BULLETIN ON
SUMERIAN AGRICULTURE
Volume I1
Cambridge, U. K .
1985
CONTENTS
Traditional husbandry and processing of archaic cereals in recent
times: Part 11, the free-threshing cereals............................l-31
G.C. Hillman
..........................................33-37
The husbandry of pulses and oil crops in modern Iraq ................39-62
Pulses and oil crop plants
W. van Zeist
M.P. Charles
Finds of sesame and linseed in Ancient Iraq..........................63-66
J.M. Renfrew
1
Pulses recorded from Ancient Iraq
J.M. Renfrew
....................................67-71
A note on the vegetation on the Uruk vase............................73-76
H.E.W. Crawford
Olpflanzen und Pflanzencle im 3. Jahrtausend..
H. Waetzoldt
.......................77-96
Cultivation of legumes and mun-gazi plants in Ur 111 Girsu...........97-118
K. Maekawa
Remarks on the cultivation of sesame and the extraction of its oi1..119-126
Beans, peas, lentils and vetches in Akkadian texts.................
M. St01
127-139
........................141-143
The "oil-plant" in Assyria ..........................................145-152
J.N. Postgate
A note on the pulse crops at Tell Shemshara
J. Eidem
The agronomy, production and utilization of sesame and linseed
in the Graeco-Roman world..........................................
T.W. Gallant
153-158
Is Fe-giF-3 sesame or flax?.........................................l59-178
D. Bedigian
A rental of tools used in processing sesame.........................179-180
M. St01 & R.M. Whiting
Illustrations of plants: Broad Bean (facing p. 1) - Chick-pea,
Fenugreek and Lentil (p. 32) - Safflower (p. 38) - Flax (p. 72)
Sesame (p. 144)
F.N. Hepper
Ltd,,
Printed in England by A d &
Teddinyton Houw, W ~ m h b W#tlhh,
&
-
PREFACE
General Editors
J.N. Postgate
Faculty of Oriental Studies
University of Cambridge
Sidgwick Avenue
Cambridge
U.K.
M.A. Powell
Department of History
Northern Illinois University
Dekalb
Illinois 60115
U.S.A.
This issue of the Butletin is principally devoted to papers prepared for a
meeting of the Sumerian Agriculture Group in Cambridge in June 1984, and
concerned with legumes and oil-seed crops. It begins, however, with the
second part of Gordon Hillman's survey of traditional cereal processing in
Turkey, and some further contributions on legumes have been reserved for
the third volume for reasons of space and time.
Several of the articles in this volume appear to vindicate F.R. Kraus's
spirited defence of sesame against the negative evidence of archaeobotany.
The realization that the plant may have been first introduced only in the
middle of the 3rd millennium offers a partial explanation of its absence
from the archaeological record, raises the intriguing question of its origins, and should underline once again the value of collecting botanical
material from historical, and not only prehistoric, sites.
With the legumes our meeting, and these papers, have served more to
cast doubt on the translations frequently given in the Assyriological
literature, than to establish convincing alternatives. It seems likely
that the chick-pea should not be the principal pulse crop of the south,
and that some form of Broad Bean or of the Field Pea could be considered as
alternative translations. In the course of our discussions we became aware
of the dearth of information about the traditional processing of legumes,
and we hope that it will be possible to present some details in the next
volume of the Bulletin.
The 1985 meeting of the Sumerian Agriculture Group discussed onions and
related plants, Cucurbitaceae, and fruit trees. Articles on these topics
will be published in Vol. 3, but as before the Editors will gladly consider
other contributions on the general subject of early Mesopotamian agriculture.
For bibliographical abbreviations to cuneiform texts not otherwise
explained, the reader is referred to the two standard Akkadian dictionaries: W. von Soden, Akkadisches Handwijrterbuch (AHw) and the Chicago
~ s s y r i a n~ictionary(CAD).
ISSN 0267-0658
Orders may be placed through booksellers or direct to the
Sumerian Agriculture Group, Faculty of Oriental Studies,
Sidgwick Avenue, Cambridge CB3 9DA, U.K.
Cover design by Christine Nicholls, after the "Warka Vase" (3200-3000 BC).
Once again our thanks go to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences,
Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, Illinois for their generous help with
the production costs, to the C.H.W. Johns Fund, and to Trinity College,
Cambridge, for hospitality and other support. We are also grateful to Mrs.
Laura Cordy (Trinity College) for help with the setting of this volume,
and not least to F. Nigel Hepper for providing his admirable illustrations.
Nicholas Postgate
Marvin Powell
October 1985
TRADITIONAL HUSBANDRY AND PROCESSING OF ARCHAIC CEREALS
IN RECENT TIMES: THE OPERATIONS, PRODUCTS AND EQUIPMENT
THAT MIGHT FEATURE IN SUMERIAN TEXTS
PART 11:
THE FREE-THRE3HING CEREALS
Gordon Hillman
( Institute of Archaeology,
University of ond don)
It was stressed in Hillman 1981 that different grain crops require
different systems of husbandry and processing, and that this fact has clear
implications for any archaeologist attempting to assess the degree of
The difsophistication of ~ncient technologies in the rural setting.
ferences are obvious even in North European agriculture, but are still more
striking in areas where traditional agrarian expertise is still extant, as
it is in parts of Turkey, for instance.
Even within the cereals, we
encounter substantial differences in both the husbandry applied in the
field and in the processing applied to the harvested crop back in the
settlement. Most striking, however, are the differences between methods
applied to glume-wheats and those applied to the free-threshing cereals.
It is for this reason that the sequences of operations applied to either
class of cereal have here been outlined separately.
Part I, dealing with the husbandry and processing of glume-wheats, was
Because
published in the previous volume of this series (Hillman 1984b).
the glume-wheats were the principal wheats of pre- and proto-historic
western Eurasia, the glume-wheat sequence was outlined in some detail. In
the following outline of the sequence of operations applied to freethreshing cereals, it is therefore necessary to describe only those operations which differ significantly from those already outlined for the
glume-wheats in Part I.
For all other operations, the details given in
Part I apply equally to the free-threshing cereals.
Indeed, the reader
should be reminded that all the ethno-agricultural papers of other workers
which were cited in Part I involved observations of the operations applied
t o free-threshing cereals.
They were cited in Part I because they represented good additional examples of operations which I had also observed
being applied to glume-wheats.
Nevertheless, although many of the operations are the same, the composition of the products is always different in
free-threshing cereals compared with those of glume-wheats. (Some of the
major differences are outlined in Hillman 1981).
Vicia faba
Brood bean
The full sequence of operations applied to free-threshing cereals is
summarised in Fig. 1.
The ethnographic studies were undertaken primarily
in Turkey, and for the Turkish terminology applied to all the early stages
of grain processing, the reader is referred to the equivalent stages of
Part I.
Hi 1 lman
Free-threshing cereals
Hillman
I
I
T H E TRADITIONAL PROCESSING O F FREE-THRESHING CEREALS I N CENTRAL A N D E A S T TURKEY:
24. GRAIN WASHING & RE-DRYING
I
T H E MAJOR OPERATIONS AND PRODUCTS - FROM HARVESTING ONWARDS
Each operation is assigned the same number as that used in the text. Most of the operations which have no effect on
the composction of products have been excluded. To further limit the complexity of the diagram, I have omitted any
reference to a) differences in processing and product composition arising from ears being harvested separately from the
straw, b) the preparation of Frikk6 from dough-ripe grain, c) the sheaf-burning of rip& cereals (see text).
U' identifies those which pass
identifies those products and by-products which are retained in the sieves;
'
identifies that fraction which works its way to the surface tf material retained in the sievc
through the sieves;
(Adapted from similar diagrams in Hillman 1981 & 1984)
--
C
SIEVING OF SEED GRAIN
(with specially made 'seed sieves')
I
13a. HARVESTING MILK-RIPE CROPS (by uprooting or reaplng low on the straw)
*--
HARVESTING MATURE CROPS
[ 1 5
with uprooted crops, the culm bases wlth their roots may be chopped off at this po-ntl
I
I
I
I
I
17.
)
I
I
I
"
("
F14 - F1
MILK-RIPE WHEATS
I
I
c/d.
I
[18. RAKING
Gathering of the
singed ears
I
I
I
I
I
I
I
I
Hand threshing
(rubbing)
i
Winnowing by
blowing
I
Hand sorting
II
I
I
i
STORE for weaving,
thatching, etc.
all of the
undamaged straw
by trampling or sledging
\
I
I
-
I
it includes many unthreshed ears
\+
/
' - r l
light chaff (especially from wheats)
some light awn fragments + a few
very light weed seeds
LIGHT CHAFF
for fuel,
temper
( & fodder)
1,
I
grain of varying degrees of
purity, but almost always
including grain-sized weed seeds.
Also, occasional grain sized
culm nodes/bases, basal part of
rachirs, etc. p
J
+
31.
1
32. SUN-DRYING OF
'chob' scimmed off surface /
[omitted from thls dlagraml
[omitted from thls dlagram]
C
GRAIN
1
34
WINN~WINGOF BRAN FROM PEELED GRAIN KERNALS
I
I
grain kernals
(inc. some straw nodes,
weed heads, etc.)
u
-/
bran
for fodder
C
1
35.
CRACKING OF GRAIN KERNALS
1
46.
SIFTING OF CRACKED GRAIN
4
GRAIN SIEVING
unbroken grains - returned to step
u
I
first grade bulgur
*
second grade bulgur
f
u
c. SECOND BULGUR SIEVING
-
w
-
d. 'BULGUR DUST' SIEVING
-
lowest grade bulgur +TARHANA
flour
( transerred
in wet areas where gr&
is sieved indoors on
day-today basis)
w
OTHER GRAIN PRODUCTS
PAR-BUILING OF GRAIN
1u
k'
(to ICLEANINGS STORE1
as above, or dlrect
onto domestic fires1
or midden)
MILLING (for flour)
lu
l"
for domest
(as in "
*
II
I;
1
.
4'
b. FIRST BULGUR SIEVING
-
'fine cleanings', ie. small
weed seeds, tail F a i n ,
small bits of rachis and
(esp. in oats) small segs.
of awn.
grain
grain-sized
weed seeds, etc.
BULGUR PREPARATION
a.
-
leavings
ie. straw nodes,
culm bases, weed heads &
largest weed seeds
23. SECOND SIEVING with finer sieves
(to remove contaminants
than the grain)
'lean
prime
1 /
7
I
all the lighter fragments
of the remaining straw ( +
attached rachises), many awns,
and lighter bits of broken rachises
22. FIRST SIEVING with medium-coarse sieve
-
I
'fine cleanings'
5
20. RE-THRESHING of raked straw whenever
-
(to remove contaminants coarser
than the grain) U
u
grain, now + clean
but including weed rye
grains & often edible
vetch seeds too.
for fodder, fuel
WINNOWINGS (the first round may be applied to the initial products
grain contaminated
with all the denser
weed seeds, weed heads,
culm nodes, etc.
c h o b l (as in step 23)
grain + grain-sized
weed seeds, etc.
!
mixture of free grain,
fine chaff, weed seeds <
and small bits of broken
straw, etc. (thereafter
scraped into heaps)
HAND SORTING
(often omltted)
I
30. HAND-SORTING OF GRAIN
-
FIRIG (Tur.)
ready for
immediate
consumption
I
1
to remove the bulk of the broken straw]
the bulk of
the coarsest
traw
'waste' - conslstg of
weed rye grains + somL
other weed seeds +
much more of the tail grain
From this point onwards, batches of grain are taken from the store and processed differently according to which
food is being prepared. In each case, however, it is usual to first give th? grain an additional cleaning , as
in steps 28-30, below, especially in the case of grain to be prepared as bulgur, though additional cleaning is
not usually applied to grain used for
I
kavurmaE.
28. ADDITIONAL FINE-SIEVING OF GRAIN taken from bulk storage
THRESHING to free the g r a m direct from the ears
a/b. by beating or lashing (today, mainly in areas with wet summers)
SHEAF- BURNING OF
1/3 - 1/12 of grain
(depending on anticipated
yield ratio)
u
*---.*I
diseased grains, infected seeds
of darnel, any remaining florets
of wild oats and chaff, etc.
semi-clean grain
to flour bins)--r
u
PREP.-
HUMMELLING OF BARLEY (gen. for fodder) and the DEHUSKING OF BARLEY & OATS (for human consumption1 have been
omitted from this diagram through lack of space.
--
Hillman
Free-threshing
cereals
WHAT ARE FREE-THRESHING CEREALS?
F r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s a r e t h o s e i n which t h e g r a i n s f a l l f r e e when t h e
e a r s a r e threshed.
( C o n t r a s t t h e 'glume-wheats'
as d e f i n e d i n P a r t I ,
146 f o o t n o t e 1 ) . They i n c l u d e m a c a r o n i wheat ( T r i t i c w n durum) , bread wheat
Indian
(T. a e s t i v u m ) , c l u b wheat (T. a e s t i v w n v a r . aestivo-compactum),
dwarf wheat (T. sphaerococcum), a l l t h e r y e s ( S e c a z e cereaze a g g . ) , a l l t h e
b a r l e y s ( v a r i o u s ~ o r d e w ns p p . ) and a l l t h e o a t s ( v a r i o u s Avena s p p . ) , f o r
which see van Zeist's c l a s s i f i c a t i o n i n BSA 1 ) .
-
"flakedn and nhuZZedrt g d n s
I n t h e most common v a r i e t i e s of b a r l e y and
o a t s , t h e g r a i n s f r e e d by t h r e s h i n g a r e s t i l l t i g h t l y e n c l o s e d w i t h i n t h e
i n n e r m o s t l a y e r s of husk ( h u l l ) , namely t h e lemma and p a l e a ( f o r i l l u s t r a t i o n s s e e C h a r l e s 1984, 28).
Such v a r i e t i e s a r e termed " h u l l e d " .
There
a r e , however, c e r t a i n v a r i e t i e s of o a t s and b a r l e y s i n which t h e g r a i n s ,
when t h e y f a l l from t h e e a r d u r i n g t h r e s h i n g , l e a v e behind t h e i r e n v e l o p i n g
Such
lemmas and p a l e a s ( i n n e r h u s k s ) a l o n g w i t h a l l t h e r e s t of t h e c h a f f .
v a r i e t i e s a r e termed "naked " , and t o d a y a r e r a r e l y grown o u t s i d e T i b e t ,
p a r t s of China and J a p a n , a l t h o u g h t h e y used t o be grown t h r o u g h o u t t h e
Near E a s t and Europe i n t h e N e o l i t h i c a n d , i n some a r e a s , t h r o u g h i n t o
l a t e r p e r i o d s as w e l l .
The h u l l e d forms d i f f e r i n n e e d i n g a n a d d i t i o n a l
o p e r a t i o n t o remove t h e husk.
However, t h i s o p e r a t i o n i s not s t r i c t l y
a n a l o g o u s t o t h e f r e e i n g of glume-wheat
g r a i n s from t h e i r s p i k e l e t s .
(Note: a l l t h e f r e e - t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s a r e naked-grained anyway; t h e r e i s no
To
s u c h t h i n g a s a f r e e - t h r e s h i n g wheat w i t h a h u l l e d ( h u s k e d ) g r a i n .
avoid a d i f f i c u l t " t o n g u e - t w i s t e r " ,
t h e r e f o r e , f r e e - t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s can
c o n v e n i e n t l y be termed " t h e naked w h e a t s " ) .
For a comprehensive r e v i e w of
t h e t e r m s used t o d i s t i n g u i s h naked and h u l l e d g r a i n s i n C l a s s i c a l s o u r c e s ,
s e e M o r i t z 1955.
For t h e f a r m e r , t h e p r i n c i p a l d i f f e r e n c e between h u l l e d - and nakedg r a i n e d v a r i e t i e s of b a r l e y and o a t s a r e a s f o l l o w s :
a) Hulled forms a r e
l e s s s u s c e p t i b l e t o ( t h o u g h f a r from immune t o ) b i r d damage.
b) I f harv e s t e d e a r l y enough t h e r e i s l e s s l o s s of g r a i n d u r i n g t r a n s p o r t from f i e l d
t o t h r e s h i n g - y a r d when h u l l e d forms a r e i n v o l v e d .
With p r e s e n t - d a y , f r e e t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s i n S y r i a t h e I n t e r n a t i o n a l Centre f o r A g r i c u l t u r a l
R e s e a r c h i n Dry Areas (Aleppo, S y r i a ) h a s r e c o r d e d t r a n s i t l o s s e s of a s
much a s 10-15% of t h e g r o s s y i e l d when h a r v e s t s a r e t r a n s p o r t e d d u r i n g t h e
d a y (ICARDA 1980). Ancient f a r m e r s w i l l c e r t a i n l y have been a c u t e l y aware
Apart from
o f t h e need t o l i m i t t h i s l o s s by any means a v a i l a b l e t o them.
n i g h t h a r v e s t i n g ( s e e s t e p 15 i n P a r t I ) , one o b v i o u s counter-measure might
have been t o h a r v e s t t h e ears s e p a r a t e l y from t h e s t r a w , s t r a i g h t i n t o
b a s k e t s o r s a c k s i n which t h e y could t h e n be t r a n s p o r t e d t o t h e t h r e s h i n g
y a r d s w i t h o u t l o s s . However, t h i s s o l u t i o n i n v o l v e s i t s own d i s a d v a n t a g e s . l
c) To produce h u s k - f r e e g r a i n from h u l l e d o a t s o r b a r l e y , a n a d d i t i o n a l deh u s k i n g o p e r a t i o n i s needed ( s e e below).
T h i s i s l i k e l y t o have been a
d o m e s t i c o p e r a t i o n and commonly performed by women.
I n r e p l a c i n g qaked
b a r l e y s and o a t s w i t h t h e i r h u l l e d e q u i v a l e n t s , t h e r e f o r e , t h e f a r m e r s may
w e l l have e n c o u n t e r e d some r e s i s t a n c e w i t h i n t h e home.
However, h u l l e d
b a r l e y ( b u t n o t h u l l e d o a t s ) can be used f o r human consumption w i t h t h e
h u l l s s t i l l attached.
I n d e e d , I always e a t b a r l e y m u e s l i and p o r r i d g e
complete w i t h t h e h u l l s .
N e v e r t h e l e s s , most s o c i e t i e s p r e f e r i t d e h u s k e d ,
and most a r e prepared t o i n v e s t some e f f o r t t o t h i s end ( s e e b a r l e y s e c t i o n
Hillman
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
below).
That h u l l e d b a r l e y s and o a t s n e v e r t h e l e s s r e p l a c e d t h e e a r l i e r ,
naked forms i s t h u s a measure of t h e i r agronomic d i s a d v a n t a g e s , i n p a r t i c u l a r , t h e i r e x t r e m e s u s c e p t i b i l i t y t o b i r d damage.
For Sumer, however, any d i s c u s s i o n of naked b a r l e y may w e l l be academ i c , a s Renfrew's (1984) summary of t h e s p a r s e p u b l i s h e d r e c o r d s of p l a n t
r e m a i n s from s i t e s i n Mesopotamia r e v e a l s a complete a b s e n c e of any i d e n t i f i c a t i o n s of H. nudurn.
( F o r a c l o s e a n a l y s i s of t h e s e i d e n t i f i c a t i o n s ,
see Charles, i n prep.).
However, i t would be s u r p r i s i n g i f e v i d e n c e of
i t s c u l t i v a t i o n i s n o t e v e n t u a l l y r e c o v e r e d from a t l e a s t some N e o l i t h i c
s i t e s i n the area.
FIELD OPERATIONS
involved i n c u l t i v a t i n g free-threshing
STEPS 1-11.
c e r e a l s a r e e s s e n t i a l l y t h e same a s t h o s e b r i e f l y o u t l i n e d f o r glume-wheats
i n P a r t I (Hillman 1984b, 115-117).
It should n e v e r t h e l e s s be s t r e s s e d
t h a t t h e d i f f e r e n t c r o p s p e c i e s and v a r i e t i e s o f t e n d i f f e r markedly from
e a c h o t h e r i n t h e i r o p t i m a l sowing t i m e s , minimum f r e q u e n c y and d u r a t i o n of
i r r i g a t i o n , and i n t h e i r y i e l d - r e s p o n s e s t o any one l e v e l of i r r i g a t i o n .
( F o r a few examples of y i e l d - r e s p o n s e s of t r a d i t i o n a l c r o p s t o e v e n t h e
l i g h t i r r i g a t i o n a p p l i e d u n d e r p a r t i a l l y r a i n - f e d systems of E a s t A n a t o l i a ,
s e e Hillman 1973a, appendix 1 )
.
[An o m i s s i o n from s t e p 3 of P a r t I:
Harvey (1980, 5 ) d e s c r i b e s a S y r i a n s y s t e m o f
sowing i n which "on d e e p e r s o i l s , one p a s s w i t h t h e [feddan] plough s e t s up
r i d g e s ('ayar c u l t i v a t i o n ) ;
t h e seed i s t h e n b r o a d c a s t and a second p a s s
(rdad) s p l i t s the ridges.
B r o a d c a s t seed t e n d s t o c o n c e n t r a t e i n t h e ' a y a r
f u r r o w s and t h e m a j o r i t y of t h e seed i s t h e r e f o r e b u r i e d a t maximum d e p t h ,
Row s p a c i n g i s a b o u t 40 t o 45 cm and row band w i d t h
which i s a b o u t 10 cm.
10 t o 15 cm."
I n view of t h e sowing i n w i d e l y spaced rows i n d i c a t e d i n
some Sumerian t e x t s ( s e e Maekawa 1984, 77-78 and 87; P o s t g a t e 1984, l o o ) ,
s u c h a s y s t e m f o r producing rows w i t h o u t t h e h e l p of s e e d e r a r d s o r any
r e s o r t t o d i b b l i n g i s p e r h a p s of i n t e r e s t t o S u m e r o l o g i s t s . ]
Broadcast sowing i n rows.
12. GUARDING OF RIPENING CROPS
The s h e l t e r s used a r e mentioned i n Hillman
1984b, 117.
The p r e s e n t - d a y c o s t s of paying f o r t h e g u a r d i n g of f i e l d s of
f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s i n t h e Busra a r e a of S y r i a a r e u s e f u l l y summarized
With f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c r o p s , t h e r e i s a l s o a
by Kadow & Seeden 1983.
g r e a t e r need f o r g u a r d i n g a g a i n s t p r e d a t i o n by b i r d s , a s s u c h c e r e a l s a r e
v a s t l y more s u s c e p t i b l e t h a n glume-wheats,
e s p e c i a l l y when t h e y a r e
s l i g h t l y immature.
I n e x p e r i m e n t a l p l o t s of c e r e a l s n e a r C a r d i f f we
r e p e a t e d l y had our bread wheat and e v e n o u r h u l l e d b a r l e y s t r i p p e d by
s p a r r o w s who, by c o n t r a s t , q u i c k l y abandoned t h e i r a t t e m p t s t o e x t r a c t
g r a i n from t h e e a r s of Emmer, E i n k o r n and o t h e r glume-wheats growing i n
p l o t s n e a r b y . Many v i l l a g e s growing f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s t h e r e f o r e organ i s e t h e i r c h i l d r e n t o parade around t h e f i e l d s making a d i n w i t h c l a p p e r s
o r by b e a t i n g c a n s .
