|Molise and the Adriatic|
Trade relations between the coastal area of Molise and Dalmatia were already common in the 4th century B.C.. During the Roman period these relations continued to flourish, and in the Byzantine period they were intensified. With the Normans the influence of Ragusa (the present Dubrovnik) over the western shores of the Adriatic grew thanks to a number of commercial treaties (1203, with Termoli) for the trade of raw materials: silver and lead from Serbian mines, timber, furs and horses were exchanged for agricultural products, especially corn, which abounded in Capitanata and the Molisian countryside.
On the eastern coast, traces of trade relations with the opposite shore are still evident today in the arts (often facilitated by the presence of the Benedictines and, later, of Venice) and architecture, especially defensive architecture (Dubrovnik, Trogir, Split and the island installations, for example). Today, Lower Molise is still characterised by the presence of settlements founded by ethnic minorities, the descendants of ancient migrations from across the Adriatic Sea (Albanians who followed Giorgio Castriota Scanderberg, Slavs and Slavonians): settlements that still preserve significant, though deeply transformed, imported elements.