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Berenike and the Ancient Maritime Spice Route$
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Steven Sidebotham

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520244306

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520244306.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

Commercial Networks and Trade Costs

Commercial Networks and Trade Costs

(p.206) 11 Commercial Networks and Trade Costs
Berenike and the Ancient Maritime Spice Route

Steven E. Sidebotham

University of California Press

After the annexation of Egypt in 30 B.C.E. Berenike became an important player in a series of interconnected local, regional, and wider-ranging trade and communication systems within and beyond the Roman Empire. Much bulk trade conducted to and from the urban centers of Rome was either within close proximity by land or over some greater distance by sea. Major caravan players in the eastern Roman Empire were Petra and Palmyra, and these players and similar desert oasis settlements prospered primarily. Land and water transport often complemented one another and should not be viewed solely as competitive. Seasons and weather greatly affected transport costs. The Mediterranean basin's contacts with Arabia, India, and points east and south were fairly circumscribed and sporadic until the Roman Empire had expanded to include all of coastal Mediterranean North Africa and large portions of the Middle East.

Keywords:   Berenike, Roman Empire, Mediterranean North Africa, Middle East, trade, Petra, Palmyra, transport

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