CSIC, Madrid , pp. Regarding Valencia, see J. Ciudad y territorio en al-Andalus. Poblamiento y cultura material. Universidad de Granada, Granada , pp. Ajuntament de Palma de Mallorca, Palma de Mallorca , pp. Barral, Barcelona , pp. Consell Insular, Ibiza , pp. Conversion to Islam in the Medieval Period.
An Essay in Quantitative History. Harvard University Press, Cambridge and London , which, nonetheless, is still the most rigorous analysis of the problem.
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Eliseu Climent, Valencia , vol. Universidad de Granada, Granada ; T. Comunidad de Madrid, Madrid , vol. Els barrancs tancats…; J. Working with Water in Medieval Europe. Brill, Leiden , pp. See, too, the references cited in note The following studies should also be borne in mind: Irrigation and Society in Medieval Valencia. Harvard University Press, Cambridge ; and the more recent but less theoretically ambitious study by A. Ghent University, Ghent Glick, Irrigation and Society…; E.
Historia de la ciudad. Estudios sobre el Estado omeya en al-Andalus. Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona ; X. Al-Mansur y la dawla camiriya. Los reinos de taifas.
John von Neumann
La taifa de Denia. Instituto Juan Gil-Albert, Alicante XXVII-2 , pp. A recent revision in R. The Almoravids and the Meanings of Jihad. Praeger, Santa Barbara Instituto de Valencia de Don Juan, Madrid , 2 vol. Academia Scientiarum Fenica, Helsinki , pp. Cressier, Fierro and Molina ed. He has published the books Poblament i espai rural. He has edited the following compilations along with E.
Abstract This is a summary of the development of Catalan maritime trade encompassing Catalonia, Mallorca and Valencia from the 12th to the late 15th century. The local products used for exchanges are studied, including saffron, dried fruit, raisins and figs, coral, wool, glue , tallow and manufactured items like woolen cloth, ceramics from Valencia, crafted hides, glass items, etc.
The overseas spheres of trade are studied from the closest, namely Occitania and France, Italy and the Maghreb, to the Mediterranean Levant and the Atlantic territories, including Andalusia, Portugal, England and Flanders. Origins and development of Catalan commerce In this article I shall examine the maritime commercial activities of Catalans abroad. I shall only briefly mention the mercantile activities of foreigners in Catalonia, Valencia and Mallorca, which would complement our overview of mediaeval Catalan commerce, yet would require a book of their own.
Furthermore, the commerce in which foreigners engaged in the regions we are examining is almost better known than the activities of Catalans abroad. It should be clarified that the term Catalan applied to commerce since the 13th century is meant in the broad sense in which it was used in the Middle Ages; that is, it encompasses Mallorcans and Valencians as well. With the exception of an occasional brief reference, I shall not study land-based commerce abroad since at this point there is little documentation available to enable us to analyse it.
Catalan commercial activity during the early Middle Ages was quite scant due to the difficulty entailed in organising the land after the Islamic occupation and in repopulating it in the midst of constant conflicts with the neighbouring Muslim lands. The urban markets began to spur the inland economy in the 9th and 10th centuries, and starting in the 11th century the earliest fairs started to boost trade both domestically and abroad.
Another maritime and perhaps also land route connected Catalonia to Islamic Spain. However, events in the 12th century were paving the way for the major commercial expansion that took place in the 13th century. Narbonne, Montpelier, Marseille, Genoa, Pisa and Sicily were visited from the earliest days, as were the nearby Muslim lands. By the second half of the 12th century, Catalans were venturing as far as the eastern Mediterranean. The growth in middle- and long-distance maritime commerce which characterised the second half of the 12th century stimulated naval construction.
The mercantile fleet must have been important by the early decades of the 13th century. This growth explains how James I was able to conduct his expedition to conquer Mallorca in with a primarily Catalan fleet, something that would have been unimaginable in the first half of the previous. The first was aimed at protecting the fleet against competition from abroad. An order issued by James I in bans any foreign ship from loading merchandise in Barcelona with an Ultramar Siria and Palestina , Alexandria or Ceuta, or from loading merchandise in these places with Barcelona as the destination as long as there was a Barcelona ship in the port willing to make the journey and carry the goods.
The conquest of Mallorca provided security in the nearby seas, and the island served as a base for the merchant fleet: Yet the structures of the new Christian society were gradually put into place. Regarding commerce, first there was a war or rapine economy, with the sale of Saracen prisoners as captives. Afterwards the internal Valencian trade routes were organised, along with exchanges with Catalonia and Mallorca, which ensured the development of a single commercial area. The supply of specialised agricultural or manufactured products: The key to the development of Catalan commerce Catalan commerce managed to overcome two initial handicaps.
