Trade and trade routes

Workshop leader:

Kaloyan Petkov (MA, Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”)
Stefani Gievska (ISHA Skopje, BA, Ss. Cyril and Methodius University of Skopje)

Ever since the dawn of mankind, due to their specific needs, people have always felt the necessity of material exchange, and thus – of economic contacts. We have archaeological evidence, dating all the way to the Bronze Age of pre-money currencies, which can be used to trace the trade activity between different groups of people. A good example are the axes from Kalugerovo and the latter “bronze dolphins” from Apollonia (modern Sozopol, Bulgaria).

Trade routes on the other hand develop much earlier, often being disrupted and resuming again during a different age. Good examples are the so called Silk road and Amber road. Different factors contribute to the emergence of these routes and their eventual demise. An early example is the crisis, experienced by Late Bronze Age cultures, who due to the lack of a copper source, which was necessary for the production of bronze, were forced to adapt to the use of a new metal.
After the massive colonization processes, beginning in Antiquity with the Greek colonization, trade relations start developing at a rapid pace. This is even more relevant during the later periods.

On this workshops we could discuss, but not be limited to, topics such as

  • Archeological materials as evidence for the existence of trade routes
  • Tracing trade routes through coin circulation
  • Trade routes in written sources
  • The pros and cons of land and sea routes
  • The evolution of international trade and modern day trade routes