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The wine-growing region is located in Rhineland-Palatinate in Germany and is named after the region. The name is derived from the historical affiliation as the province of Rheinhessen of the Grand Duchy of Hesse from 1816 to 1919. The vineyards cover 26,758 hectares, making it the largest German wine-growing region in terms of area. The vineyards are located on the left bank of the Rhine knee between Bingen, Mainz and Worms in the form of a huge triangle. Many finds attest to ancient viticulture, such as a Roman water pipe in Ingelheim. Nierstein is home to Germany's oldest vineyard, the Glöck site, which was mentioned in a document in 742. Emperor Charlemagne (742-814) had a palace there and, according to legend, discovered the excellent suitability for vineyards on a Rhine journey. He promoted viticulture here by clearing forests in the Rhine plain and planting vineyards instead. The Riesling (Rissling) was first mentioned here in 1546 by the botanist Hieronymus Bock (1498-1554).

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