They a r e a l s o encouraged t o c u l l t h e b i r d s by s l i n g s h o t s o r by c a t c h i n g them i n s n a r e s :
a d o z e n sparrows can p r o v i d e meat
more t h a n a d e q u a t e f o r a meal f o r two.
13. HARVESTING
The same t h r e e methods a r e used f o r f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s
a s were d e t a i l e d i n s t e p 1 3 of t h e Emmer sequence i n P a r t I (Hillman 1984b,
Hillman
Free-threshing
cereals
117-120).
The d i f f e r e n c e h e r e l i e s o n l y i n t h e r e l a t i v e p o p u l a r i t y of t h e
t h r e e p r i n c i p a l method s :
a ) Uprooting
I n t h e p r e s e n t - d a y Near E a s t , u p r o o t i n g i s most commonly
the
a p p l i e d t o b a r l e y - w i t h o r w i t h o u t t h e h e l p of s p e c i a l b l u n t s i c k l e s
T u r k i s h kaZzp ( s e e glume-wheats s e q u e n c e , s t e p 1 3 a ) . I n d e e d , i n most p a r t s
of Turkey, i t i s u n u s u a l t o s e e i t b e i n g h a r v e s t e d by any o t h e r method.
E l s e w h e r e , however, ( e .g. i n n o r t h C h i n a ) , u p r o o t i n g i s e q u a l l y of t e n
a p p l i e d t o bread w h e a t s ( L e s e r 1931).
P u l s e s a r e a l m o s t always u p r o o t e d .
b) Reaping ears and straw together
i s t h e method which, t o d a y , i s most
t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s , r y e s and o a t s .
-
-
by c u t t i n g low on t h e s t r a w . T h i s
commonly a p p l i e d t o a l l t h e f r e e -
C ) Reaping ears 6epamteZy from the straw.
When t h i s method i s a p p l i e d
t o d a y , i t i s i n v a r i a b l y t o durwn o r bread wheats.
C e r t a i n problems encount e r e d i n t h i s form of r e a p i n g were mentioned under s t e p 13c i n P a r t I , b u t
as i n d i c a t e d above ( p . 4 ) , t h i s method c a n r e d u c e t h e heavy g r a i n l o s s e s
t h a t a r e o f t e n i n c u r r e d between f i e l d and t h r e s h i n g y a r d .
S i g a u t ( i n comment made t o B u t s e r symposium 1984) h a s s t r e s s e d t h a t i t a l s o s a v e s l a b o u r
However, t h e
d u r i n g t h r e s h i n g and winnowing, when time i s a t a premium.
problems of uneven e a r h e i g h t t y p i c a l of many p r i m i t i v e c r o p s (and e v e n
some modern v a r i e t i e s i f sown l a t e ) would s u r e l y i n some c a s e s have
e n f o r c e d r e a p i n g s o low on t h e s t r a w of a l l t a l l e r e a r s a s b o t h t o pre-empt
t h e s e a d v a n t a g e s and s t i l l t o l e a v e s t u b b l e t a l l enough t o j u s t i f y a second
N e v e r t h e l e s s , S i g a u t h a s ample h i s t o r i c a l
r e a p i n g ( s e e P a r t I , p. 1 1 9 ) .
e v i d e n c e of t h e widespread u s e o f t h e "double h a r v e s t " i n m e d i e v a l Europe,
b u t c o n c l u d e s t h a t t h e h a b i t of c u t t i n g h i g h on t h e s t r a w may, i n
North-West Europe a t l e a s t , have been c o n d i t i o n e d a s much by t h e need f o r
t h a t c h i n g s t r a w a s by any o t h e r f a c t o r s ( S i g a u t , p e r s . comm., A p r i l 1985).
M a u r i z i o (1927, 140-1) a l s o g i v e s a c l u e t o a second d e t e r m i n i n g f a c t o r :
f o r p r o d u c t t y p e s c , d and
when g r a i n was c u t i n i t s h a l f - r i p e s t a t e (e.g.
i , b e l o w ) , i n a l l t h e w e t t e r p a r t s of Europe t h e e a r s g e n e r a l l y had t o be
oven d r i e d and were t h e r e f o r e c u t w i t h o u t t h e i r s t r a w .
d ) Ear stripping
R e f e r e n c e was made i n P a r t I ( i n a p o s t s c r i p t t o
s t e p 1 3 ) t o d e v i c e s f o r e a r s t r i p p i n g , i n p a r t i c u l a r t h e " p l u c k i n g clamp"
r e p o r t e d by S i g a u t (1978) a s s t i l l i n u s e i n t h e S p a n i s h p r o v i n c e of
A s t u r i a s ( n o t t h e P y r e n e e s a s I had s t a t e d ) under t h e name mesorias and
used t h e r e f o r h a r v e s t i n g t h e glume-wheat S p e l t (T. s p e z t a ) . It t r a n s p i r e s
t h a t t h i s two s t i c k " p l u c k i n g clamp" h a s i n r e c e n t t i m e s a l s o been used t o
h a r v e s t f r e e - t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s , and S i g a u t ( p e r s . comm. 1985) i n f o r m s m e
t h a t , f a r from i t s h a v i n g been observed i n o n l y one r e s t r i c t e d a r e a ,
e q u i v a l e n t t o o l s have been r e p o r t e d i n use i n G e o r g i a , Armenia, Nepal and
Bhutan.
He c o n t i n u e s : " I n a d d i t i o n , t h e a r e a s where m e s o r i a s - l i k e t o o l s
were used after t h e h a r v e s t p r o p e r , f o r s e p a r a t i n g e a r s o r g r a i n s from t h e
c u l m s , a r e much more numerous t h a n t h e [above] a r e a s where t h e mesorias
a r e used f o r h a r v e s t i n g p r o p e r " ( S i g a u t , p e r s . comm. 1985).
He t h e n g o e s
on t o c i t e h i s t o r i c a l e v i d e n c e of o t h e r forms of p o s t - h a r v e s t e a r s t r i p p i n g
i n Europe (e.g. i n Wiirttemberg).
( I am g r a t e f u l t o F r a n g o i s S i g a u t f o r s o
p a t i e n t l y drawing my a t t e n t i o n t o t h e w e a l t h of h i s t o r i c a l e v i d e n c e from
Europe and t h e USSR r e l a t i n g n o t o n l y t o h a r v e s t i n g methods, b u t a l s o t o
t i l l i n g and f a l l o w i n g . )
Hillman
e ) Ear plucking
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
S i g a u t ( p e r s . comm., A p r i l 1985) h a s r i g h t l y s t r e s s e d
the importance of d i s t i n g u i s h i n g between p l u c k i n g ears and s t r i p p i n g them.
P l u c k i n g , i f i t i s t o be s e e n as a v i a b l e method of h a r v e s t i n g a t a l l ,
seems t o be b e s t s u i t e d t o glume-wheats ( s e e Reynolds 1981) and i s u n l i k e l y
t o have been used f o r h a r v e s t i n g f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s on a s c a l e much i n
e x c e s s of g l e a n i n g .
For t h e b e n e f i t of a r c h a e o b o t - a n i s t s i t should p e r h a p s be mentioned
t h a t , i n glume w h e a t s , p l u c k i n g i n v o l v e s b r e a k i n g a r a c h i s i n t e r n o d e below
t h e l o w e s t f u l l y formed s p i k e l e t of t h e e a r s , and t h u s l e a v e s behind t h e
a b o r t i v e b a s a l s p i k e l e t s . By c o n t r a s t , e a r s t r i p p i n g , e v e n when a p p l i e d t o
glume-wheats, seems l i k e l y t o remove t h e e n t i r e ear + t h e t o p of t h e culm
i n many c a s e s .
I n a r c h a e o l o g i c a l r e m a i n s of c r o p p r o d u c t s , t h e r e f o r e , t h e
p r a c t i c e of p l u c k i n g can r e a d i l y be r e c o g n i s e d from a ) t h e complete a b s e n c e
of remains of t h e s e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c b a s a l s p i k e l e t s i n e i t h e r c o a r s e o r f i n e
' c l e a n i n g s ' ( i n c l . c h o b ) , a n d , b ) t h e i r p r e s e n c e i n remains of s t r a w .
The
p r a c t i c e of s i c k l e r e a p i n g , on t h e o t h e r hand, can be e s t a b l i s h e d from t h e
o p p o s i t e p a t t e r n of a s s o c i a t i o n s i n c h a r r e d remains of t h e s e same c r o p products.
( F o r f u r t h e r d e t a i l s , s e e Hillman 1981, 148-153).
14. TEMPORARY FIELD STORAGE OF HARVESTED SHEAVES
Today, a t l e a s t , proi s r a r e l y r i s k e d w i t h t h e naked-grained
cereals
longed f i e l d - s t o r a g e
( s u c h a s t h e f r e e - t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s ) on a c c o u n t of t h e i r s u s c e p t i b i l i t y t o
b i r d damage.
However, prolonged f i e l d - s t o r a g e i s n o t uncommon w i t h h u l l e d
b a r l e y and o a t s , e x c e p t i n t h e s m a l l e s t f a r m s where ( o r i n d r o u g h t y e a r s
when) t h e r e a r e o n l y s m a l l h a r v e s t s t o be p r o c e s s e d .
By c o n t r a s t , i n damp
a r e a s and a t h i g h a l t i t u d e s , e v e n f r e e - t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s a r e s u b j e c t e d t o
prolonged f i e l d - s t o r a g e - u n l e s s i n d o o r d r y i n g f a c i l i t i e s a r e a v a i l a b l e .
With f r e e - t h r e s h i n g
15. TRANSPORT OF HARVESTED CROP TO THRESHING YARDS
c e r e a l s , t h i s o c c u r s e x a c t l y a s d e s c r i b e d f o r glume-wheats i n P a r t I.
However, t h e g r a i n l o s s e s d u r i n g t r a n s p o r t a r e h e r e even g r e a t e r .
Thus,
f o r b a r l e y and f r e e - t h r e s h i n g wheats grown i n p r e s e n t - d a y S y r i a under t r a d i t i o n a l h u s b a n d r y , ICARDA 1980 h a s r e c o r d e d l o s s e s of 10-15% of g r o s s
grain yield.
Evidence of t h e s e heavy l o s s e s c a n be observed d u r i n g summer
i n t h e Near E a s t a l o n g any t r a c k c o n n e c t i n g f i e l d s and t h r e s h i n g y a r d s : t h e
ground i s s t r e w n w i t h f a l l e n g r a i n d e s t i n e d t o end up i n r o d e n t burrows,
a n t n e s t s and t h e g i z z a r d of s p a r r o w s o r p i g e o n s .
[ S t e p s 15a and 16: p r e c i s e l y a s d e s c r i b e d i n P a r t I (BSA Vol. l ) ]
17. THRESHING
P r e c i s e l y t h e same methods can be a p p l i e d t o f r e e - t h r e s h i n g
c e r e a l s a s t h o s e o u t l i n e d f o r glume-wheats under s t e p 17 i n P a r t I.
However, t h e r e s u l t s of t h r e s h i n g are a l t o g e t h e r d i f f e r e n t .
On b e i n g
t h r e s h e d , t h e g r a i n s of f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s q u i c k l y f a l l f r e e from t h e
e a r s , w i t h o u t need of any of t h e p a i n s t a k i n g p r o c e d u r e s f o r p a r c h i n g and
pounding t h e t h r e s h e d s p i k e l e t s .
A s i n t h e c a s e o f t h e glume-wheats, t h e h a r v e s t e d culms o r u n t i e d
s h e a v e s a r e spread on t h e t h r e s h i n g y a r d s e i t h e r ( i ) d i r e c t from t h e c a r t s ,
o r ( i i ) from heaps formed a t t h e s i d e of t h e y a r d s o r ( i i i ) from h e a p s
Hillman
Free- t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s
b u i l t a t t h e c e n t r e of e a c h y a r d .
T h i s l a s t s y s t e m i s most u s u a l when
o n l y small q u a n t i t i t e s a r e b e i n g t h r e s h e d , and i s u s e f u l l y i l l u s t r a t e d i n
Koyay 1956 from a n example a t KarahByiik V i l l a g e n e a r Kiiltepe:
t h e kesmik
i s p r o g r e s s i v e l y added t o t h e c i r c u l a r dbaek ( l i t . a m a t t r e s s ; i.e t h e
l a y e r b e i n g t h r e s h e d ) from a l a r g e c e n t r a l heap ( t z T ) .
P r e c i s e l y t h e same
s y s t e m i s d e s c r i b e d f o r t h e . J e b e 1 Alawi i n W. S y r i a by Amr E l Azm 1985.
To t h e r e f e r e n c e s g i v e n i n P a r t I c i t i n g a c c o u n t s of t h e 6 p r i n c i p a l
methods of t h r e s h i n g should now be added a few more, a l l of them concerned
w i t h t h r e s h i n g by s l e d g e ( T u r . dbven) o r t r i b u l u m l t h r e s h i n g wain (Tur.
cercer).
F i r s t l y , W i l l i a m s 1972 c i t e s t h e use of t h e c e r c e r armed w i t h
wood o r m e t a l p a d d l e s i n t h o s e s o u t h e a s t e r n a r e a s of Turkey around
G a z i a n t e p and Mardin which, i n t h e p a s t , e x p e r i e n c e d s t r o n g A r a b i c and
Syriac influence.
(To my knowledge, t h e cercer i s a b s e n t from t h e
Anatolian Plateau).
S e c o n d l y , A m r E l Azm 1985 b r i n g s a d e t a i l e d a c c o u n t
from t h e J e b e l Alawi of t h e c o n t i n u e d use of t h r e s h i n g wains f i t t e d w i t h
sharp-toothed s t e e l d i s k s of t h e s o r t which, i n most S y r i a n v i l l a g e s , a r e
now found o n l y i n t h e form of s t r a y s e t s of r u s t i n g d i s k s d i s c a r d e d on middens.
( I n t h e E l Koum a r e a , f o r example, we n o t i c e d t h a t no v i l l a g e midden
seemed complete w i t h o u t them).
It i s of some i n t e r e s t , however, t h a t E l
Azm s u g g e s t s t h a t , i n t h e J e b e l Alawi , t h e s t e e l - d i s k e d t h r e s h i n g wain o n l y
r e c e n t l y r e p l a c e d t h r e s h i n g s l e d s w h i c h , i n t h a t a r e a ( a s i n p a r t s of
P a l e s t i n e ) w e r e f i t t e d w i t h rough b a s a l t i c p e b b l e s a s i l l u s t r a t e d i n Kadour
On t h e o t h e r hand, C h r i s t i a n 1917-18 i n d i c a t e s
and Seeden 1983, p l a t e 23.
t h a t t h e s t e e l - d i s k e d t h r e s h i n g wain was w i d e l y used around Aleppo i n h i s
d a y , a s i t was i n P a l e s t i n e a t t h e t i m e of Dalman (1924-42).
Finally, a
p a r t i c u l a r l y f i n e example of a n I r a n i a n t h r e s h i n g wain w i t h wooden p a d d l e s
a p p e a r s i n f i g . 26 of Lerche and S t e e n s b e r g 1983.
[ S t e p s 1 8 and 19: p r e c i s e l y a s d e s c r i b e d f o r glume-wheat
H i 1lman
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
threshed e a r s .
T h i s a p p e a r s t o be e s p e c i a l l y t r u e of c r o p s t h r e s h e d by
trampling.
(Compare s t e p 21 of t h e glume-wheat sequence i n P a r t I ) .
So,
once t h e g r a i n a l r e a d y s e p a r a t e d i n t h e f i r s t round of primary winnowing
h a s been c o a r s e - s i e v e d ( t h o u g h g e n e r a l l y b e f o r e i t i s f i n e - s i e v e d ) , t h e
keamik i s once a g a i n s p r e a d a c r o s s t h e y a r d , r e - t h r e s h e d and t h e n r e winnowed.
K o ~ a y1951 d e s c r i b e s p r e c i s e l y t h e same p r a c t i c e a t Alaca HByiik
v i Llage : "d6'g'ende eziZmeden kurtuZan kelZeZer k a t z r s a ,
y a b a iZe s u g a r ,
t e k r a r diigen koqarzk" ( " I f , on t h e t h r e s h i n g y a r d , t h e r e remain e a r s which
have escaped b e i n g c r u s h e d ,
[ t h e n t h e y a r e ] raked up w i t h a winnowing
f o r k , and a t h r e s h i n g s l e d g e i s a g a i n p u t t o work.") P a l e s t i n i a n p a r a l l e l s
f o r r e - t h r e s h i n g f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s were c i t e d under s t e p 21 of t h e
glume-wheat sequence i n P a r t I.
....
....
[ S t e p s 22-26 and 28-32 of t h e glume-wheat
n o t a p p l i e d t o any f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l . ]
sequence o u t l i n e d i n P a r t I a r e
This operation i s g e n e r a l l y
22. FIRST SIEVING with medium coarse r i d d l e .
undertaken a t t h e t h r e s h i n g yards.
The s i z e of t h e mesh v a r i e s a c c o r d i n g
t o the g r a i n being sieved:
w i t h w h e a t , t h e y g e n e r a l l y u s e t h e sizmaz
g z z e r , w h i l e w i t h b a r l e y t h e y g e n e r a l l y u s e a sarat.
I n both cases, the
s i e v e s a r e d e s i g n e d t o j u s t a b o u t a l l o w t h e g r a i n t o p a s s and t h u s t o
remove a l l c o n t a m i n a n t s c o a r s e r t h a n t h e g r a i n , i n c l u d i n g weed h e a d s and
most of t h e r e m a i n i n g s t r a w nodes and r a c h i s f r a g m e n t s ( t r a d .
Eng.
"cavings").
T h i s one o p e r a t i o n t h u s combines t h e e f f e c t s of s t e p s 23 and
34 of t h e glume-wheat sequence o u t l i n e d i n P a r t I , b u t t h e w a s t e f r a c t i o n
h e r e l a c k s t h e o c c a s i o n a l ( o f t e n a b o r t i v e ) s p i k e l e t s found i n t h e e q u i v a (Compare
l e n t w a s t e f r a c t i o n from s t e p 34 of t h e glume-wheat sequence.
f i g . 1 of P a r t I w i t h t h a t of P a r t 1 1 ) .
i n Part I.]
With f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s t h e r e i s o n l y a s i n g l e e p i s o d e
20. WINNOWING
of winnowing, and b o t h s t r a w and l i g h t c h a f f a r e s e p a r a t e d from t h e g r a i n
i n t h e one s e t of o p e r a t i o n s a l o n g w i t h a l l l i g h t e r p i e c e s of t h e r a c h i s .
A s a r e s u l t , l i g h t c h a f f , f a l l i n g as a t h i n s p r e a d a t a d i s t a n c e from t h e
winnowing and admixed w i t h much of t h e s t r a w , i s r a r e l y s c r a p e d t o g e t h e r
and s t o r e d a s a s e p a r a t e p r o d u c t a s i t i s i n glume-wheats, u n l e s s , of
c o u r s e , t h e e a r s have been reaped s e p a r a t e l y from t h e s t r a w , i n which c a s e
t h e winnowing can be u n d e r t a k e n on a s m a l l e r s c a l e w i t h l i g h t e r winds s u c h
t h a t t h e l i g h t c h a f f i s r e t r i e v a b l e and s t o r e a b l e a s a s e p a r a t e p r o d u c t f o r l a t e r u s e a s e i t h e r t i n d e r o r f i n e temper.
It should be s t r e s s e d ,
however, t h a t t h i s one e p i s o d e of winnowing of f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s
i n v a r i a b l y i n v o l v e s a t l e a s t two winnowings i n q u i c k s u c c e s s i o n and i s
g e n e r a l l y t h e r e a f t e r supplemented by re-winnowing a f t e r t h e r e - t h r e s h i n g of
i n c o m p l e t e l y t h r e s h e d e a r s d e s c r i b e d below.
( F o r a d e t a i l e d a c c o u n t of
t h e h a n d l i n g of winnowing f o r k s and t h e o r g a n i s a t i o n of winnowing w i t h
r e g a r d t o w i n d - s t r e n g t h and d i r e c t i o n , s e e Dalman 1933, 111, 128).
21. RE-THRESHING AND RE-WINNOWING OF KESMIK
Unlike glume-wheats, t h e
h e a p s of kesmik ( = l i g h t s t r a w from t h e f i r s t round of p r i m a r y winnowing)
from f r e e - t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s i n v a r i a b l y c o n t a i n l a r g e numbers of i n c o m p l e t e l y
23. SECOND SIEVING with grain s i e v e s with mesh f i n e r than i n s t e p 22.
This
o p e r a t i o n i s a l s o u s u a l l y undertaken o u t a t t h e t h r e s h i n g yards and, a g a i n ,
d i f f e r e n t s i e v e s a r e g e n e r a l l y used f o r wheat and b a r l e y ( a b u g d ~ ~kya t b u r u
and a r p a kaZburu r e s p e c t i v e l y ) .
However, when t h e b a r l e y i s i n t e n d e d o n l y
f o r animal consumption, t h e n t h i s second s i e v i n g i s sometimes o m i t t e d
I n d e e d , e v e n when t h e b a r l e y i s i n t e n d e d f o r human consumption, t h e y o f t e n
d i s p e n s e w i t h buying i n s p e c i a l b a r l e y s i e v e s and s i m p l y make use of t h e i r
wheat s i e v e s t o e l i m i n a t e t h e w o r s t of t h e small c o n t a m i n a n t s .
( F o r ment i o n of t h e t r a d i t i o n a l m a n u f a c t u r e of s i e v e s , s e e P a r t I , BSA 1 ) .
.
T h i s o p e r a t i o n performs t h e same f u n c t i o n a s s t e p 35 of t h e glume-wheat
sequence i n P a r t I , i n t h a t t h e meshes a r e woven c l o s e enough t o r e t a i n a l l
t h e prime g r a i n b u t a l l o w s m a l l weed s e e d s , s h o r t awn segments, s m a l l s t o n e s and t a i l g r a i n ( " o f f a l c o r n " ) t o f a l l through.
I n contrast t o the
" f i n e c l e a n i n g s " of glume-wheats, however, s p i k e l e t f o r k s a r e a b s e n t .
A
second w a s t e f r a c t i o n i s a l s o s e p a r a t e d a t t h i s s t a g e , namely t h e "chob"
( t r a d . Eng.) c o n s i s t i n g of
f r a g m e n t s of l i g h t m a t e r i a l which work t h e i r
way t o t h e s u r f a c e of t h e g r a i n where t h e y can be skimmed o f f . E l Azm 1985
f u r t h e r d e s c r i b e s how t h e women s i e v i n g g r a i n i n t h e J e b e l Alawi, by
s i e v i n g s m a l l q u a n t i t i e s a t a time and by s k i l f u l o p e r a t i o n of t h e s i e v e
c a n produce t h r e e s e p a r a t e a g g r e g a t i o n s on t h e mesh s u r f a c e :
prime g r a i n ,
chob and g r a i n - s i z e d s t o n e s .
