In all cultures of the world, there was and still is a drinking culture in addition to an eating culture. Wine in particular has always been more than just a stimulant, but also a medicine, an antiseptic, an aphrodisiac, a preservative, a comforter, a source of strength, a medium of inspiration, a symbol of sacrifice, a component of rituals, festivals and contracts, and in many religions a sacred medium that was used to establish a mystical relationship with God or the gods.
In the "Codex Hammurabi", a collection of laws written by the Babylonian king Hammurabi (1728-1686 B.C.), which according to Sumerian tradition is based on an inspiration from the sun god Šamaš, it says: Wine is one of the most precious gifts on earth. So it demands love and respect, and we have to show it respect. However, beer was probably the first alcoholic beverage brewed in the early advanced civilisations even before wine, at least more than 6,000 years ago. Mesopotamia, Transcaucasia and/or, according to the latest research, south-eastern Anatolia in today's Turkey, bordering Armenia with the famous Mount Ararat, where the biblical Noah is said to have landed, are regarded as the cradle of viticulture.
I have great respect for the scope and quality of the wein.plus encyclopaedia. It is a unique place to go for crisp, sound information on terms from the world of wine.Dr. Edgar Müller
Dozent, Önologe und Weinbauberater, Bad Kreuznach