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A history of architecture and trade


A History of Architecture and Trade

A History of Architecture and Trade draws together essays from an
international roster of distinguished and emerging scholars to critically
examine the important role architecture and urbanism played in the past
five hundred years of global trading, moving away from a conventional
Western narrative. The book uses an alternative holistic lens through which
to view the development of architecture and trade, covering diverse topics
such as the coercive urbanism of the Dutch East India Company; how
slavery and capitalism shaped architecture and urbanization; and the
importance of Islamic trading in the history of global trade. Each chapter
examines a key site in history, using architecture, landscape and urban scale
as evidence to show how trade has shaped them. It will appeal to scholars
and researchers interested in areas such as world history, economic and
trade history and architectural history.
Patrick Haughey is a Professor of Architectural History at Savannah College
of Art and Design, USA, where he teaches modern, urban and global architecture history. His research uses a multidisciplinary approach to architecture
history, deploying world systems, economics, history and cultural geography.
His scholarship critiques the impacts of colonialism and finance on architecture and urbanism. He also teaches studio, drawing and rendering for the
Interior Design and Architecture Departments.



Routledge Research in Architecture

The Routledge Research in Architecture series provides the reader with the
latest scholarship in the field of architecture. The series publishes research
from across the globe and covers areas as diverse as architectural history and
theory, technology, digital architecture, structures, materials, details, design,
monographs of architects, interior design and much more. By making these
studies available to the worldwide academic community, the series aims to
promote quality architectural research.
For a full list of titles, please visit:
www.routledge.com/architecture/series/RRARCH
From Doxiadis’ Theory to Pikionis’ Work
Reflections of Antiquity in Modern Architecture
Kostas Tsiambaos
Thermal Comfort in Hot Dry Climates
Traditional Dwellings in Iran
Ahmadreza Foruzanmehr
Architecture and the Body, Science and Culture
Kim Sexton
The Ideal of Total Environmental Control
Knud Lönberg-Holm, Buckminster Fuller, and the SSA
Suzanne Strum
The Architecture of Medieval Churches
Theology of Love in Practice
John A.H. Lewis
A History of Architecture and Trade
Patrick Haughey


A History of Architecture
and Trade

Edited by Patrick Haughey


First published 2018
by Routledge
2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 4RN


and by Routledge
711 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10017
Routledge is an imprint of the Taylor & Francis Group, an informa business
© 2018 Patrick Haughey
The right of the editor to be identified as the author of the editorial material,
and of the authors for their individual chapters, has been asserted in
accordance with sections 77 and 78 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents
Act 1988.
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reprinted or reproduced or
utilized in any form or by any electronic, mechanical, or other means, now
known or hereafter invented, including photocopying and recording, or in
any information storage or retrieval system, without permission in writing
from the publishers.
Trademark notice: Product or corporate names may be trademarks or
registered trademarks, and are used only for identification and explanation
without intent to infringe.
British Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data
A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Names: Haughey, Patrick, editor.
Title: A history of architecture and trade / edited by Patrick Haughey.
Description: New York : Routledge, 2018. |
Series: Routledge research in architecture | Includes bibliographical
references and index.
Identifiers: LCCN 2017030220 | ISBN 9781138635739 (hardback) |
ISBN 9781315206363 (ebook)
Subjects: LCSH: Architecture and society—History. | Commerce—Social
aspects—History.
Classification: LCC NA2543.S6 H57 2018 | DDC 720.1/03—dc23
LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2017030220
ISBN: 978-1-138-63573-9 (hbk)
ISBN: 978-1-315-20636-3 (ebk)
Typeset in Sabon
by Keystroke, Neville Lodge, Tettenhall, Wolverhampton


Contents

Acknowledgments
Author biographies
Introduction: The architecture of trade is as old as
human history

vii
ix

1

PATRICK HAUGHEY

1 Legacies of colonialism: Towards an architectural history
of capitalism

10

PATRICK HAUGHEY

2 Spices, spies, and speculation: Trust and control in the early
Batavia-Amsterdam system

44

ROBERT COWHERD

3 Cities of incense and myrrh: Fantasy and capitalism in
the Arabian Gulf

62

NASSER RABBAT

4 Borneo, the river effect, and the spirit world millionaires

80

MARK JARZOMBEK

5 House as marketplace: Swahili merchant houses and their
urban context in the later Middle Ages

115

THOMAS GENSHEIMER

6 An anachronism of trade: The Mercato Nuovo in
Florence (1546–1551)
LAUREN JACOBI

128


vi

Contents

7 Merchant identity: The cartographic impulse in the
architectural sculpture of the Llotja of Palma de Mallorca

142

DORON BAUER

8 The travels of a merchant throughout the Islamic World

156

CECILIA FUMAGALLI

9 Savannah’s Custom House: A peculiar construction of
galvanized iron, apparently durable and well-adapted
to a southern climate

168

DENNIS DE WITT

10 The modernization of a port in British India: Calcutta,
1870–1880

194

ANIRUDDHA BOSE

11 Building the marble elephant: The creation of Philadelphia’s
iconic City Hall

208

GLEN UMBERGER

Index

223


Acknowledgments

In February of 2015 the Architectural History department at Savannah
College of Art and Design held its 9th and final international Symposium
on the Architecture of Trade, co-directed by Patrick Haughey and Robin
Williams. While this book was inspired by the symposium, it is neither a
compendium of the topics presented nor a publication affiliated with the
department or the college.
Books like this require the effort of a number of people. First and foremost,
I would like to thank my wife. Without her, I cannot be who I am. For all of
my work I am extremely grateful for my family and friends, who, with an
abundance of patience both challenge and support me.
I must thank Robin Williams, my department chair and co-director of the
2015 9th Symposium: The Architecture of Trade, for his tireless commitment
to the discipline of architectural history and to our community. The Savannah
Symposium was a vital bi-annual gathering of scholars from all over the
world and the department of Architectural History. As of now, this is the last
book to be inspired by the hundreds of participants and supporters, as the
symposium has been cancelled.
The Savannah Symposium, my inspiration as an educator, and our department would not be possible without the support of Savannah College of
Art and Design. As always, behind the scenes of the symposium and our
department are some very special people including, among many: Marilyn
Armstrong, Sandra Hatteberg, Susan Richards and Alice Eisner, as well as our
own dedicated students and professors. In addition, I received valuable edits
and advice on my chapter from Professor John Carey Murphy and former
architecture student Samson Johnson, among others. I would also especially
like to thank the editors and people at Routledge Publishers for their patience.
Finally, I would like to thank my colleagues from my History, Theory
and Criticism family at MIT, especially Robert Cowherd and Mark Jarzombek
who helped inspired my research, as well as my other friends here in Savannah
and elsewhere for supporting my decades-long history obsession. I am grateful
for all of the teachers in my past who have left their mark. To all the authors
whose contributions made this volume possible, thank you for your dedication,
timeliness and support. Any and all errors or misunderstandings of their
contributions are of course my own doing.


viii

Acknowledgments

Now more than ever, it is important that readers, scholars, schools and
publishers stand up to what seems to be an endless assault against education,
history and humanity.
This book is dedicated to my students, past, present and future, whose
passion, insight and trust have always kept me inspired.


Author biographies

Doron Bauer is Assistant Professor of Art History at Florida State University,
USA. He received his PhD in 2012 from Johns Hopkins University. He has
received a number of awards, including Research Fellowship, Kunsthistorische
Institut in Florenz (2016); Predoctoral Research Fellowship, Kunsthistorische
Institut in Florenz (2011–2012); La bourse d’échanges culturels de la Conseil
Général de la Vienne (2010–2011); Chateaubriand Fellowship, French
Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2009–2010) and Singleton Graduate Fellowship,
The Singleton Center for the Study of Premodern Europe (2009–2010). He
is the co-editor of a forthcoming book, Art in the Kingdom of Majorca:
An Anthology of Sources (Universitat des les Illes Balears, 2017); ‘‘Milk as
Templar Apologetics in the St. Bernard of Clairvaux Altarpiece from
Majorca” (Studies in Iconography, 36, 79–98, 2016); and “Castus Castor
(The Chaste Beaver): Some Reflections on the Iconography of the Southern
Portal of Santa María de Uncastillo” (Journal of Medieval Iberian Studies,
1, 213–230, 2009).
Aniruddha Bose is Assistant Professor of History in the History and Political
Science Department at Saint Francis University, Loretto, Pennsylvania,
USA. He received his PhD in History from the Department of History at
Boston College, Massachusetts in 2013. He is the author of “Science and
Technology in India: The Digression of Asia and Europe,” History Compass
(February 2007). Dr Bose is currently revising a manuscript based on his
doctoral dissertation tentatively titled “Modernization and Class Conflict:
The British Raj on the Calcutta Waterfront.” His research for this project
has been supported by generous grants from the Clough Center for the
Study of Constitutional Democracy in Boston College, where Dr Bose was
a Graduate Fellow (2011–2012) and by a University Fellowship from
Boston College. It has also been supported by grants from the Faculty
Development Committee at Saint Francis University and the School of Arts
and Letters at Saint Francis University. The manuscript is currently under
contract with Routledge.
Robert Cowherd is an Associate Professor of Architecture at Wentworth
Institute of Technology, Boston, USA. He was a 2014–2015 Fulbright


x

Author biographies
Scholar pursuing research on the role of design in the social transformations of Latin American cities. He is a board member of the Global
Architectural History Teaching Collaborative and the author of “Cultural
Construction of Surakarta,” in The Emerging Asian City, Vinayak Bharne,
ed. (2012), as well as “Identity Tectonics: Contested Modernities of
Java and Bali, in Across Time and Space: The Politics of Architecture in
Modernity, Patrick Haughey, ed. (2016). He holds a PhD in the History
and Theory of Architecture, an Urban Design Certificate from MIT, and a
BArch from The Cooper Union. His research focuses on the history and
theory of architecture and urbanism in Southeast Asia and Latin America
and is informed by extensive field work in the developing world; including
work in post-tsunami Aceh, where his open-source model for village
mapping and planning was widely applied.

