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Seller: ancientgifts (4,181) 99.3%, Location: Lummi Island, Washington, Ships to: Worldwide, Item: 122154223711 TRANSLATE Arabic Chinese French German Greek Indonesian Italian Hindi Japanese Korean Swedish Portuguese Russian Spanish Your browser does not support JavaScript. To view this page, enable JavaScript if it is disabled or upgrade your browser. Click here to see 1,000 archaeology/ancient history books and 2,000 ancient artifacts, antique gemstones, antique jewelry! ”Vinum: The Story of Roman Wine” by Stuart Fleming. NOTE: We have 75,000 books in our library, almost 10,000 different titles. Odds are we have other copies of this same title in varying conditions, some less expensive, some better condition. We might also have different editions as well (some paperback, some hardcover, oftentimes international editions). If you don’t see what you want, please contact us and ask. We’re happy to send you a summary of the differing conditions and prices we may have for the same title. DESCRIPTION: Hardcover with dustjacket. Publisher: Art Flair (2001). Pages: 144. Size: 11¼ x 8¼ inches; 1¾ pounds. Historical events and social attitudes--among them, changes in political fortunes, wars and plagues, slavery and materialism--that influenced the development of Roman viticulture from the mid 2nd century B.C. to the early 7th century A.D. Topics explored include production and marketing, tavern comraderie and banquet etiquette, debauchery and drunkenness, medicinals, prescribed and home-brewed , ritual wine, pagan and Christian. "Vinum: The Story of the Roman Wine" explores all these issues in the context of everyday Roman life, and shows how wine clearly mirrored the social divisions between the haves and have-nots. "Bronze is the mirror of the outward form, wine the mirror of the mind." (Athenaeus, Banquet of the Philosophers x.427). CONDITION: NEW. Art Flair (2001) 134 pages. Still in manufacturer's wraps. Unblemished and pristine in every respect. Pages are clean, crisp, unmarked, unmutilated, tightly bound, unambiguously unread. Satisfaction unconditionally guaranteed. In stock, ready to ship. No disappointments, no excuses. PROMPT SHIPPING! HEAVILY PADDED, DAMAGE-FREE PACKAGING! Meticulous and accurate descriptions! Selling rare and out-of-print ancient history books on-line since 1997. We accept returns for any reason within 14 days! #8623a. PLEASE SEE DESCRIPTIONS AND IMAGES BELOW FOR DETAILED REVIEWS AND FOR PAGES OF PICTURES FROM INSIDE OF BOOK. PLEASE SEE PUBLISHER, PROFESSIONAL, AND READER REVIEWS BELOW. PUBLISHER REVIEWS: REVIEW: "When in Rome..." is a cliche we've all heard, but what do they do in Rome? The snappy answer to that is, "go to Rome and see." But what of Romans past, say two millennia ago? As the forebears of the Italians, one might assume that the Romans were lovers of the grape; but what is the fact of the matter? Until recently, what knowledge there was of the Romans and wine was scattered amongst numerous sources. This past year, though, Stuart J. Fleming did us a favor by zipping up all this knowledge into one package. VINUM describes the place of wine in ancient Roman society. To do this, Fleming unearths and marshalls an astonishing array of facts about wine in ancient Roman life. Who would have known that the Romans wine of choice was white, not red? Who would have known that wine was utilized in conjunction with herbs to create medicine or that the Romans sold wine to the Celts, some of whom horded it for the sake of bolstering their social status? Oenophiles and students of the classics alike will delight in VINUM. It is well written, beautifully illustrated, and Archeology magazine gave it big billing in their autumn issue. Recently, Dr. Fleming made himself available for a few questions from our editor. Your beverage of choice is Belgian beer, yet you chose to write abook on Roman wine. Why? And should we expect a Belgian beer book from you in the future? Fleming: There are several fine books of the history of Belgian beers and, since that is very much a Medieval story rather than a Classical one, I really lack the expertise to do anything more than brew and savor my version of the likes of Orval and Chimay. But there is a lot of common ground between the natural chemistry of fermentation used today in the centuries-long production of lambic beers of the Payottenland valley west of Brussels and that used by the Romans two thousand years ago. In both instances, no laboratory-prepared yeasts strains are/were involved, only whatever yeast spores (of which there seem to be dozens of kinds) that capricous breezes might carry from surrounding fields into the brewer's and vintner's fermentation vats. How long was VINUM in the making? Fleming: Strictly speaking, from the time I first put finger-to-keyboard with the unimaginative words "I. INTRODUCTION" to finally signing off on the proofs of the manuscript, the creation of VINUM took about 18 months. But I had been mulling over the idea of such a book for several months before