Greek Trade!icon-house(1).gif

By Eden and Ryohei

Greek Trading was placed all around the country. Trading is where you get your own goods such as food and sell it for reasonable prices to villagers or people who really needed it around the country. Trading and bartering started out with people fishing for good quality fish and some people wanted to buy it. So then on trading has been a huge concept in Greece. Trading was a big thing and it still is and I guarantee it always will be.

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What they had grown and sold

Greece was on of the main countries around the world that was most famous for its trading and Economy.
Since the temperature is very mild, they were able to grow and make things very successfully and then trade and barter them to many different places around the continent. They traded things like food such as fish, strong metals to build, spices to cook, fine linen, grains, exported wine, olive oil and pottery. Trading was one of the things that really got people paid quite a bit. From making the goods to transporting them, people got paid quite a bit and to be in that business at that time was quite an honour. It was found that the Greeks traded many arts and crafts which sold very highly, more than wines and olive oil which were the most popular traded items in the Economy. Greeks traded most of their goods by ships unless it was in near distance. They did this because taking a ship was much faster than taking a sail boat and sailing all around the coast of Greece.
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Greeks traded most of their goods by ships unless it was in near distance. They did this because taking a ship was much faster than taking a sail boat and sailing all around the coast of Greece. They traded a lot of their food to different cities in Britain. They transported all this stuff by boat. If a location in a close venue the greeks would either ride donkeys. They could not drive or use a car because roads were way too narrow to use a big piece of machinery unless they wanted to crush someone or something.


The route they usually used to transport goods from Greece to Britain would be to go to the South Coast of Greece and just take a boat all along the outline of Europe and when they reached Britain they just took it from there and Britain citizens enjoyed the Greek goods very much. So after a while of fair trading, Britain started to trade as well. So Greece was one of the most successful countries for trading and bartering.

Ancient Currency

When Greeks started trading they exchanged one item for another with the same or close value. Around 590bc they started using coins. Coins are a lot easier to trade with opposed to bartering because you pay with one currency for everything in the city. The coin widely used in Greece was the Drachma which had an Owl and the head of Athena. The only place which didn’t accept Athens’s coins were Sparta because of the rivalry between them. At the peak of the Greek empire in the classical age their coins were used almost everywhere. When visiting other cities or countries you would have to go to a money-changer so you could exchange your currency for another for a small fee. The money-changers were normally set up in the market place or the agora. These money-changers made so much money they started lending money out and they would have to pay with interest. If the client couldn’t pay the money-changer back by the set date with interest the money-changer/banker would take what they pledged like a house. This was the start of banking. Coins were made of silver, gold, copper and iron but Greek coins were gold and silver stamped with either gods, goddesses, or a symbol of its city. For example in 300-243bc there was a coin from Corinth with Pegasus on one side and the other side Persephone’s head bound with corn wreath other side Persephone’s head bound with corn wreath. In Greece it was 8 chalkoi 1 obolus, 6 obolus 1 drachma, 100 drachma 1 mina (or mna), 60 minae 1 Athenian Talent (Athenian standard). Every single city or country had their own coin as a sign of independence.

Corinthian Silver Drachm, Pegasus
Corinthian Silver Drachm, Pegasus
Corinthian Silver Drachm, Persephone
Corinthian Silver Drachm, Persephone

Import and Export

In Greece trade was a big part of their city. Greek was a big country and their environment and surroundings couldn’t provide all of the needs of the Greeks and this was the same with other countries. Greek people had to rely on imports and exports so there country could provide the needs of the people. Importing is when you bring goods into your country from a different source, probably another country for sale. Exporting is when you transport goods from your country to another for sale. This is how the people on earth satisfied all their needs even though there country couldn’t provide. In ancient Greece some exports include Oil, Wine Pots and Pottery, Statues, Honey, Silver, Metalwork, Clothes, Books, Cutlery, Furniture, Mercenaries, Weaved products, Raw materials, Horses, and Cloth. Greeks and all other countries had to sell all their exports for a reasonable price so they have money for imports while it’s still cheap enough so other countries and citizens will buy them. All of Greece’s main imports come from 14 places scattered far and close to Greece. Greek trades with places like Egypt, Cyrene, Crete, Balkans, Cyrus, Sardis, Persia, India, Italy, Sicily, Carthage, Spain, Britain, and Miletus. These big countries have goods to offer Greece that Greece cannot supply. The main import is grain for Greece because they import 2/3 of the needed supply from different countries. The most renowned imports of Greece were Papyrus from Egypt, wheat from lands north of the black sea, and timber from Turkey and the Balkans. All the imports were Dyestuffs and luxury fabrics came from Phoenicia and Carthage, Papyrus from Egypt, Slaves, Grain, Iron, Copper, Animal hides, Wine dyes, Tin, Silver, Wool, Gold, Lotus flowers, Gems, Dye, Timber, and Spices.


Most trade was done by private merchants. Private merchant’s jobs were to sail around from port to port to buy what’s cheap in one country and sell what’s expensive in other countries for a profit. For some time Athens was the heart of trade mostly because they had one of the best ports. The most successful merchants were the ones with their own boats so they could sail freely. For the merchants it wasn’t all profit because the state charged custom duties and most of the prices around the country were around the same even though there was a considerable difference. Merchants didn’t have to go to different countries to make a profit because you could trade between different places in Greece like Corinth and Athens and still make a profit. For example Merchants could get salted fish in the coastal cities and islands then sell it in the mainland. To sell their goods merchants went straight to the agora and set up a stall or if they were busy they would sell it to a trader and they would sell it in the agora for a more expensive price than the one he bought it for.


The agora is an open air market. It is where most of the trade takes place. An Agora is where traders, money changers, and shops set up stalls and sold there goods. Near agora, important public buildings like a courthouse surrounded it. In the marketplace it would be filled with men and slaves because that was the typical crowd. The agora is always busy because its open everyday and lots of people go there to gossip, share news and share jokes. The agora is like our mall but men went everyday and if they were rich they would have slaves to carry all the stuff they traded, or bought. Everyday officers checked weights and measures and the quality of goods on sale in agora so they wouldn't be selling anything unfairly.

Overall, the Greeks were one of the most successful countries to trade and barter. The quality of their items were good and thats what people wanted, so that made Greece one of the most successfull countries in the history of well done trading and bartering. The Greeks trading was also fair and was reasonably priced.


Other Wikis from Students-


Fagg, Christopher. Anicent Greece. Library of Congress, New York, 1978.
Grant, Neil. The Greeks. Brian Todd Publishing House, London, 1990.
Lassieur, Allison. The Ancient Greeks. Library of Congrss, New York, 2004.
Macdonald, Fiona. How Would You Survive As An Ancient Greek?. Grolier Publishing, Danbury, 1996.
Nardo, Don. Life in Ancient Greece. Lucent Books, California, 1996.
Nicholson, Robert. Ancient Greece.Nelson Canada, Ontario, 1991.
Pearson, Anne. Ancient Greece. Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 1992.
Simpson, Judith. Ancient Greece. Weldon Owen Ltd., Australia, 1996.
Williams, Susan. The Greeks. Wayland Books, England, 1993.
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