Indian Kingdoms 1200–1500 and the Maritime Trade in Monetary Commodities
In this study, Deyell explores the complex ways in which monetary systems of pre-modern India influenced the great Indian Ocean trade in coinage metals (gold, silver, copper) and cowry shells. Noting the Indian subcontinent’s tremendous political, cultural and economic diversity prior to 1500, the study analyses the monetary experiences of different regions and their relative demand for monetary commodities. These needs were met through the interaction of local mining activities, coastal trading communities and overseas trade routes. The study shows how the disparate needs of Indian regions for materials to service their monetary systems comprised a significant “pull” factor shaping the development and evolution of the “international” maritime trade in these commodities.