By a d e f t f l i c k of t h e s i e v e t h e y a r e a b l e
Hillman
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
t o t o s s up j u s t t h e s t o n e s , c a t c h them i n t h e o t h e r hand, and t h u s e l i m i n a t e them.
N e i l 1913, 112, o f f e r s a c l o s e l y observed account of p r e c i s e l y
t h e same o p e r a t i o n s i n a c t i o n i n p a r t s of P a l e s t i n e .
Yet a n o t h e r u s e f u l
account of b o t h s i e v e s and s i e v i n g i s given by C h r i s t i a n 1917-18, who a g a i n
d e t a i l s t h e d i f f e r e n t waste f r a c t i o n s (complete w i t h t h e i r Arabic names)
and, l i k e Dalman (111, 142) and Kadour & Seeden 1983, s t r e s s e s the d i f f e r e n c e between the s i e v e s used f o r wheat and b a r l e y .
Free-threshing
TRANSPORT OF STRAW AND CHAFF FROM THRESHING YARDS TO BULK STORAGE.
CLASSIFICATION OF STRAW TYPES
E x a c t l y a s i n s t e p 27 of P a r t
The d e t a i l s of s t r a w c l a s s e s given i n P a r t I were, i n any c a s e , based
axamples taken p r i m a r i l y from the f r e e - t h r e s h i n g wheats. ]
- THE
I
The v a r i o u s waste f r a c t i o n s e a c h have t h e i r u s e s ( s e e f i g . 1 of t h i s
p a p e r , and s t e p 37b of P a r t I ) .
In p a r t i c u l a r , t h e c o a r s e r c l e a n i n g s a r e
used t o feed "biiyiik hayvan" ( p r i n c i p a l l y c a t t l e ) , and t h e " f i n e c l e a n i n g s "
and "hand s o r t i n g s " t o feed e i t h e r c a t t l e o r , more u s u a l l y , domestic fowl.
(When amalgamated, a s t h e y o f t e n a r e , t h e mixture i s used f o r e i t h e r group
A s i m i l a r p a t t e r n of use of waste f r a c t i o n s i s a l s o recorded
of a n i m a l s ) .
f o r Europe:
an e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y a g r i c u l t u r a l i s t Hillman ( 1 7 1 0 ) , commenting on Tussar 1573, d e s c r i b e s " r i s k " (seemingly a combination 0.' o u r
" c a v i n g s " , "chob" and perhaps " f i n e c l e a n i n g s " ) being fed t o hogs, and
r e f e r s t o " p i c k i n g s " (seemingly "hand s o r t i n g s " w i t h , perhaps, " f i n e
c l e a n i n g s " ) being fed t o p o u l t r y .
( I am g r a t e f u l t o Paul Halstead and
G l y n i s Jones f o r b r i n g i n g t h e Hillman t e x t t o my n o t i c e ) .
For a l t e r n a t i v e s t o f i n e - s i e v i n g , s e e s t e p 35 of P a r t I.
24. GRAIN WASHING (AND SUBSEQUENT SUN-DRYING)
T h i s o p e r a t i o n may be
undertaken e i t h e r a t t h i s s t a g e o r , i n a s l i g h t l y more piecemeal f a s h i o n ,
(The
a s a prelude t o buZgur p r e p a r a t i o n and g r a i n m i l l i n g f o r f l o u r .
l a t t e r s t r a t e g y i s g e n e r a l l y p r e f e r r e d a s i t r e l i e v e s t h e p r e s s u r e of work
d u r i n g bulk g r a i n c l e a n i n g on t h e t h r e s h i n g y a r d s and washed g r a i n intended
f o r buZgur can go s t r a i g h t i n t o the c a u l d r o n s w i t h o u t having t o be d r i e d
first).
The r e a s o n s f o r washing t h e g r a i n were o u t l i n e d i n s t e p 36 of P a r t I.
Of t h e s e , t h e most important i s the e l i m i n a t i o n of t o x i c "bunted" g r a i n s
i n f e c t e d w i t h and e n t i r e l y r e p l a c e d by t h e b l a c k , f o e t i d s p o r e s of T i Z Z e t i a
caries and T. f o e t i d a .
Grain washing i s a common f e a t u r e of a c t i v i t i e s around s p r i n g s , s t r e a m s
and w e l l s of Turkish v i l l a g e s i n h i g h summer, a p o i n t r e i n f o r c e d by Balaman
1969 and K o ~ a y1951, 14.
It must, of c o u r s e , be followed by v e r y thorough
sun-drying, g e n e r a l l y on t h e f l a t rooves (hububat serme'g'i ve s e r i t e r e k
kurutma'g'z).
In f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s , t h e g r a i n i s g e n e r a l l y
25. GRAIN STORAGE
s t o r e d i n o n l y a semi-clean s t a t e ( a s i n d i c a t e d i n f i g . I ) , and i t i s
generally in t h i s s t a t e that it is sold.
(For d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h i s regard
between d i f f e r e n t c e r e a l s , s e e d i s c u s s i o n ' u n d e r s t e p 37 i n the glume-wheat
sequence, and t h e i n t r o d u c t i o n t o the p r e s e n t s e c t i o n on f r e e - t h r e s h i n g
c e r e a l s , p. 4 above).
For mention of systems of measuring g r a i n f o r
s a l e , s e e s t e p 37.A i n P a r t I , and f o r a r e c e n t d i s c u s s i o n of such proced u r e s i n the Old Babylonian period see Veenhof, forthcoming [Ed . I .
cereals
87.
Doughty 1924, 11, 417-8
GRAIN RECOVERY PROM THRESHING YARD ANTS
d ~ o c r i b e s a t h r e s h i n g yard i n Saudi Arabia where the women were s i f t i n g
m t r ' n e s t s f o r the g r a i n " s t o l e n " by them.
H i s purple prose d e s e r v e s
and drew b r i d l e t o
q u o t a t i o n : " I n t h a t yard-side I saw many a n t - h i l l s ;
g o n r i d e r the l a b o u r of c e r t a i n i n d i g e n t hareem t h a t were s i t t i n g b e s i d e
them.
I saw t h e emmets' l a s t confusion (which they s u f f e r e d a s r o b b e r s ) ,
t h e i r a n t c o l o n i e s s u b v e r t e d , and caught up i n t h e womens' meal s i e v e s
that ( c a r e f u l o n l y of t h e i r d e s o l a t e l i v i n g ) tossed sky-high t h e pismire
g e n e r a t i o n , and mingled people and musheyikh i n a homicide r u i n of sand
and g r a i n .
- And e a c h needy wife had a l r e a d y some h a n d f u l s l a i d on h e r
opread k e r c h i e f , of t h i s g l e a n i n g corn".
( I am g r a t e f u l t o Tony Legge f o r
b r i n g i n g t h i s r e f e r e n c e t o my n o t i c e , and f o r e x p l a i n i n g the a r c h a i c
English).
It cannot be claimed t h a t the winnowing and s i f t i n g of a n t s '
n e e t s i s standard a g r a r i a n p r a c t i c e .
Nevertheless, i t i s a p o s s i b i l i t y
t h a t Sumerologists snould perhaps b e a r i n mind i n t r a n s l a t i n g a g r a r i a n
texts.
-
That
ants are
capable
of
carrying
s i g n i f i c a n t q u a n t i t i e s of
grain
down t o t h e i r underground n e s t t o feed t h e i r l a r v a e i s supported by observ a t i o n s of t h e a u t h o r : more than 250 T r i t i c w n durum g r a i n s per hour were
observed being c a r r i e d from a newly sown f i e l d i n t o t h e e n t r a n c e t o an
The roba n t s ' n e s t n e a r t h e s i t e of Cayijnii, N. of Diyarbaklr (Turkey).
bery of newly sown g r a i n u n d e r l i n e s t h e n e c e s s i t y of timing sowing t o
c o i n c i d e w i t h the a r r i v a l of autumn ( o r s p r i n g ) r a i n s , t h u s e n s u r i n g the
i n s t a n t germination which a l o n e can pre-empt t h e p r e d a t i o n s of a n t s , b i r d s
and r o d e n t s .
However, i t should be added t h a t we have observed a n t s
r a i d i n g even a s t a n d i n g c r o p of b a r l e y n e a r T e l l Kaya ( S y r i a ) :
whole
segments of head were b i t t e n o f f and c a r r i e d away by a n t s swarming up t h e
-
I
[28. ADDITIONAL SIEVE-CLEANING OF ALL GRAIN DRAWN FROM BULK-STORAGE,
29. ADDITIONAL WINNOWING,
30. HAND-SORTING OF GRAIN (PRIOR TO FOOD PREPARATION)
A s i n s t e p s 38-40 of P a r t I ]
I have y e t t o observe sheaf-burning of mature f r e e SHEAF-BURNING?
t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l s a s o u t l i n e d f o r glume-wheats i n pp. 141-3 of P a r t I ,
a l t h o u g h j u s t such a p r a c t i c e i s r e p o r t e d f o r some b a r l e y c r o p s i n t h e
On the o t h e r o t h e r hand, sheaves of immaShetland I s l e s by Fenton 1978.
t u r e , naked wheats a r e r e g u l a r l y burned t o produce s p e c i a l g r a i n p r o d u c t s
In t h e s e
such a s fzrzg and f r i k k k ( s e e g r a i n foods c ) and d ) , below).
c a s e s , however, t h e purpose i s somewhat d i f f e r e n t from t h e sheaf-burning
(See f i g . 1 f o r t h e b a s i c s t e p s of t h e
d e s c r i b e d i n P a r t I , 141-143.
sheaf-burning sequence).
H i 1 lman
Free-threshing
cereal
Free-threshing
FOODS PRODUCED FROM GRAINS OF FREE-THRESHING CEREALS
This f l o u r i s u s u a l l y boiled i n water o r
t o produce a g r u e l of t h e same name. A l t e r n a t i v e l y , k a v u t i s sometiuoed t o produce b r e a d , though w i t h o u t need of f u r t h e r baking ( s e e food
UCO
I: FROM FREE-THRESHING WHEATS
a ) Roasted g r a i n (Tur. k a v u m & kavunnag , o r l o c a l l y k a v u r g a t r k ) .
So
f a r , I have s e e n o n l y t h e f l o u r y - g r a i n e d forms of naked w h e a t s (and occas i o n a l l y t h e b a r l e y s ) used f o r r o a s t i n g .
The r e a s o n i s t h a t f l o u r y
g r a i n s p u f f up more r e a d i l y on h e a t i n g and a r e l e s s g r i t t y t o e a t .
The
u s u a l c a n d i d a t e s i n c l u d e t h e many s o f t - g r a i n e d v a r i e t i e s o f T. aestivm
( b r e a d w h e a t ) and t h e somewhat less common s o f t - g r a i n e d v a r i e t i e s of T.
turgidurn ( r i v i t wheat) and T. durum ( m a c a r o n i w h e a t ) .
(The f l i n t y g r a i n s
o f Emmer would p o s s i b l y be t o o g r i t t y ) .
Grain i s t a k e n from b u l k s t o r a g e and s u b m i t t e d t o t h e same a d d i t i o n a l
c l e a n i n g o p e r a t i o n s a s t h o s e t h a t p r e c e d e buZgur p r o d u c t i o n from glumew h e a t s , d e s c r i b e d i n s t e p s 3 4 , 35 and 36 of P a r t I.
To t h e c l e a n wheat
g r a i n a r e then commonly added a h a n d f u l of t h e flavoursome f r u i t l e t s o f
P i s t a c i a t e r e b i n t h u s ( t e r e b i n t h t r e e ; Tur. mavi m e r l e n g e g ) o r P. atlantica
(which i s g e n e r a l l y picked in i t s s l i g h t l y u n r i p e s t a t e ) .
In addition,
l e n t i l s , cannabis seeds, barley
t h e y o f t e n t o s s i n a few c h i c k - p e a s ,
g r a i n s o r even a few of t h e s p i c e y a n t i - f l a t u l e n t s e e d s of f e n n e l
(FoenicuZum v u z g a r e )
The m i x t u r e , t o g e t h e r w i t h a s p r i n k l i n g of s a l t , i s
now h e a t e d i n an i n v e r t e d sag! u n t i l most of t h e c e r e a l g r a i n s have s w o l l e n
and s p l i t open.3
A t t h i s p o i n t , t h e m i x t u r e (kavu-)
i s emptied i n t o
bowls r e a d y f o r immediate consumption.
Any c h a r r e d g r a i n s ( t h e r e a r e
Dalman 1931, 111, 60
o f t e n q u i t e a few) a r e picked o u t and d i s c a r d e d .
q a z i j e ) being prepared i n t h e f i e l d
a l s o d e s c r i b e s r o a s t e d g r a i n (Ar.
from whole bunches o f r i p e e a r s f o r t h e b e n e f i t of r e a p e r s , n e i g h b o u r s
a n d , above a l l , t h e poor.
.
The e f f e c t of r o a s t i n g i s n o t m e r e l y t o r e n d e r t h e g r a i n s s o f t and
floury, but a l s o t o p a r t i a l l y convert the s t a r c h t o sweet-tasting
dextrins.
This conversion occurs a t ca.
200'
C ( T y l e r 1962).
R o a s t i n g c l e a r l y r e p r e s e n t s t h e s i m p l e s t and q u i c k e s t way of r e n d e r i n g
g r a i n p a l a t a b l e and d i g e s t i b l e , though t o d a y , a t l e a s t , r o a s t e d g r a i n ,
l i k e t h e even more p o p u l a r r o a s t e d c h i c k - p e a s (ZebZebi) , r a r e l y p r o v i d e s
On t h e o t h e r hand, kauumna'g' i s o f t e n t h e
t h e major meal of t h e d a y .
f i r s t food o f f e r e d t o g u e s t s on a r r i v a l i n t h e homes o f T u r k i s h v i l l a g e r s ,
and s e r v e s a s a s n a c k w h i l e t h e d a u g h t e r s bake t h e bread t h a t w i l l form
t h e c e n t r e of t h e meal t h a t i s t o f o l l o w .
b ) F l o u r from r o a s t e d g r a i n (Tarkzna and k a v u t ) .
Pounded kavumna'g' i s
o f t e n added t o y o T u r t t o produce t h e d e l i c i o u s t a r k z n a which i s e a t e n
f r e s h ( c o n t r a s t t a r h a n a , d e s c r i b e d below under f and i n s t e p 46d of P a r t
I).
For a d e s c r i p t i o n of e q c i v a l e n t p r o d u c t s i n P a l e s t i n e , s e e A v i t s u r
1977, 230.
That t h e combination of pounded, parched g r a i n w i t h y o g h u r t o r
b u t t e r m i l k was p o p u l a r w e l l beyond t h e c o n f i n e s of t h e Near E a s t i s
a t t e s t e d i n Fenton 1978 f o r t h e S h e t l a n d I s l e s and i t was r e g u l a r l y e a t e n
by t h e p r e s e n t a u t h o r i n r u r a l p a r t s of F i n l a n d where i t was c a l l e d
virkuna.
I n some p a r t s of Turkey, however, kavurma'g' i s o c c a s i o n a l l y prepared i n g r e a t e r b u l k , t h e n ground i n a r o t a r y quern ( e l de'g'imneni) t o
cr r r r l a
a special f l o u r (kavut).
I n c o n t r a s t t o t h e f r i k k 6 of S y r i a
scorched, milk-ripe g r a i n .
P a l e s t i n e ( s e e b e l o w ) , t h e A n a t o l i a n fzrzg i s p r e p a r e d on o n l y a s m a l l
1s from g r a i n a t an even l e s s advanced ( m i l k - r i p e ) s t a t e of m a t u r i t y .
the s i m p l i c i t y of i t s p r e p a r a t i o n i t p a r a l l e l s kavurmag, a n d , l i k e
Urn*,
i s consumed o n l y a s a snack.
With f z r z g , however, t h e s n a c k s
g e n e r a l l y prepared and e a t e n o u t i n t h e f i e l d s r a t h e r t h a n i n t h e
om,. p- r i m a r i l y by t h o s e engaged i n weeding t h e c r o p s ( s e e s t a g e 10 i n t h e
g p r sequence above, P a r t I ) .
bmg:
I
So f a r , I ' v e s e e n fzrzg prepared o n l y from naked wheats s u c h a s T.
and T. a e s t i v u m .
a ) E a r s a r e plucked o r c u t ( o r t h e whole p l a n t u p r o o t e d ) when t u r n i n g
from g r e e n t o y e l l o w , a t which s t a g e t h e g r a i n s a r e somewhere between
"milk-ripe" and "dough-ripe".
(In both s t a t e s the grain i s s t i l l s o f t ,
b u t i n t h e former i t i s p o s s i b l e t o squeeze o u t a milky j u i c e w h i l e i n t h e
l a t t e r it is not).
b ) The e a r s a r e t h e n l a i d on t o p of a s m a l l , open heap of s t r a w a n d / o r
d r y weeds which a r e t h e n i g n i t e d .
The f i r e q u i c k l y b u r n s i t s e l f o u t
l e a v i n g l i g h t l y s i n g e d e a r s l y i n g among t h e a s h e s .
c ) The s i n g e d e a r s a r e t h e n picked o u t and broken ( t h r e s h e d ) by
rubbing them between t h e hands o v e r a bowl i n t o which f a l l s t h e m i x t u r e of
g r a i n s , l i g h t c h a f f , and r a c h i s e s .
d) The c h a f f i s n e x t winnowed away by t h e fzrzg-maker simply by
blowing i n t o t h e bowl.
Any r a c h i s e s remaining w i t h t h e g r a i n are picked
out and d i s c a r d e d a l o n g w i t h any c h a r r e d g r a i n s .
e ) The half-cooked, h a l f - r i p e g r a i n i s then e a t e n w h i l e i t i s s t i l l
warm.
The sweet f l a v o u r and j u i c y t e x t u r e make fzrzg v e r y p a l a t a b l e ,
a l t h o u g h f o r c e r t a i n of o u r c o l l e a g u e s i t proved t o have d r a m a t i c a l l y
purgative p r o p e r t i e s .
The o n l y equipment used t o d a y i s a bowl and
cigarette lighter.
durum
A v i t s u r 1977 d e s c r i b e s what a p p e a r s t o be an i d e n t i c a l p r o c e s s i n
P a l e s t i n e and names t h e p r o d u c t karmel (Heb.).
He a l s o d e s c r i b e s an
"intensive" , village-based
v e r s i o n of k a m e 2 p r o d u c t i o n i n which t i e d
b u n d l e s of e a r s a r e " s i n g e d " by b e i n g passed back and f o r t h o v e r t h e f l a mes and t h e n t h r e s h e d by b e i n g rubbed a g a i n s t an upturned r i d d l e i n a t u b
I t should however be n o t e d t h a t
o r s i m i l a r r e c e p t a c l e (see h i s Fig. 3).
t h e t e r m "karmeZ" i s a l s o a p p l i e d t o t h e p r o d u c t d e s c r i b e d below under t h e
A r a b i c name of f r i k k 6
.
E q u i v a l e n t t r a d i t i o n s a p p e a r t o have e x i s t e d i n r e c e n t t i m e s w e l l
Thus, Gunda 1983, 151, r e c o r d s ( a l b e i t f o r Emmer beyond t h e Near E a s t .
a glume-wheat) t h a t i n Hungary " t h e h a l f - r i p e e a r s a r e s c o r c h e d , t h e
g r a i n s rubbed o u t between t h e palms and w i l l t h u s be e a t e n i n an a l m o s t
p r e h i s t o r i c way".
For r e f e r e n c e t o f o o d s prepared from mashed f z r z g , s e e
p r o d u c t i) ( i i ) below.
Hillman
Free-threshing
cereals
F r e e - t h r e s h i n g ce r e a l 8
.
d ) ~ r i k k k(Ar ) : s c o r c h e d , c u r e d , d ough-ripe g r a i n .
Unlike f zrzg, f r i k k e
i s g e n e r a l l y produced i n b u l k a n d , a p p a r e n t l y , always from dough-ripe
Today, a t l e a s t , t h e o n l y wheat used i s ,
g r a i n ( c o n t r a s t fzrzg, a b o v e ) .
apparently,
durum.
For t h e f o l l o w i n g rough o u t l i n e of t h e p r o c e s s I
am v e r y g r a t e f u l t o P h i l W i l l i a m s ( p e r s . comm. 1982) of t h e Grain Research
Lab., Manitoba, who i s c u r r e n t l y p r e p a r i n g a f i r s t - h a n d d e t a i l e d a c c o u n t
of
frikk6
production
for
the
forthcoming
issue
of
Rachis
(see
bibliography).
( I have n o t y e t w i t n e s s e d t h e p r o c e s s i n p e r s o n ) .
T O
a ) The c r o p i s h a r v e s t e d w h i l e t h e g r a i n i s s t i l l dough-ripe and
b ) t h e h a r v e s t e d mate r i a l f i r e d
C)
he r e s i d u e i s t h e n winnowed and c o a r s e - s i e v e d t o s e p a r a t e t h e
s i n g e d e a r s from t h e mass of a s h and c h a r r e d p i e c e s of s t r a w .
dl Next, t h e e a r s a r e a p p a r e n t l y t h r e s h e d by r u b b i n g bunches of t h e m
a g a i n s t a r i d d l e p l a c e d o v e r a r e c e p t a c l e of some k i n d .
(Compare
A v i t s u r ' s d e t a i l s , above).
el The s i n g e d , t h r e s h e d g r a i n i s f i n a l l y " c u r e d " by s p r e a d i n g i t on
.
i n d o o r s u r f a c e s and l e a v i n g i t i n t h e d a r k f o r t h r e e d a y s .
thoroughly d r y , the g r a i n i s stored i n sacks.
f ) It i s cooked by b o i l i n g - as p e r b u t g u r , b u t f o r l o n g e r .
Once
~ r i k k 6 can be bought i n most S y r i a n and P a l e s t i n i a n m a r k e t s a n d , i n
our experience , r e q u i r e s c a r e f u l hand-sorting
t o remove s m a l l s t o n e s
b e f o r e cooking.
This precaution i s necessary w i t h a l l g r a i n products
( o t h e r t h a n t h o s e based on s i f t e d f l o u r ) , b u t w i t h f r i k k 6 , t h e n e c e s s i t y
of c u r i n g i t by s p r e a d i n g i t on f l o o r s , e t c . , seems t o expose i t t o an
additional
risk
of
contamination
with
small
stones
depending
( p r e s u m a b l y ) on t h e c u r i n g s u r f a c e used.
-
A v i t s u r 1977 a l s o d e s c r i b e s f r i k k 6 p r o d u c t i o n on a commercial s c a l e i n
P a l e s t i n i a n v i l l a g e s s o u t h of Hebron.
(Again, he a p p l i e s t h e Hebrew name
kamel).