that, having published in mid-1999 a catalogue for the University of Pennasylvania Museum's exhibition, Roman Glass: Reflections on Cultural Change. During preparation of that exhibition, I had realized that one of the obvious early successes of glass in the Roman World during the reign of Augustus (27 B.C to A.D.14) was its use for wine vessels (beakers and flasks) because glass's translucency allowed people to see what they were drinking. This was something that was not true either of the pottery vessels from which most Romans drank, or of the gold and silver vessels that was so cherished by the patrician classes of Roman society. I realized that so many aspects of the history of Roman wine were excellent "windows" on how Romans thought and felt about themselves and the diverse peoples most obviously, the Greeks and the Celts that they had conquered. As for the urge to write VINUM, I sensed there was a bookshelf niche somewhere between Hugh Johnson's Vintage: The Story of Wine (New York: Simon and Schuster) and Jancis Robinson's The Oxford Companion to Wine (New York: Oxford University Press) which do such a superb job of explaining how viticulture got from there to here, and from then to now. In VINUM I have reversed the perspective, to present the significance of wine in the ancient world through the eyes of the Romans themselves. Among your numerous findings about Roman wine, which ones do you think will surprise many people? Fleming: The three most common questions I get asked are: {i} Q.: What did Roman wine taste like? A.: Almost all the respected Roman wines were white and quite sweet. {ii} Q.: Was alcoholism a problem in the Roman World? A.: Almost certainly, Roman literature is rich in tales of prodigious drinkers. and {iii} Q.: Didn't Romans drink beer as well? A.: In general no, though it is likely that Roman soldiers stationed on the Rhine frontier of the Empire picked up the habit of doing so from the local Gauls. I address these topics in much greater detail in the FAQ section of my website www.romanwine.com. For my part, during my research for VINUM, I was surprised by the success of Roman vintners in limiting the spoilage of wine (acor) (albeit sometimes with actions based more on folklore than science), a problem that beleaguered the wine industries of France and the U.S. until the 18th century A.D. And I was fascinated by the wonderful echo of the Victorian era that one gets when reading about the Roman attitude to drunkenness among women, in its emphasis on morality and its blatant hypocrisy. Relatedly, did you dispel any long standing theories or myths about Roman wine? Fleming: I'm not sure I actually knock down long-standing theories or discount any present-day myths about Roman wine, but I do believe that several aspects of VINUM will catch its reader's imagination because of the sharp contrasts I draw with the place of wine in the modern world. There are several pieces of Roman literature which make it quite clear that wine was truly a central element of Roman everyday life. It was not just something which enhanced a meal or gave zest to a party. Rather, it was central to Roman overseas trade policies and political interactions with the peoples of their provinces; and it was an integral part of health care practices, of religious practices (initially pagan and cultic, but later on, Christian as well) both in life and in death. In Roman times wine was something with huge social overtones, in the sense that the quality of wine consumed was such an immediate reflection of status, senator to slave. I also would make the point that, though some Roman vintners and traders did make a great deal of money out of wine production, profit was by no means their only motivation. Truth is, the Roman psyche was locked into Rome's origins among Italy's sturdy agricultural stock, so any kind of investment in farming, including viticulture, had a special meaning and a special virtue far beyond any we can instinctively imagine today. Is there more to investigated on the subject of Roman wine? Or have you exhausted most known existent sources of information? Fleming: Though scholars continue to sift through the subtleties of the 2nd to 6th century A.D. papyrii from Romano-Egypt that are our primary source for how the production and trade of wine was organized in those times, I would not expect any dramatic changes in our understanding of such matters. On the other hand, excavation of 1st-to-3rd century A.D. Roman villas and their surrounding estates in Italy itself and in central France and along the course of the Rhine (in what were then the provinces Gallia and Germania, respectively) hold out promise of a far greater understanding of the wine productive process, both in terms of scale and efficiency. There are mysteries to be solved by such excavations, not least what caused the decline of so many Italian estates during the mid 2nd century A.D., at a time when so many other sectors of the Roman economy were booming. Meanwhile, we should not forget that so much of what we know about the Roman wine industry, and