Dennis De Witt is Vice-Chairman and former President of the Metropolitan
Waterworks Museum in Boston, USA. He holds Masters’ degrees in
Architecture from Harvard and the University of Pennsylvania. He is
currently a Commissioner of the Massachusetts Historical Commission.
His past academic affiliations include Head of the Department of History,
Theory and Criticism at the Boston Architectural College; Research
Associate at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and ArchaeologistCartographer on the Broken-K Pueblo expedition for The Field Museum.
In addition to helping research and develop the Waterworks Museum’s
permanent exhibits, he designed and curated “Vinal/Wheelwright: The
Work of Each as Boston’s Official City Architect,” 2016 and “The Art of
Engineering” (concerning nineteenth-century colored-ink-wash engineering drawings), 2015. De Witt was US co-curator of “Aqueducts of
Portugal,” 2014. His previous publications include: Arthur H. Vinal and
Edmund March Wheelwright: Architects of the Chestnut Hill High Service
Pumping Station, Metropolitan Waterworks Museum, Boston, 2016;
The Brookline Reservoir Gatehouse, National Historic Landmark
Nomination, 2015; “Conspicuous Iron and the Cochituate Aqueduct
Gatehouses,” The Journal of the Society for Industrial Archaeology,
2015; Modern Architecture in Europe: A Guide to Buildings Since the
Industrial Revolution, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London, E.P. Dutton, New
York, 1987; and “Neo-vernacular: eine Moderne Tradition,” Architese, 9,
1974. He also contributed to Art and Architecture of the Metropolitan
Waterworks, Metropolitan Waterworks Museum, Boston, 2011 and
edited and co-authored Benjamin Thompson & Associates, Process
Architecture, Tokyo, 1990.
Cecilia Fumagalli obtained her Bachelors’ and Masters’ degrees in Architecture
at Politecnico di Milano, Italy, in 2006 and 2009, respectively, and a
Masters’ in Technology, Architecture and City in Developing Countries at
Politecnico di Torino in 2012. Since 2013, she is a PhD candidate in
Architecture at the Architecture, Built Environment and Construction


Author biographies

xi

Engineering Department, Politecnico di Milano. Her research and publishing focus on the relationship between the character of the so-called Islamic
city and the issues posed by the international institutions operating in the
heritage field. Since 2006 she has worked at the Politecnico di Milano as a
Teaching Assistant and in various Architectural Design Studios as an architect and urban designer. Fumagalli also collaborates with international
organizations in many restoration and urban rehabilitation projects in
different countries—notably in Morocco, Mauritania and Malaysia.
Thomas Gensheimer is a Professor of Architectural History at the Savannah
College of Art and Design, Georgia, USA, where he teaches courses
in World Architecture, African Art and Architecture, and Islamic Art,
Architecture and Cities. He received his PhD from the University of
California Berkeley in 1997, where he was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship
to conduct research in Kenya on the urban history of the medieval East
African coast prior to European contact. Professor Gensheimer has worked
in Pakistan excavating the ancient Indus Valley city of Harappa and has
lectured and published on the cities of the East African coast, as well
as Swahili medieval houses and tombs. He served as co-director of the
4th, 6th and 7th Savannah Symposiums and has co-authored the edited
volume World Heritage and National Registers: Stewardship in Perspective
(Transaction Publishers, 2015). His most recent publication is a chapter
on Swahili houses for Swahili World, one of Routledge World Series
publications. He also serves as a board member for the Historic Sites and
Monuments Commission for the city of Savannah, Georgia.
Patrick Haughey is a Professor of Architectural History at Savannah
College of Art and Design, Georgia, USA, where he teaches Modern,
Urban and Global Architecture History, as well as Architecture Studio.
He received his PhD in the History, Theory and Criticism of Architecture
from MIT in 2009. He is the editor and author of Across Time and Space:
The Politics of Architecture in Modernity (Transaction Press, 2017),
derived from the 8th Savannah Symposium that he co-directed. He is
also a co-author of Robin Williams ed., Buildings of Savannah (2016).
Recently, he has presented topics, including “Global Savannah: An
Economic History, 1733 to the Present,” sponsored by the Society of
Architecture Historians and National Endowment of the Arts for the
Reading the City series, May 4, 2016 in Savannah: “Cartel Urbanism:
Finance and the Architecture of Displacement, Towards a New History
of Urbanization.” He was Presenter and Chair of the Geographies of
Violence session at The Worlds of Violence, 9th Pan-European Conference
on International Relations, September 23–26, 2015, Catania, Sicily; “The
Architecture of the Slave Economy,” MIT, May 16, 2015, Cambridge;
“The Politics of Style: Historicism and the City,” Spatial Politics, American
Association of Geographers’ Conference, April 7, 2017, Boston. He is also
a member of the Andrew Mellon Foundation-funded Global Architecture
History and Teaching Collaborative.


xii

Author biographies

Lauren Jacobi joined the History, Theory and Criticism faculty at MIT, USA,
in 2013. Her research interests focus on the history of late-medieval
through pre-industrial Italian architecture and urbanism with an emphasis on connections across the Mediterranean world. She applies economic
and sociological concerns to studying urban growth and transformation, architectural history and visual culture. Prior to her position
at MIT, Jacobi was a visiting lecturer in the Department of Art History at
Dartmouth College. She has also taught at New York University, where
she completed her PhD in 2012. She is the author of publications on
topics ranging from issues about how money was made to work in the
late Middle Ages, to the topographic location of international and local
banks in Rome, to the medallic representations of Pope Paul V’s architectural projects. Jacobi was a Rome Prize Fellow at the American Academy
in Rome from 2015–2016 where she has been working on a book
project in which she studies the topography of money in and beyond
Renaissance Florence. Her research has received support from the Kress
Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Dutch Institute
in Florence, the American Numismatic Society and the Morgan Library
and Museum, among other institutions.
Mark Jarzombek is a Professor of the History and Theory of Architecture at
MIT, USA, and is one of the country’s leading advocates for global history.
He has published several books and articles on that topic, including
A Global History of Architecture, Wiley Press, 2006, with co-author
Vikram Prakash and illustrator Francis D.K. Ching and Architecture
of First Societies: A Global Perspective, Wiley Press, 2013. His Urban
Heterology: Dresden and the Dialectics of Post-Traumatic History (Lund
University, 2001) rethinks the conventions of urban history, an issue he
also addresses in Krzysztof Wodiczko, City of Refuge: A 9/11 Memorial
(Blackdog Publisher, 2009), which he edited with Dr Mechtild Widrich.
He is currently working on a new book, Architecture Modernity
Enlightenment. Recent scholarship includes “Architecture: The Global
Imaginary in an Antiglobal World” (Grey Room, 61, Fall 2015), “The
Rise of the So-called Premodern” (GSAPP Transcripts: The Urgencies of
Architectural Theory, Columbia University, 2015) and “The Shanghai
Expo and the Rise of Pop-Arch” (Log, 31, Spring/Summer 2014).
Jarzombek serves on the board of several journals and academic
institutions including the SSRC and the Buell Foundation and has
organized several major international conferences on topics such as
Holocaust Memorials, Architecture and Cultural Studies, and East
European Architecture. He is the co-founder and Chair of the Andrew
Mellon Foundation-funded Global Architecture History and Teaching
Collaborative.
Nasser Rabbat graduated with a Diplome of Architecture from the University
of Damascus, Syria, in 1979. He received his Masters’ of Architecture at


