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Historical Background
General Remarks
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The Children's Crusade
The Consequences of the Crusades
In the Middle Ages, most of the people, whether in cities or the country, never left the places where they were born. Tradesmen were the only exception. They travelled along established trade routes and transported merchandise that promised them a good profit. These routes, no better than dirt roads, lead through the whole of Europe. A trip from Venice to Nuremberg took about two weeks of travel time.

A trader offered his astonished clientele a range of goods coming from all parts of the world. Exotic spices such as pepper, cinnamon and clove were transported along with carpets from the Orient, cotton and dye from Africa and high-quality silk from Asia. Salt from the area around Salzburg was also a desired commodity and was literally worth its weight in gold. Salt was greatly desired, as it was used in the preservation of meat and fish.

Knives, scissors, needles and armour crafted in Nuremberg had an excellent reputation across Europe - from London to Lisbon and even Constantinople. Spain's tropical fruit, saffron, wool and leather were traded across the whole of Europe. Northern European goods such as fish and furs were often processed in the South. France procured wine and fabrics which were shipped to London and elsewhere.

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