P r e c i s e d e t a i l s a r e n o t o f f e r e d , though one c l e a r d i f f e r e n c e i s
i n t h e use of s l e d g e s t o t h r e s h t h e g r a i n from t h e e a r s .
However, t h i s
a p p l i c a t i o n of t h e t e r m k a m e 2 d o e s n o t c a u s e t h e same d e g r e e of c o n f u s i o n
a s i t s a p p l i c a t i o n ( c i t e d a b o v e ) f o r a p r o d u c t t h a t a p p e a r s (from A v i t s u r
1977) t o be t h e P a l e s t i n i a n e q u i v a l e n t of t h e T u r k i s h fzrzg.
In t h e
a p p a r e n t a b s e n c e of A r a b i c ( o r Hebrew) t e r m i n o l o g y which c o n v e n i e n t l y
d i s t i n g u i s h e s t h e two p r o d u c t s , we can p e r h a p s r e f e r t o one as t h e
" ~ u r k i s hfzrzg", t h e o t h e r a s t h e "Arabic f r i k k 6 " , t h i s r e g a r d l e s s of t h e
common o r i g i n of t h e two words, a s n o t e d by P o s t g a t e 1984, 105.
For
C l a s s i c a l t i m e s , P l i n y ( H i s t . Nut. x v i i i , 298) d e s c r i b e s t h e h a r v e s t i n g of
u n r i p e g r a i n , though he d o e s n o t d e s c r i b e how i t was processed o r on what
s c a l e - whether a s fzrzg o r f r i k k 6 .
E q u i v a l e n t t r a d i t i o n s a g a i n e x i s t w e l l o u t s i d e t h e Near E a s t .
The
~ c h w a b i a n l ~ a v a r i a nGrunkern i s p r e p a r e d and consumed i n s i m i l a r form
( p r o f . ~ S r b e r - G r o h n e, p e r s comm. ) , and a l t h o u g h produced o n l y from S p e l t ,
Emmer and Einkorn , may, e l s e w h e r e , have been prepared from f r e e - t h r e s h i n g
wheats too.
.
h i l e d , whole g r a i n s (from r i p e e a r s )
A,
w i t h glume-wheats,
whole g r a i n t h a t h a s j u s t
been b o i l e d
i n the
r w of buZgur p r e p a r a t i o n i s r e g u l a r l y consumed a s a s n a c k o r a s a mida at en by
(@y
r n l by t h o s e i n v o l v e d i n t h e work ( s e e s t e p 38, P a r t I ) .
) ~ B
t r i t i s h s t u d e n t s , T. durum g r a i n consumed i n t h i s form proved even
mm
p u r g a t i v e t h a n b o i l e d g r a i n s of Emmer).
(44)
Aqure.
Boiled whole g r a i n of T . durwn, i s a l s o used a s t h e b a s i s of a
( a q u r e ) which h a s p a r t i c u l a r s i g n i f i c a n c e i n t h e r e l i g i o u s
C a r e f u l l y c l e a n e d whole g r a i n s
@ @ l e n d e rof t h e A l e v i o r d e r of d e r v i s h e s .
he u s e d , b u t more commonly t h e y use g r a i n s which have had t h e i r p e r i Oarpa ( b r a n ) removed i n s t a g e 40 of t h e b u t g u r
sequence a s o u t l i n e d i n
@@mplex d i s h
They a r e t h e n b o i l e d u n t i l t h e y a r e v e r y thorough)art
I f o r emmer wheat.
l y cooked
and g e l a t i n o u s , bean f l o u r and some whole beans a r e a d d e d ,
t o g o t h e r w i t h honey, some sesame, broken n u t s , cinnamon a n d , a s t h e m i x t u r e
Today, s u g a r i s
s e n e r a l l y used i n p l a c e of honey, though i n t h e i s o l a t e d r e g i o n of ~ e r s i m
i n the S.
Munzur m o u n t a i n s , t h e y s a y t h e y used t o use pounded w h i t e
cooks, h a n d f u l s of t h e f l e s h y s e e d s of pomegranates.
m u l b e r r i e s a s t h e s o l e s w e e t e n e r i n t h i s a s i n a l l o t h e r sweet d i s h e s . On
c o o l i n g , i t s e t s a s a sweet j e l l y and i s d e l i c i o u s .
ur
1977, 231, c i t e s t h e p r e p a r a t i o n of what may be aI n st ri imgiul ianr g lpyr,o dAuvc it t s on
"festive
and
mourning
occasions"
amongst
Christian
communities i n
Palestine. 4
Of t h e f r e e Buzgur and tarhana (from f r e e - t h r e s h i n g w h e a t s ) .
t h r e s h i n g wheats o n l y macaroni wheat (T. durum) i s r e g u l a r l y used t o prodtlce b u t g u r .
Bread wheat i s q u i t e u n s u i t a b l e , though i t can n e v e r t h e l e s s
he used t o produce v a r i o u s forms of g r o a t s o r p o r r i d g e ( s e e below).
f)
Following a d d i t i o n a l c l e a n i n g ( a s i n s t e p s 38-40 i n P a r t I ) , a n d ,
Rometimes, g r a i n washing d e f e r r e d from s t e p 24 ( p . 8 a b o v e ) , p r o d u c t i o n
from T. durum g r a i n f o l l o w s p r e c i s e l y t h e same sequence a s t h a t a p p l i e d t o
Emmer g r a i n ( s e e s t e p s 41 t o 47 i n P a r t I ) .
BuZgur p r o d u c t i o n from T.
dururn g e n e r a t e s t h e same t h r e e g r a d e s of g r i t s a s Emmer, and t h e y a r e p u t
t o p r e c i s e l y t h e same u s e s .
These i n c l u d e ( i n some v i l l a g e s ) t h e ~ r o d u c t i o n of d r i e d b a l l s of t a r h a n a ( s e e s t e p 45d i n P a r t I ) which p r o v i d e an
i n v a l u a b l e means of p r e s e r v i n g t h e e a r l y summer s u r p l u s of m i l k p r o d u c t s ,
a s w e l l as of u t i l i z i n g a low-grade c e r e a l by-product.
(1n Sumer, t h e
s u r p l u s of m i l k would presumably have climaxed i n t h e s p r i n g ) .
The econornic a d v a n t a g e s of d o m e s t i c p r o d u c t i o n of t a r h a n a i n even urban comm u n i t i e s i s touched on by B e n e d i c t 1974, 164, and t h e w i n t e r s t o r a g e of
t a r h a n a i s d e s c r i b e d by Balaman 1969, 268.
g) Crushed g r a i n ( g r o a t s ) , made i n t o p o r r i d g e o r g r u e l , Tur. zWMany g r o u p s s h o r t c u t even t h e most a b b r e v i a t e d buzgur-making sequence by
s i m p l y c r u s h i n g (pounding) t h e i n t a c t g r a i n s i n a m o r t a r and b o i l i n g them
i n w a t e r t o produce p o r r i d g e which t h e y e a t w i t h o r w i t h o u t t h e a d d i t i o n
o f milk p r o d u c t s a n d / o r f l a v o u r i n g s such a s honey.
T h i s p r a c t i c e was,
a p p a r e n t l y , e s p e c i a l l y p r e v a l e n t amongst g r o u p s s u c h a s t h e ~ e d o u i nwhose
mobility r e q u i r e d them t o r e s t r i c t t h e amount of heavy s t o n e equipment
Hillman
Free-threshing
cereals
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
t h a t t h e y c a r r i e d around ( s e e Musil 1928a & b; H i i t t e r o t h 1959).
Indeed,
Musil c i t e s crushed g r a i n (Ar. d e r s h i s h 6 ) a s h a v i n g been t h e p r i n c i p a l
f a r i n a c e o u s food of t h e Ruwala and o t h e r Bedouin.
For e q u i v a l e n t f o o d s
consumed by s e d e n t a r y f a r m i n g g r o u p s , see Kogay and ~ l k i i c a n 1961.
According t o A v i t s u r 1977, b o t h g r o a t s and t h e urban g u i l d of g r o a t s m a k e r s
a r e c i t e d i n Talmudic s o u r c e s .
It should a g a i n be s t r e s s e d t h a t p o r r i d g e c a n , i f r e q u i r e d , be produced from buZgur by prolonged b o i l i n g i n ample w a t e r .
Indeed, the princ i p a l f a r i n a c e o u s food of Latium seems t o have been puZs based on Emmer
b u l g u r ( s e e P a r t I , p. 141).
W p l i n g s (stewed dough) from r i p e g r a i n s .
1i n g s r e p r e s e n t a p a r t i c u l a r l y c o n v e n i e n t way of r e n d e r i n g c e r e a l f l o u r
l a , and t h e many r e f e r e n c e s t o them by M a u r i z i o 1927 and o t h e r a u t h a u g g e s t s t h a t , i n some p a r t s of c e n t r a l and n o r t h e r n Europe a t l e a s t ,
once r e p r e s e n t e d one of t h e p r i n c i p a l forms i n which c e r e a l p r o d u c t s
eaten.
Normally, mature g r a i n w a s used ( c o n t r a s t i ) ( i i i ) above).
I have n o t knowingly e n c o u n t e r e d dumplings i n t h e Near E a s t , t h e
a i b i l i t y of t h e i r h a v i n g played a p a r t i n i t s e a r l i e r c u l i n a r y h i s t o r y
not a l t o g e t h e r be e x c l u d e d .
b)
h ) A f u r t h e r form o f mashed wheat k e r n e l s (Tur. Akdene).
Balaman 1969, 268, d e s c r i b e s t h e kzg hazzrZzkZarz ( p r e p a r a t i o n s f o r wint e r ) i n t h e v i l l a g e of G r e n c i k as i n c l u d i n g t h e m a n u f a c t u r e of akde;ze.
In
h i s l i s t of l o c a l t e r m s used i n d a i l y l i f e a t t h e v i l l a g e ( p . 2 8 8 ) , he
d e f i n e s a k d e n e as buydayzn d i b e k t e dijgiilerek kabuyundan pzkarztrnzg h a Z i
("wheat g r a i n s i n a s t a t e i n which t h e i r bran h a s been removed, pounded
It would a p p e a r t h a t t h i s p r o d u c t u s e s par-boiled g r a i n
i n a mortar").
k e r n e l s t a k e n from s t e p 4 of t h e b u l g u r sequence ( s e e f i g . I ) , i . e . from
t h e e q u i v a l e n t of s t e p 44 of t h e glume-wheat p r o c e s s i n g sequence o u t l i n e d
i n P a r t I.
I have n e v e r e n c o u n t e r e d a k d e n e m y s e l f , and p r e c i s e l y how i t i s
f i n a l l y p r e p a r e d f o r human consumption i s n o t c l e a r .
Nevertheless, it
i s y e t one more g r a i n p r o d u c t which may have some a n t i q u i t y and be c i t e d
in e a r l y texts.
Paeta/Noodles (Tur. makamra)
i s l i t t l e e v i d e n c e r e l a t i n g t o t h e o r i g i n s of t h e s y s t e m of mixing
#lour and e g g s t o make a p a s t a - l i k e p r o d u c t which could be d r y - s t o r e d f o r
l a t e r use.
More c e r t a i n i s t h e f a c t t h a t bread wheat i s q u i t e u n s u i t a b l e
md, t o d a y , o n l y T. dururn i s used. The u n s u i t a b i l i t y of bread wheat was
811 t o o a p p a r e n t from an e p i d e m i c of w i f e - b e a t i n g i n I t a l y i n t h e 1960s
YIYn p a s t a m a n u f a c t u r e r s r a n o u t of T. durum and c o v e r t l y used T. aestivurn
(bread wheat) i n s t e a d , w i t h t h e r e s u l t t h a t , on c o o k i n g , t h e p a s t a
d i r s o l v e d i n t o a g l u t i n o u s mass.
The economic importance of s u c h p r o d u c t s l i e s i n t h e i r p r o v i d i n g a
m a n s of s t o r i n g s u r p l u s e g g - p r o d u c t s i n r e l a t i v e l y s t a b l e form.
It i s
no c o i n c i d e n c e , t h e r e f o r e , t h a t we f i n d A n a t o l i a n h o u s e h o l d s p r e p a r i n g
n o o d l e s whenever e g g s are p l e n t i f u l and cheap.
The economics a r e b r i e f l y
Balaman 1969, 268, a l s o c i t e s p a s t a proo u t l i n e d by B e n e d i c t 1976, 164.
d u c t i o n as one of t h e s t a n d a r d p r e p a r a t i o n s f o r w i n t e r a t t h e v i l l a g e of
Orencik n e a r Klzilcahamam.
i ) Foods p r e p a r e d from crushed o r ground g r a i n h a r v e s t e d in i t s milk- o r
dough-ripe state.
A t l e a s t t h r e e such foods a r e reported i n the ethnog r a p h i c l i t e r a t u r e a n d , a l t h o u g h n o t r e p o r t e d from t h e Near East, may w e l l
have been consumed t h e r e i n t i m e s p a s t .
1) Stewed dough-cheese m i x t u r e (Tur
( i ) F i r s t , t h e SchwabianIBavarian GriinkemmehZ i s p r e p a r e d from d r i e d ,
ground, ' h a l f - r i p e '
g r a i n s and t h e n c e used t o make t h e "uorziigZiche"
Griinkemsuppe a s w e l l a s o t h e r d i s h e s ( M a u r i z i o 1927, 141).
While, i n
Schwabia, a t l e a s t , t h i s food was (and i s ) p r e p a r e d o n l y from S p e l t , Emmer
and E i n k o r n , M a u r i z i o a l s o q u o t e s T r e i c h e l 1885, 216, who n o t e s t h a t t h e
Kasubians used h a l f - r i p e r y e ( a f r e e - t h r e s h i n g c e r e a l )
den s i e am
Ofen d i j r r e n und auf d e r Handmiihle mahlen".
No d o u b t naked wheats have
sometimes been used i n j u s t t h e same way.
"...
( i i ) S e c o n d l y , Gunda 1983, 151, q u o t e s P i n t 6 r 1909, 244, a s o b s e r v i n g t h a t
.) t h e n o t y e t f u l l y ripe,
"Among t h e P o l o c z (Hungarian e t h n i c g r o u p
m i l k y r y e e a r s a r e scorched on t h e f l a m e , t h e g r a i n s a r e crushed i n a
wooden m o r t a r , and t h e p u l p i s baked on embers i n f i s t - s i z e d lumps o r as
c a k e s " ( I am g r a t e f u l t o Mark N e s b i t t f o r b r i n g i n g t h e Gunda paper t o my
notice).
S i m i l a r f o o d s have e l s e w h e r e d o u b t l e s s been prepared from naked
w h e a t s , t o o , e s p e c i a l l y i n a r e a s n o t s u i t e d t o rye c u l t i v a t i o n .
...
f i i i ) T h i r d l y , M a u r i z i o (1927, 140) c i t e s y e t a n o t h e r food " d i e a u s
u n r e i f e m Korn b e r e i t e t wurde", namely t h e P o l i s h and Bohemian prazmo which,
under t h e name p r a z n o , Gunda 1983, 151 d e s c r i b e s a s " a knoedeZ-like meal"
i . e . dumplings of some s o r t .
- 16 -
-re
.
.
pirohu, p i r o f u )
Some v i l l a g e s produce a n o t h e r d r y - s t o r e a b l e p r o d u c t by mixing wheat f l o u r
w i t h t h e d r y powdered form of t h e c h e e s e of s h e e p and g o a t s .
They are
mixed wet and allowed t o d r y o u t i n b a l l s o r lumps which a r e s t o r e d f o r
l a t e r consumption a s a stewed cheese-dough d i s h c a l l e d p i r o h u .
Thus,
while n o t used t o produce a s o u p , as T a r h a n a , i t p r o v i d e s a v e r y s i m i l a r
means of c o n s e r v i n g s u r p l u s m i l k - p r o d u c t s i n a h i g h l y r e s i s t a n t form.
Balaman 1969 d e s c r i b e s p i r o f u p r o d u c t i o n as one of t h e s t a n d a r d p r e p a r a t i o n s f o r w i n t e r a t 0 r e n c i k v i l l a g e , and a seemingly i d e n t i c a l p r o d u c t i s
d e s c r i b e d f o r t h e Turan a r e a of NE I r a n by M a r t i n 1980, where i t i s
apparently called a r i s h a .
m) Unbaked bread
A s mentioned under food b) above, t h e f l o u r ( k a v u t ) prepared from r o a s t e d
g r a i n (kavurmay) i s sometimes used t o p r e p a r e b r e a d , s i m p l y by t h e a d d i t i o n
of w a t e r and w i t h o u t need of f u r t h e r baking.
Such f l o u r h a s p a r t i c u l a r l y
good k e e p i n g p r o p e r t i e s and t h i s , w i t h t h e absence of any need of baking
f a c i l i t i e s , h a s i n t h e p a s t made i t t h e p r e f e r r e d food of many t r a v e l l e r s ,
s h e p h e r d s and o t h e r s w i t h o u t r e a d y a c c e s s t o ovens.
T h i s advantage i s
s t r e s s e d by b o t h Musil 1928a & b and A v i t s u r 1977.
HilLman
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
n) Bread (ekmek)
S e v e r a l o p e r a t i o n s a r e involved i n making b r e a d , but a s s o much i s a l r e a d y
published on t h e s u b j e c t , o n l y t h e b r i e f e s t o u t l i n e i s included h e r e .
f i l Grain washing (buzday y z k a m a ~ z ) , d r y i n g and r e s a c k i n g .
This s t e p i s
o f t e n omitted and may, i n any c a s e , have a l r e a d y been undertaken a t an
e a r l i e r s t a g e ( s e e s t e p 24 above, f o r d e t a i l s ) .
Normally, once washed and
d r i e d , t h e g r a i n intended f o r m i l l i n g i s immediately sewn i n t o c l o s e l y
woven woollen s a c k s ( s i n g . buyday p u v a l z ) of one k i l e ( c a . 100 l i t r e s )
c a p a c i t y , a l l r e a d y f o r e v e n t u a l t r a n s p o r t t o t h e m i l l ( i f n o t hand-milled
a t home).
These g r a i n s a c k s a r e o f t e n r i c h l y ornamented, e i t h e r w i t h t h e
p a t t e r n woven ( i n k i l i m s t y l e ) o r embroidered ( c i c i m s t y l e ) , o r w i t h a more
o r n a t e p a t t e r n i n c o r p o r a t e d by double weaving w i t h i n p a n e l s (swnak s t y l e ) .
However, Kogay 1951, 14, a l s o d e s c r i b e s t h e washed and d r i e d g r a i n being
t r a n s p o r t e d t o t h e m i l l s t i t c h e d up i n s i d e e s p e c i a l l y l a r g e " c a r t - s a c k s "
(ka'hz 9uvaZz) of 400-450 l i t r e c a p a c i t y and moun ted on s o l i d -wheel c a r t s .
These a r e g e n e r a l l y of d a r k g o a t - h a i r .
( i i ) Grain measuring (buyday b'tpemeyi) , g e n e r a l l y by volume u s i n g a wooden
perik, pinik o r s i n i k .
Today, i n communal w a t e r - m i l l s , e a c h measure i s
poured d i r e c t i n t o t h e s q u a r e wooden hopper which f u n n e l s t h e g r a i n down
i n t o the hole i n the t o p millstone.
C l e a r l y , t h e g r a i n i s measured a t
Today, a t l e a s t ,
t h i s p o i n t o n l y i f i t i s being m i l l e d o u t s i d e t h e home.
i t i s u s u a l f o r the m i l l e r of a community water-mill t o take 1/20 of e i t h e r
t h e g r a i n o r t h e r e s u l t i n g f l o u r a s payment f o r h i s s e r v i c e s ( s e e K o ~ a y&
~ l k i i c a n 1961).
f i i i ) M i l l i n g fdeyirmende b'ziitmeyi).
The d i v e r s e range of methods and
equipment f o r m i l l i n g g r a i n a r e w e l l summarised elsewhere.
For c l a s s i c a l
t i m e s , Moritz 1958 p r o v i d e s a remarkably thorough s u r v e y , though, a s he
himself s t r e s s e s , much of t h e equipment was used o n l y i n s o p h i s t i c a t e d
urban c e n t r e s and i s u n l i k e l y t o have been found i n Sumer. C e r t a i n l y t h e y
a p p e a r t o have been more s o p h i s t i c a t e d than t h o s e now found i n t h e s m a l l e r
v i l l a g e s of r u r a l Turkey.
To produce f i n e r f l o u r , t h e g r i s t i s re-milled.
( i v ) F l o u r s i f t i n g f u n elemegi).
The r e s u l t i n g f l o u r i s sieved - f i r s t l y
t o remove s m a l l p i e c e s of g r i t which a r e sometimes shed by t h e m i l l s t o n e s ,
s e c o n d l y (and sometimes i n c i d e n t a l l y ) t o remove a l l t h e l a r g e r f l a k e s of
bran.
In p r e s e n t d a y Turkey, t h e f l o u r s i e v e s a r e woven from f i n e w i r e
though t h e o l d e r v i l l a g e r s r e c a l l t h e use of s i e v e s of woven wool.
For
c l a s s i c a l t i m e s , P l i n y ( H i s t . Nut. x v i i i , 108) r e p o r t s t h a t " G a l l i c provinc e s invented a kind of b o l t e r ( c r i b r o r w n g e n e r a ) made of h o r s e h a i r " , t h a t
i n Spain t h e y "made s i e v e s and meal s i f t e r s of f l a x " , and i n Egypt of
"papyrus and r u s h " .
Moritz 1958 concludes t h a t two d i f f e r e n t g r a d e s of
f l o u r s i e v e were used i n sequence : t h e c r i b r w n p o l z i n a r i u m and t h e c r i b r w n
excussariwn.
(Within t h i s l a s t grade he i n c l u d e s t h e c r i b r w n farinoswn.)
Both g r a d e s were made of l i n e n , which i n n o v a t i o n P l i n y a t t r i b u t e s t o Spain.
P o l l u x a p p a r e n t l y s u g g e s t s t h a t e f f e c t i v e s i e v i n g of f l o u r i n c l a s s i c a l
t i m e s f i r s t became p o s s i b l e w i t h t h e replacement of reed s i e v e s by s i e v e s
woven from l i n e n , though Moritz 1958 s u g g e s t s t h a t the f i n e s t s i e v e ( t h e
name of which, he n o t e s , r a r e l y a p p e a r s i n e a r l y t e x t s ) was probably used
o n l y i n s o p h i s t i c a t e d urban c o n t e x t s .
lli1lman
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
It must be s t r e s s e d t h a t t h e modem o b s e s s i o n w i t h " p u r e " , chalkd u l t e r a t e d , white bread b e r e f t of t h e f i b r e n e c e s s a r y i n h e a l t h y d i e t was
first adpoted by t h e s e l f - s t y l e d e l i t e of urban c e n t r e s of the Roman
Empire. But from G a l e n ' s f r a n k commentary on t h e v i r t u e s of v i l l a g e b r e a d s
of r u r a l Pamphylia and Thrace, i t i s c l e a r t h a t t h e maladies c o n d i t i o n e d by
d i e t s of f i b r e l e s s pap were r e s t r i c t e d t o t h e towns.5 Those of us working
i n r u r a l a r e a s of t h e Near E a s t can be g r a t e f u l t h a t t h e s t i l l e x t a n t fad
k q u e a t h e d by t h e Roman f a s h i o n a b l e s h a s y e t t o b e g u i l e t h e p a l a t e s of t h e
m a j o r i t y of Near E a s t e r n v i l l a g e r s .
