Abydos: A Traditional Brewery

At Abydos, in Egypt, archaeologists have uncovered what seems to be the oldest “brewery” ever discovered. Beer, which Romans hated because of “the drink’s lack of nobility” and its smell “of wet goat”, is nonetheless recognized as the first drink made by humans… even before the sacrosanct wine.

It should also be noted, even if the articles seem to gloss over this specification, that the “recipe” for beer is attributed to the Mesopotamians. The ancient Egyptians, when founding their own civilization, were (with apologies to Egyptologists) greatly inspired by their touchy neighbours by the Euphrates.

The “mother of all civilizations” had indeed, literally, consecrated the beverage, conferring on it properties both nutritional and quasi-divine… The profession of brewer was reserved for women only… and punishments were severe in cases of “fraud”.


Read our three-part history of the drinks of antiquity




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