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MisterEd

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Ancient Wine -the search for the origins of viniculture
author -Patrick E. McGovern

McGovern is a senior research scientist at the University of Pennsylvania (MASCA) and professor of archaeology. He pioneered the field of biomolecular archaeology and has made important new discoveries from ancient viniculture artifacts discovered in the Middle East (Mesopotamia). If you have any interest in human's earliest introduction to vinifera and it's subsequent development as a libation this book is a great read. The early history of vino is fascinating and I highly recommend "Ancient Wine."

http://press.princeton.edu/titles/7591.html

Peace.
Ed
 
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GreginND

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The history of wine and alcohol are fascinating and some of the science is contradictory. My colleague wrote a historical science book about alcohol that delves into many beverages including beer, mead, and wine.

The Quest for Aqua Vitae: The History and Chemistry of Alcohol from Antiquity to the Middle Ages

Interestingly, some of the biblical references for "wine" may not be referring to grape wines. One of the common sources of sugar in the Fertile Crescent at the time was from dates. So date wine was very common.

It is thought that modern vitas vinifera originated in the region around what is modern day Georgia and spread out from there.
 
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BernardSmith

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Not sure I totally agree - certainly the Hebrew for grapes (geffen) is the word associated with the word for wine (yayin) but in biblical Hebrew the word for honey (d'vash) may mean the syrup of dates. Indeed, there is a published discussion in the 11th Century (CE) about whether bee honey is in fact kosher since any product such as milk from a non kosher animal is considered as non kosher and while some insects are considered as kosher bees are not. Insofar as that discussion was taking place in Troyes, France in the 11th Century - and one of the participants was a biblical scholar known as Rashi who was also a vintner my sense is that bee honey wine was not universally viewed as suitable for drinking... but wine made from grapes was certainly part of the culture in the Levant in the time of the Kings if not earlier.
 

Mismost

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The history of wine and alcohol are fascinating and some of the science is contradictory. My colleague wrote a historical science book about alcohol that delves into many beverages including beer, mead, and wine.

The Quest for Aqua Vitae: The History and Chemistry of Alcohol from Antiquity to the Middle Ages

Interestingly, some of the biblical references for "wine" may not be referring to grape wines. One of the common sources of sugar in the Fertile Crescent at the time was from dates. So date wine was very common.

It is thought that modern vitas vinifera originated in the region around what is modern day Georgia and spread out from there.
Interesting. There is a Biblical reference of Joshua sent to spy out the land of Canaan, Numbers13:23...They cut a cluster of grapes to take back and show the people...it took two men to carry that one cluster of grapes! They were in the land that flowed milk and honey.

Being a Southern Conservative Christian, I have no trouble believing that where the Bible says grapes they mean grapes. John, son of Zechariah and Elizabeth, who was Jewish, wandered the desert of Judea subsisting on grasshoppers and honey..Matthew 3:1-12. In keeping with this Season, this is the same John who cried 'Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near". The same John who baptized Jesus... Matthew 13:17. That would be the same guy they would call Christ. You know, The Dude they named Christmas after? The Man that gave the ultimate present to mankind.

I digress and it bother me not a bit to do so, just to get here. I have no doubt that date wines existed in history and that people back then could tell the difference between grapes, dates, honey, and grasshoppers.

Merry Christmas and Cheers!:h
 
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MisterEd

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According to McGovern the earliest remnants of fermented wine that were discovered in ancient storage vessels called amphoras, that he was able to verify by molecular DNA analysis, came from archaeological sites in what is now modern day north west Iran. He estimates the time period to be at least 7 to 8 thousand years ago. The first discoveries of fermented grapes were probably discovered by hunter/gatherers coming across grapes that had fallen into hollowed out rocks. And he suspects wine barely predates beer timeline wise. Both had a huge impact on the area and especially Mesopotamia and Egypt. The wine festivals that the pharoahs hosted were unbelievable in scope and size; upwards of 30,000 participants in some instances!
 

GreginND

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Interesting. There is a Biblical reference of Joshua sent to spy out the land of Canaan, Numbers13:23...They cut a cluster of grapes to take back and show the people...it took two men to carry that one cluster of grapes! They were in the land that flowed milk and honey.

Being a Southern Conservative Christian, I have no trouble believing that where the Bible says grapes they mean grapes. John, son of Zechariah and Elizabeth, who was Jewish, wandered the desert of Judea subsisting on grasshoppers and honey..Matthew 3:1-12. In keeping with this Season, this is the same John who cried 'Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is near". The same John who baptized Jesus... Matthew 13:17. That would be the same guy they would call Christ. You know, The Dude they named Christmas after? The Man that gave the ultimate present to mankind.

I digress and it bother me not a bit to do so, just to get here. I have no doubt that date wines existed in history and that people back then could tell the difference between grapes, dates, honey, and grasshoppers.

Merry Christmas and Cheers!:h
Certainly there were plenty of grape wines too.
 

mennyg19

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Interesting. There is a Biblical reference of Joshua sent to spy out the land of Canaan, Numbers13:23...They cut a cluster of grapes to take back and show the people...it took two men to carry that one cluster of grapes! They were in the land that flowed milk and honey.
Jewish sources say that it actually took 8 men to carry the cluster of grapes. Another 2 men carried a pomegranate (and another fruit which is slipping my mind right now) each.
 

