The illustration shows a group of people crossing the bridge into a town, and the collector levying the toll. The oxen and pigs, the country-wife on horseback, with a lamb laid over the front of her saddle, represent the country-people and their farm-produce; the pack-horse and mule on the left, with their flat-capped attendant, are an interesting illustration of the itinerant trader bringing in his goods.
The last cut is taken from the painted glass at Tournay of the fifteenth century, and represents marchands en gros. This illustration of a warehouse with the merchant and his clerk, and the men and the casks and bales, and the great scales, in full tide of business, is curious and interesting.
Our illustration represents a market scene, the women sitting on their low stools, with their baskets of goods displayed on the ground before them. The female on the left seems to be filling up her time by knitting; the woman on the right is paying her market dues to the collector, who is habited as a clerk. The background appears to represent a warehouse, where transactions of a larger kind are going on.
Our woodcut represents a mediæval shop of a high class, probably a goldsmith’s. The shopkeeper eagerly bargaining with his customer is easily recognised, the shopkeeper’s clerk is making an entry of the transaction, and the customer’s servant stands behind him, holding some of his purchases; flagons and cups and dishes seem to be the principal wares; heaps of money lie on the table, which is covered with a handsome tablecloth, and in the background are hung on a “perch,” for sale, girdles, a hand-mirror, a cup, a purse, and sword.
European Trade Routes in the 14th Century
Settlers trading with the indians—bartering casting counters and other trade goods for furs. (Conjectural sketch by Sidney E. King.)
One reason why the colonists selected a site for Jamestown some miles up the James River was to develop the Indian trade over an extensive area. During the early years of the colony, trade with the natives was encouraged. It is clear from the early records that the settlers bartered such items as beads, cloth, penny knives, shears, bells, glass toys, whistles, hatchets, pots and pans, brass casting counters, and similar objects in exchange for Indian corn (and other vegetables), fish, game, fruits and berries, and furs.
Standard Weight in Brass of the Fish-market at Mans: Sign of the Syren (End of the Sixteenth Century).