The first was that the Genovese, Pisans, Venetians and even Occitanians were already entrenched in the most prosperous markets, and the second was the lack of important raw materials or many manufactured goods, which required the Catalans to redistribute products from abroad, leading to lower profit margins. Catalan merchants overcame the first difficulty with dedication and effort; they were no doubt able to take advantage of the gaps left in the markets at certain times by the wars among their competitors, and starting in the 13th century they also had the steadfast support of the monarchy both diplomatically and in terms of trade regulations, with protective measures and provisions that created a favourable institutional and legal framework.
They also managed to overcome the second handicap. The merchants analysed each market and tried to introduce the goods that were available, which would thus lead to a rise in the. Initially, the Catalans could offer wheat only after bountiful harvests, along with oil, honey and wine, just like the countries around it.
They also offered Muslim captives, the product of the spoils of war during the centuries of expansion 12th and 13th , which turned into a demand for slaves in the 14th century. From an early date, the manufacture of tallow, the melted fat of ruminants, was developed, along with pitch, a product made using pine resin.
There is abundant information demonstrating that this was one of the products constantly present in 13th century exports. A specialised and highly prized crop, saffron, began to gain prominence in the same century. The southern reaches of Valencia contributed dates, which had previously only been available from the Maghreb; scarlet, a highly prized dye for luxury clothing extracted from an insect, the kermes; safflower, also called bastard saffron, whose capitulum or flower receptacle was used to make dyes and whose seeds were used to make an oil used in pharmaceutical products; soda-ash, a product made from burning barilla, which was used to make soap and to manufacture glass.
This period, too, witnessed the consolidation of the major wool production and distribution centre in the Maestrat region in the Kingdom of Valencia. Eivissa island contributed to exporting an essential raw material, the salt from its salt flats. This product was added to the output from the salt flats of Mata, near Guardamar, which came under the ownership of James II in the late. The textile industry grew sharply in Catalonia at that time, and in the 14th to 15th centuries it began to be engine of economic activity. In this city, the most important textile industry in the 13th century was cotton: The export of fabric manufactured in Valencia and heading to Castile is documented as early as the first half of the 14th century, in smaller amounts than fabric from Catalonia.
However, the output rose through protectionist measures, such as the ban on importing foreign fabric issued in Alum, which was used to set colours and to tan hides, was in high demand in Catalonia and was also re-exported. The hubs of commerce: Evolution of growth and crisis The most important hubs of catalan commerce were the capitals of the three Catalan-speaking regions within the Crown of Aragon, namely Barcelona,27 Valencia28 and Mallorca,29 which have been studied extensively. Its maritime commerce took place via the Canet beach and the port of Cotlliure.
Inland, the important trading cities were Lleida, Cervera and Vic. Barcelona led the whole and ensured the import-export relationship with faraway ports; Mallorca became a repository of goods from many different places, but especially the Maghreb, where the foreign merchants could gather supplies for their destinations; and Valencia imported manufactured goods, exported agricultural products and specialised in exchanges with Castile, where it redistributed some of the manufactured goods it received.
There are commercial areas that have been more thoroughly studied than others; for example, commerce between the Maghreb countries and all three regions is fairly well known. Generally speaking, with the exception of the last few decades of the century, the 14th century has not been thoroughly researched, although there are some sectoral studies. The 15th century is better known in all three regions, but the last third of the century in Catalonia has been somewhat ignored. Yet it is quite clear that in the 14th and 15th centuries, commercial movements geared up in all the regions, and maritime commerce started to develop with the different Atlantic territories.
The debates on the evolution of commerce have focused on the start of the expansion of Valencian trade and the crisis in Catalan trade in the 14th century. First it organised agricultural and crafts production, and then it joined the Catalan coastal routes, which ensured redistribution of the agricultural products and manufactured goods in the three maritime regions. Gradually it joined the Catalan network abroad.
This activity began to increase. Altarpiece of the exchange of Perpignan. Fragment of the altarpiece of the Trinity attributed to the Master of Canapost which depicts the exchange of Perpignan. Museu Hyacinthe Rigaud, Perpignan. Romestan says that Valencia must have stopped being a colonial economy by around the midth century, although perhaps this shift should be situated some years earlier. Regarding the 14th century crisis in Catalonia, Jaume Vicens Vives and Pierre Vilar spoke about a Catalan economic crisis that must have begun in the midth century.
In contrast, Del Treppo did not see a crisis and claimed that growth had continued until the midth century despite the crises caused by wars, and in fact until the Catalan Civil War in The damage caused by the wars — the war with Genoa, the almost constant revolt in Sardinia and the war with. Castile — had disastrous effects on the Catalan economy, much more dire than the plague since it ruined public finances and the emptied coffers of the king and the towns.
