This second volume in the series collects papers from two workshops held at the University of Göttingen in 2019 and 2020. The international meetings tackled questions related to merchants and money in a comparative perspective, with examples spanning from the Bronze Age to the early Modern period and embracing Europe, the Mediterranean, Asia and East Africa. The first part of this volume presents historical case studies of how merchants planned and carried out commercial expeditions; how risk, cost, and potential profit was calculated; and how the value of goods was calculated and converted. The papers in the second part address current theories and methods on the development and function of money before and after the invention of coinage. The introduction of balance scales around 3000 BCE enabled the formation of overarching indexes of value and the calculation of the commercial value of goods and services. It also allowed for a selected set of commodities to take on the role of currency. Around 650 BCE, this led to the invention of coinage in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Gojko Barjamovic is Senior Lecturer on Assyriology in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at Harvard University, USA. His field of interest is the history of Assyria in the 2nd and 1st millennia BC with particular focus on the study of trade during the Old Assyrian period. His publications include inter alia: A Historical Geography of Anatolia in the Old Assyrian Colony Period (2011) and Libraries Before Alexandria (2019).
Nicola Ialongo is postdoctoral researcher in the ERC-2014-CoG 'WEIGHTANDVALUE" at the Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Germany. He received his PhD at the University of Rome “La Sapienza”, Italy. His interests comprise prehistoric economy and trade, religion and power in prehistoric societies, Bronze Age hoards and votive depositions, relative chronology of the European Bronze Age and statistical methods in archaeological research.
Prof. Dr. Lorenz Rahmstorf, geboren 1970 in Frankfurt a. M., Studium der Ur- und Frühgeschichte in Heidelberg und Bristol (GB), Promotion am Institut für Ur- und Frühgeschichte der Universität Heidelberg 2002, Habilitation in Vor- und Frühgeschichte an der Universität Mainz 2012, aktuell Professor am Seminar für Ur- und Frühgeschichte der Universität Göttingen. Forschungsschwerpunkte: Späte Kupferzeit, Bronzezeit, frühe Eisenzeit, Wirtschaftsgeschichte, Kulturkontakte und Austausch, Komparative Archäologie und Kleinfunde (besonders Gewichte).
Lorenz Rahmstorf, born 1970 in Frankfurt a. M., studied Prehistoric Archaeology in Heidelberg and Bristol (GB). He earned his PhD in prehistoric archaeology at the University of Heidelberg in 2002. In 2012 achieved the Habilitation in the same field at the University of Mainz. Since 2017 he is Professor for Prehistoric Archaeology at the University of Göttingen. His research interests comprise the Chalcolithic period, the Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age and more specifically early trade and transfer of innovations, comparative archaeology and small finds (especially weights).