... the “sour black” principal red wine grape (vitis vinifera) of the uplands of Northern Greece ...
The importance of viticulture in ancient Greek society ensured the spread of the wine industry into Europe and across the English Channel ...
The Greek historian Thucydides (c 460 – c 395BC) quoted that: “the peoples of the Mediterranean began to emerge from barbarism when they learned to cultivate the olive and the vine” ... I’m sure the same thing happened to the Celts and the English ...
|Terra Cotta relief showing Satyrs|
expressing the juice from trodden
grapes in wicker mats
(Ancient Greece: eighth century to
circa six hundred AD)
For most of Rome’s winemaking history, Greek wine was still the most highly prized ... but by the 2nd century BC grand cru vineyards were established, with Pliny the Elder writing extensively about these first growths of Rome.
For those of you who followed my Ice Age posts, just before the A – Z, may remember I mentioned Pompeii ... here the 79 AD eruption of Mount Vesuvius had a devastating effect on one of the most important wine centres of Roman viticulture – that of Pompeii and its surrounds.
The Romans took their knowledge with them across the Channel with vines being established up and down England ... as the temperature at that time in history was warm enough to ripen the grapes.
|Van Gogh's still life with|
apples, pears, lemons and
grapes; (1887) Art Institute
Rome’s influence on Britain is not so much viticultural as it is cultural – throughout modern history the British have played a key role through trade in shaping the world of wine.
Evidence of Vitus Vinifera vines (Xinomavro) being grown in the British Isles is known ... and may well have been grown here during another warm period, the Hoxnian Stage, about 440,000 years ago ...
That is X for Xinomavro grape from Aspects of British Cookery
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