It wrought havoc on the land and the fleet, and it hindered or impeded the regular flow of commerce because of the effects of the war on the fleet. This financial crisis, which is clear, is what has given this sense of an overall economic crisis. Trade was not directly affected, although it was indirectly because the lack of resources made it difficult to carry out maritime defence policies and to defend against the proliferation of corsairs and pirates that besieged the merchant fleet. In the 15th century, the incessant wars waged by Alphonse the Magnanimous also led to problems in trade.
Maritime traffic had to be heavily armed because of the large number of enemies, and this boosted costs. The expansion of the Ottoman Empire, with the significant. They would achieve this towards the end of the century, when Catalan merchants were once again visiting Constantinople. The conflict caused extensive destruction to the harvests and goods because the fighting took place on their soil, required heavy financial contributions on both sides to sustain the war and ruined the institutions and the Crown. It also impeded or hindered the transport of goods and thus commerce.
Once the war was over, the hatred and vengeance, confiscations of assets and other problems entailed in any civil war created legal insecurity and hindered the immediate recovery of the economy. The currency depreciated, as the gold florin, which had been worth 11 sous in the late 14th century and 13 sous at the start of the 15th century, came to be traded for The pariatge tax paid on maritime commercial activity because it was required on the goods that entered Catalonia by sea earned its maximum yields in to After the war, it yielded , pounds and in the subsequent years it dropped even further: These figures prove that the crisis was quite dire, yet it was not quite the end.
It took between ten and fifteen years for the war crisis to come to an end; it lasted only briefly. By the late 15th century, Catalan commerce was highly active once again, especially in the Atlantic. The entire Catalan coastline was more heavily populated, and its ports bustled with activity.
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The small ports hosted not only coastal traffic but also foreign activity, as we shall see, especially in the Atlantic. The evolution of commerce from the sectoral perspective Trade with Occitania and France Until the 13th century, Catalans bought cloth that was locally manufactured or made in northern France and Flan-. However, depending on how the harvests fared, the traffic in grain ran in the opposite direction, and it was exported from Catalonia to Languedoc. They all purchased prized cloth there.
However, the Valencians soon took these exchanges into their own hands, as proven by the comanda contract and freight headed to Occitanian ports between and The exported products included Catalan, Valencian or Mallorcan cloth, oil, pine nuts, saffron, raisins and figs the dried fruit tended to come from Valencia or Mallorca , fava beans, hide, pitch and tallow, soap, mirrors, daggers and chests, rope, basquet and pottery and ceramic, among the products manufactured locally.
This is shown by treaties, such as the one from which ensures the safety of the respective merchants in the. What is more, the Genoan toll in , codified from a previous situation, mentions the men from Barcelona among the foreign merchants that went there to bring Saracen slaves to sell. The conquests of Mallorca, Valencia and Murcia in the ensuing century would cause more to reach the city, as proven by the sales of Catalan merchants in Genoa in , , and For the first time, we can find Catalan merchants in Genoa who are recorded as natives of Mallorca and Valencia.
Catalan and Mallorcan commerce in Genoa in the first half of the 14th century has been studied very little, even though the relations were intense. In contrast, it seems that Valencian merchants did not pay many visits to the capital of Liguria. Naturally, wars harmed commerce. The war of the Crown of Catalonia and Aragon and Mallorca against Genoa in inflicted serious damage to trade in Mallorca, assessed at , pounds in the western Mediterranean and 20, on the Atlantic coast of the Maghreb in the first year.
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Yet even greater was the damage caused by the war from to and the hostility that prevailed between Catalans and Genovese thereafter in the guise of privateering and piracy incidents. Indeed, a tax imposed on goods taken to or extracted by Catalans in Genoa in , as well as in to , most certainly to indemnify the victims of the acts of piracy, provides priceless information on imports and exports among the three regions in the Catalan and Genovese economic area.
Even though the tax only affected Catalans and more specifically residents of Barcelona, Valencians and Mallorcans also appeared in the accounts with the note that they were tax-exempt. It should be noted that regardless of whether the ships came from Barcelona or Valencia, they could just as easily have been carrying goods from Barcelona, Tortosa or Valencia, and there were even lots of goods owned jointly.
These figures reveal extremely close ties among the merchant classes of the different Catalan-speaking cities. The records also show the departure of fourteen Catalan cargo ships. The ships from Valencia carried more pottery and ceramics, figs, raisins and dates, and scarlet.
Yet others were Oriental. There were even Tuscan products for redistribution. Trade with Genoa continued with the same intensity during the ensuing years. From Valencia to Genoa alone, Coral Cuadrada has documented fourteen ship journeys through the documentation from the Datini Archive for to The volumes of licences taken from banned goods from Barcelona reveal that there were at least 44 journeys to Genoa between and The record from shows the arrival of thirteen Catalan ships bearing goods, although this time there is no mention of Mallorcans or Valencians, who did not have to pay taxes.