what caused changes in it over the centuries, has come to us from the investigation of the underwater sites of amphorae-laden ships which came to grief at many a treacherous spot along the Mediterranean coastline. It seems like every few months yet another wreck is found and new patterns in the Roman wine trade are defined. The second edition of VINUM could well read rather differently from the first... REVIEW: Rome's poets and philosophers extolled the virtues of relaxing with friends to enjoy good conversation and good wine. For most Romans, the family dinner table would have been the usual place for such relaxation. Everyone had been up since dawn, and those who had gone into fields, or had business in the marketplace, sustained themselves through the day with little more than a light lunch of bread and fruit, and a beaker of well-diluted vin ordinaire. A late afternoon dinner at home was an opportunity to enjoy a slightly better quality wine, surely savored by those who could afford it. During a Roman dinner of substance, a guest might expect first to be served some hors d'oeuvres, then a honeyed wine--a mulsum. Its sweetness would offset the taste of salted fish and pig's feet that, along with hard-boiled eggs and stuffed artichokes, were among the appetizers. Better wines would be offered after each of the subsequent two courses--mensa prima, which would be meat-, poultry-, or fish-based; and mensa secunda, which would be fresh fruit, a custard, or some honey-sweet dessert. During a convivium, a banquet with emphasis on richly prepared and novel food, the partaking of which was a pleasure--a conviviality--which would be accompanied by a generous flow of wines. Did the Romans drink a lot? Apparently so, at least by modern standards. We should hesitate to censure such behavior too quickly. Most Romans drank wine simply because the water being piped into their cities was none too pure and sometimes disease-ridden. And I would not be the first to suggest that general urban squalor drove many a poor Roman to drown his sorrows. Horace asked: "Who, after his wine, harps on the hardships of campaigns or poverty?" Petronius, describing a banquet in his novel Satyricon, wrote, "Just then some glass jars carefully fastened with gypsum were brought on, with labels tied on their necks.... As we were poring over the tags, Trimalchio clapped his hands and cried, 'Ah me, so wine lives longer than miserable man. So let us be merry. Wine is life.' REVIEW: “VINUM: The Story of Roman Wine”, through a blend of classical literature, archaeology and vineyard science, describes how the Romans perceived wine's significance in their everyday life at all levels of society, senator to slave. REVIEW: Stuart Fleming is currently Scientific Director at the University of Pennsylvania Museum. He is the author of five previous books, including “Authenticity in Art” (1975), “The Egyptian Mummy: Secrets and Science” (1981), and “Roman Glass: Reflections on Cultural Change” (1999). It was the dynamic story underlying the last of these that inspired him to tackle the sometimes, confusing, but always fascinating topic of wine's cultural importance in the Roman World. Personal interests tend to be outside archaeology, however. He takes constant pleasure from classical music—particularly Dvorak and Larssen—and learning about technical aspects of European painting. And, despite the flavorsome topic of VINUM, his enduring hobby is the brewing of Belgian-style beers. PROFESSIONAL REVIEWS: REVIEW: Follow the way that historical events and social attitudes — among them, changes in political fortunes, wars and plagues, slavery and materialism — influenced the nature of Roman viticulture from the mid-2nd century B.C. to the early 7th century A.D. Wrapped into this story is the place of wine in Roman everyday life: its influence on the rules of marriage, its valuable role in medicinals, its part in religious practices, and the way it so clearly mirrored social divisions between the haves and have-nots. VINUM: The Story of Roman Wine explores all these issues, along with the rival views on wine's merits; as a force for idleness and debauchery, or as a catalyst for friendship and an aid to good health. “One barrel of wine can work more miracles than a church full of saints.” (A modern Italian proverb). REVIEW: As an archaeologist with a special knowledge of archaeochemistry and of the history of glass, Fleming brings useful expertise to this field. He knows the Greek and Latin written sources only in translation, yet he has read widely among them and has selected his citations well. Fleming begins with an economic history of the Roman wine trade. A risky move, because ancient economic history is difficult to write with any confidence. There are practically no statistics. However, if you can do ancient economic history for any one commodity, that commodity is wine, because a good deal of wine was transported in earthenware amphorae, a good many of the amphorae had information written on them, and bits of amphorae survive in large numbers. So you can