The Latin/Greek term (autós = self, chthón = earth) means "long-established, indigenous, native to the soil" and, in relation to geology and biology, "originating or occurring at the site of discovery" (the opposite is allochthonous, meaning originating elsewhere - not native to the site of discovery). A related term is "endemic" (endemie), which means "occurring locally" or "common in a particular area" (but not necessarily originating there). The term "autochthonous", often used in describing grape varieties, means in a narrower sense that the vine is almost exclusively or predominantly traditionally cultivated in a particular area, where it also originated or at least has a relatively long history and has acquired a certain cultural significance.
For my many years of work as an editor with a wine and culinary focus, I always like to inform myself about special questions at Wine lexicon. Spontaneous reading and following links often leads to exciting discoveries in the wide world of wine.Dr. Christa Hanten
Fachjournalistin, Lektorin und Verkosterin, Wien