Indian Ocean Trade

599 Words3 Pages
The Indian Ocean was a power trading region that encouraged the spread of religion, crops, languages and people. Goods and ideas were traded consistently throughout this 1,100 year time period, but the traders, merchants, powers, trading systems, and some of the products changed from 650 to 1750. Trade flourished as the spices, textiles, manufactured goods, and raw goods of the Indian Ocean became staples that the western world came to depend on heavily. But, trade of these items was already in effect long before the Europeans arrived. This continuity of sea trade can be seen throughout 650-1750, rising and falling at times. With the rise of Islam and the Mongols, overseas trade slowed because of the importance of the Silk Road. As the Mongols declined sea trade became important again. The merchants of the Indian Ocean were used to the highest quality of products. The Ming, and especially the Chinese, continued in heavy foreign trade from Malacca to India throughout this period. Traders would pick up spices and hardwoods from the South East Asian islands and send them on dhows to the Arabian Peninsula. Spices continued to be sold from India and Indonesia demonstrating how most commodities continued to be sold despite who ruled the sea trade. With the advent of navigational developments, Portuguese lead the European race to trade with Asia. Vasco De Gama reached India in 1498. This was the beginning of the European infiltration of Indian Ocean trade, bringing about many changes. The Portuguese took over more trade and established ports like Goa in India. Then Britain too dominated trade in conjunction with joint stock companies like the Dutch East India Company. The Chinese traded silks, porcelain and other luxury goods with Europe and Arabia, even as the Ming set rules up for when, where and who could trade at specific spots. The establishment of different sea
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