Internationale Tagung/International Conference

Textile Trade and Distribution 2. From the Ancient Near East to the Mediterranean (1000 BC to AD 400)


11.-14. November 2015

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Dr. Kerstin Droß-Krüpe
Universität Kassel
Teilgebiet Alte Geschichte

Prof. Dr. Marie-Louise Nosch
The Danish National Research Foundation's Centre for Textile Research (CTR)

Conference languages will be English and German. 

Registration is now open for this event! There will be no registration fee. If you would like to attend please send an email to

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Textiles have always been among the most popular goods of mankind. Thus it is surprising that ancient textile production only within the last decades has been given particular attention in Classical Studies. However it is remarkable that at the same time textile trade and distribution has gained little attention so far. This desideratum was the point of departure for the first international conference “Textile Trade and Distribution in Antiquity”, held at Philipps-University Marburg (Germany) in 2013. This follow-up conference is based on a collaboration between the Department of Ancient History at Kassel University and the Danish National Research Foundation’s Centre for Textile Research and will expand the outcomes of the Marburg conference by the integration of modern economic stimuli. 30 researchers from 15 countries will give lectures covering the fields of Ancient History, Near Eastern Studies, Archaeology, Textile Research, Modern Economics, and Life Sciences.

To enable an analysis of textile exchange processes we decided to follow a strict terminological distinction between trade and distribution deriving from modern Economics. We consider it important to be well aware of the actual meaning of this vocabulary to create a common basis for communication for all attendees:

Trade: Purchase of goods from one (or several) producer(s) or supplier(s), transportation, stockage and sale of these goods to customers without modifying or processing them significantly. Traders (or trading companies) normally act with the intention of profit making.

Distribution: Any process of making a product or service available for use or consumption by a consumer or user.

So not all exchange processes are automatically to be called trade; not every ‘exotic’ object came to the place where it was found by means of trade. Other distribution channels such as presents, subsidies, tributes, and booty, should not be neglected, though it is certainly often difficult to identify them.

The conference aims to enable and facilitate interdisciplinary exchange and the discussion of new methodological approaches. Overcoming traditional boundaries between academic disciplines, identifying research gaps and discussing new research focuses are declared objectives.

We are looking forward to exiting talks, new perspectives and vivid discussions!

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The conference is funded by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), the Alexander von Humboldt-Foundation, the Groupe de Recherche International 'Ancient Textiles from Orient to the Mediterranean' (ATOM) and the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS).