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An olive stone from 150BC links pre-Roman Britain to today's pizzeria
guardian.co.uk ^ | Thursday 19 July 2012 | Maev Kennedy

Posted on 07/21/2012 7:25:39 AM PDT by SunkenCiv

Iron Age Britons were importing olives from the Mediterranean a century before the Romans arrived with their exotic tastes in food, say archaeologists who have discovered a single olive stone from an excavation of an Iron Age well at at Silchester in Hampshire.

The stone came from a layer securely dated to the first century BC, making it the earliest ever found in Britain -- but since nobody ever went to the trouble of importing one olive, there must be more, rotted beyond recognition or still buried.

The stone, combined with earlier finds of seasoning herbs such as coriander, dill and celery, all previously believed to have arrived with the Romans, suggests a diet at Silchester that would be familiar in any high street pizza restaurant.

The excavators, led by Professor Mike Fulford of Reading University, also found another more poignant luxury import: the skeleton of a tiny dog, no bigger than a modern toy poodle, carefully buried, curled up as if in sleep. However it may not have met a peaceful end...

Fulford has been leading the annual summer excavations at Silchester, which bring together hundreds of student, volunteer and professional archaeologists, for half a lifetime, and the site continues to throw up surprises. It was an important Roman town, but deliberately abandoned in the 7th century, its wells blocked up and its buildings tumbled, and never reoccupied. Apart from a few Victorian farm buildings, it is still open farmland, surrounded by the jagged remains of massive Roman walls.

(Excerpt) Read more at guardian.co.uk ...


TOPICS: History; Science; Travel
KEYWORDS: dietandcuisine; godsgravesglyphs; hampshire; mikefulford; romanempire; silchester; unitedkingdom
Professor Mike Fulford at the dig in Silchester. The latest find is an olive stone that dates back to Iron Age Britain. Photograph: Graham Turner for the Guardian

Graham Turner for the Guardian

1 posted on 07/21/2012 7:25:45 AM PDT by SunkenCiv
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Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek
Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek
by Barry Cunliffe
Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek
by Barry Cunliffe


2 posted on 07/21/2012 7:33:51 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: SunkenCiv

“Fulford now believes that the town was at its height a century before the Roman invasion in 43AD, with...paved streets...drainage...enjoying a lifestyle in Britain that, previously, was believed to have arrived with the Romans.”

This is serious stuff, dude. It turns my whole opinion on Europe back then on its head. I had always thought that the non-Romans were simply barbarians, as far as lifestyle went (i.e., nomads in tents) - and the idea of paved streets and drainage only existed because of the Romans and then disappeared with them (for many hundreds of years) after they fell.


3 posted on 07/21/2012 7:37:03 AM PDT by BobL
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oops, there have been three isbns:

Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek Extraordinary Voyage of Pytheas the Greek
Extraordinary Voyage
of Pytheas the Greek

by Barry Cunliffe
Extraordinary Voyage
of Pytheas the Greek

by Barry Cunliffe
Extraordinary Voyage
of Pytheas the Greek

by Barry Cunliffe


4 posted on 07/21/2012 7:37:13 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: SunkenCiv

5 posted on 07/21/2012 7:38:02 AM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Mater tua caligas exercitus gerit ;-{)
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To: BobL

There was a topic or two along these lines during the past year or two; the Romans still excelled at civil engineering, able to cherry-pick the best ideas from a large number of conquered peoples. There’s another current article (I’m not going to post it, at least not this week, and something like it may have already appeared) about water engineering in Roman Palmyra.

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/07/120717-palmyra-roman-city-syria-science-farming-world-ancient/

One area that the Romans were never exactly great at was navigating the seas. They weren’t bad, in time — they turned the seven seas into pirate-free lakes for centuries — but the Roman army just didn’t like the idea of sea battles. During and after Augustus Rome got serious about standing navies and built five major naval bases, including one on the North Sea and one on the Black Sea.

Seagoing trade in Roman times was enormous, and spread out in all directions, including India (no doubt about it) and other areas outside the Empire, including Ireland, China, and the Baltic. But that was not due to some kind of official merchant marine, it was the free market at work.

Roman engineering resulted in some of, if not *the*, largest wooden seagoing vessels ever made. Those Egyptian obelisks in Rome were moved — each in one piece — from Egypt during the Roman Empire, and those weigh 200+ tons, some perhaps 300 tons. The columns for some of the temples on the forum were quarried — each in one piece — in Egypt and transported by sea to Rome.

OTOH, the British Isles have been inhabited for many thousands of years, and the big break with the continent was a long time ago. Since then, no one has gotten there by walking overland. :’)


6 posted on 07/21/2012 7:46:58 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: JoeProBono

The Romans had everything except the peppers and tomatoes. :’)


7 posted on 07/21/2012 7:47:51 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; decimon; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; ...

 GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach
Trade with Mediterranean Europe preceding the Roman conquest of Britain -- no real surprise there, though. :')

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.


8 posted on 07/21/2012 7:48:18 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: SunkenCiv
I was thinking, just last night, about how varied were the (flavors) tastes availabe to a 100AD British person. Some flavors they would not have had:

* Chocolate
* Tomatoes
* Potatoes
* Coffee
* Tobacco
* Hot Peppers
* Turkey

And so on.

Pretty bland I'd say.

(All the hot peppers in the world have their origins in the Carribean.)

9 posted on 07/21/2012 7:58:07 AM PDT by blam
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To: SunkenCiv

Awesome!! Thanks for the all the info and the link. You make Wikipedia look like a children’s book.


10 posted on 07/21/2012 7:59:39 AM PDT by BobL
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To: blam

“Pretty bland I’d say.”

Blam, Bland is a relative word. I remember visiting some people I knew that lived in Michigan (near Detroit). They were convinced they had the best pizza in the world. Having lived in the Northeast for a time, I just felt very sad for them.


11 posted on 07/21/2012 8:04:13 AM PDT by BobL
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To: SunkenCiv

12 posted on 07/21/2012 8:16:22 AM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Mater tua caligas exercitus gerit ;-{)
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To: SunkenCiv
they turned the seven seas into pirate-free lakes for centuries

And what seven seas would those be?

13 posted on 07/21/2012 8:21:57 AM PDT by DeaconBenjamin (A trillion here, a trillion there, soon you're NOT talking real money)
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To: BobL
I didn't even hear the word pizza until I was 15 years old.

I heard the word taco for the first time when I was about 19.

14 posted on 07/21/2012 8:23:07 AM PDT by blam
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To: blam

Pray you make it to 90 before discovering Haggis.


15 posted on 07/21/2012 8:25:52 AM PDT by Tijeras_Slim
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To: BobL
Before Rome became a corrupt empire, it was a corrupt republic.

A little further in:

It is my opinion that the alleged Roman achievements are largely a myth; and I feel it is time for this myth to be debunked a little. What the Romans excelled in was bullying, bludgeoning, butchering and blood baths. Like the Soviet Empire, the Roman Empire enslaved peoples whose cultural level was far above their own. They not only ruthlessly vandalized their countries, but they also looted them, stealing their art treasures, abducting their scientists and copying their technical know-how, which the Romans' barren society was rarely able to improve on. No wonder, then, that Rome was filled with great works of art. But the light of culture which Rome is supposed to have emanated was a borrowed light: borrowed from the Greeks and the other peoples that the Roman militarists had enslaved.

16 posted on 07/21/2012 8:40:28 AM PDT by Lonesome in Massachussets (The Democratic Party strongly supports full civil rights for necro-Americans!)
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To: Tijeras_Slim

isn’t haggis a disgusting scottish food?


17 posted on 07/21/2012 8:41:23 AM PDT by brivette
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets

I wouldn’t put rule that out, at all. But from a archeology perspective, when you stumble on to ruins in Rome, it is natural to think that they were the achievers. It’s only when you can start accurately dating and sequencing stuff that the perspective me start to change.


18 posted on 07/21/2012 8:51:18 AM PDT by BobL
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To: brivette

It’s disgusting and it’s Scottish... the last is up for debate.


19 posted on 07/21/2012 8:51:53 AM PDT by Tijeras_Slim
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets

One problem with the article though:

“The Roman contribution to mathematics was little more than nothing at all.”

If that were the case, I’d expect the public schools to pounce on that and use it as their curriculum. Since they’re not doing so, there may have been some merit to their mathematical skills.


20 posted on 07/21/2012 8:53:21 AM PDT by BobL
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To: BobL
In his Gallic Wars, Julius Caesar invaded Britain twice, in 55 and 54 BC.[1] The first invasion, made late in summer, was either intended as a full invasion (in which case it was unsuccessful - it gained a beachhead on the coast of Kent but achieved little else) or a reconnaissance-in-force expedition. The second was more successful, setting up a friendly king, Mandubracius, and forcing the submission of his rival, Cassivellaunus, although no territory was conquered and held for Rome, but was restored to the allied Trinovantes, along with promised tribute of other tribes in what is now eastern England.

This poorly written piece of crap is so full of misinformation as to be unbelievable. Julius Caesar invaded Brittan in 55BC.

21 posted on 07/21/2012 9:06:21 AM PDT by central_va ( I won't be reconstructed and I do not give a damn.)
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To: Tijeras_Slim

22 posted on 07/21/2012 9:06:43 AM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Mater tua caligas exercitus gerit ;-{)
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To: BobL

Outside of Italy a lot of ruins dating from the period of the Roman Empire are described as “Roman Ruins”, when in fact the Romans may have had little or nothing to do with them. I was just presenting a different point of view that reinforces the point of this post.

The Romans should get credit, at least, for popularizing the Estrucan Arch, one of the real milestones in engineering, comparable to the invention of the wheel. They were also very skillful builders, and may well have spread their technique around the Mediterrian. Whether or not they were superior to the Carthaginians or Greeks is doubtful.

The real lesson of the Roman Empire is that no matter how advanced a civilization is intellectually, it will not survive if it becomes number two militarily.


23 posted on 07/21/2012 9:34:57 AM PDT by Lonesome in Massachussets (The Democratic Party strongly supports full civil rights for necro-Americans!)
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To: blam

Sounds like you could’ve grown up in Modesto. I met my first black person when I was 18. She was a really nice girl.


24 posted on 07/21/2012 9:52:31 AM PDT by EggsAckley ( There's an Ethiopian in the fuel supply ! ! ..)
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To: JoeProBono

Romans went to war on diet of pizza, dig shows.
The Scotsman | Mon 26 Aug 2002 | John Innes
Posted on 08/26/2002 2:20:42 PM PDT by vannrox
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/739684/posts


25 posted on 07/21/2012 10:01:56 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: blam

Pepper (the table kind) was imported to the Roman Empire from the SW Pacific, along with the Orangutan. All they’d have needed was a table with a round hole in the middle of it, and they’d have been in the urban legends business. ;’)

Also, all of our ancestors used to eat and/or season with stuff we regard as unremarkable weeds. Tastes change, other stuff is more economical to grow — important as labor specialization and farm mechanization changed agriculture. But don’t forget, ADM and Monsanto are behind everything, and behind them are the Bilderbergers!!! /s

Wintercress is a peppery plant that pops up early in the spring (when it’s actually late winter, really); also there is the lowly mustard seed, loads of other stuff.


26 posted on 07/21/2012 10:07:16 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: BobL

I’m sure the Romans didn’t just one day “show up.”

As Cicero said - by defending our allies, we have become master of the whole world.


27 posted on 07/21/2012 10:30:22 AM PDT by PGR88
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To: BobL

Don’t get me started on those b*st*rds. ;’)


28 posted on 07/21/2012 11:32:15 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: DeaconBenjamin

The salad dressings, of course. Geez.


29 posted on 07/21/2012 11:32:59 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: Lonesome in Massachussets

Rome’s empire preceded the fall of the fascist oligarchy which is passed off as the Roman Republic. The problem I have with the transition to a fulltime emperor is anachronistic — in the arts and media, it’s always portrayed as a single dimensional good vs evil struggle. And around here, the advocates of that view are nearly always advocates of (shall we say) another, more recent, corrupt oligarchy.

BTW, that page appears to be a neonazi website (speaking of more recent, corrupt oligarchy).


30 posted on 07/21/2012 11:37:44 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: central_va

Julius Caesar did indeed invade Britain twice, so what’s the problem?


31 posted on 07/21/2012 11:39:38 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: PGR88

Well said.


32 posted on 07/21/2012 11:41:43 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: SunkenCiv

Did the Romans bring tomatoes to Britain?


33 posted on 07/21/2012 11:43:38 AM PDT by AU72
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To: SunkenCiv

An Oliver Stone from 150 BC? They had to put up with those back then too?


34 posted on 07/21/2012 11:46:13 AM PDT by Larry Lucido
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To: SunkenCiv

Roman pizzas had no tomato sauce on them.


35 posted on 07/21/2012 11:48:13 AM PDT by Verginius Rufus
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Same guy, same town, only two other topics?


 Relic of Harpocrates, the god of secrecy and silence, found at Silchester

· 07/19/2010 6:34:52 PM PDT ·
· Posted by SunkenCiv ·
· 13 replies ·
· 1+ views ·
· Guardian UK ·
· Friday 16 July 2010 ·
· Maev Kennedy ·

Archaeological dig at abandoned Roman city in Hampshire yields earliest representation of an Egyptian deity found in Britain... A battered and corroded thumb --- sized piece of bronze has turned out to be a unique find, the earliest representation of an Egyptian deity from any site in Britain --- and appropriately, after almost 2,000 years hidden in the ground, it is Harpocrates, the god of secrecy and silence. The little figure was found at Silchester, site of an abandoned Roman city in Hampshire, in last summer's excavation, but his identity was only revealed in months of careful conservation work. His...


 'Britain's first pre-Roman planned town' found near Reading

· 08/20/2011 8:10:56 AM PDT ·
· Posted by decimon ·
· 21 replies ·
· BBC ·
· August 17, 2011 ·
· Louise Ord ·

Archaeologists believe they have found the first pre-Roman planned town discovered in Britain.It has been unearthed beneath the Roman town of Silchester or Calleva Atrebatum near modern Reading. The Romans are often credited with bringing civilisation to Britain - including town planning. But excavations have shown evidence of an Iron Age town built on a grid and signs inhabitants had access to imported wine and olive oil. Prof Mike Fulford, an archaeologist at the University of Reading, said the people of Iron Age Silchester appear to have adopted an urbanised 'Roman' way of living, long before the Romans arrived. "It...



36 posted on 07/21/2012 1:34:17 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: AU72; Verginius Rufus

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2908989/posts?page=7#7


37 posted on 07/21/2012 1:36:21 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: EggsAckley
"Sounds like you could’ve grown up in Modesto. I met my first black person when I was 18. She was a really nice girl."

I went to the same rural public school for twelve years...zero minorties the whole time. We did suspect that one girl may have had a little Asian blood though.

The Blacks had their own school 4-5 miles away.

38 posted on 07/21/2012 1:41:52 PM PDT by blam
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To: JoeProBono

Went to the Cheese Barn in Milwaukee a month ago. I had barely walked in the door when I was handed a sample of parmasan cut from the wheel. Best I have ever had, flavor burst in the mouth.
Sarvechio, Grand American competition, best parmasan in US.


39 posted on 07/21/2012 3:54:40 PM PDT by Cold Heart
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To: Cold Heart

I’m going to keep out an eye for it.

http://wisconsincheesemasters.com/sarvecchio.aspx


40 posted on 07/21/2012 4:26:55 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: Cold Heart

41 posted on 07/21/2012 4:32:22 PM PDT by JoeProBono (A closed mouth gathers no feet - Mater tua caligas exercitus gerit ;-{)
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To: JoeProBono

That’s slice to see.


42 posted on 07/21/2012 6:46:18 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: blam

Why do you think Britain established the empire it did? They weren’t out to rule the world, they just wanted to find some food with flavor. They grew up on bland Brit food and stuff like blood pudding, so risking their lives to go somewhere like India or China would have been pretty appealing.


43 posted on 07/23/2012 8:14:08 AM PDT by tarawa
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Additional:

Luxury food and pampered pooches in Iron Age Britain
Past Horizons Archaeology
http://www.pasthorizonspr.com/index.php/archives/07/2012/luxury-food-and-pampered-pooches-in-iron-age-britain


44 posted on 07/28/2012 7:20:06 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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