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The great daily market at Bantam was cosmopolitan and thriving. There the English met Arab, Turkish, Iranian, Gujarati, Tamil, Bengali, Malay, Javanese and Chinese merchants who were selling products from their own countries. The market bought and sold an incredible range of exotic goods.

The English had their woollen cloth but it soon became clear that they would do better to barter with other Asian goods, especially Indian textiles.

Bantam had existed as a city from at least the 11th century but it was during the 16th century that it rose to be an international port. The Kingdom of Bantam was created around 1527. Despite religious differences, trade with the Portuguese flourished, while the Chinese came in ever increasing numbers.

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The great market at Bantam, from Historie van Indien by William Lodewijckszoon, published at Amsterdam in 1598. The engraving is accompanied by a key in Dutch.

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Where is BantamThe DutchMarketMaking Contact