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The Medieval Herring Fishery In The Western Baltic

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Chapter Summary

This chapter addresses the links between the medieval herring fishery in western Baltic and the inland areas of Europe. It describes when and for what reasons herring, an ocean fish, became an everyday food all over Europe. It then examines, using the Scanian fisheries as an example, the effects of this market development on a regional fishery and its subsequent development from an indigenous fishery to an international sensation. The chapter gives an account of the economic and political structures of the Baltic which form the background for particular market system of the herring markets in that region, exemplified by the fisheries off the island of Rügen and off Scania. It then describes both the possibilities of quantifying catch amounts in Middle Ages, using the Scanian fishery as an example, as well as the trade routes and relationships between these herring fisheries in western Baltic and their buyers in Europe.

Keywords: catch amounts; economic; medieval herring fishery; Rügen; Scanian fisheries; trade routes; western Baltic



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