gather them, tabulate what the inscriptions say (if you can understand them - they weren't written for modern archaeologists), and make deductions about the volume of trade. On this basis, and using other evidence where available, Fleming develops a history in which, over the five centuries of the Roman empire, Italian vineyards gave way to Spanish, they in turn to north African, and they to Palestinian. It's an interesting story, and there is literary evidence for some of it beyond what Fleming quotes. It largely depends, still, on whether the amphorae are representative of the trade. Why shouldn't they be? First, because people re-used amphorae and they didn't always bother to re-inscribe them. Second, because wooden barrels began to replace amphorae, and barrels don't survive. Third, because some wine - we have no idea how much - was distributed in ox-skins: in fact André Tchernia has suggested that Albanum or Alban wine (a great name which Fleming mentions rather little) is almost invisible archaeologically because it was carted in ox-skins to Rome and sold there en vrac. Still, although we can't be certain of the absolute significance of the history that Fleming constructs, there is truth in it, and his bravery in beginning with economic history pays off. He moves on to the wider significance of wine in Roman society. This is discussed and analysed in a series of short chapters in which Fleming deals with the importance of wine to farmers and investors, to physicians and patients, to emperors and slaves, but, principally, to ordinary Romans whether entertaining at home or swilling at the tavern. One chapter (14, 'A Separate Standard') is devoted to Roman women and their consumption of wine. Fleming brings out the unexpected and somewhat contradictory approach to this issue by Roman opinion-formers (meaning men: Roman women formed opinions too, but we know nothing of them). It was widely felt that things had been better in the old days when women had not been allowed to drink wine. It was also believed that women, being moister in temperament than men, were less inclined to intoxication, because their natural humours would dilute the wine; therefore, since in fact they did drink wine, women were encouraged by physicians to drink it almost straight, while men were advised to add more water. Lastly Fleming gives us an overview of the place of wine in Roman religion. I would have liked some further survey of the appellations of wine that are known from Roman texts. They are more varied geographically than Fleming suggests. We know various names of Spanish and Gaulish and Greek wines familiar in Rome, also several Egyptian types (Saitum or Saeites was sufficiently important around 300 AD to be given a price in the Emperor Diocletian's buying list for the Roman army). Thanks above all to the imperial physician Galen, we know many names of wines from Asia Minor, and since Galen was a garrulous wine-taster we know how those wines looked and tasted and in what circumstances he prescribed each type for his patients. The illustrations are beautiful and well-chosen, and they are in color throughout. Several medicinal plants are illustrated because they were used to flavor wine, to make medicinal wines, or to aromatize a dining room. Fleming has done well, however, to include numerous relatively unfamiliar illustrations, from a mosaic vignette of grape-treading to an evocative wall-painting from the Villa Pamphili in Rome. What is going on in this picture? There's no doubt, at any rate, that the wine-god is in charge. The illustrations are excellent, the drawings and diagrams highly professional. The translations from Greek and Latin prose are well chosen and very informative. If you care about the history of wine, you'll want this book. REVIEW: “Vinum: The Story of Roman Wine” is highly recommended as an excellent source of history pertaining to the production, marketing, and social circumstances pertaining to the consumption of wine in the ancient Roman world. Now nearly extinct in the wild, grapes (vitis vinifera) grew throughout the ancient Mediterranean, the juice readily fermenting as the enzymes of wild yeasts that naturally collect on the waxy skin break down the sugar content of the grape into alcohol and carbon dioxide. In Italy, grape vines were cultivated both in the north by the Etruscans and in the south by Greek colonists. Wine growing was less important to the Romans, who, in the early years of the Republic, were fighting to expand their domination of the peninsula. By the middle of the second century BC, however, with the defeat of the Etruscans and the Samnites, Pyrrhus and the Greeks, Philip of Macedonia and the Carthaginians, Rome controlled the Mediterranean, and there were both the wealth and markets to invest in vineyards. The earliest work on wine and agriculture was written in Punic. After the destruction of Carthage in 146 BC, the Senate decreed that this treatise be translated into Latin, and it subsequently became the source for all Roman writing on viticulture. Ironically, it was Cato