There were fifteen departures from Genoa. In , the ship traffic. The goods exported and imported were similar to those in the 14th century, with a rise in wool and a drop in hides in the exports. Mario Del Treppo stated that the number of journeys between Catalonia and Liguria had dropped by half throughout the course of the century, from to , although the ships could hold more cargo, but they did not decrease in Valencia.
The city was not pardoned by the Holy See until Relations normalised with the treaty between Pisa and Peter the Great. The presence of Catalans in Pisa is scantly documented, but they must have been important enough to merit a consulate of Catalans, an institution created in , the counterpart to the Pisan consulates in the maritime cities of Catalonia and Valencia. Much more information is available on the Tuscans and Lombards in Catalonia, who had to grapple with the ban on establishing commerce in Barcelona, which was also extended to Mallorca in The ones who were already there must have been expelled.
More than a century with alternating permissiveness and intransigence ended with a free trade decree, with certain conditions, in Even though Lombard products reached Genoa, where the Catalans were able to purchase them, Catalan compa-. The Catalans sent wool and leathers there, along with cloth, coral, rope and sometimes Sicilian wheat. King Alphonse the Magnanimous also traded there, as he often did, to purchase luxury goods.
Regarding this area on the Adriatic Sea, we should also consider relations with Dubrovnik, where there was a heavy Catalan presence. Sicily had an unbeatable strategic location at the centre of the Mediterranean and for this reason was a compulsory stopping point on sailing routes between the Levant and the western Mediterranean lands and along the routes headed to the ports of the Adriatic or Tunis and Libya.
The island became a repository for goods from both East and West. The ships that plied the Levant route tended to sell part of their cargo in Sicily, both coming and going, and they took on other products. It was a rather populous island with well-to-do social echelons, making it a good client in itself. Sicily was also rich in diverse products appealing enough to be the purpose of a commercial journey. In the 13th century, the Catalans took oil, saffron, paper, French and Catalan cloth, specifically cloth from Lleida, and slaves to Sicily, where they purchased cotton, cumin and wheat.
The intervention of Peter the Great in Sicily after the revolt of the Sicilian Vespers in may have accentuated the presence of Catalans on the island, who also used it as a base for trading with Tunis, Tripoli and Bugia. The ports most often visited by Catalans were the ones in Palermo, Messina and Syracuse and the wheat shippers.
In the 15th century the island joined the Crown of Aragon when Martin the Young died, which only tightened the economic and commercial ties. The Sicilian market was reserved for Catalan cloth through protectionist measures dictated by King Ferdinand the Catholic, although the monarch wanted to control the profits earned by Catalan merchants in Sicily, which aroused vehement protests. Sardinia also boasted an outstanding strategic location, though not quite as good as Sicily. Unlike Sicily, it was a poor island that was not a market for redistribution.
Map of the Catalan consulates and domains in the Crown of Aragon in The domains of the Crown of Aragon and the sites of the Catalan consulates in the Mediterranean in are marked in red. Some consulates worked to defend the interests of the local merchants in foreign cities. Commerce with Sardinia was active before the Catalan conquest of the island, despite the fact that little documentation on it remains. The Catalans imported Sardinian wheat, but not regularly because of the long wars with the Giudici of Arborea, as well as pasta spaghetti , hides and cheese, wild animal hides such as fallow deer, and especially coral, which, after being crafted in Barcelona, was an essential part of the Catalan freight headed to the Levant, a market that absorbed large amounts of it.
The Catalans took to Sardinia woollen cloth, sewing notions, oil, rice, saffron, raisins and wine, hemp, glass, Valencian pottery and all sorts of products in small amounts needed for local life. During the long conquest of the Kingdom of Naples, commercial relations rose considerably, and they surged even more after it: With the sale of this cloth they earned money to spend on spices in Alexandria. However, there was no stop in Naples on the way back because there was a rush to reach Barce-. Most of the ship arrivals from Barcelona to the Kingdom of Naples came in the waning years of the reign of Alphonse the Magnanimous, from to After that traffic dropped off considerably.
Valencia and Mallorca also engaged in intense trade with Naples; the Mallorcans exported Mallorcan cloth, salt from Eivissa, Catalan hazelnuts, Galician or Berber leathers, and, while the Castel Nuovo of Naples was under construction, stone from Mallorca. They imported wheat, linen, hemp, animal fat, wood, wine casks and hoops for casks, sulphur and wine. After the death of Alphonse the Magnanimous in , many Catalans continued operating in the Kingdom of Naples, but maritime relations plummeted during the years of the Catalan Civil War. The ban on importing foreign cloth issued by King Ferdinand of Naples in as a means of encouraging textile manufacturing caused problems in the exports of Catalan and Mallorcan cloth.
In , the Catalans managed to get this provision revoked, but in a new intervention against protectionist measures was needed. Maritime commerce with Muslim Spain and the Maghreb entailed a single economic area for the Catalans. The import, export and passages taxes, called lleudes, are also a testimony of this traffic.
The lleuda of Barcelona, dated between and , taxed spices, fine cloth of silk and purple and cotton coming from Muslim Spain and the Orient. It included a personal fee for the merchants who came from Islamic Spain or for those going there from Barcelona.
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The lleuda of Tamarit taxed the goods that were making the route from Andalusia and Barbaria, unless they veered off towards Mallorca, and it included in the list of taxable goods those that were characteristic of that region: There were of these journeys, of which were heading towards Muslim Spain and Barbaria. Some are old, dating from , and , while others date from and ; the vast majority were from and later. Bearing in mind that death or absence must have prevented many merchants from testifying, I believe that journeys demonstrates the intensity of the commercial relations with Muslim Spain and the Maghreb.
In and , Pope Gregory IX allowed the island to engage in commerce with the Islamic states both near and far that is, those in the Mediterranean East in times of peace; he allowed all kinds of products, including food, but no horses, mules, weapons, iron and wood. The record book of the notary Pere Romeu, dated , includes seventeen comanda contract, ten of which indicate their destination: The other destinations were in Catalonia, Valencia and the islands. Only ten years after the conquest, foreign trade was clearly targeted at the Maghreb. The licence for ships in shows a bit more variation.
That year, because of the conflict between the Catalans and the Angevins over the Kingdom of Sicily, the king of Mallorca imposed restrictive measures on sailing: A total of seventy-four licences were granted, but only 33 journeys were. The difference with respect to the total mentioned corresponds to licences for sailors on ships that already had their own. The most often visited sector, as we shall see, was Ifriqiyah.
A trial from on the taxes to be paid by the shippers from Calp and Altea also provides information on the export of raisins, figs and other products to Barbaria, among other destinations, in the last few decades of the 13th century. The Mallorcans, however, had very strong commercial ties with the Maghreb and with Granada. Their goal was to secure transport at the best prices when they needed it through joint negotiation of the freight, but in fact they also tried to monopolise trade by particularly shutting out the Italians, who were regarded as their competitors: The different episodes in the war over control of the Strait of Gibraltar had repercussions on commerce with the Maghreb, especially with Morocco, because of incidents with the Moroccans and through the order for the Catalan and Mallorcan merchants to leave Morocco handed down by Peter the Ceremonious and the king of Mallorca.
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In contrast, during the war of Castile and the Crown of Aragon against Granada in , the Mallorcans secured authorisation to travel to Morocco, although they could not carry supplies to support Granada. The most serious difficulties were caused by Castile, which was against trade with the Islamic countries and unleashed a constant series of incidents against Catalan and Mallorcan ships even though the king of Castile placed Mallorcan merchants and the Muslims and Jews who travelled on their ships and traded with Islamic countries under his safeguard.
Generally speaking, even though the relations with the sultanates were not regulated by treaties for many years, which theoretically entailed a state of war, commerce was not interrupted. Oftentimes, the companies from Catalonia, Mallorca or Valencia had commercial agent living in the Maghreb. From there they exported gold, hides, wax, wool considered low quality , ostrich feathers, ambergris, dates and sometimes wheat from Morocco, especially the Mallorcans, who had a severe wheat shortage and secured sup-.
The Catalans took there salt from Ibiza, wool and linen fabrics, fustian, wine, metal items, copper, lead, sheaf knives from Vic, pottery, mirrors, oil, figs, hazelnuts, rice, carob, crafted leathers and products to be redistributed such as spices and perfumes. We should not downplay the importance of the ransom of captives within the volume of trade between Catalan lands and the Maghreb.
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Generally speaking, this lack of interest in the Maghreb is attributed to the rising importance of trade with the Levant, yet in any event many products from the Maghreb appeared in the quality assessment lists in the Catalan merchandise manual. However, between and , trade with the Maghreb began to wane: This decrease may have been be due to internal divisions in these countries or to the aggressive policy of the Christian states, which shortly thereafter, in , led to the conquest of marketplaces in the Maghreb.
Starting in the midth century, Catalans and Valencians began to be displaced in this region by Venetians, Florentines and Genovese. In the late 15th century, the turbulence in the eastern Mediterranean shifted the circulation of spices towards Barbaria, where the Valencians were provisioned with pepper perhaps pepper from Guinea and ginger, shellac, gum Arabic, gall, incense and gum benzoin.
There was a steep rise in the traffic of slaves: The prominence of fraud in the transport of goods banned by the Holy See to the Maghreb has been mentioned; these goods included weapons and sailing supplies such as pitch, as well as other goods banned at a later date, including rice, sulphur and alum.
