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Chinese temple on a lake

The Chinese Emperor Who Built A Lake of Wine and a Forest of Meat

The last ruler of China’s Shang Dynasty knew how to relax. When he and his Queen wanted to unwind, they would head to his pleasure palace and take a dip in their lake of wine. That wasn’t just a cute...
Left to right- Barn Hammer Brewing Company Head Brewer Brian Westcott, Matt Gibbs of the University of Winnipeg and Barn Hammer owner Tyler Birch teamed up to re-create an ancient beer. THE CANADIAN PRESS/David Lipnowski/The Conversation

We brewed an ancient Graeco-Roman beer and here’s how it tastes

Matt Gibbs / The Conversation Beer is the most consumed alcoholic beverage in the world; it is also the most popular drink after water and tea . In the modern world, however, little consideration is...
The ancient vessel (center) that was found to contain 2,000-year-old alcohol.

Would You Try This Ancient Liquor Found Inside 2,200-Year-Old Chinese Vessel?

ArchaeologChinese Vesselists have unearthed an ancient tomb in China’s Shaanxi Province, containing a hoard of relics, including a sealed bronze kettle filled with 2,200-year-old liquor. Would you be...
Ancient Egyptian relief. Design by Anand Balaji. (Image credit: Julian Tuffs);Deriv.

Amarna Era Chronological Conundrum: Accession of Neferneferuaten and Tutankhamun’s Death–Part II

With only an Amarna wine jar label from Regnal Year 17 – purported to be the last dated inscription from his reign – that makes no mention of Akhenaten by name, and the generous 59 years’ rule...
Ancient Egyptian relief. Design by Anand Balaji.

Amarna Era Chronological Conundrum: Dating Akhenaten’s Death and the Length of Horemheb’s Reign–Part I

When the Nineteenth Dynasty Pharaoh Menmaatre Seti I drew up the famed King List at his mortuary temple in the holy city of Abydos, he was confident that he had struck the final nail in the coffin of...
Roman fresco with banquet scene from the Casa dei Casti Amanti

Savoring the Danger: ‘Sugar of Lead’ Was Used to Flavor Roman Food and Wine with Toxic Consequences

How far did ancient people go to enhance the flavor of their food and drinks? Would they consume toxic substances if it made things a little more appetizing? The Romans did, by adding a sweet version...
Detail of ‘Monk tasting wine’ by Josef Wagner-Höhenberg.

Feeling Guilty About Drinking? Well, Ask the Saints

Michael Foley / The Conversation Each year the holidays bring with them an increase in both the consumption of alcohol and concern about drinking’s harmful effects. Alcohol abuse is no laughing...
This is base of Neolithic jar being prepared for sampling for residue analysis.

Discovery of 8,000-year-old Residue in the Middle East is the Earliest Evidence Yet of Winemaking

Gadachrili Gora Regional Archaeological Project Expedition (GRAPE), a joint undertaking between the University of Toronto (U of T) and the Georgian National Museum, have uncovered evidence of the...
Egyptian hieroglyphics depict the pouring out of beer.

The Strange and Wonderful World of Ancient Brews

Many of us now enjoy unusual alcoholic beverage concoctions since the advent of the craft beer and cocktail movements. What we may not realize is that fellow humans have been carrying on like this...
Fresco depicting two lares pouring wine from a drinking horn (rhyton) into a bucket (situla), they stand on either side of a scene of sacrifice, beneath a pair of serpents bringers of prosperity and abondance, Pompeii, Naples Archaeological Museum

6,000-Year-Old Cave Find Shows Sicilians Made Wine Way Before Previously Thought

Researchers have found traces of wine in Sicily dating back to the 4th millennium BC. According to experts, that could mean that Italians have been making and drinking wine for much longer than...
The wine press in Ramat Negev is intermeshed with a building, as seen above, summer 2017.

Boutique Wine for Byzantines: 1,600-year-old Wine Press Discovered in the Negev Desert

The Times of Israel reports that a 1,600-year-old wine press has been discovered in a vast Byzantine building along the incense trade route in the southern Negev desert in Israel. Experts suggest...
Little Known Links Between Spirits You Drink and the Holy Spirit

Little Known Links Between Spirits You Drink and the Holy Spirit

Beer may have been invented by the ancient Egyptians, but it was perfected in medieval monasteries, which gave us modern brewing as we know it. They also pioneered and improved several methods of...
Detail of the 1650-year-old Speyer wine bottle.

To Open or Not to Open The 1,650-Year-Old Speyer Wine Bottle?

Contemporary historians have been debating for a few years now if they should open the Speyer wine bottle, which is believed to be the world’s oldest bottle of wine. The Pfalz Historical Museum in...
Drinking from a Viking drinking horn

No One Questions that Vikings Drank; But Did They Make Wine?

Further evidence that the Vikings weren’t just beer-swilling, raping, and pillaging savages comes out of Denmark with the discovery of two grape seeds that may indicate the Norsemen didn’t just drink...
A boy holding a platter of fruits with a bucket of crabs, in a kitchen with fish and squid, on the June panel from a mosaic depicting the months (3rd century)

Eating Like a Roman: Healthy Greens, Gritty Bread and Fish Paste – The Evolution of Ancient Roman Cuisine

While the reputation of ancient Roman dining features decadent drinking and feasting to a point of excess – leading to notorious purges in the vomitorium – those stories were largely anecdotal, or...
Searching for the Lost Footsteps of the Scorpion Kings

Searching for the Lost Footsteps of the Scorpion Kings

In the pre-dynastic period of ancient Egypt, there were two rulers by the name of ‘Scorpion’. They were long forgotten for most of the world until Dwayne Johnson played one of the rulers in the...

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