Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: The maritime trade of the smaller Bristol Channel ports in the sixteenth century
Author: Taylor, Duncan
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2009
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Historians of maritime trade in the late medieval and early modern periods have concentrated almost wholly on overseas trade and on the trade of larger ports to understand the commercial and economic trends of this period. This thesis examines trade in a group of smaller regional ports to determine whether such a focus is justified. In addition to national Exchequer accounts, a range of supplementary sources are employed. These suggest that the national customs records, upon which historians have relied to trace maritime trade, present a substantially misleading picture so far as the smaller Bristol Channel ports are concerned. Both domestic and overseas trade conducted through these ports was much greater than has previously been allowed, both in absolute terms and also relative to Bristol. In particular linking the Bridgwater water bailiffs accounts with Exchequer sources reveals a large scale trade from the southern Welsh ports to England during this period which has not previously been recognised. This has implications for previous assessments of the economic development of this region, but also adds significantly to understanding of the coastal accounts which have hitherto been largely uncritically adopted by historians of this period. The smaller port towns around the Bristol Channel are shown to have had sharply differentiated patterns of trade, both from each other and from Bristol. By the end of the sixteenth century they were emerging as places which were to an extent specialist distributors or niche marketeers in the same way as inland towns. The study of the trade of small ports in this period does not therefore simply reproduce on a lesser scale work which has already been undertaken for the large port of Bristol, but adds to understanding of patterns of trade and domestic economic development in this period
Supervisor: Smith, Brendan ; Jones, Evan Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available