Of the maritime journeys between and that we are able to document, went to Barbaria, which accounts for The loads headed to Barbaria accounted for one-third of the total comanda contracts still conserved. The Valencian Moors participated in commerce with the Maghreb and as fellow Muslims received favourable. The Christian merchants from their same country complained about this, stating that the Muslim traders were charged lower taxes. In addition to this statement, which might be true, they also levelled more serious accusations, such as that they carried weapons to the Islamic countries, provided information and even earned a percentage of the spoils secured by Berber corsairs.
There appears to be no proof of these charges, yet they are signs of the deep-seated mistrust the Christian merchants felt towards their Muslim counterparts. Once they passed the Strait, some of these boats also visited Seville, at least after In Fez, there was a Catalan colony back in that period, and in Nife Casablanca the Mallorcans had their own notary and chaplain at certain times.
The number of journeys from Mallorca to Morocco gives an idea of the intensity of the traffic: Mallorcan captains often repeated these journeys in subsequent years and tended to stop at the ports of Granada. However, there was a slight rally between and , with five journeys to Safi out of a total of 33 to Morocco.
Valancians visited Morocco rarely compared to the central Maghreb. Catalans had been frequenting Oran and Honein in the Kingdom of Tlemcen since before , along with Togo, Mazagran, Mostaganem, Tenes, Brecht and Cherchell, which were also visited by Mallorcans, who went to Algier as well This was the region that interested them the most because the trans-Sa-. The figures from Valencia were adjusted after recent research in the Valencian archives, which so far indicate 38 freight loads plus one shared load for this area and Tunis and eight comanda contracts for this zone in the same period.
There was a great deal of activity between and , with a total of journeys. The central Maghreb was the region preferred by the Mallorcans. Between and , there were transactions in Valencia related to the Kingdom of Tlemcen, many more than with Tunis and Morocco. However, it should be borne in mind that transactions were conducted in the generic location known as Barbaria.
The departure licences for armoured vessels from Valencia between and noted 19 heading to ports in the Kingdom of Tlemcen, which were joined by nine also travelling there after visiting ports in Granada. Documents on Catalan sales and freight drafted in Tunis in , and are still conserved.
Merchants from Vic took fine furs, dressy clothes and woollen cloth there. Some Barcelona merchants, including Jaume Albareda and Guillem de Fontcoberta, lived in Bugia for some time and rent the custom gabella, and Jaume Albareda died there. Berenguer de Bonastre lived in Tunis, most likely between and , with an occasional subsequent journey, as did Arnau de Solsona, a merchant from Lleida. The record book of a Genovese notary who. Likewise, some of the Muslim merchants who had remained in Christian Valencia most certainly kept doing business with the Maghreb; this is suggested by the authorisation of a Valencian Saracen to purchase a ship to take on commercial journeys to Tunis, Bugia and other places with Christian and Muslim partners.
The figures for Valencia are slightly different if we check Valencian sources: Juan Leonardo Soler has found 20 freight loads headed to the ports of Ifriqiyah and almost nine comanda contracts. Starting in , Barcelona merchants showed a great deal of interest in the zone called Mont de Barca between Tunis and Tripoli, where they apparently purchased slaves. Between and there were 25 transactions in Valencia related to the Kingdom of Tunis. The departure licences for armoured vessels from Valencia included only three licences to travel to Tunis between and , one of which called for a stop in Mallorca.
Company documents and comanda contracts with Valencia when it was still Muslim in and , as well as with Murcia, are still conserved. The aforementioned record book of Mallorcan notary Pere Romeu, dating from , contains a comanda contracts for Islamic Spain. These ports were stopping points where the naval traffic between the Mediterranean and the Atlantic began to intensify in the late 13th century. Catalans and Mallorcans traded there from a very early date, even though Castilians tried to prevent this trade and prompted maritime incidents, such as one in The treaties between Granada and the Crown of Aragon regulated trade relations, especially taxation, so that the Catalans had the same exemptions and privileges as the Genovese.
In fact, in order to avoid a conflict similar to the one involving the many Mallorcans in the Kingdom of Granada, King James II of Mallorca postponed his participation in the crusade. The Genovese corsairs often used the ports of Granada as their base and refuge, and they wrought havoc on the Catalan and Mallorcan merchants who were headed to either Granada or Morocco. What is more, Mallorcans were present in the kingdom, although they did not have an influential position close to the royal house, as some Valencia merchants did.
They took cloth from both Catalonia and abroad to Granada. The Valencians took oil, rice, saffron, honey, Sardinian cheese, hides, cotton and Valencian cloth, among other products. The Western merchants, including Catalans, went to these far-off lands to seek spices, a term that encompassed a wide range of products used for seasoning and pharmaceutical products such as pepper, clove, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar; dyeing agents like indigo and brazil; glue and resins, like incense and lacquer; and textile products like cotton, linen and silk. The spices earned steep profits, so the Catalans made every effort to penetrate this market even though by the time they arrived the Italians were already solidly operating.
