Amber Road

The Amber Road was an ancient trade route for the transfer of amber. As one of the waterways and ancient highways, for centuries the road led from Europe to Asia and back, and from northern Europe to the Mediterranean Sea.

A vital component of ornamental objects, amber was transported from the North Sea and Baltic Sea coasts overland by way of the Vistula and Dnieper rivers to Italy, Greece, the Black Sea, and Egypt thousands of years ago, and long after.

In Roman times, a main route ran south from the Baltic coast in Prussia through the land of the Boii (modern Czech Republic and Slovakia) to the head of the Adriatic Sea. The Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun had Baltic amber among his burial goods,Fact|date=June 2008 and amber was sent from the North Sea to the temple of Apollo at Delphi as an offering. From the Black Sea, trade could continue to Asia along the Silk Road, another ancient trade route.

The Old Prussian towns of Kaup and Truso on the Baltic were the starting points of the route to the south. In Scandinavia the amber road probably gave rise to the thriving Nordic Bronze Age culture, bringing influences from the Mediterranean Sea to the northernmost countries of Europe.

Sometimes the Kaliningrad Oblast is called the Янтарный край, which means the Amber region.

Names

* _cs. Jantarová stezka
* _de. Bernsteinstraße
* _hu. Borostyánút
* _it. Via dell'Ambra
* _lv. Dzintara Ceļš
* _lt. Gintaro kelias
* _pl. Szlak Bursztynowy or "Jantarowy Szlak"
* _ru. Янтарный путь
* _sk. Jantárová cesta
* _sl. Jantarjeva pot

Overview of known amber finding places in Europe

Amber roads connect amber finding locations to customer sites in Europe, in the Middle East regions and in the Far East.

Overview of known amber roads by country

Central Europe

The shortest (and possibly oldest) road avoids alpine areas and led from the Baltic coastline (Estonia) through Poland, Silesia, passed the Moravian Gate, followed the river Morava to Slovakia, where it crossed the Danube to Austria near Carnuntum, heading southwards down to Aquileia at the Adriatic coast.

Germany

Several roads connected the North Sea and Baltic Seas, especially the city of Hamburg to the Brenner Pass, proceeding southwards to Brindisi in Italy and Ambracia (Greece). "(See map at right)"

witzerland

The Swiss region indicates a number of alpine roads, concentrating around the capital city Bern and probably originating from the borders of the Rhône River and the Rhine.

The Netherlands

A small section, including Baarn, Barneveld, Amersfoort and Amerongen, connected the North Sea with the Lower Rhine.

Belgium

A small section, led southwards from Antwerp and Bruges to the towns Braine-l’Alleud and Braine-le-Comte, both originally named "Brennia-Brenna".Fact|date=August 2008 The route continued by following the Meuse River towards Bern in Switzerland.

France

Three routes may be identified leading from an amber finding location called Brenne at the mouth of river Loire towards Bresse and Bern, crossing the Alps to Switzerland and Italy.

outhern France and Spain

Routes connecting amber finding locations at Ambares (near Bordeaux), leading to Béarn and the Pyrenees. Routes connecting the amber finding locations in northern Spain and in the Pyrenees were a trading route to the Mediterranean Sea.

External links

* [http://www.amberroad.net Amber Road]
* [http://www.ciolek.com/OWTRAD/DATA/tmcZCEm0100.html OWTRAD-scientific description of the amber road in Poland]
* [http://www.ciolek.com/owtrad.html Old World Traditional Trade Routes (OWTRAD) Project]
* [http://www.american.edu/TED/amber.htm Amber route along the river Elbe]
* [http://www.joannesrichter.homepage.t-online.de/Androgyn/SpellingTUI.pdf Joannes Richter - "Spelling Thee, U & I - Introducing into the art of amber trading & Initiation in the great Androgyne Religion"] (pdf file)
* [http://www.joannesrichter.homepage.t-online.de/Androgyn/Bernsteinrouten_BK.pdf Joannes Richter - "Die Bernsteinroute bei Backnang"] (pdf file)


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