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Sasanian PersiaBetween Rome and the Steppes of Eurasia$
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Eberhard Sauer

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781474401012

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474401012.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 12 June 2021

The India Trade in Late Antiquity

The India Trade in Late Antiquity

(p.284) 13 The India Trade in Late Antiquity
Sasanian Persia

James Howard-Johnston

Edinburgh University Press

The effects of long-distance maritime trade on the economic and political development of the hinterlands of port-cities are as evident on either side of the Red Sea as in South-East Asia. Both great powers of the west profited from the India trade in the fifth century, but with the deterioration in their relations after the 502-5 war, the Persians imposed an embargo on Roman trade with India, which Justinian tried and failed to break. Hence it was mainly through Persia that the products of the south and the east, including garnets from south India and Sri Lanka, reached Europe. The gold received in tribute from the Romans was probably destined for India. Close attention should be paid to references to trade in contemporary writings by members of elites which were largely indifferent to economic matters. They reveal inter alia the existence of a powerful business lobby in the Sasanian Empire.

Keywords:   Indian Ocean trade in antiquity, Relations between Rome and Persia, Roman subsidies to Persia, Sasanian trade

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