Author biographies

xiii

University of California, Los Angeles in 1984 and his PhD in Architecture,
Art, and Environmental Studies at MIT in 1991. He is the Aga Khan
Professor of Islamic Architecture and the Director of the Aga Khan Program
for Islamic Architecture (AKPIA) at MIT. Rabbat is a world-renowned
scholar and advocate for the re-conceptualization of Islamic architecture
as a coherent, yet fluid, multifaceted, and open-minded field of study. In
2007, he was a visiting professor at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität,
Munich, followed in 2009 at the École des Hautes Etudes en Sciences
Sociales in Paris. He has received The J. Paul Getty Postdoctoral Fellowship,
as well as fellowships from the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study
Fellowship, The American Research Center in Egypt Fellowship the Chaire
de l’Institut du Monde Arabe. Recently, Dr Rabbat received the BritishKuwait Friendship Society Prize in Middle Eastern Studies (2011). He has
authored numerous books and edited volumes, including The Citadel
of Cairo: A New Interpretation of Royal Mamluk Architecture, Leiden:
E. J. Brill, 1995; Making Cairo Medieval, eds. Nezar AlSayyad, Irene
Bierman & Nasser Rabbat, Lantham, MD: Lexington Press, 2005; The
Citadel of Cairo: A Guidebook, Cairo: Supreme Council of Antiquities,
2010; in English and Arabic: Al-Mudun al-Mayyita: Durus min Madhih
wa-Ru’an li-Mustaqbaliha (The Dead Cities: Lessons from its History and
Views on its Future), al-Aws Publishers, 2010; Mamluk History Through
Architecture: Building, Culture, and Politics in Mamluk, Egypt and Syria,
London: Tauris I. B., 2010) and is editor of The Courtyard House between
Cultural Reference and Universal Relevance, London: Ashgate, 2010). He
has authored dozens of scholarly articles in both English and Arabic, and
is the author of the BBC’s Museum of Lost Objects series.
Glen Umberger earned a Master of Fine Arts in Architectural History
from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Georgia, USA, in 2015.
His thesis, “Philadelphia City Hall: Redefining the Civic Image of the
Modern American City” was awarded the Outstanding Architectural
History Graduate Thesis for the 2014–2015 academic year. Mr Umberger
is currently the Manager of Special Projects for the New York Landmarks
Conservancy. He is also an Adjunct Instructor at New York University,
School of Professional Studies, Center for Applied Liberal Arts, where he
teaches courses on New York City’s architectural history. Mr Umberger
has presented two academic papers: “Curing Architectural Amnesia:
A New Look at a Forgotten Famous Civic Masterpiece,” 2014 Annual
Meeting Southeast Chapter of the Society of Architectural Historians
(SESAH), Fayetteville, Arkansas and “Building Philadelphia’s Marble
Elephant: The Economics and Politics of Creating an Iconic City Hall
for the Workshop of the World,” Architecture of Trade, 9th Savannah
Symposium, Savannah, Georgia. Mr Umberger has also been inducted into
the Gamma Eta Chapter of Tau Sigma Delta Honor Society in Architecture
and Allied Arts.



Introduction
The architecture of trade is as
old as human history
Patrick Haughey

The exchange of manufactured goods and foodstuffs has formed an integral
part of human history in almost every corner of the planet from our earliest
days of our existence down to the present.1

Trade is as old as humanity. Indeed, the exchange of goods may be what has
always defined humans in relationship to each other. While economists,
sociologists, and historians have been writing about trade for centuries,
trade is rarely included in the history of architecture. This is itself rather
surprising, as the activity of trade is often facilitated by architecture.2 More
often than not, trade is what pays for architecture.
In 1415, Prince Henry convinced his father, Portuguese King Joao, to
conquer the Muslim North African city of Ceuta (Morocco) and launched
the process of establishing a series of private trading posts down the Atlantic
coast of Africa. For the rest of the century, Portuguese trading posts controlled the trade activities of the African coast in an effort to ensure that
Portuguese traders were the primary beneficiaries of the lucrative exchange;
especially with the rich gold and salt mines of the Ashanti and Mossi via
trading centers of the West African Gold Coast and up the Niger River to
Djenne and Timbuktu.
By 1440, Lisbon had a monopoly on Atlantic trade from their islands and
West Africa where they traded for pepper, which came to West Africa overland
from Alexandria and Mozambique. They also trade for the pepper now
grown in Guinea. One of the great myths of history is that Venice began
its decline when the Turks conquered Constantinople in 1453—a bias
of Christian history. In fact, Venice was already in decline due to the rise of
Lisbon, who were able to undercut their trade in spices by harvesting them at
the western end of the Muslim trade routes in West Africa and from their
newfound monopoly on cheap sugar. Portugal was also the first European
Empire to realize the potential of sugar indigenous to Southeast Asia, planting
it on their islands of the Azores, Goree, and the Canary Islands, although
Muslim merchants had already successfully planted the crop in Sicily. To
make the trade work, Lisbon traded spices and sugar for grain, wool, copper,