who had insisted on the destruction of Carthage in the Punic wars and who, about 160 BC, wrote De Agri Cultura, the first survey of Roman viticulture, which, significantly, also is the earliest surviving prose work in Latin. In it, he discusses the production of wine on large slave-based villa estates, which suggests how important vine cultivation had become in an agrarian economy that traditionally was subsistence farming. Indeed, by 154 BC, says Pliny, wine production in Italy was unsurpassed. That same year, the cultivation of vines was prohibited beyond the Alps, and, for the first two centuries BC, wine was exported to the provinces, especially to Gaul, in exchange for the slaves whose labor was needed to cultivate the large estate vineyards. (In part, the wine trade with Gaul was so extensive because its inhabitants, writes Diodorus Siculus, were besotted by wine, which was drunk unmixed and without moderation). But, as more land was expropriated by the villa estates, the displaced rural population was forced to emigrate to Rome until, by the first century BC, the city had approximately one million inhabitants. Mulsum was wine sweetened with honey, mixed in just before drinking (and therefore not like mead) and served as an aperitif at the beginning of the meal. (Conditum had herbs and spices such as pepper added as well.) Often freely dispensed to the plebs at public events to solicit their political support, the demand for mulsum became so great that it was more profitable to sell wine at home than to export it and, by the first century AD, wine had to be imported from Iberia and Gaul. Varro relates the story of an impoverished host serving mulsum to his guests, even though he economized by not drinking it, himself. But mulsum was not always inexpensive or inferior. Martial writes of the best quality being made of Falernian mixed with Attic honey, a drink suitable to be poured by Ganymede, himself, cupbearer to Zeus (XIII.108). The dregs of the wine press should be given to the livestock, suggests Columella, "for they contain the strength both of food and of wine and make the cattle sleek and of good cheer and plump." When soaked in water and allowed to ferment, the grape-skins and stalks left in the vat also produced lora, a thin, bitter brew allocated to slaves. Soldiers and the urban poor usually drank little better. In 37 BC, Varro wrote Res Rusticae ("Country Matters"), a manual on farming. His discussion of viticulture is more cursory than Cato's, but he does say that some grapes produce wines that must be drunk within a year, before they become too bitter, while others, such as Falernian, mature with age and increase in value. A century later, Pliny was to say the same thing: that nothing experienced a greater increase in value than wine that had been cellered up to twenty years or a greater decrease in value afterwards (XIV.57). The most comprehensive account of Roman viticulture is by Columella. In De Re Rustica ("On Country Matters"), written around AD 65, he discusses all aspects of the villa system and wine production. The best wine, he says, is that "which has given pleasure by its own natural quality," although the pitch that sometimes was used to seal the inside of amphorae is likely to have dissolved in the wine and imparted a resinous taste. By now, viticulture was highly developed, and most of the practices about which Columella writes still are in use. Yet, there is no longer the confidence that Cato had after the defeat of Carthage about the profitability of wine. Imports from the provinces and a decrease in the supply of slaves were depressing the market. In AD 77, two years before his death while observing the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius, Pliny completed his Natural History. In Book XIV, he reviews the history of wine, its viticulture and vinification. Pliny laments the increased production of cheap wines and the loss of quality vintages. Traditionally, the best wine was reputed to have been Caecuban from Latium, but it no longer existed, the neglected vineyards having been dug up by Nero for the construction of a canal. Augustus was said to have preferred Setine (although Suetonius says it was Rhaetic from Verona). In Pliny's time, the best wine was considered to be Falernian, grown on the slopes of Mount Falernus on the border between Latium and Campania. Next in rank were the wines of the Alban Hills southeast of Rome, and Surrentine and Massic (among others) from the Campania. Finally, there was Mamertine from Messina, first brought into favor by Julius Caesar, who had it served at public banquets. But it was Falernian that elicits the most praise. Made from the Aminean grape, "a producer of exceedingly good wine," according to Columella, it was brought to Italy by Greek colonists who first settled at Cumae near the Bay of Naples. Pliny says that three types were recognized: Caucinian, which was grown on the higher slopes; and then, midway down, Faustian (grown on the estate of Faustus, the son of the dictator Sulla, and regarded as the best and