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Would you drink this? 3,000 year old wine found in Israel

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
8/28/2014 (2 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Find will reveal more information about Canaanite life

A new excavation of a Bronze Age palace in Israel has revealed a massive wine cellar filled with a collection of over 40 large vessels that each contain a differently flavored wine including mint, honey and juniper, researchers say.

Radar imaging of the ancient cellar where more than 40 wine vessels were found, dating back more than 3,000 years.

Radar imaging of the ancient cellar where more than 40 wine vessels were found, dating back more than 3,000 years.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
8/28/2014 (2 years ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: Israel, History, Middle East, International, News


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This information was revealed in a study published in the open-access journal PLOS ONE, and authored by Andrew Koh from Brandeis University.

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This find occurred during a 2013 excavation of the Middle Bronze Age Canaanite Tel Kabri palace in modern-day Israel. The wine storage vessels were found in an enclosed room located west of the palace's central courtyard.

The objects found in an ancient cellar in Israel, which contain ancient wines made of different ingr

The objects found in an ancient cellar in Israel, which contain ancient wines made of different ingredients.


The wine vessels were discovered using an organic residue analysis that used mass spectrometry to reveal the chemical compounds which indicated wine. The authors were also able to detect subtle differences between ingredients or additives within the wine using the system, which included honey, storax resin, terebinth resin, cedar oil, cyperus, juniper, and possibly mint, myrtle, and cinnamon.

These findings indicate that humans at the time had a sophisticated enough understanding of plants, as well as the skills necessary to produce a complex beverage that balanced preservation and palatability.

The authors believe that these findings will contribute to a greater understanding of ancient viticulture and the Canaanite economy.

"Based on the nature of the room, it was anticipated from the beginning that residue samples extracted and studied under virtually identical circumstances with minimal variability would have the potential to reveal new and significant insights from both a scientific and archaeological perspective," said Koh.

"We believe this study will not only change our understanding of ancient viticulture and palatial social practices, but also the manner in which we approach organic residue analysis (ORA) as an integrated, qualitative, and interdisciplinary exercise that is as field dependent as it is laboratory intensive."

For much of early human history in the Mediterranean and Near East, wine production, consumption and distribution played a vital role. However, little archaeological evidence about Bronze Age wine is available to support this theory.

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