I found it difficult to assess how profitable the shops were. Their prices were higher than town prices, because apart from the costs of transport, they worked on a higher profit margin on a lower turnover - though I am not sure that village shopkeepers could buy wholesale as cheaply as town retailers. The acceptance of payment in kind further increased the shopkeeper's margin because he priced grain below what he would sell it for. Against this the impossibility of refusing credit and the difficulty of collecting debts made it a doubtful means of earning a living. The more temporary shops were usually run by poor men, but several of the permanent shops were sidelines run by the better-off. Full-time shopkeeping seemed to provide no more than a modest standard of living.
Small retail trade was also carried on by numerous pedlars. These varied considerably. In Sakaltutan two of the poorest villagers used to bring donkey-loads of fruit or vegetables in season, combs and other cheap odds and ends to Sakaltutan and other villages, exchanging them for eggs and grain. Pedlars of this type are mostly villagers. Even this enterprise required a minimum capital or credit with a merchant, and some degree of judgement of the market.
Besides these, more specialised pedlars and travelling salesmen would arrive, from towns or from more prosperous villages nearer Kayseri. Some sold earthenware pots; others, more prosperous, sold cloth, usually carried by horse; others traded in oxen. This last was a more complex business, involving long-term credit. Oxen cost even then from T.L.200 to T.L.800 a pair, (,£25-£100, $7o to $280), and the payments were usually spaced over three years.
Anything imported into the village can be bought more