2

Patrick Haughey

and timber in Antwerp, which they exchanged for spices, pepper, and gold in
West Africa. The gold helped to finance their expeditions around Africa to the
Indian Ocean and eventually the China Sea (see Chapter 2 for more).
In 1498, Vasco de Gama rounded the Cape of Good Hope and introduced
the relatively peaceful Indian Ocean to violence and extortion. In 1510,
Alfonso de Albuquerque conquered Goa and proceeded to try to conquer
every port between Aden and Malacca to ensure a complete monopoly.
While Lisbon, for the most part, remained the political capital of the
Portuguese trading empire, the region of Goa, with its port at Daman Diu,
was the economic capital, controlling the vast administration of the Estado
de Indies. Eventually, the global powerhouse of the Estado de Indies was
challenged by their European neighbors. However, Goa remained Portuguese
for centuries until the newly-minted independent nation of India took it
back by force in 1961.
Portuguese trading ships were armed with cannon, a technology that was
new to the ports along the African coast. After several centuries of open
trade dominated by Muslim and Chinese sea traders, the Portuguese exploited
local rivalries and used cannon fired from their ships to batter lightly fortified port towns into submission. The Cartaz trade monopoly system is named
after the “cartaz,” or “letter,” certifying the payment of ‘The Royal Fifth’—a
20% tax or trade duty—to the Portuguese crown. Failure to produce such
a letter could result in the confiscation of cargo, the destruction of ships, or
death. The original ambition of the Cartaz System was to make Portuguese
merchants the sole beneficiaries of the most lucrative trade commodities,
particularly pepper. The market prices of spices brought through long chains
of middlemen to from the Spice Islands (Indonesia) were based on the incremental price increases each time it changed hands along the way. By bypassing as many of the middlemen as possible, Portuguese merchants limited
competition and concentrated profits in their own hands
The East was low-volume, but its products commanded a massively high
price. Returns on pepper, mace, cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg in Lisbon
could reach 180 times the price paid in Calicut on the Malabar Coast and
reach higher than that in Antwerp, London and Bruges. Lisbon’s wealth
was derived from the unprecedented profits from the Portuguese dominance of sea-based trade routes along the Atlantic coast of Africa, the
Indian Ocean and the China Sea all the way to Japan. Prior to the arrival of
the Portuguese under the Muslim Trading System, when pepper arrived in
Europe it was more valuable than gold. The arrival of the Portuguese fleet
in the Indian Ocean and their virtual monopoly of the spice trade to Europe
by 1580, as well as the slave trade from the Captaincy of Angola to their
American colonies, paid for a number of impressive architectures and infrastructure back in Lisbon, including the Tower of Belem and the Monastery
of Saint Jerome.
The Tower of Belem was built from 1510–1514 to protect the Portuguese
Fleet as it departed for Africa and later, India. It is also a reference to the


Introduction

3

endless crusade to return the “Holy Lands” to Christianity at the behest of
the 15th-century Papal Bulls and in the aftermath of the conquest of the
Turks. Only seven ships made the trip out of Lisbon to Goa in the early
years, so protecting them from European competitors was important, as
was ascending Lisbon’s dominance over trade not only north to Antwerp,
but into the Mediterranean due. The Tower of Belem (a reference to
Bethlehem), is an exemplary architecture of both power and the multiple
cultural influences on the Iberian peninsula. The naming of the Tower, if not
its form, from scripture would come to play an important role in the both
the Estado de Indies and the Americas under Portuguese rule. Towers to
protect valuable harbors were not new to the region, as they were prominent
throughout the coastal lands controlled by Muslim rulers for centuries, as
well as the many others, from the Visigoths to the Carthaginians and
Romans. What is relatively unique about the Tower is that it was designed
and built by Fransisco Arruda, who studied architecture across the straits in
North Africa. The tower is built with what is known as the Manueline style
(after the King). The style is a hybrid of the Byzantine-Islamic style typical
of Umayyad and Almohad Al-Andalucia and North African structures, with
delicate horseshoe arches, details and stonework. Much of the architecture

Figure 0.1 Jeronimos Monastery, before 1755 (first half of the 18th century (PD)).3


