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Document Details :
Title: A Difficult Old Assyrian Business Venture
Subtitle: Mannum-kī-Aššur Tries his Luck with Iron
Author(s): VEENHOF, Klaas R.
Journal: Bibliotheca Orientalis
Volume: 73 Issue: 1-2 Date: 2016
Assyrian merchants active in Anatolia also traded in iron, most probably both bloom-iron and un-worked ore, which could be found in small quantities in the 'inner land'. This extremely expensive metal was highly appreciated by the local élites and its trade therefore a potentially lucrative, though somewhat risky undertaking, also because it often implied indirect exchange (e.g. iron > copper > silver). Assyrians often formed partnerships for this purpose and we regularly read about problems the partners ran into, which could result in confrontations and legal proceedings, and the judicial records this generated are an important source of information. The present article deals with such a complicated trading adventure, documented in seven records, apparently from different archives, three of which are published here for the first time. These records are described and presented and followed by a reconstruction of the phases of this trading operation and the problems it raised, which gives us an interesting view behind the scene.