most carefully produced); and, on the lower slopes, Falernian. Galen is the last to comment on Roman taste in wine. A doctor at a gladiatorial school in Pergamum before becoming, in AD 169, the personal physician to Marcus Aurelius, he had used wine to bathe the wounds of gladiators and to concoct potions of wine and drugs (theriacs) to protect the emperor from poison. In De Antidotis ("On Antidotes"), he writes that Faustian Falernian had no equal, which was something he discovered by going through the Palatine cellars, beginning with wines at least twenty years old and tasting each vintage until he found the oldest one that still was sweet and had no bitterness. This would have been served to the emperor in goblets carved of myrrhina (fluorspar) or rock crystal, precious metal or blown glass. (In his Meditations, Aurelius also speaks of Falernian. As a Stoic he was less impressed with the wine he drank and reminds himself: "Surely it is an excellent plan, when you are seated before delicacies and choice foods, to impress upon your imagination...that the Falernian wine is grape juice.") Distillation was unknown in the ancient world (and would not be discovered until the early middle ages); wine, therefore, was the strongest drink of the Romans. Falernian was full-bodied (firmissima), with an alcohol content as much as fifteen or sixteen percent (at which point the yeast is killed by the alcohol it produces). A white wine, it was aged for ten to twenty years, until it was the color of amber (Pliny, XXXVII.12). The fabled vintage of 121 BC was a Falernian, the same year that Opimius was consul and had rebuilt the Temple of Concord. This is the wine that Petronius, in the Satyricon, has Trimalchio serve at his dinner banquet, and it is this wine that Pliny says still survived, although so concentrated as to be barely drinkable, to his own time 200 years later. He also speaks of Opimian Falernian being offered to Caligula that was 160 years old. Vintage wines could be kept for such lengths of time because they were stored in amphorae. These were large tapering two-handled clay jars, with a narrow neck that was sealed with cork plastered over with cement, and held approximately 26 liters or almost 7 gallons. Vines were pruned and tended, and the grapes cut and brought in baskets to be trodden or crushed in the wine press, which the Romans had developed and which produced a second, inferior run. The must (juice) then underwent fermentation and maturation. Weaker wines were aged in large clay containers (dolia) partially buried in the floor. More full-bodied wines, such as those from the Campania, were fermented in the open air to promote the oxidation characteristic of a mature wine—exposed, says Pliny, "to the sun, moon, rain and wind" (XIV.136). The wine then was racked (transferred) to amphorae either for storage, sometimes in a warm, smoky loft to promote aging; or for transport, which usually was by boat. (It was cheaper to ship wine from one end of the Mediterranean to the other than to haul it seventy-five miles overland, which is one reason why most vineyards tended to be situated on the coast or near major rivers.) At the time of Augustus, the taste was for strong, sweet wines, which meant that the grapes were left to ripen on the vine as long as possible, sometimes until the first frost of autumn, so as to concentrate the sugar that could be converted to alcohol. Boiling also reduced and concentrated the must (defrutum or sapa, depending upon the concentration), which then was used to provide the necessary sugar for the fermentation of weaker wines or to make others sweeter still. (This sweet grape syrup also had potentially dangerous levels of dissolved lead.) Honey was added as a sweetener, as well, to create mead. Wine also was flavored with spices, resin, or even sea water, all of which helped to act as a preservative or mask sour wine that was turning to vinegar (bacteria oxidizing the alcohol of the wine into acetic acid and ethyl acetate). Food, too, was strongly seasoned, as one can read in the cookbook of Apicius. Fermented fish sauce (garum), garlic, fruits such as figs and apricots (which would have been sweetened and preserved in sapa), honey, and wine all were used to flavor the food. Often, such condiments completely overwhelmed its natural taste, which was just as well with meats that were beginning to go bad. Wine almost always was mixed with water for drinking; undiluted wine (merum) was considered the habit of provincials and barbarians. The Romans usually mixed one part wine to two parts water (sometimes hot or even salted with sea water to cut some of the sweetness). The Greeks tended to dilute their wine with three or four parts water, which they always mixed by adding the wine. The intention of the symposium was to enjoy the aesthetic pleasure of the wine, to be intoxicated just enough to have the mind released from inhibition and conversation stimulated. At its Roman counterpart, the convivium, there was a tendency to get drunk more blatantly. Martial at least, mixing his wine and