Библиографическое описание:

Эркузиев А. А. The role of northern-eastern trade route in the relationships of the khanates of Central Asia and Western Europe in XVI-XVII century // Молодой ученый. — 2014. — №2. — С. 659-661.

XV-XVI centuries — the era of great geographical inventions opened a new era in the life of European people. In this period of time a significant movement happened in the economy of Western Europe, and the base of economical progress consisted of raw materials and riches brought from the new discovered countries. Now, the trade routes going through the Mediterranean Sea moved to the World Oceans by discovering the new world. This case significantly affected to the role of Western European countries in the World Trade. The trade with «The new World» and India was under the control of the Spanish and Portuguese merchants, it caused to begin trying open new trade routes and getting huge raw material bases in the other western European countries under the influence of these discoveries and inventions. First of all in this case without repeating the routes discovered by the Spanish and Portuguese in the western European countries such as France, England, Holland, Italy and Sweden, the plans began to be made to go to eastern India and China via northern-eastern sea route. But, still there was not enough geographical knowledge about these places which had been considered to be far and mysterious to pass away. In addition, among the European people there was a fear to go to the land of Moskovia as to go to the edge of the earth [1]. Because, various travelers (Plano Karpini, Rubrukvis, Marco Polo, and others), who came into Asia on the purpose of delegation and missionary work in XIII century, brought into Europe the information like Muscovy was the land where scary people live and bordered on India.

In XVI century theoretical information about the northern-eastern trade route going to India through Muscovy began to develop. Batista Ramuzio from Venice, the author of the first travel collection famous for in Europe, depending on the information of Pliniy [2] who was an aristocrat lived in the city of Augsburg of Germany, mentioned in his work that in the ancient time the Indians who went to Sea on business came to the coast of Germany [3]. On the base of his information Ramuzio indicated the possibility of getting to China and India from the north-east, he noted that the ambassador Dmitriy Gerasimov who was sent to Rome from Muscovy had seen the geographic map of Muscovy [4].

The first projects about the northern-eastern trade route and practically trying it was firstly carried out by Italian people. Benedetto Skotto went round Europe from the north-east in the beginning of XVI century and suggested that it was possible to go to the East India through the coast of China [5]. In the 20s of XVI century Paolo Chentuiore worked out the project about setting trade relationships of Western Europe with the Asian countries via Muscovy [6].

In 1522–1523 Gaspar Chentuiore and Joanny Veratsione went on a voyage from Italy towards India and China via the Baltic Sea in order to carry out the project worked out by Paolo Chentuiore. But, because of the wreck of the ship near the coast of Normand, they couldn’t go on the voyage.

In 1527 the Englishman Robert Torn suggested the king of England Henry XVIII(1509–1547) sending an expedition to the North and organizing a travel round the Earth that can be possible to return to Europe via Cape Of Good Hope travelling through Tatarstan, China, Malaya and the East India in the north-east direction [7].

As a theoretical source this information gave stimulus to begin the sea travels in the north-east direction.

It should be mentioned, until that time there were usual ways leading to India and China. But the sea route round Africa, the new discovered continent in the result of Great Geographical inventions, was far and full of difficulty. Second, because of the reign of the Usmaniys in XV century in the ancient trade route Levant [8] going through the Mediterranean Sea there increased a danger merchants and trade caravans. Closing the trade routes in the Persian Gulf by Portuguese in 1518 and also frequent battles between Usmaniys and Iran made it difficult to do business via the sate of Usmaniys. Only France who had a good relationship with the state of Usmaniys could do business in a certain order in the Mediterranean [9].

In 1475 Usmaniy Turks conquered the cities Tana and Kaffa which had a great importance in the trade of Europeans with the East on the joining point of the river Don with the Azov Sea. After that, European countries paid attention again to Astrakhan which played a great role in the trade of Muscovy, forgotten because of the discovering the sea trade routes in the result of Great Geagraphical inventions, with the East countries [1]. With this European countries planned to go to Moscow from Riga via the Baltic Sea, then to Astrakhan via the Moscow, Oka, and Volga rivers, then from the Caspian Sea to Mangishlak Peninsula, from there to the Indian river through the Parapamis (Hindikush mountains) along the Oks (Amudarya) [1].

