British East India Company

1757–1858.

A New Way to Trade

Before to the fifteenth century, trade goods traveled from Asia to the Middle East and Europe along the Silk Road, a well known road of that time that a majority of people traded on. Later on the Arab traders came to dominate the Silk Road. Venice gained a monopoly on the Arab trade. Now European nations could only get spices from Venice and were forced to pay whatever price the Venetians asked. This prompted the Age of Exploration, as European explorers in search of spices and other goods sought a sea route to the East. Portugal was the first to succeed and gained wealth from the pepper trade.