(u) Leavening fmayatandzmna)
In a d d i t i o n t o t h e s t a n d a r d present-day
p r a c t i c e of simply u s i n g soured dough r e t a i n e d from a few d a y s p r e v i o u s l y ,
P l i n y ( H i s t . Nut. x v i i i , 68-69 and 102-4) o u t l i n e s a number of o t h e r
leavens used i n h i s d a y : a ) Foam from t h e v a t s i n which g r a i n was being
ateeped i n p r e p a r a t i o n f o r m a l t i n g ;
b) m i l l e t dipped i n unfermented wine
c ) c a k e s of wheat bran a g a i n
( a v a i l a b l e o n l y d u r i n g wine-making s e a s o n ) ;
d ) b a r l e y leaven which soured q u i c k l y
dipped i n unfermented white wine;
onough n o t t o need d i p p i n g i n wine; e ) f l o u r ( ? s o u r e d ) of b i t t e r v e t c h o r
chick-peas ( c i c e r c u z a e ) used t o leaven b a r l e y bread; f ) wheat f l o u r b o i l e d
down i n t o a p o r r i d g e and allowed t o go s o u r .
( v i ) Bread baking fekmezin p i p i r m e g i ) Many ( b u t c e r t a i n l y n o t a l l ) of t h e
b a s i c systems of bread baking used i n P a l e s t i n e a r e c o n v e n i e n t l y summarised
md c l a s s i f i e d by A v i t s u r 1977.
More e x t e n s i v e d e t a i l s of s p e c i f i c forms
of baking and t h e equipment used a r e published -- f o r Turkey by Oral 1956
and 1957, Ongan 1958, Kogay & ~ l k i i c a n 1961, and Giikoglu 1966;
for
P a l e s t i n e by Wilson 1906, Dalman 1928-39, v o l s . 2 and 7;
f o r some of t h e
Dedouin by Musil 1928a & b; f o r some Kurdish f a m i l i e s by Hansen 1961; f o r
the 2-layered f l a t bread of n o r t h S y r i a , Williams & E l Haramein 1982; and
for t h e Near E a s t i n g e n e r a l , Lerche 1980?. A u s e f u l summary of t h e prep a r a t i o n of unleavened bread i n t h e Near E a s t , Europe and elsewhere i s a l s o
given i n Maurizio 1916.
For evidence of t h e use i n Mesopotamia a l r e a d y by
the 3rd millennium B.C. of a range of t h e baking systems d e s c r i b e d by t h e
above a u t h o r s , see Crawford 1981.
o) Sprouted g r a i n ( m a l t ) p r o d u c t s .
These can be e i t h e r r o a s t e d o r a i r - d r i e d p r i o r t o p r e p a r a t i o n a s soup,
p o r r i d g e , bread o r a s t h e base f o r f e r m e n t a t i o n i n b e e r p r o d u c t i o n , e t c .
(see P o s t g a t e 1984, 106).
11: FOODS FROM BARLEY
In t h e Near E a s t , most of t h e b a r l e y i s today grown a s f o d d e r , p r i m a r i l y
f o r sheep and g o a t s .
(Of t h e g r a i n f e e d s , c a t t l e respond b e t t e r t o t h e
p u l s e s s u c h a s b i t t e r v e t c h ( V i c i a e r v i ' l i a ) , common v e t c h ( V i c i a s a t i v a )
and cow ve t c h l i n g ( L a t h y r u s s a t i v u s ) ) N e v e r t h e l e s s , i n Turkey, a t l e a s t ,
b a r l e y i s s t i l l used i n s m a l l q u a n t i t i e s a s a t h i c k e n e r f o r soups and i n
kavurmag
.
.
Hillman
Free-thre shing c e r e a l s
Free-thre shing c e r e a l s
As s t r e s s e d i n t h e i n t r o d u c t i o n above, t h e 6-rowed naked b a r l e y s grown
i n t h e Near E a s t d u r i n g t h e n e o l i t h i c have l o n g s i n c e been r e p l a c e d by t h e
However, b e f o r e t h e s e h u l l e d
h u l l e d e q u i v a l e n t s - b o t h 6- and 2-rowed.
b a r l e y s are p r e p a r e d as f o o d , t h e y have a t l e a s t t o be hummelled ( u n l e s s
t h e y a r e o f t h e rare, a w n l e s s t r i f u r c a t w n v a r i e t i e s ) a b u t are g e n e r a l l y
( b u t n o t always) dehulled a s w e l l .
( D e h u l l i n g o b v i a t e s t h e n e c e s s i t y of
p r i o r hummelling).
Hummezling i s t h e removal of t h e b a s a l b i t of t h e awn, g e n e r a l l y complete
w i t h t h e t o p of t h e l e m m a .
It i s o f t e n a p p l i e d t o b a r l e y i n t e n d e d a s a n i m a l f o o d , as w e l l as t o g r a i n i n t e n d e d as food f o r humans.
Most of t h e
d a n g e r o u s l y r o b u s t awn of e a c h g r a i n w i l l have been broken o f f and
fragmented d u r i n g t h r e s h i n g , b u t t h i s l e a v e s t h e l o w e s t m i l l i m e t r e o r two
p r o t r u d i n g from t h e g r a i n apex.
T h i s p r o t r u d i n g awn base would be
d a n g e r o u s i f i n g e s t e d , a s , p r e s e n t e d as a broken e n d , i t i s w e l l a b l e t o
p e n e t r a t e t h e f l e s h , e s p e c i a l l y i n t h e most common v a r i e t i e s o f 6-rowed
b a r l e y which have p a r t i c u l a r l y r i g i d awns.
Hummelling i s g e n e r a l l y done w i t h a m o r t a r and p e s t l e ( o r m a l l e t ) o r ,
i n t h e NW European t r a d i t i o n , w i t h a "hummeller" c o n s i s t i n g of a rod w i t h ,
a t t a c h e d t o i t , a t r a n s v e r s e p l a t e composed of a chequerboard of v e r t i c a l
" b l a d e s " o f wood o r i r o n .
The g r a i n i s poured i n t o a f l a t - b o t t o m e d t r o u g h
and stamped w i t h t h e hummeller.
No d o u b t many o t h e r d e v i c e s can be (and
have b e e n ) used t o a c h i e v e t h e same e n d .
Once removed, t h e awn b a s e s
( g e n e r a l l y w i t h a p i e c e of lemma a t t a c h e d ) a r e e l i m i n a t e d from t h e g r a i n by
winnowing and / o r s i f t i n g
.
I
The use of m a l l e t s and m o r t a r s t o d e - h u l l
barley i s clearly not
k a t r i c t e d t o Turkey.
Under t h e name of "knocking s t o n e s " , b r o a d - r i m e d
#Cane m o r t a r s and wooden m a l l e t s have i n r e c e n t t i m e s been used t o d e h u s k
b e l e y a s f a r a f i e l d a s Orkney and S h e t l a n d (Fenton 1 9 7 8 ) , and Maurizio
i t 2 7 r e c o r d s s i m i l a r p r a c t i c e s i n c e n t r a l and east Europe. On t h e o t h e r
b d , Axel S t e e n s b e r g , d r a w i n g on h i s r i c h memories of l i f e on h i s f a m i l y ' s
gatm and l a t e r a s a farm-hand i n Zealand, r e p o r t s t h e f o l l o w i n g :
"My
t@therd i d n o t have a m o r t a r and pestle; i n f a c t , t h e s e t o o l s were unknown
h Denmark f o r t h e p r o c e s s i n g o f b a r l e y (de-husking).
He used t h e f l a i l
upon t h e b a r l e y u n t i l t h e h u s k s were o f f .
It r e q u i r e d some time and
Ntience.
But i n w i n t e r he had time enough." ( S t e e n s b e r g , p e r s . comm.
1984). [ I am g r a t e f u l t o Axel S t e e n s b e r g a ) f o r s o g e n e r o u s l y making t h i s
md s o much o t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n a v a i l a b l e t o me, and b ) f o r k i n d l y g i v i n g
pIrmissionforme toquote fromhisletters.]
Onceremoved ( b y w h a t e v e r
I f barley
ayrtem) t h e h u l l s are e l i m i n a t e d by winnowing a n d / o r s i f t i n g .
# r a i n i s t o be d e - h u l l e d , i t w i l l n o t g e n e r a l l y be hummelled.
p) Roasted b a r l e y
This sometimes forms a component of kavurma'g' ( s e e above, p. 10 under a ) ) b u t
1, today r a r e l y e a t e n on i t s own.
The h u l l s are n o t removed p r i o r t o
roasting.
P l i n y ( H i s t . N a t . x v i i i , 74) n o t e s t h a t the " I t a l i a n s bake i t
( b a r l e y ] w i t h o u t s t e e p i n g i t i n water" which may p e r h a p s a l s o r e f e r t o some
r o r t of b a r l e y kavurma'g'.
He a l s o r e f e r s ( x v i i i , 73) t o r o a s t e d b a r l e y
being m i l l e d and used t o m a k e p o r r i d g e .
q ) Barley porridge
De-huzzhg ( t o remove lemmas and p a l e a s , which, i n t h e h u l l e d b a r l e y s , are
f u s e d t o t h e s u r f a c e of t h e g r a i n ) .
B a r l e y d o e s n o t have t o be d e - h u l l e d
i f t h e g r a i n i s e a t e n i n r o a s t e d form o r as raw, c r u s h e d ( " r o l l e d " ) g r a i n s
mixed w i t h , s a y , m i l k i n t h e form of a m u e s l i o r cooked as p o r r i d g e ( s e e p.
4 above).
For most o t h e r c l a s s e s of f o o d , however, t h e h u l l s a r e g e n e r a l l y
s t r i p p e d o f f and t h e r e s u l t i n g "pearl b a r l e y " used i n s t e a d .
That e a r l i e r
p o p u l a t i o n s a l s o p r e f e r r e d t h e i r b a r l e y t o be peeled i s i m p l i e d i n P l i n y ' s
and i t a p p e a r s t h a t p o t t a g e [from
comment ( H i s t . N a t . x v i i i , 8 4 )
E m e r ] was as much unknown t o Greece a s p e a r l [ = p e e l e d ] b a r l e y w a s t o
Rome".
The i m p l i c a t i o n i s r e i n f o r c e d f o r n e a r b y P h r y g i a by t h e r e c o v e r y of
a p o t o f b a r l e y p e e l i n g s from one of G o r d i o n ' s p a l a c e - q u a r t e r megara i n
which s e v e r a l s t e p s o f g r a i n - p r o c e s s i n g a p p e a r t o have been i n p r o g r e s s
when t h e c i t y was a t t a c k e d and burned i n t h e e a r l y 7 t h c e n t u r y B.C.
( H i l l m a n , unpub.).
"...
The methods of b a r l e y p e a r l i n g i n p r e s e n t - d a y h a t o l i a are p r e c i s e l y
t h e same as t h o s e a p p l i e d i n removing t h e bran from p a r - b o i l e d wheat g r a i n
i n t h e t h i r d s t e p of b u t g u r p r o d u c t i o n ( s e e s t e p 4 3 i n P a r t I ) , namely,
t h e y u s e e i t h e r t h e heavy s e t e n o r e l s e a d i b e k ( m o r t a r ) t o g e t h e r w i t h
With b a r l e y p e e l i n g , however, t h e g r a i n d o e s
e i t h e r mallets o r pestles.
n o t have t o be b o i l e d and d r i e d b e f o r e h a n d , though my i n f o r m a n t s ( e .g. a t
Mecitijzii kijyii) were c a r e f u l t o stress t h e i m p o r t a n c e of a ) t h e b a r l e y g r a i n
b e i n g p r o p e r l y r i p e n e d and d r i e d , b l s p r i n k l i n g t h e g r a i n w i t h w a t e r immed i a t e l y p r i o r t o pounding i t i n t h e d i b e k o r r a s p i n g i t i n t h e s e t e n .
However, p r i o r p a r c h i n g a l s o h e l p s , a p o i n t a l s o n o t e d by Hopf 1962.
20 -
-
Today p e a r l ( i . e . p e e l e d ) b a r l e y i s o f t e n m i l l e d , crushed and e a t e n as
p o r r i d g e , and t h e p r a c t i c e c l e a r l y h a s r e s p e c t a b l e a n c e s t r y ,
Pliny (Hist.
Nat. x v i i i , 7 2 ) c l a i m s t h a t " t h e Greeks p r e f e r i t t o any o t h e r g r a i n f o r
p o r r i d g e " and t h a t t h e y added t o i t " l a r g e q u a n t i t i e s of r o a s t e d l i n s e e d l a
l a x a t i v e ] and c o r i a n d e r " [an a n t i - f l a t u l a n t ]
Perhaps t h e l a r g e - s c a l e
import of c o r i a n d e r d i s t r i b u t e d i n minimum u n i t s of 17 l i t r e s by t h e
Mycenaeans r e p r e s e n t s an e a r l i e r example of t h e same b a r l e y - e a t i n g t r a d i t i o n ( s e e Chadwick 1976 f o r h i s t r a n s l a t i o n of t h e L i n e a r B t a b l e t s
concerned).
For C l a s s i c a l G r e e c e , M o r i t z 1958 c o n c l u d e s t h a t b a r l e y
p o l e n t a ( p o r r i d g e o r g r u e l ) was prepared d i r e c t from t h e unmilled g r a i n ,
but whether t h e ' m i l l i n g ' can be t a k e n t o imply d e h u s k i n g i s n o t c l e a r .
P l i n y ( x v i i i , 71) n o t e s i t s consumption i n I n d i a a s w e l l .
.
r) "Kneaded t h i n g s " (Greek &a)
M o r i t z 1958, 149-50 a l s o d i s c u s s e s t h e Greek use of b a r l e y t o produce
"kneaded t h i n g s " which, i n t r i g u i n g l y , were n o t baked.
He n o t e s t h a t " t h e
'kneaded t h i n g s ' (mzza) were t h e e v e r y d a y food of t h e g r e a t e r p a r t of t h e
Greek p o p u l a t i o n , f o r a s l o n g a s b a r l e y r e t a i n e d i t s importance".
Sumer
l i k e w i s e seems t o have consumed l a r g e q u a n t i t i e s of b a r l e y , and i t i s
c l e a r l y o f i n t e r e s t t o know i f e q u i v a l e n t p r o d u c t s e v e r formed p a r t of
t h e i r regular d i e t .
Hillman
s ) B a r l e y d u m p l i n g s (stewed dough)
I t seems t h a t f l o u r of a n y c e r e a l
i n c l u d e d ( s e e p r o d u c t j) a b o v e ) .
Free-thre shing c e r e a l s
ll I l 1 man
Free-thre shing c e r e a l s
CONCLUDING COMMENTS: A NOTE OF CAUTION
can
be
eaten
as d u m p l i n g s ,
barley
t ) B a r l e y bread (Tur. arpa ekmezi)
B a r l e y bread i s s t i l l w i d e l y e a t e n , though i t a p p e a r s r a r e l y t o have
r i v a l l e d wheaten bread i n p o p u l a r i t y .
For r e c e n t p a t t e r n s of consumption
and modes of p r e p a r a t i o n ( e s p e c i a l l y i n c e n t r a l and E a s t Europe) s e e
M a u r i z i o 1916 and 1927.
P l i n y ( x v i i i , 71) a g a i n n o t e s i t s consumption i n
I n d i a ; b u t f o r a r e a s n e a r e r home s t a t e s ( 7 4 ) t h a t " b a r l e y bread w a s much
used i n e a r l i e r d a y s , b u t h a s been condemned by e x p e r i e n c e and i s now f e d
t o a n i m a l s " . He l a t e r a d d s ( 1 0 3 ) t h a t b a r l e y bread was leavened by t h e use
of t h e [ f e r m e n t e d ? ] f l o u r of Vicia ervilia ( b i t t e r v e t c h ) and C i c e r arietinwn ( c h i c k - p e a ) .
That b a r l e y bread was r e g u l a r b a s i c f a r e i n P a l e s t i n e a t
t h e time of J e s u s i s s u g g e s t e d by S t . John t h e E v a n g e l i s t ' s r e c o r d of t h e
m i r a c u l o u s f e e d i n g of t h e f i v e thousand (John 6 , 91, and i t s more a n c i e n t
use i s i n d i c a t e d i n E z e k i e l 4 , 12.
u ) Foods from t h e m i l l e t s
The m i l l e t s s h o u l d , p e r h a p s have been i n c l u d e d i n t h e same s e c t i o n as t h e
glume-wheats.
Like t h e glume-wheats
a l t h e g r a i n c a n n o t be p r e p a r e d f o r
b) t h e husks comprise b o t h glumes and
food u n t i l t h e husks a r e removed,
lemmas.
( F o r d e t a i l s of t h e de-husking of m i l l e t g r a i n w i t h m o r t a r s ,
wooden hand-mills
and f o o t p e s t l e s , s e e Gunda 1983, 150 & 160-162.)
N e v e r t h e l e s s , i t must be s t r e s s e d t h a t t h e y a r e q u i t e u n r e l a t e d :
the
m i l l e t s belong t o an e n t i r e l y s e p a r a t e sub-family ( t h e P a n i c o i d e a e ) of t h e
g r a s s mega-f a m i l y ( t h e Gramineae o r Poaceae)
.
I n p r e s e n t - d a y Turkey, m i l l e t s a r e , t o my knowledge, grown p r i m a r i l y
( i ) a s a n i m a l f e e d , t i i ) A; t h e s o u r c e of t h e d e l i c i o u s , m i l d l y fermented
d r i n k c a l l e d boza.
T h i s d r i n k i s c h a r a c t e r i s e d by i t s t h i c k t e x t u r e and
e f f e r v e s c e n t t a s t e , and i s g e n e r a l l y s o l d i n w i n t e r - t i m e
However, P r o f .
David O a t e s r e c a l l s t h a t i n t h e Cukurova of S. Turkey ( C i l i c i a ) , he was
t o l d t h a t cracked m i l l e t was used t o make t h e b e s t q u a l i t y of b u l g u r ( p e r s .
comm. t o t h e e d i t o r , t o whom I am g r a t e f u l f o r b r i n g i n g i t t o my n o t i c e ) .
E l s e w h e r e , m i l l e t g r a i n i s ( o r was) used t o p r e p a r e many of t h e o t h e r f o o d s
l i s t e d f o r wheat and b a r l e y , and f o r i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e i r range and modes
of p r e p a r a t i o n t h e r e a d e r i s r e f e r r e d t o M a u r i z i o 1927 and Gunda 1983.
M i l l e t s a r e of a more t r o p i c a l o r i g i n t h a n o u r o t h e r Near E a s t e r n c e r e a l s ,
a r e a summer c r o p (sown and h a r v e s t e d w e l l a f t e r t h e o t h e r s ) , r e q u i r e
e i t h e r i r r i g a t i o n o r h i g h w a t e r t a b l e , and a r e sown a t low d e n s i t y g e n e r a l l y by d i b b l i n g o r t r i c k l i n g ( s e e P a r t I , s t e p 7 ) .
Regrettably, I
have n e v e r observed t h e i r p r o c e s s i n g f o r human food and can o f f e r n o f i r s t hand i n f o r m a t i o n .
.
TI#* o u t l i n e of o p e r a t i o n s , t h e i r p r o d u c t s and t h e a s s o c i a t e d t o o l s g i v e n i n
I'nrt I and i n t h e p r e s e n t p a p e r i n e v i t a b l y r e p r e s e n t s a g r o s s s i m p l i f i c a I l o n of t h e broad s p e c t r u m of p r a c t i c a l r e a l i t i e s .
For example, t h e r i c h
ngriirian and c u l i n a r y t r a d i t i o n s of even a c o u n t r y a s d i v e r s e a s Turkey
c q l C n r l y encompass o n l y a segment of t h e f u l l range o f p o s s i b i l i t i e s . (The
gcbographic and temporal l i m i t s t o t h e a p p l i c a b i l i t y of Near E a s t e r n e t h n o a g r a r i a n models have been d i s c u s s e d e x h a u s t i v e l y e l s e w h e r e , e . g . i n Hillman
1981, 130-139; 1984a, 7-11).
Even w i t h any one t r a d i t i o n , many a d a p t a t i o n s
nrcn p o s s i b l e a c c o r d i n g t o l o c a l c o n d i t i o n s .
T h i s h a s been s t r e s s e d by
I'rof. Axel S t e e n s b e r g ( p e r s . comm. 1984) who g i v e s t h e f o l l o w i n g example
I r o m h i s e a r l y f a r m i n g e x p e r i e n c e s i n Denmark:
"
my f a t h e r d i d n o t
r~lways use t h e same methods of [ c r o p ] p r o c e s s i n g s t r i c t l y i n e a c h c a s e .
I t depended, of c o u r s e , v e r y much o n , f o r example, t h e c o n d i t i o n s of h a r vvsting [with r e s p e c t t o wetness]
Even t h e t r e a t m e n t s i n t h e barn
c.ould v a r y , a s w e l l a s t h e c l e a n i n g p r o c e s s e s . "
....
....
N e v e r t h e l e s s , t h e r e a r e e v e n t u a l l i m i t s on t h e range of e f f e c t i v e , conv v n i e n t ways of u n d e r t a k i n g any one t a s k u s i n g t r a d i t i o n a l t e c h n o l o g i e s ,
cBven i f t h e t o o l s used may l o o k v e r y d i f f e r e n t i n d i f f e r e n t p a r t s of t h e
world.
For example, throwing a m i x t u r e of s t r a w , c h a f f and g r a i n i n t o t h e
r ~ l rmoved by a c r o s s - b r e e z e i s r e g a r d e d by a l m o s t a l l c u l t u r e s a s one of
I 11e b e s t ways of s e p a r a t i n g t h e t h r e e components.
But t h e t o o l s used t o
propel the mixture i n t o the a i r o f t e n e x h i b i t s t r i k i n g v a r i a t i o n s i n e a c h
r e g i o n . A s f o r t h e s e q u e n c e of t h e d i f f e r e n t o p e r a t i o n s , t h i s a p p e a r s more
inviolate.
For example, most of t h e s t r a w must be s e p a r a t e d from t h e g r a i n
hefore t h e l a t t e r i s s i e v e d t o remove s m a l l - s i z e d c o n t a m i n a n t s , a s , o t h e r w i s e , t h e s t r a w would c l o g t h e s i e v e .
