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10

I'm not into proscribing a lot of collective guilt onto modern peoples for acts of their cultural ancestors. In fact, its damn silly. However, if someone else is trying to do this publicly, they should be really careful, because when it comes to slavery almost no culture on earth has clean hands. This includes Muslim society, and local Negro1 cultures. ...


9

The question is commonly asked (Google the question and you get 446,000,000 answers). BBC News has an excellent answer that mirrors my answer below, but in far more depth and with much less withering sarcasm. The summary is the last two sentences, " . . . to paraphrase Churchill, out of all the elements, gold makes the worst possible currency. Apart ...


6

We can safely assume that Polo wasn't motivated by greed or monetary compensation when he undertook his voyage but rather by spirit of adventure and curiosity. There are several reasons why money was not an issue when he decided to propagate his knowledge, but first and foremost it wasn't an issue because his family was already well-off else he wouldn't ...


6

Polo was already fantastically wealthy, so he may have been ambivalent about money. The operant issue was that at the time he wrote the book he was in a prison in Genoa. Writing the book had the advantage of improving his reputation with the Genoese and thereby helping him get out of prison, which he eventually did. As far as the benefits of the knowledge ...


6

The question is a bit confusing. The way I read it, you're asking why something expensive has enough demand to sustain a profitable trade ("How did the high price of spices allow such high demand?"). The answer is that it wasn't that expensive. A pound of spices might cost several days' worth of wages for an average craftsman, but a pound of pepper is a lot ...


6

These situations were totally common throughout history. Starting from the industrial revolution in Britain which led to numerous concerns in France about their textile industry. I can tell you many other examples. The pre-revolutionary Russian Empire where German industry was seen to dominate over domestic industry. The Cold War era Soviet Union where it ...


5

From a practicality perspective; Gold shared the same an early advantages that Copper did for developing societies. It can be worked by being beaten and by being cast, so the technology requirements to begin working with gold is lower than even bronze. In it's natural state gold is malleable and shiny, making it an obvious candidate for cultures and artists ...


5

After the voyages of Columbus, who sailed for Spain, the Portuguese and Spanish divided up the new world in the Treaty of Tordesillas (1494). The later pattern of colonization followed this treaty in general outline. Your question has an incorrect assumption, that the Portuguese were only traders. They had a global empire that included Brazil, islands in ...


4

Silk, being a fragile fabric, is going to be lost in virtually any archaeological context. THIS article says: SE′RICUM (σερικόν), silk, also called bombycinum. The first ancient author who affords any evidence respecting the use of silk, is Aristotle (H.A. V.19).a After a description, partially correct, of the metamorphoses of the silkworm (bombyx, ...


4

As surprising as this may seem, there is some truth in these allegations, but of course this does not change in any way their antisemitic character. Why there is some truth The French Triangular Trade was conducted primarily from the harbor of Nantes, from where departed almost as many slave-carrying ships as from all the other French harbors combined. ...


4

Shoes Boeing vs Airbus BAE vs Lockheed Martin Smoot Hawley Fordney-Mccumber - which explicitly aimed to protect US factories. You may also wish to check tariffs on Italian leather shoes - I don't have anything immediately to hand, but the US has traditionally levied tariffs on Italian shoes to protect domestic industry. I believe that Steel was ...


4

The answer appears to be "yes" in both cases: Tariffs in United States history: In the colonial era, before 1775, nearly every colony levied its own tariffs, usually with lower rates for British products. There were taxes on ships (on a tonnage basis), import taxes on slaves, export taxes on tobacco, and import taxes on alcoholic beverages. The ...


3

It turns out that if you hunt hard enough, there is a fragment of a wikipedia page that covers this. First off, what was found was traces of coca and nicotine in hair from Egyptian mummies by one person. Nobody has ever duplicated the coca find (after multiple attempts), but some other folks have found traces of nicotine in some other mummies. Its worth ...


2

Nemesis was sold in 1852, and I would presume (but can't confirm) that it was sold for scrap. I can't locate any indications that it was ever re-registered though. See Warships of the World to 1900 by Lincoln P. Paine, p 115-6


2

To add to @Mark's answer, we may venture that in early times, gold was both rare and amenable to be crafted into jewels that thus displayed the wealth of their owner. As such, gold is a key to an elevated social status, making it highly desirable everywhere. Gold was not the first metal to serve in that role; e.g. some late neolithic tombs have yielded ...


1

During this time, the Native Americans traded mainly furs and sometimes food. In exchange, the Europeans gave them items like horses, alcohol, and manufactured goods such as guns, metal cooking utensils, and cloth. The Indians made good use of the trade goods they received, specifically the axes, knives, and guns. They had quite a good source of income for ...


1

It is pretty logical. Back in time there were no electronic, car and many industries, and the wealth - gold and silver - of the world arrived to Europe - mainly to nobles and kings. There was a big portion of extra wealth available to spend, and it was an interesting luxury item since those times the spices in foods were very limited in europe due to the ...


1

Spain and Portugal controlled their colonies differently because they developed differently during the 15th century. By the 15th century, Portugal was already a "complete" country. The century was characterized by seagoing voyages under Prince Henry the Navigator, around the coast of Africa. The end result was Vasco da Gama's sailing totally around Africa, ...


1

When the law prohibits interest altogether, it does not prevent it. Many people must borrow, and nobody will lend without such a consideration for the use of their money as is suitable, not only to what can be made by the use of it, but to the difficulty and danger of evading the law. The high rate of interest among all Mahometan nations is ...


1

I have a great interest in the history of salt, mainly because of looking to the uncertain future, and can confirm that Salt was essential to soldiers during warfare. If was the main way to preserve meat, fish and vegetables, and without it long marches were untenable. Salt mines were few and far between and taking it from the sea was only practical in ...



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