Skip to comments.Tamil Trade
Posted on 09/11/2004 8:07:01 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
Whatever study has been made so far of the Tamil texts side by side with comparable data available in Strabo, Pliny, the Periplus Maris Erythraei and Ptolomey, and with the archaeological and numismatic finds in Southern India, has shown that the Tamil texts contain illuminating corroborative evidence.
Discussions of Roman Tamil trade made by Jean Filliozat, Mortimer Wheeler, Pierre Meile, E.H. Warmington and M.P. Charlesworth have taken into consideration the tests interpreted by V. Kangasabai Pillai in his book the "Tamils one thousand eight hundred years Ago". 1904.
(Excerpt) Read more at intamm.com ...
Roman period maritime artefactsDozens of classical wrecks excavated in the Mediterranean have produced a clear development of hull construction although little is preserved of their rigging. With no wrecks excavated in the Erythraean Sea the vehicles of the Roman trade are not represented in the archaeological record. Papyrological records detailing receipts and trading activity on the Nile mention Greek vessels called hellenikon, large river vessels which sailed the Nile (Lewis 1983: 143; Bagnall 1983: 35). These records give some detail of the rig, which may have been utilised on the Red Sea, this includes linen sails, rings and blocks. As ancient sources suggest (Herodotus 2.36) Egyptian type vessels were quite different from specifically sea-going vessels, although a range of technologies may have been utilised by the Romans. However there is no published archaeological evidence for the type of craft referred to as the good vessels, masterpieces of the Yavanas (westerners) (Sidebotham 1986: 23) mentioned in the c. 150 AD Tamil poetry of the Kauliliya Arthasastra. This referred to the arrival of Yavanas to the Malbar coast port of Muziris.
Univ of Southampton
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[at] Qusier al-Qadim, from the first and second centuries A.D... were inscribed with Tamil graffiti in the Brahmi script and likely came from Arikamedu in southern India (not far from the modern town of Pondicherry). These constitute the first Indian Tamil inscriptions ever found in Egypt, and their discovery, next to a small iron forge, raises the possibility that a small community of Indian merchants or metalworkers lived at Qusier al-Qadim... researchers found items typical of the east, for example, teak and cloth made from jute. [pp 82-83]Contemporary writing about the Roman ships arriving in India and leaving with goods is also discussed.
At Empire's Edge:
Exploring Rome's Egyptian Frontier
by Robert B. Jackson
Travel in the Ancient World
by Lionel Casson
The History: Thalia, the Internet Classics Archive ^ | 440 B.C. | Herodotus, tr by George Rawlinson
Posted on 09/09/2004 10:31:01 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
The Voyage around the Erythraean Sea
Silk Road ^ | 2004 | William H. Schoff
Posted on 09/12/2004 7:55:44 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
At Empire's Edge:Pliny the Elder also added a warning: "The subject is one well worthy of our notice, seeing that in no year does India drain us of less than 550,000,000 sesterces giving back her own wares, which are sold among us at fully 100 percent their first cost." Romans were not the only ones to comment on the nature of their trade with India. A Tamil poem from the second or third century A.D. includes the following passage: "The beautiful vessels, the masterpieces of the Yavanas [Westerners], stir white foam on the Periyar, river of Kerala, arriving with gold and departing with pepper." Despite the discovery in southern India of some six thousand silver denarii and gold aurei, which seems to corroborate these statements, scholars disagree about whether such an economic imbalance actually occurred. Certainly the Romans spent vast sums of money on Asian luxuries, but they might also have used a barter system. Roman amphora, pottery, glass, lamps, and other items have been excavated in India, Sri Lanka, and Arabia, and Roman beads (gold or silver, set in glass) have been uncovered in the Rufiji Delta of Tanzania... In addition, the Greek/Egyptian author of Periplus Maris Erythraei (Circumnavigation of the Red Sea) identifies specific places where bartering was or was not possible. [pp 88-89]
Exploring Rome's Egyptian Frontier
by Robert B. Jackson
This is my own private topic. ;') [bump]
Uncracked Ancient CodesSanskrit and early Dravidian, the ancient languages of India, seem to be the keys to deciphering the highly challenging script of the Indus Valley civilization of the third millennium b.c. in what is now Pakistan and northwest India. As with other languages, a photographic corpus of drawings, a sign list and a concordance must be compiled before decipherment will be possible. Work has proceeded along these lines for inscriptions on some 3,700 objects from the Indus Valley, most of them seal stones with very brief inscriptions (the longest has only 26 characters)... Robinson's descriptions of such analysis, and his accounts of both successful and unsuccessful decoding attempts, are clear, provocative and stimulating.
(Lost Languages reviewed)
by William C. West
The Enigma Of The World's Undeciphered Scripts
by Andrew Robinson
Lionel Casson pingarooni :)
The Ancient Mariners
by Lionel Casson
Excavations at Berenike 1994-2001Also found at Berenike is the first ever example of a carpet - also Indian made. Pearls have been found in jewelry that are clearly eastern in origin. Pottery from Aqaba, Arabia - and India, is in abundance. Fine ware, which has incised decoration, can be identified specifically to India. The site in India from which it came can even be identified, thanks to the excavation's pottery specialist having traveled to India to study Indian made pottery... Of particular interest is the presence of black pepper, an Indian commodity, in exceptionally large quantity at Berenike. Dr. Windrich advised the audience that only two other sites in Egypt have found peppercorns - at Mons Claudianus, and at Shenshef. In each case fewer than 20 peppercorns were found, but at Berenike, the estimate presently stands at 133,000! This fact is primarily due to having excavated a very large clay pot, originally buried in a courtyard, that was completely full of peppercorns... in the 1st century, contact were really with Muziris on the southwestern coast of India, vice or perhaps in addition to Barygaza much farther north. And it goes without saying that the evidence for trade with India is clear.
by Nancy Corbin
American Research Center in Egypt
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Archaeologists Uncover Ancient Maritime Spice Route Between India, Egypt
Popular Science | 2-8-2004
Posted on 02/08/2004 3:57:17 PM EST by blam
Just updating the GGG info, not sending a general distribution.
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