Library Header Image
LSE Theses Online London School of Economics web site

The commercial development of Ancona, 1479-1551

Earle, Peter (1969) The commercial development of Ancona, 1479-1551. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

Text - Submitted Version
Download (76MB) | Preview


This thesis will examine and attempt to explain how, in the first half of the sixteenth century, the central Italian port of Ancona achieved its greatest economic importance relative to other cities in the whole of its history. It will be seen that this development coincided with and was causally connected with the rise of other ports as widely dispersed as London, Antwerp, Ragusa and Constantinople. During this period Ancona was transformed from a port of merely regional significance into a major international entrepot where the raw materials and manufactured goods of the Ottoman Empire were exchanged for agricultural produce and industrial goods from Italy and Western Europe. These changes were caused by developments outside Ancona itself, in particular the political stability of the lands of the eastern Mediterranean under Ottoman rule and the growing tendency for merchants to use land rather than sea trade routes as a result of improved organisation of land haulage and the growth of piracy. The thesis has been based mainly on the hitherto unconsulted notarial archives of Ancona, and it should help to revise the view that post-medieval notarial records are of little value in studying commercial history. Other sources in Ancona itself and in the main cities with which she traded have also been consulted. The thesis is arranged in six chapters. Chapter I sets the political and commercial framework of the Mediterranean with which Ancona was to develop. Chapter II sets the city in its geographical, historical and political perspective within this Mediterranean. Chapter III consists of an examination and criticism of the sources consulted. Chapter IV is the core of the thesis, describing the commercial development if the city and attempting to explain it. Finally Chapters V and VI discuss the way in which trade was carried on in Acona. Chapter V deals with the structure of the merchant community and the way in which merchants operated, whilst Chapter VI deals with the organisation and operation of shipping.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 1969 Peter Earle
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
Sets: Departments > Economic History

Actions (login required)

Record administration - authorised staff only Record administration - authorised staff only


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics