The Italian agronomist Giovanni Vettorio Soderini (1526-1596), born in Florence, studied philosophy and law at the University of Bologna. After his return to Tuscany
, he was sentenced to death for alleged complicity in a conspiracy against the Medici
. However, he was pardoned and banished to the country. He escaped boredom in exile by studying agriculture. He subsequently wrote some remarkable treatises. Only after his death was his work on viticulture published in 1600, "Trattato della coltivazione delle viti, e del frutto che se ne puô cavare" (Treatise on the cultivation of vines and fruit). Among other things, it describes the grape varieties
and winemaking methods known at the time. Soderini was convinced (according to the knowledge or belief of his time) that the position of the stars and the phases of the moon
had an influence on the yield
, quality and shelf life of the wine. He recommended harvesting when the moon was waning in a particular sign of the zodiac.