So w i t h most of t h e r e s t of t h e
sequences o u t l i n e d h e r e and i n P a r t I. And of c o u r s e , when a p p l y i n g e t h n o g r a p h i c a l l y based i n t e r p r e t i v e models i n t h e a n a l y s i s of a r c h a e o l o g i c a l /
t e x t u a l d a t a , we d o a t l e a s t know t h a t t h e models r e p r e s e n t p o s s i b i l i t i e s
which a r e (and presumably were) a g r i c u l t u r a l l y f e a s i b l e .
N e v e r t h e l e s s , we
must n e v e r f o r g e t t h a t o t h e r p o s s i b i l i t i e s w i l l o f t e n have e x i s t e d f o r t h e
p e o p l e s concerned
.
POSTSCRIPT: Additional references
The f o l l o w i n g works came t o my n o t i c e t o o l a t e f o r t h e i r c o n t e n t s t o be
a d e q u a t e l y c i t e d i n t h e p r e s e n t paper o r i n P a r t I. However, t h e y c l e a r l y
d e s e r v e t o be b e t t e r known amongst t h o s e involved i n s t u d i e s of e a r l y a g r i culture:
S i g a u t 1977; Lerche & S t e e n s b e r g 1983; Gunda 1983; S i g a u t , i n
p r e s s ; and t h e c o l l e c t i o n of p a p e r s i n t h e volume L e s Hommes e t L e u r S o l s
( s e e under S i g a u t 1977). Each work h a s an e x t e n s i v e b i b l i o g r a p h y .
The r e a d e r s h i p of t h e B u l l e t i n i n c l u d e s a r c h a e o l o g i s t s concerned w i t h
r e c o n s t r u c t i n g p a s t p a t t e r n s of a g r a r i a n l i f e from e x c a v a t e d r e m a i n s , and
i t i s t h e r e f o r e a p p r o p r i a t e f i n a l l y t o c i t e a new and e x c i t i n g s t u d y which
a d d r e s s e s t h i s o b j e c t i v e i n a way which p a r a l l e l s and e x t e n d s t h a t developed by a r c h a e o b o t a n i s t s f o r a ) i n t e r p r e t i n g c h a r r e d remains of c r o p s and
weeds i n terms of a n c i e n t a g r a r i a n p r a c t i c e , and b ) i d e n t i f y i n g p a s t func-
Free-threshing
Hillman
cereals
Free-thre s h i n g c e r e a l s
NOTES
t i o n s of excavated s t r u c t u r e s . 6
I n h e r ' A g r i c u l t u r a l equipment and
a g r a r i a n s o c i a l s t r u c t u r e ' , t h e e t h n o a r c h a e o l o g i s t Valen t i n Roux ( i n p r e s s )
h a s e x p l o r e d ( i n present-day v i l l a g e s ) t h e c o r r e l a t i o n s between - on t h e
one hand - v a r i o u s components of a g r a r i a n s o c i a l s t r u c t u r e , and - on t h e
o t h e r hand - t h e t y p e s and abundance of a g r i c u l t u r a l t o o l s , and t h e i r patt e r n s of d i s t r i b u t i o n r e l a t i v e t o v i l l a g e s t r u c t u r e s of known f u n c t i o n .
Her o b j e c t i v e i n d e v e l o p i n g h e r e t h n o - a g r a r i a n model i s t h u s t o provide
a r c h a e o l o g i s t s w i t h t h e means of i n t e r p r e t i n g remains of t o o l assemblages
(and t h e a s s o c i a t e d s t r u c t u r e s ) i n terms of p a s t p a t t e r n s of a g r a r i a n
s o c i a l s t r u c t u r e . The recovery of i n f o r m a t i o n on a g r a r i a n s o c i a l s t r u c t u r e
i s one of t h e concerns of the Sumerian A g r i c u l t u r e Group, and Roux's work
t h e r e f o r e r e p r e s e n t s y e t a n o t h e r a r e a of s t u d y w i t h which t h e Group must
attempt t o maintain contact.
I.
There a r e e x c e p t i o n s t o t h i s g r e a t e r r e s i s t a n c e of h u l l e d g r a i n t o
These e x c e p t i o n s involve the many c r o p s of 6-rowed
transport losses.
b a r l e y which, f o l l o w i n g i n t r o g r e s s i o n of ' b r i t t l e - r a c h i s genes ' from neighbouring p o p u l a t i o n s of wild b a r l e y , produce e a r s which p a r t l y o r wholly
#hatter a t maturity.
T h i s phenomenon can be encountered i n many p a r t s of
the Near E a s t today and was d o u b t l e s s even more common i n t h e p a s t - when
wild b a r l e y was c e r t a i n l y more abundant than i t i s today.
2. I t i s q u i t e p o s s i b l e t h a t , i n the p a s t , g r a i n may a l s o have been regul a r l y r e t r i e v e d from t h e n e s t s of r o d e n t s , e s p e c i a l l y i n the Near E a s t
where r o d e n t numbers and d i v e r s i t y a r e g r e a t e r than i n Europe.
Peter
In D. C h a n d l e r ' s
Rowley-Conwy k i n d l y brought t h e f o l l o w i n g t o my n o t i c e :
Marlborough as a m i l i t a r y commander (London: B a t s f o r d , 1973), 282, Col.
Sterne i s a p p a r e n t l y quoted a s r e p o r t i n g t h a t "During the s i e g e of Aire
( F r a n c e ] , p r o v i s i o n s were v e r y s c a r c e ;
but one t h i n g gave the s o l d i e r s
r e l i e f and i t i s almost i n c r e d i b l e - and i t was the hoards of corn which
the mice l a i d up i n t h e s t o r e h o u s e s i n the e a r t h , which our men found, and
came home d a i l y loaded w i t h corn which they g o t o u t of t h e s e hoards".
3. A sa9 i s a concave s h e e t of m e t a l , g e n e r a l l y 50-60 cm. a c r o s s and, w i t h
the convex s i d e up, used f o r baking two of the major t y p e s of f l a t bread.
4.
The word a p u r e d e r i v e s from the Arabic 'a's'urah, which r e f e r s f i r s t t o
the f e a s t on t h e 1 0 t h d a y of Muharram, and then t o a d i s h t r a d i t i o n a l l y
e a t e n then.
In Egypt t h i s d i s h i s made of r i c e , milk and duck ( s e e M.
Hinds & S. Badawi, D i c t i o n a r y of Egyptian A r a b i c , forthcoming, s .v. ) , but
the word a l s o r e f e r s t o a "sweet pudding based on whole wheat".
Similar
d i s h e s a r e found a s f u n e r a r y food i n modern Greece, and i n modem I r a q t h e
d i s h 'a's'uriyah i s composed of a mixture i n c l u d i n g wheat, b a r l e y , l e n t i l s ,
green gram, o a t s ( h u r t m a n ) , d r i e d kidney beans, cow pea ( l u b y e ) and r i c e
(Sabah A. J a s i m , p e r s . comm.) [Ed . I .
5. I am indebted t o D r . Stephen M i t c h e l l f o r t r a n s l a t i n g the
passages of Galen from the o r i g i n a l Greek.
relevant
6 . For the a r c h a e o b o t a n i c a l methodology, s e e Hillman 1973b, 1981 & 1984a;
Jones 1981 & 1984; and, f o r some complicating f a c t o r s , Bottema 1984 and
M i l l e r 1984.
Free-threshing
Hillman
cereals
BIBLIOGRAPHY
S. & Seeden, H.
"The American U n i v e r s i t y of B e i r u t r e s c u e e x c a v a t i o n s a t
Shams ed-Din T a n n i r a " , Berytus: Archaeological Studies 28,
87-126.
Al-Radi,
1980
# l l lmnn
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
MI-Azm, Amr
1985
f'cltlton,
A.
1978
A v i t s u r , S.
1977
Balaman
1969
"The way t o b r e a d . The example of t h e l a n d o f I s r a e l " , Tools
and Tillage 214, 228-241.
The E n g l i s h t r a n s l a t i o n c i t e d h e r e i s from t h e New Internutionaz Version, 1979 (London: Hodder & S t o u g h t o n ) .
Bible
B e n e d i c t , P.
1974
UZa: an Anatolian town.
(;a I c n
.
"The c o m p o s i t i o n of some modem c h a r r e d seed a s s e m b l a g e s " , i n
Van Zeist & C a s p a r i e 1984.
J.
CZaudii Galeni Opera Omnia, V I , e d . C.G.
Kuhn, Book 1 ( o f 6 t h
volume). L e i p z i g 1823. ( R e p r i n t 1965, Georg O l m s , Hildesheim)
(;\~nrla , % l a
1983
" C u l t u r a l e c o l o g y of o l d c u l t i v a t e d p l a n t s i n t h e C a r p a t h i a n
a r e a " , Ethnologia Europaea 13 ( i i ) , 146-179.
The
Kurdish
Skrifter.
Bottema, S.
1984
(Ed i n b u r g h ,
(;t!kozlu, Ahme t
I966
"Kastamonu ekmekler" (=The b r e a d s of Kastamonu; i n T u r k i s h ) ,
Tiirk Ethno'g'rafya Dergisi 9 , 101-109.
ll~insen,. H.H.
1961
Leiden: B r i l l .
The Northern I s l e s : Orkney and Shetland.
Donald)
, A.R.
"Ankara
kgylerinden
ijrencikde
meydana
gelen
kiiltiir
d e g i g m e s i " , AnthropoZoji (Ankara i n i v e r s i t e s i D i l ve T a r i h Cografya F a k u l t e s i A n t h r o p o l o j i B i l i m l e r i A r a ~ t l r m aE n s t i t i i s i i
t a r a f i n d a n Y a y m l a r l ) 4 , 259-328.
" E t h n o - a g r i c u l t u r a l s t u d y i n t h e v i l l a g e of E l F i n d a r a i n t h e
Alawite Mountains". ( F i n a l y e a r B.Sc. D i s s e r t a t i o n , I n s t i t u t e
o f Archaeology, U n i v e r s i t y o f London .)
Ilarvey, J.A.
1980
women's l i f e .
KBbenhaven : Nationalmusee t
E t h n o g r a f i s k Raekke, V I I .
Pp. 124.
" P l a n t i n g methods f o r w i n t e r c r o p s i n NW S y r i a " , ICARDA disPp. 29.
cussion paper No. 6 .
Chadwlck, J.
1976
C h a r l e s , M.P.
1984
The Mycenean World.
Cambridge U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s .
Iitllman, ?
1710
" I n t r o d u c t o r y remarks on t h e c e r e a l s " , B u l l e t i n on Sumerian
Agriculture 1 , 17-31.
i n prep.
Ill l l m a n , G.C.
1973a
Agriculture i n Mesopotamia i n the l a t e 4th and early 3rd
millennia
B.C.
(provisional
title)
Ph.D.
Thesis,
Department of Human Environment,
U n i v e r s i t y of London.
C h r i s t i a n , V.
1917-18
"Volkskundliche
Auf zeichnungen
I n s t i t u t e of
aus
Anthropos: Internationale Z e i t s c h r i f t
Sprachenkunde, 12-13, 1014-1025.
Haleb
fiir
Archaeology,
(Syrien)" ,
K5Zker-
,
Doughty, C.M.
1924
Arbeit und S i t t e i n Pali.istinu.
Zweite Reihe:
O l m s Verlagsbuchhandlung, Hildesheim.
7 vols.
Travels i n Arabia Deserta
-
. London
: Cape.
-
26
1964, Georg
population
levels
at
"Crop husbandry and food p r o d u c t i o n : modern models f o r t h e
i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of p l a n t r e m a i n s " , Anatolian Studies 23, 241244.
1981
" R e c o n s t r u c t i n g c r o p husbandry p r a c t i c e s from c h a r r e d remains
of p l a n t s " , i n Mercer 1981, 123-162.
1984a
" I n t e r p r e t a t i o n of a r c h a e o l o g i c a l p l a n t remains: t h e a p p l i c a t i o n of e t h n o g r a p h i c models from Turkey", i n van Z e i s t &
C a s p a r i e 1984, 1-42.
1984b
" T r a d i t i o n a l husbandry and p r o c e s s i n g of a r c h a i c c e r e a l s i n
r e c e n t t i m e s : t h e o p e r a t i o n s , p r o d u c t s and equipment which
might f e a t u r e i n Sumerian t e x t s .
P a r t I: t h e glume-wheats",
Bulletin on Sumerian Agriculture 1 , 114-152.
und
G.
" A g r i c u l t u r a l p r o d u c t i v i t y and p a s t
Asvan", Anatolian Studies 23, 225-240.
1973b
Crawford, H.E.W.
1981
"Some f i r e i n s t a l l a t i o n s from Abu S a l a b i k h , I r a q " , ~ a Z 6 o r i e n t
7 ( i i ) , 105-114.
Dalman
1933
Tussar Redivivus, a s c i t e d by G e o f f r e y Grigson i n t h e 1984
e d i t i o n of T u s s a r c . 1573. (See i n p a r t i c u l a r p. 283).
.
H i llman
Hopf, M.
1962
Free-thre shing c e r e a l s
" B e r i c h t iiber d i e Un t e r s u c h u n g von Samen und H o l z k o h l e n r e s t e n
von d e r A r g i s s a Magula a u s d e r prHkeramischen b i s m i t t e l b r o n z e z e i t l i c h e n S c h i c h t e n " , i n V. M i l o j Z i E , J. Boessneck & M.
HOP£, Die deutschen Ausgrabungen auf der Argissa Ma'g'ula i n
Thessalien. Bonn.
I/
I
!
h m r , P.
M a r t i n , M.
1980
J o n e s , G.E.M.
1981
"Crop
processing
at
Assiros
Toumba:
a
taphonomic
1984
Kadour, H. & Seeden, H.
1983
"Busra 1980: r e p o r t s o f an a r c h a e o l o g i c a l and e t h n o g r a p h i c
campaign", Damaszener Mitteilungen 1, 77-101.
Kogay, H.Z.
1951
Anadolu 'nun Ethno'g'rafya ve FoZ klorina Dair Malzeme: I AlacaHb'yiik.
Das Dorf Alaca-HByiik: M a t e r i a l i e n z u r E t h n o g r a p h i e
und Volkskunde von A n a t o l i e n ( i n T u r k i s h & German).
Tiirk T a r i h Kurumu Basimevi. Pp. 105 + 37 p l a t e s .
Ankara:
"Tiirkiye
Halkinin
maddZ
kiiltiiriine
dair
araatirmalar :
I: C i f t ~ i l i k " . ( R e s e a r c h e s on t h e m a t e r i a l c u l t u r e o f t h e
T u r k i s h P e o p l e : I. Farming; i n T u r k i s h ) . Tiirk Ethno'g'rafya
Dergisi I , 7-55 + p l a t e s 1-20.
Kogay, H.Z.
1961
& c l k i i c a n , A.
Anadolu yemekleri ve Tiirk. mutfa'g'z.
Turkish kitchen; i n Turkish).
L e r c h e , G.
1980(?)
( = A n a t o l i a n f o o d s and t h e
Ankara.
"Khubz Tannur: F r e s h l y consumed f l a t bread i n t h e Near E a s t "
i n A. Fenton & T.M. Owen (ed s .), Food i n ~ e r s p e c t i v e( p r o c e e d i n g s of t h e 3rd I n t . Conf. on E t h n o l o g i c a l Food Research.
C a r d i f f , Wales; 1977).
Edinburgh: John Donald.
L e r c h e , G. & S t e e n s b e r g , A.
1983
"Tools and t i l l a g e i n I r a n . O b s e r v a t i o n s made i n 1965 i n t h e
p r o v i n c e of Kermgn", Tools and Tillage 4 ( 4 ) , 217-248.
des
Pf liiges
.
Miinster:
" C e r e a l c u l t i v a t i o n i n t h e U r 111 p e r i o d " , B u l l e t i n on Sum-
"Pastoral production.
Milk and firewood i n t h e e c o l o g y of
Turan", Expedition 22, 24-28.
Maurizio, A.
1916
1927
" I n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f a r c h a e o l o g i c a l p l a n t remains: ethnographic
models from G r e e c e " , i n van Zeist & C a s p a r i e 1984.
Verbreitung
111, 3.
erian Agriculture 1, 73-96.
study",
Z e i t s c h r i f t fiir Archiiologie 15, 105-112.
und
"An FmBir: a s t r a w rope g r a n a r y " , Gwerin 1 ( I ) , 2-20.
( I am g r a t e f u l t o D r . M. Monk, U n i v e r s i t y of Cork, Eire, f o r
b r i n g i n g t h i s t o my n o t i c e .)
1956
I CARDA
1980
Entstehung
Anthropos-Bibliothek,
Lucas , A.T.
Maekawa, K.
1984
" P o s t - h a r v e s t p r o c e s s i n g of w i n t e r c r o p s i n NW S y r i a " ICARDA
( I n t e r n a t i o n a l C e n t r e f o r A g r i c u l t u r a l R e s e a r c h i n Dry A r e a s )
Discussion Document No. 4 . Aleppo. Pp. 18.
Die
1931
H i i t t e r o t h , W.-D.
1959
Bergnomaden und Yaylabauern i m m i t t l e r e n kurdischen Taurus.
(Marburg Geographische S c h r i f t e n , 11; S e l b s t v e r l a g d e s Geog.
I n s t . d e r k i v . Marburg). Note: v e r y e x t e n s i v e b i b l i o g r a p h y
on t r an shuman c e
.
Free-thre shing c e r e a l s
Hillman
Mercer, R.
1981
" V e r a r b e i t u n g d e s G e t r e i d e s zu Fladen s e i t den u r g e s c h i c h t l i c h e n Z e i t e n " , Anz. Schweis. AZtertumskunde 1 8 , 1-30.
Die Geschichte unserer Pflanzennahrung von den Urzeiten b i s
zur Gegenwart. B e r l i n : Parey.
(ed .)
Farming practice i n B r i t i s h prehistory.
Ed i n b u r g h U n i v e r s i t y
Press.
Miller, N.
1984
"The
interpretation
of
some
carbonized
cereal
remains",
B u l l e t i n on Sumerian Agriculture 1, 45-47.
M o r i t z , L.A.
1955
"
Husked
'
and
'naked
'
grain"
CZassicaZ Quarterly, New Series,
and "Corn",
both i n
5 (=Vol. 4 9 ) , 129-134
The
and
135-141.
1958
Grain m i l l s and flour i n classicai! a n t i q u i t y .
Oxf ord Uni-
v e r s i t y Press.
Musil, A.
1928a
1928b
Palmyrena:
a topographic i t i n e r a r y .
New York: American
Geographical Society.
( D e a l s w i t h t h e R w a l a , 'Umur, Fwa're,
Bani Khalid , Mwali, S b a ' a and Had i d i y i n Bedouin .)
The manners and customs o f the Rwala Bedouins.
.
New York:
"Nigde'de ekmek ve klgekmegi
'winter-bread ' i n d u s t r i e s i n
~thno'g'rafyaDergisi 3 , 67-77.
f a a l i y e t l e r i " (="Bread and
Nigde";
i n T u r k i s h ) , Tiirk
American G e o g r a p h i c a l S o c i e t y
Ongan, H.
1958
Hillman
O r a l , Z.
1956-57
Free-threshing
" S e l ~ u k Devri
yemekleri
ve
Ethnozrafya Dergisi 1 , 73-76;
P i n t e ' r , S.
1909
"A p a l 6 c e s a l 5 d o t t h o n a " .
p e s t ) 1 0 , 200-207
ekmekleri",
2, 29-34.
I
&
11,
Tiirk
"Cereals cultivated i n ancient Iraq",
Agriculture 1 , 32-44.
Bulletin on
Bulletin on Sumerian
S i g a u t , F.
1977
"Agricultural
equipment and
( p l a c e o f p u b l i c a t i o n unknown).
agrarian
social
T u s s a r , T.
c. 1523 e t c .
structure"
"Identification d e s techniques de rEcolte d e s grains alim e n t a i r e s " , J. drAgric. Trad. et de Bot. Appl. 24, 145-161.
Republished 1984 by
Oxford U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s .
T y l e r , C.
1962
Organic chemistry for students of agriculture. London: A l l e n
and Unwin.
Van Z e i s t , W. & C a s p a r i e , W.C. ( e d s . )
Plants and Ancient
1984
Rotterdam: Balkema.
Veenhof, K.R.
forthcoming
"Modern a g r i c u l t u r a l t e c h n o l o g y i n Agvan",
23, 277-279.
1974
" T a r i m s a l Teknoloj i", i n D.H. French e t a l . , "Agvan K a z l l a r l
1971N, O D T ~ ~
Keban Projesi Yayznlarz: Seri 1, 4: 1971
gatzqmatarz (=METU Keban P r o j e c t P u b l i c a t i o n s : 1971 a c t i v i t i e s , s e r i e s 1 No. 4 ) . Ankara: TBrk T a r i h Kurumu Baslmevi.
Man:
studies
Williams, P.C.
forthcoming ( A r t i c l e on t h e t r a d i t i o n a l p r e p a r a t i o n
S y r i a ) , i n a f o r t h c o m i n g i s s u e of Rachis.
of
Frikke
in
NW
oven a t ICARDA",
in
Rachis: Barley, Wheat and Triticale Newsletter 1 , 16-18.
"Quelques n o t i o n s d e b a s e e n matie're d e t r a v a i l d u s o l d a n s
i n Les Hommes et
l e s anciennes a g r i c u l t u r e s euro+ennes",
Five hundred points of good husbandry.
Anatolian Studies
1973
Williams, P.C. & El-Haramein, F. J a b y
1982
"The b u i l d i n g of a Khobz f u r n a c e - t y p e
Zeurs Sols: Les techniques de prSparation du champ dans Ze
fonctionnement et dans Z'histoire des systBmes de culture
(=Journal d'Agriculture Traditionnelle et de Botanique
AppZiquSe, 24) 140-170.
1978
Free-threshing c e r e a l s
W l 1 1 iams, D.E.
1972
"Agricultural
technology"
(under
"Recent. archaeological
r e s e a r c h i n T u r k e y " ) , AnatoZian Studies 22, 19-20.
( a s c i t e d by Gunda 1983).
Reynolds, P.J.
"Deadstock and l i v e s t o c k " , i n Mercer 1981, 97-122.
1981
ROUX, V.
i n press
III l lman
Nsprajzi Muzeum ~rtesitb'je(Buda-
P o s t g a t e , J.N.
1984
" P r o c e s s i n g of c e r e a l s i n t h e c u n e i f o r m r e c o r d " ,
Sumerian Agriculture 1 , 103-113.
Renfrew, J.M.
1984
cereals
in palaeoethnobotany.
" s a g . i l . l a = saggilz, " d i f f e r e n c e a s s e s s e d " . On measuring and
a c c o u n t i n g i n some Old Babylonian t e x t s " ( i n p r e s s ) .
PULSES AND OIL CROP PLANTS
W . van Zeist
(Groningen)
In continuation of the lists of cereal crop plants published in a
previous issue of this bulletin, leguminous crop plants and plants grown
because of the oleaginous seeds are treated in the present paper.
The
information is again presented in a very concise manner, viz. in tabular
form. For further particulars the reader is referred to the literature
cited below.