water equally, declared that "I can do nothing sober, but when I drink, fifteen poets will come to my aid" (Epigrams, XI.6). The Campanian coast around Pompeii and the Surrentine peninsula were popular with Romans of wealth and fashion, many of whom had vineyards and villas there. Greek culture still was strong, and its vines were considered among the best in Italy. Smothered by ash in the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in AD 79, Pompeii preserves a vivid picture of Roman life at the time. Wine prices were posted and varied for wines of different quality (one, two, three, or four asses per sextarius or pint; by comparison, a loaf of bread cost two asses). On one wall of one tavern, the price list still can be read, "For one as you can drink wine; for two, you can drink the best; for four, you can drink Falernian." In fact, genuine Falernian, a wine drunk by emperors, was not likely to have been available. The daily drink usually was red wine not more than a year old, drawn from amphorae stored at the counter, and drunk from earthenware mugs. Some two hundred taverns or thermopolia have been identified in Pompeii, many near the public baths. Pliny, who had retired to the Bay of Naples to command a small naval detachment, writes of how a thirst can be acquired. First, he says, one goes to the baths, getting so hot as sometimes to become unconscious, then rushing out, often still naked, to grab a large vessel of wine and swill down its contents, only to vomit it up again so more could be drunk (XIV.136). The eruption of Vesuvius destroyed some of the best vineyards in Italy. Growers replanted everywhere they could, at times even replacing fields sown for grain. By the time Pliny wrote in the first century AD, Iberia was an important producer of wine, and wine first was beginning to be imported from Gaul, with new vines being planted at Narbonensis in the south (viticulture would spread northward and new vines introduced that were more suitable to the region, one of which was the biturica, the ancestor of cabernet varieties). Eventually, there was a glut. With the intention of preserving the supply of grain and, possibly, to protect the domestic wine industry, Domitian banned, in an edict of AD 92, the planting of any new vineyards in Italy and ordered the removal of half the vines in the provinces. When, in AD 212, Caracalla conferred citizenship on all free inhabitants of the empire (the Constitutio Antoniniana), it eliminated the privilege of cultivating vines that had been the prerogative of Roman citizens. Now, all those in the provinces were permitted to grow wine grapes. In AD 280, the edict which Domitian had imposed almost two hundred years earlier was revoked, although it may never have been enforced in the first place. Any restrictions on the development of viticulture now were completely removed. REVIEW: Fleming brings to life the conviviums (banquets of the wealthy), neighborhood taverns and drunken debaucheries of ancient Rome. [Philadelphia Inquirer]. READER REVIEWS: REVIEW: Vinum is an attractive and very informative lbook that tells us virtually everything we might want to know about the role wine played in the Roman world. How were the vines that produced it grown? Who made it and where? How was it harvested and prepared? How was it stored and shipped? How was it kept? Who drank it and what different qualities were available? What were Roman taverns like? Were Roman parties sometimes as wild as we think they were? What did the Romans think about wine? All of these questions, and more, are answered in a very readable text embellished with numerous colorful drawings, charts, photographs and maps. In fact, many of the areas of Europe where great wines are produced today also produced wines under the Romans, and even now not only are some of the grape varieties the same, but some of the growing methods are as well. Anyone who really likes wine ought to very much enjoy having this book. REVIEW: A sumptuous introduction to wine production, distribution, and consumption in the world of ancient Rome. “VINUM” is beautifully illustrated and produced, and it's an easy read. Would make a really nice present for anyone who enjoys drinking wine. But it's not only pretty and polished. Also a really good introduction for the academic reader -- student or teacher. Fleming carefully and fully documents ancient and modern sources, and he provides the reader with an excellent survey of the state of knowledge. The references point the way to further research. Especially recommended for wine connoisseurs, teachers of high school and undergraduate survey courses, and students in those courses. REVIEW: Fascinating history of the importance of wine throughout the ages--not just in Rome, but throughout the Roman Empire. REVIEW: I quite enjoyed the book. My only complaint is that it left me wanting more! It’s like a good wine after you've had only a sip. REVIEW: The Romans had an amazing process of making, storing and transporting wine. Loved it. I always ship books Media Mail in a padded mailer. This