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English viticulture was probably introduced on a larger scale by the Romans who came to the island in 43 BC. Finds of pollen from vines prove that viticulture existed even before then. In 1152, the future King Henry II (1133-1189) came into possession of Gascony and large parts of western France, including Bordeaux (which reverted to France in 1453), through his marriage to Eleonora of Aquitaine (1122-1204). For almost 300 years, French wine was imported on a large scale. This was also the great time of the rosé-coloured Clairet. But sweet wines from southern Europe in particular were also very popular from the middle of the 14th century, for example Vernage (Vernacchia) from Italy and Malmsey from the islands of Cyprus and Crete, which was shipped from the Greek port of Monemvasia (Peloponnese). For this reason, independent English viticulture came to a standstill for many centuries

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