4

Patrick Haughey

in both Portugal, Spain and their colonies overseas is influenced by the long
ties with both Byzantine and Arabic craftsman, many of whom converted to
Christianity by force, or to avoid the Inquisitions that begin in the middle of
the 15th century, rather than be forced away from their homes. You can also
see similar features in the cloister of the Monastery of Saint Jerome, as well
as in the remnants the Palace of the King that was later remodeled to imitate
French Versailles in the 17th century, after the devastating earthquake the
destroyed the city in 1755.
The Monastery of Saint Jerome (1516–1544) is also known as the “Pepper
Cathedral,” despite the fact that it was largely built with a tax on non-pepper
spices (Figure 0.1). King Manuel originally funded the project with money
obtained from the Vintena da Pimenta, a 5% tax on commerce from Africa
and the Orient, equivalent to 70 kilograms (150 pounds) of gold per year.
Pepper, cinnamon and cloves went untaxed because those profits went to the
crown. With the influx of riches, the architects built one of the largest buildings in Europe. The narrow columns on the interior are adorned with the
representations of the riches from the Indies, including the important peppercorns. The ornamentation also illustrates images of navigation instruments as well as “exotic” plants and animals from the colonies. Vasco de
Gama, whose navigation around the Cape of Good Hope allowed the
Portuguese fleet to the exploit the Indian Ocean and the modern poet Luís
de Camões, who commemorated de Gama’s achievements, are buried here
in elaborate tombs. In 1833, the Monastery was secularized; its art stripped
and the space abandoned before restoration began in 1863 that has completely altered its exterior appearance, demolished significant portions of the
building, and relocated the tombs.
By the turn of the century, the Monastery of Saint Jerome became a
secular temple for the burial and commemoration of a few nationalist poets,
as well as for Dictator António de Oliveira Salazar, who was interned there
for ten years in 1951 before his body was moved to a new memorial. The
Tower and the Monastery are in the neighborhood of Belem, where for
the past four centuries, Portugal has used monuments and architecture to
commemorate its discoveries while eliminating the violence of its exploitation. Included here are the Praça do Império, built in 1938 to commemorate
the dictatorship and new 1933 Constitution of the Estado Nova, which
permanently enshrined Portugal’s “civilizing powers” beyond its European
boundaries. The Praça briefly held an exposition celebrating the triumphs of
Portugal’s age of exploration.4
As other European powers reduced Portugal’s influence on the East,
Lisbon increasingly relied on the violent exploitation of Angola and Brazil’s
slave-based economies for its wealth. Indeed, Angola spans around 481,226
square miles along the southwest coast of Africa and is notably rich in
mineral reserves, including oil, iron, copper, bauxite, diamonds and uranium.
After the loss of Goa in 1961, the Captaincy of Angola was the primary
source of Portugal’s wealth. However, by the 1970s, the collapse of oil


Introduction

5

prices, the postcolonial tensions throughout much of Africa and the civil
wars from Algeria to Angola, created a complex and violent rupture in the
last remaining large colony of the former Portuguese empire, from which
the host country and its leadership in Lisbon never fully recovered.
While the 1938 exposition was temporary, the fountain with the crests
of the families from that era remains along with Salazar’s 1960s monument
to Henry the Navigator, the Padrão dos Descobrimentos. The endless
remodelling of the large former monastery continued into the 1960s when
the Maritime Museum was added to the building, completing the Monastery’s
role as a centuries-long monument to Portugal’s once vast Trading Empire.

Chapter summary
This volume owes its existence to the generous work and research conducted
by its authors and, of course, the hard work of its publisher. Indeed, we
hope that this volume serves as an inspiration for the renewal of research
into how architecture influences and participates in trade on a global and
local scale across time. It is not intended to be comprehensive; rather each
chapter is a specialized look at trade through the lens of eleven Architectural
Historians. Indeed, much of what historians and economists have written
about trade unfairly privileges a Eurocentric model. Yet the emergence of
this European trading world—particularly the new financial innovations
such as banking, bond markets, and currency arbitrage that paid for and
gave birth to the art and architecture of the “Italian” Renaissance, exists
precisely because it was at the intersection of the European textile trade and
the centuries-old Muslim Trading World that spanned from Cordoba to
East Africa and the China Sea.5
In the first chapter, Patrick Haughey cites architectural evidence and
history to prove that the features of contemporary global capitalism were in
existence long before Adam Smith theorized its existence or Karl Marx
offered his widely-read critique. What is more, it has been operative on a
global scale centuries before the emergence of the neoliberal post-World
War order of the late twentieth century. “Legacies of Colonialism: Towards
an Architectural History of Capitalism,” argues that contrary to popular
belief, the origins of what we now think of as financial capitalism and its
mythical “free-market” ethos can be traced to the coercive and violent laws
that enabled an on-going 500-year global war over resources for profit originating in the late 16th century, with colonialism by profiteering shareholders
in English charter companies, as well as in the simultaneous systems of
consumerism, slavery, and coercion that underwrote both the Industrial and
“American” Revolutions.
In Chapter 2: “Spices, Spies, and Speculation: Trust and Control in the
early Batavia-Amsterdam System,” Robert Cowherd reveals the coercive and
violent origins of capitalism through the architectural and urban lens of the
Dutch East India Company. Cowherd examines the specific formal-spatial