book is shipped FOR FREE via USPS INSURED media mail (“book rate”). All domestic shipments and most international shipments will include free USPS Delivery Confirmation (you might be able to update the status of your shipment on-line at the USPS Web Site) and free insurance coverage. A small percentage of international shipments may require an additional fee for tracking and/or delivery confirmation. If you are concerned about a little wear and tear to the book in transit, I would suggest a boxed shipment - it is an extra $1.00. Whether via padded mailer or box, we will give discounts for multiple purchases. International orders are welcome, but shipping costs are substantially higher. Most international orders cost an additional $12.99 to $33.99 for an insured shipment in a heavily padded mailer, and typically includes some form of rudimentary tracking and/or delivery confirmation (though for some countries, this is only available at additional cost). There is also a discount program which can cut postage costs by 50% to 75% if you’re buying about half-a-dozen books or more (5 kilos+). Rates and available services vary a bit from country to country. You can email or message me for a shipping cost quote, but I assure you they are as reasonable as USPS rates allow, and if it turns out the rate is too high for your pocketbook, we will cancel the sale at your request. ADDITIONAL PURCHASES do receive a VERY LARGE discount, typically about $5 per book (for each additional book after the first) so as to reward you for the economies of combined shipping/insurance costs. Your purchase will ordinarily be shipped within 48 hours of payment. We package as well as anyone in the business, with lots of protective padding and containers. All of our shipments are sent via insured mail so as to comply with PayPal requirements. We do NOT recommend uninsured shipments, and expressly disclaim any responsibility for the loss of an uninsured shipment. Unfortunately the contents of parcels are easily “lost” or misdelivered by postal employees – even in the USA. That’s why all of our domestic shipments (and most international) shipments include a USPS delivery confirmation tag; or are trackable or traceable, and all shipments (international and domestic) are insured. We do offer U.S. Postal Service Priority Mail, Registered Mail, and Express Mail for both international and domestic shipments, as well United Parcel Service (UPS) and Federal Express (Fed-Ex). Please ask for a rate quotation. We will accept whatever payment method you are most comfortable with. If upon receipt of the item you are disappointed for any reason whatever, I offer a no questions asked return policy. Send it back, I will give you a complete refund of the purchase price (less our original shipping costs). Most of the items I offer come from the collection of a family friend who was active in the field of Archaeology for over forty years. However many of the items also come from purchases I make in Eastern Europe, India, and from the Levant (Eastern Mediterranean/Near East) from various institutions and dealers. Though I have always had an interest in archaeology, my own academic background was in sociology and cultural anthropology. After my retirement however, I found myself drawn to archaeology as well. Aside from my own personal collection, I have made extensive and frequent additions of my own via purchases on Ebay (of course), as well as many purchases from both dealers and institutions throughout the world - but especially in the Near East and in Eastern Europe. I spend over half of my year out of the United States, and have spent much of my life either in India or Eastern Europe. In fact much of what we generate on Yahoo, Amazon and Ebay goes to support The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, as well as some other worthy institutions in Europe connected with Anthropology and Archaeology. I acquire some small but interesting collections overseas from time-to-time, and have as well some duplicate items within my own collection which I occasionally decide to part with. Though I have a collection of ancient coins numbering in the tens of thousands, my primary interest is in ancient jewelry. My wife also is an active participant in the "business" of antique and ancient jewelry, and is from Russia. I would be happy to provide you with a certificate/guarantee of authenticity for any item you purchase from me. There is a $2 fee for mailing under separate cover. Whenever I am overseas I have made arrangements for purchases to be shipped out via domestic mail. If I am in the field, you may have to wait for a week or two for a COA to arrive via international air mail. But you can be sure your purchase will arrive properly packaged and promptly - even if I am absent. And when I am in a remote field location with merely a notebook computer, at times I am not able to access my email for a day or two, so be patient, I will always respond to every email. Please see our "ADDITIONAL TERMS OF SALE."

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