In ancient times, Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans brought vines to the Iberian Peninsula. Under the long Moorish rule from the 8th to the 12th century, viticulture stagnated, but did not come to a complete standstill despite the ban on alcohol. As in many other countries, the Roman Catholic monastic order of the Cistercians had a decisive influence on viticulture; in the 12th century they founded 18 monasteries in Portugal. King Dinis (1279-1325) promoted agriculture and viticulture on such a large scale that the proceeds were used to build up a merchant fleet, thus creating the basis for Portugal's rise to become a world power. He was therefore given the nickname "Rei lavrador" (King of the Peasants). Under the Avis kings, especially Emanuel I. (1469-1521), Portugal rose to become a leading European trading and naval power. Henry the Navigator (1394-1460) initiated voyages of discovery along the West African coast. Muscat and Malvasia grapes were planted on the rediscovered island of Madeira. A flourishing wine trade with England developed.
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