6

Patrick Haughey

conflicts of Dutch Batavia (Jakarta) and offers insights to these larger sets of
instrumental forces that constitute a set of prerequisites for the operations
of early European adventures in expanded trade relations. Batavia exemplifies
an architecture of control characteristic of the widely-dispersed type of the
European fortified port town. For several centuries, Europeans were driven
by religious imperative and greed to break the tightly held Muslim spice
trade monopolies supplying Venice from then mythical locations far to the
east. Among the multiple elements that figure prominently into the 16thand 17th-century history of discovery, capture, defense, and control of the
transcontinental networks of exchange is the architecture of an interconnected
series of fortress-port-factory-towns. Like the technologically sophisticated
ships shuttling goods, munitions, priests, soldiers, laborers, finance, and
information between ports of call, the port towns themselves were designed
to minimize the labor needed to move goods and secure the town against all
threats, whether external or from the population of the town itself. One of
the lasting legacies of these port towns is the strategy of strict physical
segregation and social fragmentation, permitting a handful of Europeans to
guard against insurrection.
Nasser Rabbat, in Chapter 3: “Cities of Incense and Myrrh: Fantasy and
Capitalism in the Arabian Gulf,” notes that trade can persist for millennia,
transforming the landscape between the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf over
time, adapting along the way to invent and reinvent systems of trade as
architecture and urbanism. As Rabbat writes, in the second and first
millennium BCE, the Arabian Peninsula and the Fertile Crescent witnessed
the emergence of highly efficient cities as commercial emporia along the
trade routes bringing the luxury goods of Asia to the consumption centers
of Antiquity along the Mediterranean. Over time, these legendary cities,
Babylon, Byblos, Dura-Europos, Palmyra, Petra, Alexandria, Sanaa, Mokha,
Damascus, Baghdad, Cairo, and Istanbul, which rose and fell with the rise
and fall of empires, became the subject of myth. This fairy tale image
survived their political and commercial decline and tinged the monumental
architecture of their Middle Eastern urban heirs in the modern age with an
aura of Oriental mystery and opulence. Nowhere is this more evident than
in cities of the Arabian Gulf—Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Doha, and Manama—
which have become the contemporary “fabled cities of the East” by design.
Trade, even as it is mobile, leaves its traces in both architecture and
memory. For Mark Jarzombek in Chapter 4: “Borneo, the River Effect, and
the Spirit World Millionaires,” the absent elite architecture of Borneo is
contrasted with traces left in the landscape that reveal a long ignored yet
crucial aspect of global trade. For that reason, Borneo is rarely mentioned in
discussions about the development of architecture and cities in Southeast
Asia. However, that Borneo was targeted early on by Indian traders because
it possessed an extraordinary litany of wealth-producing commodities, from
gold, diamonds, camphor, and pearls, which were interesting to the Indian
traders to tortoise shells (used by the Chinese as oracle bones), hornbill


Introduction

7

ivory (which the Chinese value above true ivory, or even jade, to make belt
buckles for high officials), rhinoceros horn (used to treat fever, rheumatism,
gout, and other disorders), and edible bird’s nests, a food item so valuable
that it was reserved only for the family of the Chinese emperor.
Thomas Gensheimer, in Chapter 5: “House as Marketplace: Swahili
Merchant Houses and their Urban Context in the Later Middle Ages,”
describes the vibrant, yet often neglected role of the East African coast in
this global trade. The port cities of the East African coast had served as
centers of commercial exchange centuries before the Portuguese arrived at
the end of the 15th century. For over a thousand years, traders from Persia,
India, and southern Arabia ventured to the coast, providing the economic
foundation for the development of an indigenous and prosperous Islamic
urban culture whose cities shared many architectural features common
throughout the western Indian Ocean basin. Despite the importance of
trade, the presence of extensive bazaars, characteristic of cities throughout
the medieval Muslim world, appears to be largely lacking along the Swahili
coast. Indeed, Gensheimer explains how, due to the nature of the luxury
trade, Swahili domestic structures served as a substitute arena for facilitating
inter-regional exchange between foreign merchants and local elites.
While much has been written about the art, architecture, and philosophy
of this “Italian” Renaissance era, it was trade and banking that paid for this
largess.6 Indeed, due to competition from the Portuguese and the new trade
monopoly imposed by the Ottoman Empire, much of the power of this
region faded by the late 16th century. Yet, many of the banking families
remained powerful. Indeed, by the middle of the 16th century the mercantile
loggia, a relic of an earlier period of Tuscan power, re-emerged as a building
type that was once again used to demarcate places of trade in Florence and
areas of Tuscany under the Medici’s control. Lauren Jacobi, in Chapter 6:
“An Anachronism of Trade: The Mercato Nuovo in Florence (1546–51),”
argues that this architecture, designed by Giovanni Battista del Tasso
between 1546 and 1551 to encourage gold and silk trade, was deliberately
anachronistic in its modality, at a time when Florence’s elite paradoxically
sought to distance themselves from a connection to commerce.
Doron Bauer, in Chapter 7: “Merchant Identity: The Cartographic Impulse
in the Architectural Sculpture of the Llotja of Palma de Mallorca,” reminds us
that Spain also had a vibrant and architecturally significant role in trade. His
chapter focuses on the closely related Llotja of Palma de Mallorca and the
Llotja of Valencia. The two late-medieval gothic buildings were commissioned
by merchant guilds in prominent port cities in the western Mediterranean to
function as stock markets as well as the seat of the College of Merchants (and
in Valencia also of the Consulate of the Sea). Bauer notes that both cities
feature large and impressive commercial halls where commodities were
brought and their prices were subjected to negotiations.
In Chapter 8, Cecilia Fumagalli brings us back to the architecture of
the Muslim Trading World with “The Travels of a Merchant throughout