The Englishmen, who didn’t want to be behind the Spanish and the Portuguese in the field of geographical inventions in the World Oceans, began the sea expeditions in 1553 in order to open the north-east trade route. After the first expedition under the leadership of Richard Chensler had landed on the coast of Arkhangelsk along the north-east trade route, the exact information about the state of Muscovy became popular in Europe. At this time the trade company “Moskva” was founded by the Englishmen in 1555 on the purpose of using the lands of Muscovy in the trade relations with the East countries in the north-east direction. But, at this time, as the Englishmen had few ships and technically lower development than the Spanish and Portuguese, it didn’t give them the opportunity to reach the lands of China and India along the north-east sea route. But, taking the Narva and Volga waterway under control by Muscovy in 1558 gave the opportunity to go to Central Asia and Iran from the Baltic Sea via Muscovy [10]. So that the Englishmen’s trade expedition in the Volga-Caspian waterway began. In 1558 the representative of the trade company “Moskva”, an English merchant Antony Jenkinson came to Bukhara with the permission of the Russian King Ivan IV in order to open the way to India and China via the Volga river, the Caspian Sea and the Amudarya and the Hindikush mountains [11].

In XVI century the state of Muscovy was struggling for the free trade in the markets of Europe. To provide the free consumption of the products of Muscovy in the markets of Europe Muscovy needed a partner in Europe. This aim was the reason why the King Ivan IV permitted the English for the free trade with the East countries. But, England was not interested in the benefits of Muscovy in the European markets, but, they had an aim to use Muscovy as a transit trade market for bringing the necessary raw materials for the English industry [12]. After Muscovy had conquered the Kazan khanate (1552) and the Astrakhan khanate (1554), the importance of the Volga-Caspian waterway in the trade relations with the East countries raised [13]. In the result, Muscovy had the opportunity of controlling all the economical relations of the European countries along the northern part of the Great Silk Road, in the Caspian Sea and with Central Asia, and partially the economical relations with China and India as well 14. Also, the plan of the European countries to go to China and India in the north-east direction raised Astrakhan’s reputation in the trade with East countries again [13]. Therefore, almost all the European countries sent their representatives to Muscovy asking for giving the right to trade with the East countries via Astrakhan. While the European countries discovering the new lands in the world oceans, Muscovy also began to search its economic benefits in the East countries. Information about the markets of the East countries and caravan routes was firstly brought to Muscovy by the slave people and their generations captive by Mongols [15]. Also, considering the importance of Astrakhan in the economic relations of Europe-East countries, in 1557–1558 the governors of Khiva and Samarkand sent their ambassadors to the king of Muscovy Ivan Vasilevich (Ivan IV Grozniy) asking for the Central Asian merchants’ rights to trade freely in Astrakhjan and the other places of Russia [16].

In XVII-XVIII centuries the ambassadors and merchants sent to Muscovy by the khanates of Central Asia noted about some parts of the north-east trade route in their diaries. This information shows that the trade relations of Europe-East countries were developed in the territory of Muscovy, the main part of the north-east trade route.

The increase of the interest to the north-east trade route increased the trips of Holland and French ships, and struggle for the reign of the trade route began. Because, along the Volga-Caspian direction of this route took 46 days from Arkhangelsk to get to Astrakhan where the merchants of the khanates of Central Asia and East countries [17].

This trade route was under the control of the English in XVI century and in the first half of XVII century, and in the second half of XVII century and in XVIII century it was under the control of the Dutchmen.

The East-Indian companies, which played the main role in the world trade in XVII-XVIII centuries, were founded in the countries situated on the north-east trade route. In 1600 English, in 1602 Dutch, in 1664 French, in 1689 Holstein East Indian companies were founded and probably they first struggled for the north-east sea trade. In XVII-XVIII centuries the north-east trade route became so popular that the author of “Robinson Cruso” D. Defoe tried to describe the wreck of the ship in the second part of his work happened near the coast of Arkhangelsk.

The importance of the north-east trade route had a certain place in the life of the people of Central Asia. Because, this route going towards India and China went through the territories of Central Asia. Whereas, this route was considered to be the main route connecting Central Asia with the world trade after the Great Silk Road had lost its importance. But, in XVIII century as soon as the world trade moved to the world oceans and being under the control of the Englishmen, the north-east trade route began to lose its importance, and this brought Central Asia to be behind the world trade.

In the result of opening the north-east trade route rich information about Muscovy which had been unknown to the Europeans until the middle ages was captured, due to the movements in the trade route, geographical information about the inner areas of Euro-Asia broadened, the information of antique time authors about the Caspian Sea was more clarified on the basis of scientific information. Especially, the inventions on the land could also equalized to the inventions in the world ocean in the result of Great Geographical inventions with their importance in the world trade.


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