Chapter

From Trade Diasporas to Circulation Societies

Sebouh David Aslanian

in From the Indian Ocean to the Mediterranean

Published by University of California Press

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9780520266872
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520947573 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520266872.003.0001
From Trade Diasporas to Circulation Societies

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During the Safavid-Ottoman wars of 1603–1605, the Safavid monarch Shah 'Abbas I (r. 1587–1629) laid waste to the frontier regions of his empire, deporting up to 300,000 Armenians and others from the frontier territories, and resettling them in the interior of his realm. The Julfans were driven to the Iranian capital of Isfahan, where 'Abbas I granted them land across the Zayandarud River and permitted them to build their own suburb, named New Julfa, in memory of their abandoned home. As a result of its lucrative hold on Iran's silk exports to Europe, the small suburb of New Julfa grew throughout the seventeenth century to become one of the most important mercantile centers in Eurasia. The Julfan Armenians were able to build one of the greatest trade networks of the early modern period. This book examines the emergence and growth of this global trade network of Armenian merchants from New Julfa. It also recreates the ethos of trust and cooperation between merchants of the same community and describes the concept of “trade diaspora.”.

Keywords: Julfans; Armenians; merchants; trade networks; New Julfa; Iran; silk; Eurasia; trade diaspora; cooperation

Chapter.  10598 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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