Was Stone-Age Wine a Drink of the People?

Finds at the site of an ancient Greek village suggest that people of all classes have enjoyed wine since at least the Neolithic Age.

Think about wine in the ancient world, and chances are you’ll picture chalices, feasts and rituals: The stuff of elites. But ruins in Greece suggest that wine may have roots that are more populist than we typically think—even as far back as the Stone Age—according to a new study published in the Journal of Archaeological Science.

 In the 1990s, archaeobotanist Soultana Valamoti began studying the ruins of a Neolithic village at Dikili Tash, first discovered in northern Greece in the early 1920s. (For those of you who’ve forgotten your ancient eras, the Neolithic era was the late Stone Age—the period when humans began shaping stone tools and producing, rather than hunting and gathering, their food.)

Initially, Valamoti was looking for

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