Role and importance of Izmir on the silk trade - XVIIth and XVIIIth centuries

In the 16th and 17th centuries, the city of Izmir played an important role in the as an international port, especially after its revival as a trading centre after Ottoman-Iran war of 1615-18, when it surpassed Aleppo in Syria. At this time, most silk came from Iran, but with supplies being disrupted by warring states, Izmir also offered was a more secure with the Ottamans investing in the port to make it an attractive proposition for traders. Gradually European merchant colonies set themselves up in the city to facilitate exporting silk to Europe. The main types of Iranian silk at this time were ardasse, charbassi, carvari and loge. In the face of difficulties sourcing silks as countries in the region vied to control silk routes, traders switched back to Syrian silk after 1727. Bengal silk also became an option, leading to price wars and attempts to control the prices. By 1740 France became a leading commercial power in the Levant, using Izmir as its trading centre.

Related Information

  • Author(s):
    Prof. Dr. Necmi ULKER
    17th and 18th century AD
    Language of article:

    International Seminar for UNESCO Integral Study of the Silk Roads: Roads of Dialogue: “The influence of the Silk Roads on Turkish Culture and Art”. 30, October, 1990. Izmir, Turkey.

    France, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Syrian Arab Republic, Türkiye

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