BernardSmith

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The history of wine and alcohol are fascinating and some of the science is contradictory. My colleague wrote a historical science book about alcohol that delves into many beverages including beer, mead, and wine.

The Quest for Aqua Vitae: The History and Chemistry of Alcohol from Antiquity to the Middle Ages

Interestingly, some of the biblical references for "wine" may not be referring to grape wines. One of the common sources of sugar in the Fertile Crescent at the time was from dates. So date wine was very common.

It is thought that modern vitas vinifera originated in the region around what is modern day Georgia and spread out from there.
The problem of using biblical references is that it is not clear when the stories were in fact recorded. So the story of Noah includes the fact that he planted a vineyard. The sources of that story , then, obviously understood the nature of vine-culture but the date of that story is not so obvious, although we are dealing with a culture that was not hunter -gathering but agricultural. We know that Babylonians brewed beer, and bread and beer may have been discovered at the same time - but again that required an agricultural based society.
 
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MisterEd

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The problem of using biblical references is that it is not clear when the stories were in fact recorded.
Trying to tie in biblical references to vino is problematic if you believe the world is much much older than young earth creationists purport. Hunter/gatherers were roaming the Mesopotamian valley tens of thousands of years before the timeline of biblical stories. The first homo sapiens to savour those newly discovered fermented grapes undoubtedly had a huge smile on their face when they realized what they had. The cultural impact was immense.
 

Masbustelo

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One note that I would throw in regarding the Bible. The Bible is in part an historical record of the descendants of Adam and Eve. Biblical study and archeological support both indicate that this race only goes back Circa 6,500 years.
 

wineforfun

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One note that I would throw in regarding the Bible. The Bible is in part an historical record of the descendants of Adam and Eve. Biblical study and archeological support both indicate that this race only goes back Circa 6,500 years.
As Masbustelo states, biblical study (creationism)only supports 6,000 - 10,000 years (depending on source used), not the millions of years that some proclaim.
There is no way to tell if things are millions of years old, other than "what it would be at this rate".

Even Carbon 19 won't do it as you need something that you truly know is a million years old to compare to, not what you think it would be if it aged at a certain rate.
 

BernardSmith

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Whether you want to argue that the world is only 6000 years old or not is your business, but I think we have some confidence in measuring the half life of Carbon 14 and then using the presence of Carbon 14 in organic material to date the age of the material. Occam's razor would require that unless you have some hard evidence to suggest that the decay rate suddenly changed at some period in the history of the planet or was never constant but quite random, you do need to assume that the rate of change is pretty constant if all other things that would/could affect the rate of change are pretty constant and predictable within the historical record in question. http://www.c14dating.com/int.html.
 
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wineforfun

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Whether you want to argue that the world is only 6000 years old or not is your business, but I think we have some confidence in measuring the half life of Carbon 14 and then using the presence of Carbon 14 in organic material to date the age of the material. Occam's razor would require that unless you have some hard evidence to suggest that the decay rate suddenly changed at some period in the history of the planet or was never constant but quite random, you do need to assume that the rate of change is pretty constant if all other things that would/could affect the rate of change are pretty constant and predictable within the historical record in question. http://www.c14dating.com/int.html.
My fault, you are correct, Carbon 14.

As far as the rest, I have my own opinions on the "rate of change" and Occam's razor, that I will keep to myself.
 

Stressbaby

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One note that I would throw in regarding the Bible. The Bible is in part an historical record of the descendants of Adam and Eve. Biblical study and archeological support both indicate that this race only goes back Circa 6,500 years.
Huh?

Paleoanthropology pretty clearly shows H. sapiens is on the order of 200K years old.
 

jburtner

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Whenever we started making wine - That's when we evolved. Ancient Aliens God Whatever.

Cheers!
-johann
 

Masbustelo

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Of anthropology and H. Sapiens I know nothing. However referring to the Bible, the Bible is the history of the descendants of Adam and Eve (mankind). Of this race or family there is no record, or evidence, either Biblical or extra-Biblical of them having existed prior to the 4th millennium BC . The oldest known city or civilization pertaining to mankind, known to archaeologists, is that of Uruk in modern Iraq. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uruk
 

MisterEd

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The scientific community is pretty much in unified agreement on the 200K. Unfortunately there remains a lot of pseudoscience that attempts to disclaim such assertions. Dinosaurs on Noah's Ark and other such conjecture is just that- conjecture.
What is important is that our primitive ancestors made that fabulous discovery involving fermented fruits! The impact of vinifera has left an indelible mark on our civilization. We continue to improve on the final product and I believe our forebears would be amazed at how far we have taken the science of enology. Wine and humans have a bright future!
Peace.
Ed


Huh?

Paleoanthropology pretty clearly shows H. sapiens is on the order of 200K years old.
 

JohnT

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Folks,

I am sorry, but I am closing this thread. Although not quite there, this thread is fast approaching the point where things can turn ugly.

I hate to do this, but we are now, after all, talking about religion and the mods have given this thread enough leeway.

Again, sorry to have to do this..

johnT.
 
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