8

Patrick Haughey

the Islamic World.” Indeed, for Fumagalli, the Islamic urban world is based
on the idea of the market, which is arguably the visible part of the urban structure for visitors. The towns of the entire Islamic world are connected to each
other through caravan routes, where goods travel up to suqs and bazars,
which are the arrival point of a broader territorial system. Therefore, to understand the Islamic urban and territorial structure, Fumagalli insists that it is
from the perspective of the merchant traveling from town to town that we
witness how the architectural, urban, and land structures of the Islamic city
are shaped to accommodate the merchant during his travels.
While global trade systems and their regional and urban impacts dominate
this volume, in Chapter 9, Dennis De Witt introduces new structural evidence
on an architectural typology crucial to global trade: “Savannah’s Custom
House: A Peculiar Construction of Galvanized Iron, Apparently Durable
and Well-Adapted to a Southern Climate.” De Witt reminds us that
architecture must be built, and often it must deploy an innovative structure.
Further, his scholarship is a reminder that architectural history is forever
unfinished. Indeed, as De Witt argues, these structural innovations embodied
in the Savannah’s Custom Custom House and its relationship to the Boston
Merchants Exchange is quite possibly unique in the history of United States
architecture.
Aniruddha Bose challenges the Western narrative of industrialization, by
reminding us that much of the colonial world was at the forefront of trade
innovation in Chapter 10: “The Modernization of a Port in British India:
Calcutta, 1870–1880.” In the 19th century, the Calcutta port was not only
the most important trading center in eastern India; it was the capital of the
British Raj. From around 1860 to 1910, the British Indian government
invested considerable sums to upgrade the port’s infrastructure. Throughout
this period, thousands of men, women, and children labored, loading and
unloading the cargoes passing through the port. This chapter examines
records from 1860–1870 in order to understand the impact of these changes
on the port’s workforce. The significance of this research is threefold. First,
it sheds light on the processes of class formation in British India, while demonstrating that violence and coercion are embedded in trade. Second, it complicates our understanding of the relationship between technology and
subaltern populations in British India. Third, it demonstrates the scale of
the Calcutta waterfront, thereby underlining the importance of trade in the
architecture of urban India.
Finally, in Chapter 11 Glen Umberger introduces us to an understudied,
yet significant late-19th century monument in “Building the Marble Elephant:
The Creation of Philadelphia’s Iconic City Hall.” Umberger considers how
political resolve managed to produce a monumental municipal building
symbolizing the city’s image of itself as the manufacturing capital of the
world, without any mortgage, liens, or encumbrances and how, in spite of its
cost and size, it is still one of the most overlooked architectural landmarks in
the United States. For the next thirty years, Philadelphia would be involved


Introduction

9

in the construction of the New Public Building, which was designed by a
dedicated small group of world-class architects and artists whose goal was
to create an iconic architectural masterpiece that “in some far off future day
be all that remains to tell the story of our civilization, and to testify to the
dignity and public spirit of our people.” Boasting a didactic sculptural
program designed “to express American ideas and develop American
genius,” the new City Hall featured a multitude of allegorical representations including commerce, industry, and trade. Remarkably, although conceived during the national financial crisis surrounding the Panic of 1873, the
city officially completed their monumental task in July 1901, producing the
largest and most expensive municipal building in North America.

Notes
1
2
3
4
5

Charles Parker, Global Interactions in the Early Modern Age, 1400–1800
(Cambridge University Press, New York, 2010), 68.
Parts of this introduction were written with Robert Cowherd for the Andrew
Mellon Foundation funded Global Architecture History and Teaching
Collaborative. It has been edited and modified for publication.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jer%C3%B3nimos_Monastery#/media/File:
Mosteiro_dos_Jer%C3%B3nimos_antes_de_1755.png.
Elen Sapega, “Remembering Empire/Forgetting the Colonies: Accretions
of Memory and the Limits of Commemoration in a Lisbon Neighborhood,”
History and Memory v.20, n.2, 2008, 19–24.
“Italian” is in quotes because there was no such thing as Italy until the 19th
century conquest first of northern Italy by Napoleon, followed by the decadeslong invasion southwards of Victor Emmanuel during Risorgimento. Indeed,
from around 586 to 1815, what we think of as Italy was a series of shifting
territories, Papal States, and Kingdoms.


1

Legacies of colonialism
Towards an architectural
history of capitalism
Patrick Haughey

A brief history of economics and enlightenment philosophy
The origins of capitalism, as opposed to other forms of exchange, has a
murky history. Most economists and historians pinpoint its emergence
between its diagnosis by Adam Smith in the late 18th century and its critique by Karl Marx in the late 19th century. Historians attempting to understand the relationship of capitalism have followed this pattern. The eminent
American Historian, Joyce Appleby published The Relentless Revolution: A
History of Capitalism in 2010. She notes admirably that to claim a start
date for capitalism is arbitrary and that it is cultural as well as economic.
Despite noting the influence of the Portuguese, Spanish, various Papal
decrees and even the Dutch, she claims these only bolster the case for English
exceptionalism. For Appleby, capitalism begins in England “with the convergence of agricultural improvements, global explorations, and scientific
advances.”1 Indeed, she insists their experience was “unique,” all while she
admits that people in Africa, the Middle East and India had capitalism
“thrust” upon them; yet, while there is little mention in her book of “revolution” against state-sponsored violence, she does mention the relationship
between the Natural philosophers and economic justification and cites the
usual suspects in her introduction: Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Thomas Paine,
Max Weber, and others.2 She notes Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations (1776)
is the first diagnosis of nearly two centuries of history, yet still finds the
origins of English capitalism to occur around this moment. This chapter is
going to take her at her word. The English did create capitalism, but not in
the way she and many others have seen it.3 Appleby’s “global explorations”
required state-sponsored violence. The agricultural improvements and
scientific advancements leading to the industrial revolution were the result
of law and privileged landed power.
Even Thomas Piketty’s bestselling Capital in the Twenty-First Century
(2014) places the origins of capitalism, in his twist, the beginning of wealth
inequality at this moment. Piketty pairs the classical natural philosophy
of England with its late 18th-century emergence in France under the guise of
enlightenment and the rapid explosion of its population. He also unpacks


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