These products arrived via three main routes: The accounting documents still surviving from the. Marquis Conrad de Montferrat thus granted the communities of citizens from Barcelona and Marseille and the bourgeoisie from Montpellier and Saint Gilles an exemption from all import and export taxes in Tyre and in the entire Kingdom of Jerusalem when it was won back from Saracen hands, and he recognised its autonomous administration under the authority of a viscount for the federation and seven consuls chosen by each community, with their own jurisdiction for the residents except in criminal matters.
He also granted them a fonduq, an oven and a manor home. We have hints as to the development of this commerce during the 13th century. Some documents from Vic tell us about trade with Acre, from which cotton, liquorice and cumin were imported in , while the goods from a merchant who had died in Acre were gotten back. In Barcelona, two maritime lending contracts survive for two journeys to St John of Acre in and , as do comanda contracts which reveal that the Catalans transported luxury fabrics from France, cloth from Lleida, almonds, antimony and mercury to the Levant. In Acre there was a small colony of Barcelona merchants who intervened in the dissentions among the Latins between and Pere Marquet had frequented this marketplace before with the ship he owned with Marimon de Plegamans and Guillem de Llacera.
They chartered it to merchants from Barcelona, who returned with cotton and other goods. Many of them were merchants or captains who already plied this route. Sailing aboard the ship owned by Ramon Marquet, the king returned after a heavy storm at the beginning of the journey, but the others reached Acre. Apparently he secured commercial franchises for the Catalans at that time. In , the king sent another delegate to get back money, merchandise and goods lost by Catalans in Alexandria.
Officially there were no journeys to Alexandria for years. Some people did go there, yet they were accused not of this — they could have surely claimed to be unaware of the ban — but of having transported banned goods. The use of an intermediate port did not prevent them from being discovered, even though they were later pardoned for their violations. In , he moderated the ban on trade with Alexandria, lowering the usual prohibitions on goods that could be used to wage war, which could not be taken to Islamic countries as per old papal dispositions.
Through comanda contracts of ships heading to Alexandria, there is proof that commercial relations had resumed. The prohibition caused serious difficulties in European trade, which needed the spices for seasonings and the pharmacopeia. In Barcelona it was not obeyed immediately because of enmity with the Pope over the issue of Sicily: If they were discovered, they paid the fine. The fines provide us with a great deal of information on the traffic with Alexandria.
They were mainly paid by Catalans from Catalonia proper, as well as Mallorcans and a handful of Valencians. There were absolutions of the punishments imposed on the violators and extraordinary licences to trade with Alexandria. The licences were granted more and more frequently in around and became widespread after The Holy See was forced to somehow regularise trade with Egypt through the payment of licences since it had become necessary to ensure the supply of the European markets.
The Pax Mongolica had ended and the asian routes had become unsafe, so spices stopped flowing to the Black Sea ports and virtually the only way to access them was through Egypt and Syria. The Crown of Aragon, which was unwilling to lose the source of income that had come from the payment of fines until then, added its own licence to the papal licence, which began working as a kind of royal monopoly, although the system gradually became less cumbersome. After , the Barcelona merchants secured better fiscal treatment from the Mamluk sultan, which extended to all Catalans.
The Catalans were quite close to matching the Venetians and Genovese, the two leading commercial powers, although they had no base in the Orient as their counterparts did, with the exception of the duchies of Athens and Neopatria created by the Gran Companyia Catalana a. While Venetian and Genovese ships visited Beirut between and , Catalan ships travelled there, making Catalonia third in the ranking. During the period when trade with Alexandria was banned and goods from there were considered contraband, between and at least eleven Mallorcan ships went to Alexandria, and between and some Mallorcans paid the Pope fines for having travelled to Alexandria.
After Mallorca rejoined the Crown of Aragon in , more Barcelona and Mallorcan merchants engaged in business with the Orient. From to , there were a couple of annual journeys to the Levant, although some of the ships may have originated in Barcelona and stopped to top off their cargo in Mallorca. In , Barcelona and Valencia agreed to armour five galleys, four from Barcelona and one from Valencia, to ensure the safety of the trade with the Levant.
Gran Sinagoga de Budapest
Perhaps in , the council of the city of Valencia repeated the experiment of sending a large galley to Beirut to do business with locally-manufactured woollen cloth; in a regular line of merchant galleys received subsidies. It has been said that Valencia failed to replace Barcelona as the hub of the international trade of long-distance sailing routes from northern Europe to the Mediterranean Levant; however, it likely had no intention of replacing Barcelona. The fact that Valencia played a minor role in commerce in the Levant is proven by the fact that between and , when Barcelona wanted to organise a fleet to expel the Basque corsair Pedro de Larraondo from the Mediterranean Levant, where he was attacking Catalans on their most profitable merchant route, it was alone in the enterprise because the other cities did not have as much to lose.
