Waves of Prosperity

Waves of Prosperity India, China and the West - How Global Trade Transformed the World

Paperback (16 Sep 2016)

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Publisher's Synopsis

When the Genoese merchant, Marco Polo, first arrived in Dynastic China he was faced with a society far advanced of anything he had encountered in Europe. The ports were filled with commodities from all over the eastern world, while new technology was driving the economy forward. It would take another 400 years before European trade in the Atlantic eclipsed the Pacific markets.

From China's phenomenally successful Sung dynasty (c. AD 960-1279), Cargoes reveals the power of the Mughals merchants of Gujarat, who built an empire so powerful that, even in the 17th century, the richest man in the world was a Gujarat trader. It was not until the opening up of the spice routes and the discovery of South American gold that medieval Iberia came to the fore. It was only then that the Atlantic Empire of the west came to dominate world trade, first the Dutch Republic in the seventeenth century, then the British Empire in the age of the Industrial Revolution, American supremacy in the twentieth century, and the development of post-war Japan.

Along the way Greg Clydesdale looks at the parallel lives and ideas of merchants and explorers, missionaries, kings, bankers and emperors. He shows how great trading nations rise on a wave of technological and financial innovation and how in that success lies the cause of their inevitable decline.

Book information

ISBN: 9781472139009
Publisher: Little, Brown
Imprint: Robinson
Pub date:
DEWEY: 382.09
DEWEY edition: 23
Language: English
Number of pages: 432
Weight: 594g
Height: 155mm
Width: 234mm
Spine width: 35mm