The role of several major harbours in Sumatra on the Maritime Silk Route between the seventh and sixteenth centuries

Archaeological findings in Sumatra and Java have revealed that the Strait of Malacca, the Strait of Sunda and the Indian Ocean were zones of trade from the first centuries of our era onwards. From the 7th to the 13th century AD, the region was controlled by the rulers of Srivijaya. The power subsequently shifted to the Sultanates of Samudera-Pasai, Aceh, Malacca, and Banten. From the 7th to the 16th century, major harbours emerged and import and export monopolies were created. As a result, the Selat Melaka, Selat Sunda and the Indian Ocean became an important sailing route on the maritime Silk Road.

Related Information

  • Author(s):
    Hasan Muarif Ambary
    7th century AD to 16th century AD
    Language of article:

    International Seminar for UNESCO Integral Study of the Silk Roads: Roads of Dialogue “Harbour cities along the Silk Roads”. 9-14 January 1991. Surabaya, Indonesia.


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