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Fish, Stock And Barrel. Changes In The Stockfish Trade In Northern Europe, C. 1360–1560

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Chapter Summary

Bergen was the main hub of stockfish trade in the Middle Ages, and in the sources 'Bergen fish' is often synonymous with stockfish. The stockfish trade there underwent several changes in the analysed period: due to fluctuations in population in late medieval Europe, as well as to the emergence of new fisheries, trading centres, and merchant groups. This chapter focuses on the consequences of these changes, with special relation to the Bergen case. It provides an overview of the stockfish trade in Bergen with a look at the various groups of merchants involved in the trade, particularly the Hansards and the merchants from Holland. It then analyses the changes in the stockfish trade in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. It also examines the technological changes connected to the stockfish trade, the emergence of new trade centres, and the consequences of those changes for Bergen as a stockfish trade centre.

Keywords: Bergen; fisheries; Hansards; merchant groups; northern Europe; stockfish trade; trading centres



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