Caravan (travellers)

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Description[edit] – Caravans in historical times connected East Asia and Europe carrying luxurious goods like silks and jewelry.
– Considerable investment was required for caravans, which were often targeted by bandits due to the lucrative profits.
– Profits from successful journeys could be enormous, similar to the European spice trade.
– Rulers along trade routes constructed caravanserais to support commerce, information flow, and people.
– Caravanserais provided essential services like water, baths, fodder, and shops for travelers.

Transport Capacity
– Caravans had limited transport capacity compared to merchant ships; e.g., 500 camels carried only a fraction of goods.
– Even in present times, caravans in less-developed areas transport vital goods through challenging terrains.
– Examples include camel trains in the Sahara Desert transporting agriculture seeds.
– Caravans play a crucial role in supplying goods in regions with inadequate infrastructure.
– The comparison between caravan transport and maritime transport highlights limitations.

See also[edit] – Convoy
– Camel train
– Wagon train
– Central American migrant caravans of 2017–22
– Explore related topics like convoy systems and different types of caravan transportation.

References[edit] – Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Caravan.
– Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
– Dean, Riaz (2022). The Stone Tower: Ptolemy, the Silk Road, and a 2,000-Year-Old Riddle.
– Ciolek, T. Matthew. Catalogue of Georeferenced Caravansaras/Khans.
– Access additional resources like books and articles for further reading on caravans and trade routes.

External Links[edit] – Media related to Caravans at Wikimedia Commons
– Fragner, Bert G. (1990). Caravan. Encyclopaedia Iranica.
– Find multimedia resources and scholarly articles related to caravans.
– Explore additional information on caravans and their historical significance.
– Access external resources for a deeper understanding of caravans and their impact.

A caravan (from Persian کاروان kârvân) or cafila (from Arabicقَافِلَةqāfila listen) is a group of people traveling together, often on a trade expedition. Caravans were used mainly in desert areas and throughout the Silk Road, where traveling in groups aided in defense against bandits as well as helped to improve economies of scale in trade. Some of the first caravans on the Silk Road were sent out by Emperor Wu of Han in the 2nd century BCE when this vast network of roads was 'born', and as China began exporting large quantities of silk and other goods west, particularly destined for the Roman Empire.

Edwin Lord Weeks, Arrival of a Caravan Outside the City of Morocco
A trade caravan passing the Isle of Graia in the Gulf of Akabah, Arabia Petraea,1839 lithograph by Louis Haghe from an original by David Roberts
Camel caravan in Morocco, November 2013
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