Food Globalisation and the Red Sea: New Evidence from the Ancient Ports at Quseir al-Qadim, Egypt

In: Human Interaction with the Environment in the Red Sea

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Abstract

The Red Sea has long functioned as a major conduit for long-distance trade and several harbours on its coast played key roles in the ancient spice trade. Excavations at one of these ports, Quseir al-Qadim (Roman Myos Hormos and Islamic Kusayr), have revealed many well-preserved food remains, and these are providing new insights into early antecedents of food globalisation. The range of spices traded and changes in the scale and nature of the trade over time are discussed, as are the impacts of the introduced plants on local foodways and agricultural production. Food and geopolitics are found to be intricately linked.

Human Interaction with the Environment in the Red Sea

Selected Papers of Red Sea Project VI