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Networks of Communication and Exchange 300 B.C.E.-600 C.E.

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Presentation on theme: "Networks of Communication and Exchange 300 B.C.E.-600 C.E."— Presentation transcript:

1 Networks of Communication and Exchange 300 B.C.E.-600 C.E.


3 Before classical times, long-distance trade was risky and costly What two developments reduced the risks of long-distance trade and stimulated trade during classical times?

4 How did Alexander’s conquests bring Greek civilization into contact with eastern ideas? What was the impact?

5 Break-up of Alexander’s Empire

6 Indian Ocean Monsoon  Seasonal monsoon winds, which affected historic sailing routes in the Indian Ocean, were discovered by mariners from Ptolemaic Egypt about 40 C.E.  The prevailing winds blow from the southwest in the summer and from the northeast in the winter

7 Major trade routes of the Classical Period

8 Two major types of trade contacts during the Classical Era Land Routes: – Trans Saharan Trade Routes – The Silk Road Sea Routes: – The Indian Ocean System – The Mediterranean Sea Lanes

9 Trade Networks: What was Exchanged ? Agricultural commodities Manufactured goods Natural resources Technologies – stirrup (major innovation) came from Afghanistan and made its way both to China and Europe – camel saddle Ideas: Buddhism, Hinduism and Christianity Diseases—spread along trade routes


11 Trans Saharan Trade Prior to the Classical Age the Sahara Desert served as a natural geographical barrier between Sub- Saharan Africa and those living in north and east Introduction of camel (probably around 1 st century B.C.E.) from Arabia, made trade caravans possible

12 Saharan Trade Camels—ships of the desert

13 Saharan Trade technological advancement: camel saddle allowing trade goods to be transported items from Sub-Saharan Africa would make their way to eastern Africa and then into Indian Ocean and Mediterranean Sea trade networks “silent trade” was often used

14 Saharan Trade: What was traded? desert salt was an important trading commodity – for export traders from Sub- Saharan Africa brought forest products, kola nuts, palm oil, rhinoceros horns, tortoise shells, ivory, emeralds and gold – imported cloth, glass, olive oil, wine, brass, iron and copper


16 the Silk Road was a linking of trade routes that took silk from China to the Middle East and Mediterranean—NO ONE BUILT THE ROAD! The Silk Road

17 Silk Road Silk Road extended overland from Chang’an (Xi’an) in China to the ports of Tyre and Antioch in the eastern Mediterranean


19 Indian Ocean Trade

20 Differences in Sailing Vessels Mediterranean and Indian Ocean Indian Ocean Strong seasonal winds making navigation difficult, so lateen sail (triangular) was used –more maneuverable Boats smaller than used in Mediterranean Mediterranean Sea very calm water Sails large and flat to pick up wind Ships had rowers and stayed close to shore

21 Lateen sail for rough monsoon waters

22 Mediterranean ships

23 Mediterranean Sea Trade Sea lanes linked the port of Rome (Ostia) to Syria and Palestine to Spain and north Africa Roman military and naval power kept the Sea lanes largely free of pirates Dominated by Roman mariners

24 Mediterranean Sea Trade

25 Movement (and impact) of ideas, disease and people during the Classical Period

26 The Spread of Ideas along Trade Routes Buddhism spreads to China along the Silk Road and Southeast Asia by land and sea Hinduism spreads to Southeast Asia via sea trade routes Christianity becomes the dominant religion in Roman empire Christian communities flourished in Mesopotamia, Iran and as far away as India The Spread of Buddhism, Hinduism, and Christianity 200 B.C.E.- 400 C.E.

27 Spread of Buddhism By the post classical era Buddhism became the most popular religion in east Asia, including Japan, Korea, and China Imported Buddhism brought its artistic styles and literature to these countries including China

28 Angkor Wat: Hindu Temple in Cambodia built in the early 12 th century merchant mariners regularly traveled between India and southeast Asia during the late centuries B.C.E. clear signs of cultural influence of India by the first century C.E.

29 Syncretism in cultural exchange Example: Buddhist statements about celibacy and spiritual quests were altered to make this aspect of the belief harmonious with Confucian Chinese values How did Hellenistic art styles impact Buddhist art? How did the Indian idea of asceticism and celibacy influence Christianity? Exchange between Mahayana Buddhism and Christianity— influenced each other

30 Impact of the spread of disease on classical populations AP theme: Demography and Disease

31 Spread of Epidemic Disease  During the 2 nd and 3 rd centuries C.E. the Han and Roman empires suffered large- scale outbreaks of epidemic disease  Hit China slightly later—similar impact  Smallpox, measles and possibly bubonic plague  Roman population went from about 60 million, during the reign of Augustus, to 45 million by the 2 nd century  165-180 an outbreak of smallpox furthur reduced population to 40 million and killed Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius (180)

32 Spread of Epidemic Disease  Demographic decline brought economic and social change  trade within the empires declined  economies move to regional self-sufficiency  In weakening the Mediterranean society it helped bring about the fall of the western Roman empire  What happened in Han China? What was the impact?  What happened in other areas classical areas (Persia, India) What was the impact?

33 A Number of significant migrations took place in late classical era AP theme: Migration

34 Bantu Migrations 1000 B.C.E.-500 C.E.


36 Germanic Migrations C.E. 400-526

37 Polynesian Migrations (up to C.E. 300)

38 Migrations in late classical era C.E. 200-600  Polynesians: their migration was like the Bantu—very gradual over long time period


40 The End

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