The Mediterranean Connections of Basque Ports (1700-1841): Trade, Trust and Networks
Aragón Ruano, Álvaro
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Journal of European Economic History 3 : 51-90 (2015)
[EN] This research analyses the commercial relationships between Basque and the Mediterranean ports from the beginning of the eighteenth century until the first third of the nineteenth century, when the customs were moved to the coast. Although part of a wider international network, these connections must be considered a strategic relationship to both parties. The research delves into the lives, the evolution and the strategies put into practice by Mediterranean merchants who settled in Basque ports and Basque merchants who, without moving to other ports, strengthened their commercial ties, thanks to a combination of kinship, ethnicity and marriage between traders’ families. Epistolary correspondence of some traders not only brings to light daily details and methods implemented by merchants in order to succeed, but also allows us to measure or at least get an approximate idea of the uncertainty, insecurity and dangers they faced during their commercial activity.