caravan


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caravan,

group of travelers or merchants banded together and organized for mutual assistance and defense while traveling through unsettled or hostile country. Caravan trade is associated with the history of the Middle East as far back as the records of ancient civilizations extend and seems to have been well developed before sea commerce began. It is evident that all trade from one fertile area to another in this region had to be organized from the first, since long distances of desert trail separated settled parts and since local governments could not guarantee protection against tribes eager for loot and pillage. Such wares as jewels, spices, perfumes, dyes, metals, rare woods, ivory, oils, and textiles (chiefly silk) are associated with the trade. Camels were the main carriers from Egypt to Mesopotamia and throughout the Arabian peninsula. They were introduced into N Africa and the Sahara region in the 3d cent. A.D. Donkeys were used in Asia Minor. Trade naturally prospered in the period of the great empires, when the caravan routes could be controlled and protected; and it was to secure control of such routes that many wars were fought and conquests made in ancient times. An empire provided for the establishment of inns, or caravansaries, for the accommodation of travelers along the way. Such improvements facilitated the movement of troops to protect the routes. Cities rose and fell in ancient times in proportion to the rise and fall in the trade of the caravan routes upon which they were located. Basically the caravan system underwent little change until challenged in modern times by the motor truck and the airplane. Travelers having occasion to cross desert spaces usually joined merchant caravans. After the advent of Islam, the pilgrimage of the devout to Mecca gave rise to long pilgrim caravans that were a feature of the pilgrimage season each year. The closest approach to caravan trade in the New World was the wagon trainwagon train,
in U.S. history, a group of covered wagons used to convey people and supplies to the West before the coming of the railroad. The wagon replaced the pack, or horse, train in land commerce as soon as proper roads had been built.
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 commerce that developed over the Sante Fe Trail.
References in classic literature ?
The lady of the caravan looked on approvingly for some time, and then said,
Nell was very much surprised that the man should be so accurately acquainted with the weight of one whom she had read of in books as having lived considerably before their time, but speedily forgot the subject in the joy of hearing that they were to go forward in the caravan, for which she thanked its lady with unaffected earnestness.
Great customer service forms the backbone of this company and we really care that our customers enjoy their caravan and motorhome experiences.
My wife and I are the North East representatives for the Retro Caravan Club.
THIS year marks the 17th annual caravan show at Clwyd Caravans, which features top of the range models from leading manufacturers like Buccaneer, Elddis, Lunar and Venus.
BRAZEN thieves have been captured on CCTV towing away a family's PS12,500 caravan in the middle of the night.
This week welcomes some real, authentic travelling music in the form of the multi-instrumentalist, producer and composer Dub Caravan, who will be coming to us from the UK to join Cypriot producer MC and instrumentalist Med Dred.
Summary: The amount, which equates to the cost of five chemotherapy sessions, went to the Pink Caravan
WE'VE asked The Caravan Club and The Camping and Caravanning Club for its top sites in the Midlands for families.
ALEADING UK caravan and motorhome business has expanded into large new purpose-built premises close to its base in Newport creating a bespoke body shop and repairs hub.
STUDENTS from Coventry University have helped revolutionise the camping industry by designing a new sleek caravan with curves to die for.
UK exports of caravans to China have increased, with caravan makers achieving higher sales to Asian consumers, the Telegraph news company revealed on Monday.