The persecution of this corsair by armoured Catalan merchant ships led to a naval battle between them and Genovese ships in the port of Alexandria, which irked the Egyptian authorities. For a period of time, the Cata-. Alphonse the Magnanimous secured highly favourable commercial conditions for Catalan merchants in the Mamluk sultanate; however, shortly thereafter, in , a pepper monopoly established by the sultan led to retaliation by King Alphonse. Relations continued to be turbulent throughout the entire reign, which affected the merchants, who often had to pay onerous taxes in retaliation.
The military effort to conquer the Kingdom of Naples, the wars in Italy and the military activities in the Eastern Mediterranean often occupied the merchant fleet, and traffic with the Levant waned. However, between and there was an average of five journeys to Alexandria and Rhodes per year. Valencia also sent some ships there throughout the 15th century, and the presence of Valencian merchants in Alexandria is documented in the years to The Byzantine Empire was a slightly later trade target for the Catalans; it is documented since , and ship comanda contracts from Barcelonans to this destination can be found since It should be noted that at that time, some Catalans had reached Caffa on the Crimean Sea; specifically, ship captain Bartomeu Llovell was there with his ship in Mallorcans were present there, as there is proof that the same year a Mallorcan ship was burned in the port of Constantinople by the Venetian.
In the midth century we have documentation of intense traffic with Constantinople, and an account book of a commercial journey to this city still remains, the only one that survives in the West for the 14th century. Nonetheless, at the end of the century one or two ships headed to Constantinople per year, and this pace was kept up during the 15th century. Between and , journeys to Constantinople and Romania in general are documented at a rate of three to four ships per year.
This commercial relationship continued throughout the 15th century; around ten Mallorcans lived in Constantinople in around After the conquest of Constantinople by the Turks, the Catalans and Mallorcans tried to adapt to the difficult circumstances of the expansion of the Ottoman Empire. They continued their exchanges with the eastern Mediterranean, and we can even find some Catalan and Mallorcan commercial journeys to Turkish Constantinople. The strict bans on trade which weighed heavily on relations with the Mamluk sultanate for a period of time turned Cyprus into a repository of Oriental spices and goods which reached it along routes that were not affected by the papal prohibitions, such as Little Armenia, which was also frequented by the Catalans.
In , the Catalans received preferential fiscal treatment in Cyprus, similar to the traders from Provence, Narbonne and Pisa, but not as favourable as the treatment dispensed to the Genovese and Venetians. A large number of comanda contracts heading for Candia Crete and Cyprus and reports of ship journeys to these islands remain from and , while the record books of Genovese notaries in Cyprus reveal the presence of around 40 Catalans from Barcelona and Tarragona on the island, most prominently Bernat Marquet.
The presence of Mallorcans on Crete Candia is also documented starting in and Candia was an essential stopover on the routes to the Mediterranean Levant. In the 15th century, there seems to have been a drop in trade. There is a great deal of information on journeys from Barcelona to Rhodes, and they continued after Constantinople was seized by the Turks.
Journeys from Mallorca were also quite common, and there were some from Valencia as well. The islands or territories under Venetian or Genovese domination were also visited by the Catalans, but not as much as the other ports. The goods brought back include spices, pepper, ginger, cinnamon and sometimes wax, silk, alum, mastic and squirrel furs. In the 14th century, additional goods heading to Romania included considerable amounts of Catalan textiles, and mats, most likely from Valencia, along with silver, gold, fish, rice, anise and anise seed, pottery and ceramic, almonds, dates, figs, scarlet, sheet brass and even cork.
In the second half of the 14th century and throughout the 15th century, Oriental slaves came to be a prominent part of the cargo transported home, in addition to the goods mentioned above. The commercial relations with Castile developed across land routes in the entire central area Castilla la Vieja, Castilla la Nueva and Extremadura and Murcia, with the import of products such as wool, animals for meat consumption, horses, wood and salted fish, and the export of cloth, spices, oil and products for redistribution, in addition to grain and wine, which circu-.
Cover of the book of the consulate of the sea, a compilation of Catalan maritime trade laws.
This exchange was favourable to the Catalans and Valencians because they offered goods with more added value. The protectionist measure decreed by the Castilian King Henry III in banning the import of cloth from the Crown of Aragon, probably to encourage its manufacture in Castile, did not have major repercussions because of the death of the monarch. N 3 PDF Download. Curso Practico De Creole Haitiano: De Sarria A Santiago: Mas Que Un Viaje El Alma De Las Ciudades: El Ano Que Fui Nomada: El Camino De Santiago.
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