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Trade business

 is a great business

Trade business was always one of the most popular and traditional areas in Russia. 
In 1724 the main work of a famous merchant Ivan Pososhkov “About Poverty and Wealth”
was published. He insisted that the wealth of the country depended on the factories
and the development of the trade activity of its population. He wrote: “Trade business is a great business! Any kingdom grows rich with the help of merchants and without them neither of the states is able to exist”.


The first step 
in trade business.
The seller is an inventive profession. Psychology knowledge is necessary. Trade rows 
mean the next step 
in business. 
Trade is a  lottery on the way to the successful business.
 The private shop.

Many years have passed, but these words haven’t lost their meaning. Nowadays, trade business is probably the most popular kind of business in Russia. Every day a lot of people from the youngest to the oldest sell or buy different things, but only some of them devote their life to this occupation, hoping for a chance to become successful.

Trade business is an old one. The first notes about Russian merchants were found in the chronicles of the 10th century. This occupation was considered to be very useful and necessary for the society and able either to bring a glory, or to cut down honour.

Sotco Sytin and Gurata Rogovin, the inhabitants of Novgorod, became famous because they had chosen the trade business as their enterprising activity. Precisely this occupation was an enrichment source and an integration instrument of all Russian lands. With the help of trade we had an opportunity to connect with the neighbours.

Russia was always famous for the abundance and cheapness of goods on its fairs. Marzheret, 
a French man, wrote at the beginning of the 17th century: “Russia is a highly rich country, money
are not exported, but they are annually imported to Russia in a huge quantity, because all accounts are fulfilled with different products, that they have in abundance: many kinds of fur, wax, tallow, cow and horse skin…”

Gradually the merchants became an authoritative power. The richest of them held the superior financial appointments. During Peter’s I reign businessmen were liberated from the civil service and got advances without any percent. Such names as Milutin, the Demidovs, Ivan Komarov are known to every Russian pupil after 300 years.

The trade rules were rather strict, even cruel. For instance, a salesman, who had sold some unqualitative products on the trade square in St. Petersburg , was punished with a knout for the first time and then – a hard labour.

Foreign trade also developed. A lot of trade contracts were undersigned and trade relations with many countries were established, for example, with Sweden, Great Britain, France, Prussia, Turkey, Italy, Spain, China. By the way the English were the first, who gave a credit to Russian merchants.

During Ekaterina’s II reign limitation for enterprising activity was canceled. In 1785 all merchants were divided into 3 guilds. Those, who had a capital from 1000 to 5000 rubles, belonged to the first guild and could sell only retail. Those merchants, whose capital amounted to 5000-10000 rubles, belonged to the second guild and could sell wholesale but only in Russia. The merchants of the third guild (with a capital from 10000 rubles and above) could sell wholesale in Russia and in many foreign countries. They could also be the owners of the factories and different plants. And at last, the merchants with a capital more than 100 000 rubles were called the honorary citizens.

At the beginning of the 19th century the trade relations with the United States of America were established.

During Nikolay’s I reign the first exhibitions of Russian industry appeared. Then, in 1846 Act of 
the substantive merchant government was proclaimed. If a person wanted to enter a trade business,
he had to take a guild certificate (or a craft certificate). Only then he got some advantages”: 
an opportunity to be rewarded for special merits, to come to Emperor Court etc. A merchant had also an opportunity to become a nobleman for outstanding merits, as Eliseev G.G. from St. Petersburg and Sapozhnikov from Moscow did. A merchant could become a baron, as the first exporter Solov'ov O.A., then the famous Stroganovs and the merchants Feleizen and Kusov did.

The merchants Eliseevs are very famous, but not everyone knows that the success of the trade dynasty started from the initiative of the state peasant Peter Eliseev, who lived in Yaroslavl' Province. In 1813 he himself and his wife came to St. Petersburg with 8000 rubles for allocation and opened a fruit shop. Five years later he began to sell the wine and bought a depot. So, the peasant Peter Eliseev became the merchant of the first guild. After the parents’ death, their sons Sergey Stepan and Gregory continued their business.

Nowadays, 200 years later, trade is not less attractive, troublesome and dangerous activity. The most popular kind of trade among young people is Internet trade. It is when in an Internet-shop an Internet-manager offers Internet-goods and Internet-services to Internet-customers all over the world. Ivan Pososhkov couldn’t even dream of such opportunities.

Девичник. 2001- 2006.
  Авторский журнал. 
© "Девичник/ Devichnick", 20012006.
© Оформление, текст, фотоматериалы Молотилова Л. К., 20012006.
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