This thesis concerns the hypothetical reconstruction of the Islamic city of Banten, Indonesia. For more than one hundred years this site lay deserted, abandoned even be-fore the end of the Sultanates of Banten. A minor port of the north coast of Java brought to life by conquering Moslem merchant-evangelists coming from the more eastern parts of the island, Banten flourished with the spice trade during the early European expansion overseas. But its greatness was short-lived. Old Banten is a lost city, and most of its monuments are buried and covered with grass. Unfortunately, there are very few published accounts describing Banten, especially after it was conquered by Maulana Hasanuddin 1525 A.D. It quickly became the principal port in western Java, replacing Sunda Kalapa (now Jakarta, the capital of the Republic of Indonesia). As the sixteenth century passed, Banten surpassed the other competing market places along Java’s north coast, and by 1596 it was the largest and most prosperous of them all. There are also very few published accounts during the critical 70 years of its development from its founding as an Islamic city to the arrival of the first fleets from northern Europe, and they are brief.
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