It should be emphasized that not all the species listed in the tables
have been demonstrated for Near Eastern archaeological sites. The discrepancy between the archaeobotanical and linguistic evidence for the use of
resame in ancient times is one of the problems we are left with.
The
absence of opium poppy in the Near Eastern archaeobotanical record is
another curious fact.
Cicer arietinwn
TrigoneZZa foenwn-graecum
Chick-pea
Fenugreek
In addition to Table 1 the following should be mentioned.
A number
of beans not listed in this table are reported for early historical India
(150 B.C. - A.D. 200): pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan (L.)Millsp.),
black gram
( Vigna mungo (L. )Hepper , syn. Phaseotus mungo L. ) , green gram (Vigna
radiata (L.)Wilczek, syn. PhaseoZus aureus Roxb.) and hyacinth bean (Labtab
purpureus (L.)Sweet, syn. DoZichos ZabZab L.).
Various leguminous species
are at present grown as green fodder, e.g. black medic (Medicago ZupuZina
L.), white melilot (MeZiZotus aZbus Medik.), field melilot (MeZiZotus
officinaZis Lam.), red clover (Trifozium pratense L.) and white clover
( TrifoZiwn repens L )
..
linseed
sesame
5 mm
0
Lens escuzenta
5m r
Fig. 1
Lentil
Pulses & oil crop plants
van Zeist
vm Zeist
Pulses & oil crop plants
TABLE 1 : PULSES
LITERATURE CONSULTED
Ben-Ze'ev, N. & Zohary, D.
"Species relationships in the genus Pisum L.", Israel Journal
1973
of Botany 22, 73-91.
Duke, J.A.
1981
andb book of Legumes of World Economic Importance.
Mansfeld, R.
1959
Crops and Man.
English, German,
French, Arabic
I
ouZinaris Medik.
(-Lens escutenta Moench
Plenum
Press, New ~ork-andLondon.
Harlan, J.R.
1975
bt!n name
t o p . microsperma Barul.
t o p . macrospewna Barul.
I
lentil
Linse
lentille
'adas
small-seeded lentil
large-seeded lentil
American Society of Agronomy, Madison.
Vorliiufiges verzeichnis landwirtschaftlich oder giErtnt7risch
kultivierter Pflanzenarten. Akademie Verlag, Berlin.
Purseglove, J.W.
1977
Tropical Crops, Dicoty Zedons
third impression).
.
Longman, London (reprinted
Now sativum L.
t o p . hortense Aschers.et
Graebn.
Renfrew, J.M.
1973
Palaeoethnobotany.
East and Europe.
The prehistoric food plants of the Near
t o p . arvense (L.)Poir.
Methuen & Co. Ltd., London.
garden pea
Saaterbse
pois rond
field pea
Felderbse
pois gris
bazille
Schultze-Motel, J.
1979
"Die
urgeschichtlichen Reste des Schlafmohns (Papaver
somniferum L.) und die Entstehung der Art", KulturpfZanze 27,
207-215.
Zeven, A.C. & Zhukovsky, P.H.
1975
Dictionary of cultivated plants
diversity. ~udoc,Wageningen.
Zohary, D.
1972
"The wild
cultivated
326-332.
and
their
centres
progenitor and the place of origin of
lentil: Lens cutinaris", Economic Botany
Distribution, origin and other particulars
Lentil is cultivated in most subtropical and
warm temperate regions of the world.
Smallseeded lentil (3-6 mm) was widely cultivated in
ancient times; it formed part of the crop-plant
assortment of the earliest farmers. The largeseeded subspecies (6-9 mm) is not known from
archaeological sites. Lens orientalis (Boiss.)
Hand.-Mazz.,
with a Near Eastern distribution,
is at present regarded as the wild ancestor of
domestic lentil.
Size of orientatis lentils:
2.5-3.0 mm.
The only distinction between wild
and domestic lentil in archaeological sites is
the size of the seeds.
If the seeds are all
less than 3 mm in diameter, it is likely that
the wild lentil is represented.
Garden pea has white flowers and green to yellow
spherical seeds. Field pea has pink or purple
flowers; the seeds are globose or angular with
one or two flat faces, brownish to grey in colour, often mottled. Peas are widely grown in regions with a cool and relatively humid climate.
They were among the crop plants of the early
Neolithic farmers in the Near East. In archaeological finds, spherical and angular forms occur
Pisum humile Boiss. et Nos, with a
together.
Near Eastern distribution, is the probable wild
ancestor of domestic pea.
The latter has a
smooth seed coat, whereas in wild pea the seed
coat is rough. Unfortunately, in charred (archaeological) peas the seed coat is mostly no
longer present.
of
#@or arietinum L.
chick-pea, gram
Kichererbse
pois-chiche
hummus
Chick-pea is widely cultivated in India, the
Near East, the Mediterranean area and Ethiopia
since antiquity. The species requires a cool and
dry climate.
Small numbers of chick-peas have
been recovered on Near Eastern Neolithic sites:
wild or cultivated?
Certainly cultivated in
Bronze Age times.
The ancestry of domestic
chick-pea is not yet known with certainty. Cicer
reticulatum Ladizinsky, which is round in SE
Turkey, is at present regarded as the wild progenitor.
Woia ervitia (L. )Willd.
(-Ervum ervilia L.)
bitter vetch
Linsenwicke
ervilier
kirsanna
At present grown only for stock feed.
Archaeobotanical evidence suggests that in ancient
times bitter vetch was also consumed by man. The
seeds are toxic and should be soaked in water
before cooking.
In Vicia ervizia, wild forms,
weedy races and cultivated varieties occur.
Truly wild forms are known from Anatolia. Indications of the intentional growing of bitter
vetch date back to the sixth millennium B.C.
the
26,
Zohary, D. & Hopf, M.
1973
"Domestication of Pulses in the Old World", Science 182,
887-894.
Pulses & oil crop plants
van Zeist
Van Zeist
TABLE 1 : PULSES ( c t d . )
English, German,
French, Arabic
Latin name
v i c i a faba L. var. minor
Beck
var. equina Pers.
tick bean
Kleine Ackerbohne
feverole
horse bean
Pferdebohne
?
var
. major Harz.
broad bean
Puffbohne
feve
TABLE 2 : OIL CROPS
Distribution, origin and other particulars
Only small-seeded beans (var. minor) are known
from prehistoric and early-historical sites. The
culti.vation of V i c i a faba must have started in
the fourth millennium B.C.
It became an important crop plant (Celtic bean) in prehistoric Europe.
In the Near East, its cultivation may have
been confined to the Levant.
The ancestry of
Vicia faba is still somewhat problematical. Vicic
narbonensis L. has long been considered the wild
ancestor, but now Vicia gatitea F'litm. et Zoh.,
with a Near Eastern distribution, is proposed as
the most likely candidate.
Latin name
English, German,
French, Arabic
& m u m indicum L.
(-!;esamum orientate L. )
sesame
Sesam
sesame
simsim
Cultivated in Asia (particularly China and India)
and NW Africa.
Origin in doubt.
Reported for
Chalcolithic (2250-1750 B.C.)
Harappa in Indus
Sesamwn pollen has been extracted from
valley.
7th mill. B.C. layers at Ali Kosh, in SW Iran.
Sesame seeds have so far not been found in SW
Asian archaeological sites.
It is unlikely that
they would have escaped attention; the seeds are
large enough to be recovered, even with rather
"primitive" sampling methods.
Confusion with
linseeds may be ruled out. Sesame seeds can easily be distinguished from linseeds (see Fig. 1).
linseed, flax
Leinsamen
1in
kittan
One of the most ancient crop-plant species. Cultivation dates back to the late 7th mill. B.C.
Frequently reported from archaeological sites in
the Near East and Europe.
The wild ancestor,
Linum bienne Mill. (Linwn angustifoliwn Huds.),
has a Mediterranean - Near Eastern distribution.
Modern fibre flax has been selected for long, unbranched stems (with few flowers); oil flax is
rather much-branched, producing many flowers (and
seeds).
opium POPPY
Schlafmohn
pavot noir
At present the main areas of cultivation are
Papaver
China, India, Turkey and the Balkans.
setigerum DC., with a West-Mediterranean distribution, is the wild progenitor of Papaver somniferwn.
Opium poppy seeds have been recovered
from a great number of prehistoric sites in Europe, starting in the 5th mill. B.C.
This crop
plant has not (yet) been attested for Near Eastern archaeological sites.
rape
Raps
navette
At present an important oil plant, cultivated in
temperate regions,particularly in Eurasia (India,
China). Nothing is known about its possible cultivation in ancient times.
Moreover, (charred)
Brassica napus seeds may be difficult to distinguish from those of other Brassica and of Sinapis
species.
A few more Brassica species are grown
Brassica oteracea L.
for the oleaginous seeds.
is the ancestor of all forms of cabbage.
Turnip
is also a Brassica species ( B . rapa L.).
The
seeds of Sinapis alba L. are the source of white
mustard, those of Brassica nigra L. of black
mustard
---
baqilla
Lathyrus sativus L.
grass-pea,
chickling vetch
Saat-Platterbse
gesse cultivee
hurtuman, julban
Cultivated in India and the Near East.
The consumption of grass-pea seeds over a long period
causes a paralytic disease known as "lathyri
Seeds are not toxic if soaked in water for 24
hours before cooking.
Lathyrus cicera L., wit1
a Mediterranean-Near Eastern distribution, is regarded as the wild ancestor of domestic grassArchaeobotanical evidence for the cultivapea.
tion of Lathyrus sativus dates back to the end
of the third millennium B.C.
Lupinus albus L.
white lupin
Weisse Lupine
lupin blanc
Cultivated around the Mediterranean, particularly
as animal fodder. Fresh seeds are poisonous to
man, but boiling in water removes the bitter a1
kaloids.
Of Near Eastern - SE European origin.
No archaeobotanical evidence of lupin cultivation
in the ancient Near East.
fenugreek
Bockshornklee
fenugrec
hulba
This leguminous species is cultivated as a condiment crop. The seeds contain coumarin. No records of fenugreek from Near Eastern sites.
Vicia sativa L .
common vetch
Futterwicke
vesce commun
dharrat
Cultivated as animal fodder. Vicia seeds are reportc?d from various archaeological sites in Sh
Only if the hilum (the scar of
Asia and Europe.
attac:hment of the seed) has been preserved, can
vic&z sativa seeds be distinguished from other
large-sized vetch seeds.
Medicago sativa L.
alfalfa, lucerne
Luzerne
sainfoin
jatt
Medicago seeds have been
Grown for stock feed.
recovered from Near Eastern sites, but a species
determination of the archaeological plant remains
is still problematical.
Pulses & oil crop plants
-
Distribution, origin and other particulars
.-
1,lnurn usitatissimwn L.
.
I
Pulses & o i l crop plants
van Z e i s t
TABLE 2 : OIL CROPS (ctd,)
AN INTRODUCTION TO THE LEGUMES AND OIL PLANTS OF MESOPOTAMIA
Latin name
English, German,
French, Arabic
Distribution, origin and other particulars
Carthamus tinctorius L.
safflower
Saflor
saf ran b3tard
qurtum
The dried florets were the source of the red dye,
safflower carmin.
It is now grown mainly as an
oil-seed crop.
Occasional finds of carthamus
fruits in Near Eastern archaeological sites are
not yet proof of the cultivation of safflower.
Cannabis sativa L.
hemp
Hanf
chanvre
qunnab
The plant provides fibre from the stems, oil from
the seeds and narcotics from the leaves and flowers (of the female plants).
Cannabis sativa is a
native of Central Asia and is said to be of very
ancient cultivation in Asia and Europe. Archaeobotanical evidence of Cannabis in Europe dates
back to the last centuries B.C.
and the species
has not (yet) been recorded for the ancient Near
East.
I
1
I
M.P,
Charles
(Institute of Archaeology,
University of London)
QeneraZ introduction
In a t t e m p t i n g t o draw t o g e t h e r some b a s i c d e t a i l s c o n c e r n i n g t h e c r o p husbandry of t h e p u l s e s and o i l p l a n t s i n Mesopotamia ( I r a q and S y r i a ) , i t
q u i c k l y became a p p a r e n t t h a t t h e r e was i n s u f f i c i e n t i n f o r m a t i o n a v a i l a b l e
on such t o p i c s as sowing and h a r v e s t i n g f o r t h e a r e a . So i t was d e c i d e d t o
include d a t a from o t h e r , b r o a d l y s i m i l a r , r e g i o n s t o produce a r e a s o n a b l y
complete p i c t u r e .
I n d i a , China and t h e Middle E a s t a r e t h e a r e a s most commonly c i t e d , a l t h o u g h i n a few c a s e s i t proved n e c e s s a r y t o use d a t a from
the U.S.A.,
u s u a l l y C a l i f o r n i a , and i t w i l l be s e e n t h a t t h e s e f i g u r e s a r e
much h i g h e r , i n h a r v e s t y i e l d e s p e c i a l l y , t h a n would be e x p e c t e d f o r
ksopotamia.
I
O f t h e s p e c i e s i n c l u d e d i n t h e s u r v e y t h e r e a r e f i v e which a r e n o t
believed t o have o r i g i n a t e d i n S.W. A s i a , b u t which I f e e l may have reached
k s o p o t a m i a a t a f a i r l y e a r l y d a t e . These a r e : GZycine m a x (Soya b e a n ) , a
n a t i v e of E. A s i a , Vigna unguicuZata (Cow p e a ) , t h o u g h t t o have o r i g i n a t e d
i n A f r i c a b u t h a v i n g a l a r g e c e n t r e of d i v e r s i t y i n I n d i a , PaseoZus a u r e u s
(Mung b e a n ) , p r o b a b l y from I n d i a , R i c i n u s communis ( C a s t o r o i l ) , o r i g i Prunus
n a t i n g i n A f r i c a o r I n d i a , and Vicia sativa, a n a t i v e of Europe.
m@gdaZus, t h e almond t r e e , which was an o i l s o u r c e , w i l l be t r e a t e d w i t h
the f r u i t trees i n t h e n e x t i s s u e of t h e BuZZetin; t h e r e i s n o record of
Lupinus aZbus L. i n I r a q , s o i t h a s been omitted from t h i s a r t i c l e .
f i e pulses
i
I
I
..
2 cm
Carthamus t i n c t o r i u s
-
38
-
The p u l s e as d e f i n e d by P u r s e g l o v e 1968 i s t h e " d r i e d e d i b l e seed of a
c u l t i v a t e d legume". The p l a n t s a r e members of t h e leguminous g r o u p , one of
the l a r g e s t and e c o n o m i c a l l y most i m p o r t a n t g r o u p s of t h e f l o w e r i n g p l a n t
kingdom w i t h a l m o s t 700 g e n e r a and 18,000 s p e c i e s worldwide, numbers o n l y
axceeded by t h e Compositae.
The legumes may e i t h e r be c o n s i d e r e d a s a
family, t h e Leguminosae , d i v i d e d by P u r s e g l o v e 1968 i n t o t h r e e subf a m i l i e s , o r as i n t h e F l o r a of Iraq, a f t e r Hutchinson 1959, be promoted t o
an o r d e r , t h e Leguminales, w i t h t h r e e f a m i l i e s :
9 genera i n I r a q , 1 n a t i v e
I. C a e s a l p i n i a c e a e
5 genera i n I r a q , 2 n a t i v e
11. Mimosaceae
111. P a p i l i o n a c e a e
46 g e n e r a i n I r a q , 30 n a t i v e
A l l t h e c u l t i v a t e d p u l s e c r o p s i n Mesopotamia a r e members of t h e
P a p i l i o n a c e a e , t h e o t h e r two f a m i l i e s b e i n g of c o m p a r a t i v e l y l i t t l e economic importance and n o r m a l l y r e s t r i c t e d t o t h e t r o p i c s .
Charles
Although we a r e p r i m a r i l y concerned h e r e w i t h t h e use of t h e p u l s e s a s
seed c r o p s , two o t h e r i m p o r t a n t u s e s should be mentioned as t h e y have a
d i r e c t b e a r i n g on t h e v a l u e of t h e p u l s e s as c r o p p l a n t s , i.e. t h e i r r o l e
I . S o i l e n r i c h i n g p l a n t s The p u l s e s l i k e t h e o t h e r leguminous p l a n t s
as:
a r e a b l e t o f i x a t m o s p h e r i c n i t r o g e n which i s b e n e f i c i a l t o t h e s o i l a s i t
i n c r e a s e s the n i t r o g e n a v a i l a b l e f o r subsequent crops.
T h i s makes them an
e s s e n t i a l p a r t of a n y c r o p r o t a t i o n scheme, b e i n g e i t h e r c u t and ploughed
i n t o t h e s o i l b e f o r e m a t u r i n g and s e t t i n g seed ( i . e . a s a g r e e n m a n u r e ) , o r
allowed t o f r u i t and h a r v e s t e d , t h e s t a l k s b e i n g used a s f o d d e r o r ploughed
in.
They have a l s o been used s u c c e s s f u l l y i n s o i l r e c l a m a t i o n p r o j e c t s on
t h e s a l i n i s e d land of Southern I r a q (Dielman 1 9 6 3 ) , and t h e s e q u a l i t i e s
could w e l l have been a p p r e c i a t e d i n Sumerian t i m e s .
2. Fodder p l a n t s
The whole p l a n t , w i t h o r w i t h o u t t h e s e e d s a r e
g e n e r a l l y good feed f o r l i v e s t o c k and can be grazed w h i l e growing, c u t f o r
f o d d e r , o r t h e s t a l k s l e f t a f t e r h a r v e s t i n g t h e seed a s f o r a g e .
These two c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s combined w i t h t h e h i g h p r o t e i n c o n t e n t of t h e
s e e d , which i s s u f f i c i e n t t o make up f o r t h e d e f i c i e n c i e s o f a c e r e a l - b a s e d
d i e t l a c k i n g m e a t , make t h e p u l s e s a v e r y v a l u a b l e c r o p .
Yet t h e y seem t o
be o f l i t t l e i m p o r t a n c e i n modem I r a q w i t h t h e two major p u b l i s h e d s u r v e y s
of I r a q i a g r i c u l t u r e b a r e l y m e n t i o n i n g them.
Poyck 1962 r e c o r d s o n l y two
s p e c i e s i n h i s t a b l e of t h e m a j o r c r o p p l a n t s , Vicia f a b a , grown on 0.3% of
t h e t o t a l winter-cropped l a n d , and P h a s e o l u s a u r e u s on 0.2% of t h e t o t a l
summer-cropped l a n d .
The D i y a l a and Middle T i g r i s P r o j e c t s (1959) r e c o r d s
"broad beans" a s an i r r i g a t e d w i n t e r c r o p , and p u l s e s as summer i r r i g a t e d
o n e s . The legumes a r e recommended as a p a r t of t h e s u g g e s t e d c r o p r o t a t i o n
programme f o r t h e i r a b i l i t y t o a c t a s a s o i l - e n r i c h i n g b r e a k , producing
s e e d s o r a n i m a l f e e d , w h i l e a t t h e same time r e p l e n i s h i n g r a t h e r t h a n
depleting the s o i l ;
t h i s may be c o n s i d e r e d an improvement on a l l o w i n g t h e
land t o be l e f t f a l l o w f o r a y e a r i n a more i n t e n s i v e a g r i c u l t u r a l regime.
The biology o f the pulses
a. Chromosome number a n d p l o i d y level
The cytotaxonomy of t h e p u l s e s
under s t u d y h e r e i s much s i m p l e r t h a n t h a t of c e r e a l s l i k e t h e wheats and
o a t s , b e i n g "uncomplicated by p o l y p l o i d y " ( S t e l e , i n Simmonds 1976, 183,
r e f e r r i n g t o t h e cytotaxonomy of Vigna s p . ) .
A l l the species a r e d i p l o i d ,
usually self-pollinating
p l a n t s , i n which t h e p r o c e s s e s of s p e c i e s
i n t e r c r o s s i n g and chromosome m u l t i p l i c a t i o n have played l i t t l e p a r t .
That
s a i d , t h e a n c e s t r a l p l a n t s , t h e manner and l o c a t i o n o f t h e i r c u l t i v a t i o n
and , where a p p l i c a b l e , d o m e s t i c a t i o n , a r e o f t e n l e s s w e l l understood than
f o r the cereals.
The movement of t h e s p e c i e s o u t of t h e i r n a t i v e a r e a s
r e s u l t i n g from t h e i r widespread i n t r o d u c t i o n and c u l t i v a t i o n , combining
w i t h a d i v e r s i f i c a t i o n of forms and c u l t i v a r s t o confuse t h e sequence of
e v e n t s p e r h a p s t o s u c h an e x t e n t t h a t t h e y can n e v e r be r e t r a c e d .
b. Morphology
The f r u i t
The most c o n s p i c u o u s f e a t u r e s h a r e d b y a l m o s t a l l t h e
Leguminosae f a m i l y i s t h e f r u i t c a l l e d a pod o r legume; a s d e f i n e d by Guest
(-1966, 149) a legume " c o n s i s t s of a s i n g l e c a r p e l , u s u a l l y opening round
Cfhrrl e s
Cha margin a l o n g b o t h s u t u r e s i n t o two h a l v e s " .
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
The pod of t h e c u l t i v a t e d
~ I H C Si s t y p i c a l l y oblong and n a r r o w i n s h a p e , l a c k i n g t i s s u e between t h e
1
mods.
I n o t h e r members i t may be c u r v e d , b l o a t e d , s p i r a l l y c o i l e d (e.g.
llhdicago sp.) o r f l a t t e n e d d o r s o - v e n t r a l l y , i n a few c a s e s t h e f r u i t i s i n
tha form of a lomentum, i . e . a legume " c o n t r a c t e d between t h e s e e d s and
brerlking t r a n s v e r s e l y i n t o p a r t s when r i p e " (Guest 1966, 151).
The seed
pcrl of P r o s o p i s farcta, of t h e Mimosaceae f a m i l y , i s " p u r p l i s h , s h o r t and
t a t " , w i t h a l e a t h e r y t e x t u r e and f l e s h y p a r t i t i o n s between t h e s e e d s ; i t
4 0 non-dehiscent and seed d i s p e r s a l i s e f f e c t e d by g r a z i n g a n i m a l s conatbrnfng t h e p o d s , t h e s e e d s p a s s i n g t h r o u g h t h e g u t a l m o s t undamaged.
Once t h e mature s e e d s have d r i e d t h e pod d e h i s c e s , b r e a k i n g i n t o two
v a l v e s , a l o n g t h e d o r s a l and v e n t r a l s u t u r e s ;
t h i s p r o c e s s may be v i o l e n t
wltll the s e e d s b e i n g f o r c i b l y e j e c t e d o r f l i c k e d some d i s t a n c e from t h e
plant, e.g.
i n t h e Bladder Senna where t h e pod i n f l a t e s and e x p e l s t h e
m a d s t h r o u g h t h e apex.
I n o t h e r c a s e s i t i s t h e r e s u l t of t h e v a l v e s
t w i s t i n g o r j e r k i n g a s t h e y d r y unevenly.
