looking for land to settle and cultivate
Some were raiders and plunderers.
Most accepted Christianity (Comparison, Mongols adopted local religions like Islam)
Caused feudalism (serfs needing protection worked on land of lords who protected them with knights)
Normandy (Western France)
MAGYARS (800-970 CE)
Came to Europe from the east
Descendants of nomadic people who had settle in Hungary
Raided settlements in Germany, Italy and southern France
BANTU (1500 BCE to 1000 CE)
From Central Africa to south and southeast Africa
Brought technology, iron, knowledge of agriculture, animal herding.
Swahili is a Bantu-Arabic language
Comparison: Spread of Indo-European languages (Aryan), Latin (Romans), Arabic (Muslims)
People migrated from Southeast Asia to Oceania (Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii) and east Africa (Madagascar)
Brought plants (coconuts, bananas)
Marco Polo (1260-1295)
Traveled along Silk Route with father and uncle (1271-1275)
Appointed to high court of Kublai Khan (Yuan Dynasty) from 1275-1292
Given a "golden tablet" (VIP passport) allowing him to travel anywhere with free lodging, horses etc.
Wrote "The Travels of Marco Polo" in 1298 inspiring Western travelers (like Columbus)
Muslim traveler from North Africa
1300s began journey to "Dar-al Islam" (Islamic areas) across Afro-Eurasia
Journals discussed regions
Traveled 75,000 miles