The fairs of Champagne developed over time into a calendar of 6 fairs, each 3-6 weeks long in four cities in Champagne throughout the year. One of these took place around "the last Tuesday before mid-Lent" in Bar-sur-Aube. That is, the middle of March.
Although the faires were merchant fairs, they were more than that... and less. For one, they were also times of celebration, "with music and juggling shows". For another, they weren't aimed at selling goods to the general public, but consisted largely of merchants trading with each other. Finally, the actual buying and selling of goods was somewhat detached from the fairs. By the end of the 13th century, the merchants would arrive with their goods late, sending ahead couriers to announce what was on the way.
Point being, using this as a period model doesn't imply having an event that looks like Birka. It does however give a great excuse for having A&S-type works strewn about the embassy rooms and a reason to be talking about them.
Also, it was common for churches (such as our fine site) to offer their spaces for merchants, and for covered merchant areas to spread out around them.
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