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List of illustrations Preface 1. Trade diasporas and cross-cultural trade 2. Africa: incentives to trade, patterns of competition 3. Africa: traders and trade communities 4. Ancient trade 5. A new trade axis: the Mediterranean to China, circa 200 BC-AD 1000 6. Asian trade and the rise of Islam 7. The European entry into the trade of maritime Asia 8. Bugis, banians and Chinese: Asian traders in the era of the great companies 9. Overland trade of the seventeenth century: Armenian carriers between Europe and East Asia 10. The North American fur trade 11. The twilight of the trade diasporas Bibliography Index.