- from Byzantine Empire
Picture Constantinople in 540 CE. The city is a busy trading port where many important global trade routes meet. Merchants here handle goods from all over the world. Let’s walk through a warehouse near the docks and see what’s going on today.
The shelves are piled high with rolls of cloth, even silk and linen. Barrels and amphorae (clay jugs) are everywhere, filled with oil and wine. Workers unload chests of precious spices that just arrived. Caravans carried those spices across the desert from China and India. The merchant who owns all this has a ship leaving tomorrow. It will sail across the Black Sea and up the Dnieper River. He hopes it will bring back furs, salt, wax, and honey.