Non-violent d e h i s c e n c e of t h e
pad means t h e s e e d s d o n o t t r a v e l f a r from t h e p a r e n t p l a n t b u t i n some
canes t h e whole pod i s modified t o be blown by t h e wind o r t o c a t c h i n a n i M I h a i r s , e t c . i n c r e a s i n g t h e d i s t a n c e of d i s p e r s a l .
In s e v e r a l of t h e c u l t i v a t e d p u l s e s seed-pod
d e h i s c e n c e h a s been l o s t
In the p r o c e s s of d o m e s t i c a t i o n , e .g. L e n s c u l i n a r i s , C i c e r a r i e t i n w n and
Vigna u n g u i c u l a t a , and h e r e i t i s e s s e n t i a l t h a t t h e pods be picked and
m e d s sown f o r t h e c o n t i n u a t i o n of t h e c r o p .
7he seed ( T a b l e 1 )
A s i n g l e seed pod may c o n t a i n between one and twenty
s e e d s , e a c h borne on a s i n g l e f u n i c l e o r s t a l k , when d r i e d t h e y
arc r e f e r e d t o a s a " p u l s e " .
Seed s i z e can v a r y c o n s i d e r a b l y , t h e s m a l l e s t
of the c u l t i v a t e d s p e c i e s b e i n g . t h a t of Vicia sativa, 0.2-0.4(-06)
cm. i n
dimmeter, t h e l a r g e s t Vicia f a b a v a r . m a j o r , r e a c h i n g 3.0 x 2.5 cm.
( o r more)
The seed i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by t h i c k o u t e r seed-coat o r t e s t a which a c t s
Iwrh a s a p r o t e c t i v e l a y e r and a s a mechanism c o n t r o l l i n g g e r m i n a t i o n .
Tlrls l a t t e r r o l e i s performed by p r e v e n t i n g t h e u p t a k e of w a t e r t o t h e
rntlicle and plumule u n t i l t h e t e s t a i s broken ( e i t h e r by p h y s i c a l cond l t t o n s such a s f r o s t c r a c k i n g o r s o i l a b r a s i o n , o r by chemical a c t i o n ,
s . ~ . t h e g u t enzymes of s h e e p and g o a t s ) .
T h i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c makes t h e
~ * c ? d ,once m a t u r e , e m i n e n t l y s t o r a b l e , and i t can remain e d i b l e f o r conr t d e r a b l e p e r i o d s of t i m e , s e v e r a l y e a r s a t l e a s t .
Within t h e t e s t a a r e two l a r g e c o t y l e d o n s , t h e seed l e a v e s , t h e p r i n t-lpal e n e r g y s t o r i n g o r g a n s of t h e p u l s e s which l a c k t h e l a r g e s t a r c h - r i c h
e~ldospermic t i s s u e t y p i c a l of t h e c e r e a l s ( s e e C h a r l e s BSA 1 (1984) 2 1 ) .
The major food r e s e r v e s u b s t a n c e s of t h e c o t y l e d o n s a r e p r o t e i n , s t a r c h ,
atrd o c c a s i o n a l l y o i l , e .g. G l y c i n e m a x and A r a c h i s hypogaea. The seed proLvin c o n t e n t r a n g e s from 17 t o 50%, t h e l a t t e r v a l u e b e i n g a t t a i n e d i n
acbcds of G l y c i n e m a x , t h e r i c h e s t p r o t e i n s o u r c e i n t h e p l a n t kingdom.
It
I r ; t h e h i g h p r o t e i n c o n t e n t of t h e s e s e e d s t h a t makes them s o i m p o r t a n t t o
t l ~ ehuman d i e t , s u p p l e m e n t i n g t h e c e r e a l s which a r e a l m o s t t o t a l l y l a c k i n g
111 p r o t e i n s ,
and s u p p l y i n g s e v e r a l aminoacids e s s e n t i a l t o human me tabol ism.
Charles
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
Sowing and harvest methods a s t h e y r e l a t e t o p l a n t morphology ( T a b l e 1 )
The method of sowing i s g e n e r a l l y d e t e r m i n e d by seed s i z e ( H i l l m a n , p e r s .
comm.), t h e l a r g e r s e e d s b e i n g sown i n rows by d r i l l i n g o r d i b b l i n g , t h e
s m a l l e r o n e s b e i n g b r o a d c a s t o n t o a f i n e seed bed and t h e n l i g h t l y c o v e r e d :
Seeds i n t h e i n t e r m e d i a t e s i z e c a t e g o r y can be sown by e i t h e r method.
It
h a s been d i f f i c u l t t o assemble i n f o r m a t i o n c o n c e r n i n g how sowing was done
b e f o r e t h e i n t r o d u c t i o n of mechanized equipment i n Mesopotamia, and s~ t h e
r e f e r e n c e s t o Lens c u l i n a r i s b e i n g sown by b o t h d r i l l i n g and broad c a s t m g ,
a s w e l l as C i c e r a r i e t i n u m , may o n l y a p p l y t o modem p r a c t i c e .
For Vicia
f a b a v a r . e q u i n a sowing by b o t h methods i s r e c o r d e d f o r I r a q by Guest 1930
( u n p u b l i s h e d ) b u t t h i s i s f o r t h e a g r i c u l t u r a l s t a t i o n a t Rustam r z t h e r
t h a n an o b s e r v a t i o n of any t r a d i t i o n a l p r a c t i c e s .
bed p r e p a r a t i o n i s a f f e c t e d by seed s i z e , a f i n e r t i l t h b e i n g
f o r t h e smaller-seeded p l a n t s and c a r e f u l c o v e r i n g of t h e seed
a few c e n t i m e t r e s of s o i l i s needed t o e n s u r e t h a t t h e p l a n t can
and d e v e l o p s u c c e s s f u l l y .
The p u l s e s a r e f r e q u e n t l y sown i n
w i t h wheat and b a r l e y , t h e l a t t e r g e n e r a l l y b e i n g c u t o u t f o r
t h e c r o p grows.
Crop h a r v e s t i n g depends on a number of f a c t o r s , some of which r e l a t e
t o t h e t y p e of pod d e h i s c e n c z and p l a n t h e i g h t .
They may be b r i e f l y
d e s c r i b e d as :
1. End p r o d u c t r e q u i r e d : when grown f o r t h e g r e e n s e e d s t h e pods a r e
picked by hand when s t i l l immature; a s a p u l s e t h e pods a r e p i c k e d , o r t h e
whole p l a n t c u t o r u p r o o t e d ;
t o s e r v e a s f o d d e r t h e p l a n t i s c u t regularly.
2. Type of pod d e h i s c e n c e : i f t h e pod i s d e h i s c e n t then t h e h a r v e s t i n g
must be done b e f o r e t h e s e e d s a r e d i s p e r s e d ;
i n a c r o p where pod r i p e n i n g
i s uneven t h i s may have t o be done by p i c k i n g t h e pods a s t h e y mature.
3 . P l a n t h e i g h t a n d straw u s e :
t h e s m a l l e r p l a n t s tend t o be
u p r o o t e d , f o r t h e t a l l e r p l a n t s i t i s u s u a l t o r e a p h i g h up t h e s t a l k where
t h e s t r a w can be l e f t t o be grazed a s f o r a g e ;
i f the straw i s required a s
f o d d e r o r f o r f u e l t h e n r e a p i n g low on t h e p l a n t i s t h e b e s t method.
Sowing r a t e s and h a r v e s t y i e l d s a r e g i v e n i n Table 1:
ween t h e two r a n g e s from a p p r o x i m a t e l y 7: 1 t o 50: 1 o r more.
Lathyrus s a t i v u s
V. f a b a v a r . e q u i n a
V. f a b a v a r . m a j o r
Sowing r a t e
39-45 k g / h a
135-168 kg/ha
100-128 kg/ha
Harve s t y i e l d
1059-1121 k g / h a
2017-2690 kg/ha
700-880 kg/ha
the r a t i o betRatio
25-27 : 1
15-16: 1
7:l
The l a s t s e t of f i g u r e s a r e a v e r a g e s from Poyck 1962, and compare v e r y
p o o r l y w i t h r e c o r d e d y i e l d s of Vicia f a b a v a r . major i n B r i t a i n of up t o
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
5021 kg/ha, and an a v e r a g e of o v e r 3000 kg/ha (sowing r a t e s f o r t h e s e
ranging from 224-447 k g / h a ) , b u t a r e r e a s o n a b l e i n r e l a t i o n t o t h e o t h e r
y i e l d s g i v e n f o r wheat, b a r l e y , c o t t o n e t c . i n t h e same r e p o r t .
80aeonatity
.
a. Large seed s o v e r 1.0 cm. d iam. , Vicia f a b a ( a l l 3 v a r ) and C i c e r
arietinum
b. Medium s e e d s , 0.5-1.0
cm. diam., e .g. Pisum satiuum, L a t h y r u s sativus, G l y c i n e mm, Lens c u l i n a r i s .
c . Small s e e d s under 0.5 cm diam., t h e small-seeded Lens c u l i n a r i s ,
Vicia e r v i l i a , P h a s e o l u s a u r e u s , Vicia sativa and Vigna u n g u i c u l a t a .
Seed
recorded
with j u s t
germinate
admixture
fodder a s
Charles
( T a b l e 1)
The legumes l i s t e d by van Z e i s t a r e a l l a n n u a l winter-growing p l a n t s , sown
In autumn ( l a t e September t o November) and h a r v e s t e d i n l a t e s p r i n g t o
r a r l y summer, from A p r i l t h r o u g h t o J u n e .
Three of t h e s p e c i e s I have
d d e d a r e summer-growing a n n u a l s , Vigna u n g u i c u l a t a , P h a s e o l u s a u r e u s and
G l ~ c i n emm, t h e f o u r t h , V. sativa i s autumn-sown i n I r a q .
Sowing d a t e s
t o r t h e summer c r o p s a r e March and A p r i l , t h e s e e d s b e i n g h a r v e s t e d i n
J u l y , August and o c c a s i o n a l l y as l a t e as September.
One f a c t o r t h a t must be borne i n mind when e x t r a p o l a t i n g from t h e
modern a g r i c u l t u r a l s y s t e m and c u l t i v a r s i s t h e p o s s i b i l i t y of changes t h a t
nny have t a k e n p l a c e i n t h e s p e c i e s d u r i n g s e v e r a l thousand y e a r s of c u l t i vation.
Ramanujan ( i n Simmonds 1976) d e s c r i b e s two d i s t i n c t , though i n t e r f e r t i l e c u l t i v a r s of C i c e r a r i e t i n u m :
( 1 ) a s p r i n g - g r o w form: l a r g e
p l a n t s w i t h "owl-head s h a p e d , l i g h t c o l o u r e d s e e d s w i t h l i t t l e w r i n k l i n g of
tlw seed c o a t " ( 2 )
a winter-gram form: " r a i s e d i n t h e c o o l d r y s e a s o n "
o f I n d i a , e t c . , t h e s e a r e quick-growing, s m a l l e r p l a n t s w i t h " s m a l l , t y p i c a l l y w r i n k l e d , ram-head shaped and d a r k c o l o u r e d " s e e d s . The d a t e of t h i s
development, and t h e p o s s i b l e r o l e t h a t e i t h e r c u l t i v a r may have had i n t h e
past i s n o t known, and t h e c a s e i s by n o means u n i q u e :
there a r e , f o r
oxample, w i n t e r and spring-grown forms of Vicia sativa.
We must a l s o
remember t h a t t h e development of t h e t h r e e Vicia f a b a and two Pisum satiuum v a r i e t i e s a r e shrouded i n u n c e r t a i n t y ;
it i s l i k e l y t h a t it was the
horse bean ( V i c i a f a b a v a r e q u i n a ) t h a t was t h e p r i n c i p a l r e p r e s e n t a t i v e
of t h e Faba g r o u p and n o t t h e broad bean (V. f a b a v a r . m a j o r ) , which may
not have been known t i l l much l a t e r ( s e e Renfrew, t h i s volume, p.
.
***).
The ecology of the pulses
O r i g i n s a n d ancestral p l a n t s
(Table 1 )
The n a t i v e a r e a s of t h e a n c e s t r a l p u l s e s g e n e r a l l y f a l l i n t o t h e West Asian
Mediterranean Europe r e g i o n and t h e y a r e l i k e l y t o have been p r e s e n t i n
the " f e r t i l e c r e s c e n t " of t h e Near E a s t , i n c l u d i n g Northern Mesopotamia.
Their a n c e s t r y i s n o t always known, b u t where p o s s i b l e t h e l i k e l y p r o g e n i t o r s a r e l i s t e d a l o n g w i t h t h e a r e a of o r i g i n on Table 1.
Three of t h e
a d d i t i o n a l s p e c i e s seem t o have o r i g i n a t e d i n more t r o p i c a l a r e a s , y e t t h e y
tire n o t o u t s i d e t h e r e g i o n s occupied by t h e p r o g e n i t o r s of s p e c i e s connidered t o have reached Mesopotamia a t an e a r l y d a t e , e .g. C i c e r a r i e t i n u m .
Obviously a r c h a e o - b o t a n i c a l
i n v e s t i g a t i o n could be v e r y i m p o r t a n t i n
h e l p i n g t o e s t a b l i s h t h e e a r l y sequence of i n t r o d u c t i o n and d o m e s t i c a t i o n .
-
Charles
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
Habitat and d i s t r i b u t i o n
1
(Table 1 )
I n t h e a b s e n c e o f a good a r c h a e o - b o t a n i c a l r e c o r d , we must be v e r y c a r e f u l
when c o n s i d e r i n g t h e s p e c i e s c u l t i v a t e d i n a n c i e n t Mesopotamia, u s i n g
i n f o r m a t i o n based on t h e modern d i s t r i b u t i o n , h a b i t a t and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s
of t h e p u l s e s .
The i n t e r v e n i n g p e r i o d h a s s e e n t h e e v o l u t i o n of a number
of new c u l t i v a r s which may have f e a t u r e s q u i t e d i s t i n c t from t h e i r
predecessors'.
There i s a l s o t h e p o s s i b i l i t y of minor f l u c t u a t i o n s i n t h e
c l i m a t e of t h e r e g i o n , which may have had an a p p r e c i a b l e impact on t h e
a g r i c u l t u r a l system.
The o v e r r i d i n g f a c t o r s i n t h e d i s t r i b u t i o n and s e a s o n a l i t y of t h e
v e g e t a t i o n a r e t h e e x t r e m e c l i m a t e and low r a i n f a l l of s o u t h e r n Mesop o t a m i a , which impose c e r t a i n , s e e m i n g l y unchanged , r e s t r i c t i o n s on a g r i culture.
Thus t h e r e can be n o e x t e n s i v e a g r i c u l t u r e ( o f w i n t e r o r summer
c r o p s ) on t h e a l l u v i a l p l a i n s of s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia w i t h o u t i r r i g a t i o n
w a t e r t o supplement t h e n a t u r a l r a i n f a l l , and even w i t h s u f f i c i e n t w a t e r
t h e h i g h s p r i n g and summer t e m p e r a t u r e s can p r e v e n t t h e growth of many species.
To p l a n t s t o l e r a n t of t h e s e c o n d i t i o n s , however, t h e r e g u l a r h o t
sunny c l i m a t e i s good f o r s u c c e s s f u l g r o w t h , e s p e c i a l l y f o r t h e p r o d u c t i o n
of s e e d s .
I n n o r t h e r n Mesopotamia c o n d i t i o n s tend t o be c o o l e r , r a i n f a l l h i g h e r
and above t h e 300 mm i s o h y e t s u f f i c i e n t f o r w i n t e r ( t h o u g h n o t f o r summer)
c r o p s , and t h e f a c t o r s of h a b i t a t and a l t i t u d e become much more i m p o r t a n t
t h a n i n t h e s o u t h , where h a b i t a t t y p e s are few.
On t h e b a s i s of t h e i n f o r m a t i o n p r e s e n t e d i n Table 1, t h e p u l s e s may
be d i v i d e d i n t o t h r e e g r o u p s e x t r a p o l a t e d from t h e i r d i s t r i b u t i o n i n I r a q :
1.
S p e c i e s n o t found
V i c i a erviZia
.
i n s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia
-
Cicer arietinum and
2.
S p e c i e s r e s t r i c t e d t o s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia
- Pisum sativurn v a r s .
hortense and aruense, Lathyrus sativus, GZycine m m , Vigna unguicuZata, PhaseoZus aureus.
3.
S p e c i e s found i n n o r t h e r n & s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia
v a r s ) , Vicia sativa.
.
-
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
Chnrle s
N.B.:
The major s o u r c e of i n f o r m a t i o n on t h e d i s t r i b u t i o n of t h e c u l t i vated p u l s e s was Kew Gardens c o l l e c t i o n , from where t h e FZora of I r a q ' s
n o t e s a r e d e r i v e d . On l o o k i n g t h r o u g h t h i s m a t e r i a l i t w a s v e r y n o t i c e a b l e
how few examples of t h e cultivated p l a n t s t h e r e were: - - 3 Vicia faba, 8
CCcer arietinum, 3 Pisum sativum v a r . hortense ( = v a r . sativurn i n t h e FZora
of I r a q ) , 9 Lathyrus sativus examples. T h i s i s n o t a r e f l e c t i o n of t h e i r
a c a r c i t y , a l l b e i n g commonly c u l t i v a t e d i n I r a q , b u t r a t h e r of t h e low
p r i o r i t y g i v e n t o t h e c o l l e c t i o n of c u l t i v a t e d p l a n t s , which i t i s
g e n e r a l l y assumed a r e a d e q u a t e l y mapped o u t a l r e a d y .
T h i s problem i s
a c c e n t u a t e d by t h e number of t h e s e p l a n t s picked a t t h e a g r i c u l t u r a l
r e s e a r c h s t a t i o n s , e.g. Abu Ghraib and Rustam, which t h u s d o n o t t r u l y
r e p r e s e n t t h e " n a t u r a l " d i s t r i b u t i o n , a s t h e y may have been e x p e r i m e n t a l
p l a n t s which though u n s u c c e s s f u l were s t i l l p r e s e n t and r e c o r d e d . ]
The u s e s of t h e leguminosae can be summarized t h u s :
P u l s e s - d r y s e e d s , a good s t o r a b l e p r o t e i n - r i c h food s o u r c e
Green v e g e t a b l e - t h e u n r i p e pods and s e e d s e a t e n raw o r a s a vegetable
P o t h e r b s - t h e l e a v e s and s h o o t s of c e r t a i n s p e c i e s
Forage - whole p l a n t grazed while growing
Fodder - whole p l a n t , w i t h o r w i t h o u t t h e s e e d s , c u t and fed t o
a n i m a l s ; i n c l u d e s t h e s t a l k s o r haulms l e f t a f t e r h a r v e s t of p u l s e s
and t h e s t r a w and husks r e s i d u a l from t h r e s h i n g and winnowing
Cover c r o p s - whole p l a n t a s s i l a g e o r a g r e e n manure 'ploughed i n '
S o i l e n r i c h i n g - a b i l i t y t o f i x n i t r o g e n makes them v e r y u s e f u l i n
crop r o t a t i o n systems
Land r e c l a m a t i o n - e.g. of s a l i n i z e d s o i l s i n s o u t h e r n I r a q
Oil-seed p l a n t s - s e e d s of GZycine max and Arachis hypogaea ( p e a n u t
from S. America) r i c h i n o i l a s w e l l a s p r o t e i n
Other u s e s i n c l u d e - t i m b e r , r e s i n s , condiments, f i b r e , m e d i c i n e s , gums,
tanning a g e n t s , d y e s , p o i s o n s , f u e l , o r n a m e n t a l and shade t r e e s .
Vicia faba ( 3
The a p p a r e n t a b s e n c e of Cicer arietinum from s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia i s i n t e r e s t i n g a s i t i s commonly i d e n t i f i e d w i t h t h e " l a r g e legume" found i n t h e
cuneiform t e x t s .
P u r s e g l o v e 1968 d e s c r i b e s t h e chick-pea as a "cold
w e a t h e r p l a n t " p r e f e r r i n g a c o o l d r y c l i m a t e w i t h c o o l o r cold n i g h t s .
One
p o s s i b l e s u b s t i t u t e f o r C. arietinum i s Vicia faba v a r . equina which h a s a
s i m i l a r s i z e d s e e d , grows w e l l i n Lower I r a q , and even e x h i b i t s a d e g r e e of
s a l t t o l e r a n c e , a f e a t u r e unique i n t h e p u l s e s on which work h a s been
c a r r i e d o u t , and a s mentioned a b o v e , i t was p r o b a b l y t h i s , and n o t V . faba
v a r . major t h a t was grown i n Sumerian t i m e s .
One o t h e r s p e c i e s t h a t e x p e r i e n c e s problems i n s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia,
t h i s time as a r e s u l t of t h e h o t summer wind c a u s i n g t h e f l o w e r s t o be shed
b e f o r e f e r t i l i z a t i o n had been a c h i e v e d , i s GZycine max, though i t can w i t h
c a r e f u l c u l t i v a t i o n be grown q u i t e s u c c e s s f u l l y (Guest 1930, u n p u b l i s h e d ) .
The oil plants
Table 2
'rhe major o i l seed p l a n t s of Mesopotamia form a d i v e r s e g r o u p , w i t h a s many
families represented a s there a r e species.
Though t h e y a r e m o s t l y a n n u a l
h e r b s , two, OZea europaea and Prunus amygdalus, a r e t r e e s , and a t h i r d ,
Ir'icinus communis, i s a s h o r t - l i v e d p e r e n n i a l , c a p a b l e t o growing t o 7
metres. The a n n u a l h e r b s d i v i d e e q u a l l y i n t o w i n t e r and summer c r o p s :
a . w i n t e r c r o p s - Linum usitatissimum, Papaver somniferum, Brassica
napus and Carthamus t i n c t o r i u s
.
b. summer c r o p s - Sesamum indicum, Cannabis sativa, Ricinus communis
and GZycine m m .
Charles
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
o l i v e (Ozea europaea) f r u i t s i n l a t e summer/autumn, and t h e almond
(Prunus amygdatus) i n s p r i n g l e a r l y summer.
The
iii. a fruit
1
A l l p l a n t s c o n t a i n some o i l , u s u a l l y a s a form of e n e r g y s t o r a g e .
It
i s u s u a l l y d i s t r i b u t e d t h r o u g h o u t t h e p l a n t and used a s r e q u i r e d by the
various tissues.
O c c a s i o n a l l y , however, i t i s c o n c e n t r a t e d in a s t o r a g e
o r g a n s u c h a s a r o o t t u b e r o r t h e s e e d ; i n t h e l a t t e r i t a c t s a s a highy i e l d i n g e n e r g y s t o r e u t i l i s e d when t h e seed g e r m i n a t e s . The c l i m a t e of
Mesopotamia i s w e l l s u i t e d t o t h e p r o d u c t i o n of h i g h seed o i l y i e l d , w i t t
i t s warm s p r i n g and h o t , d r y summer months, a h i g h number of s u n s h i n e hours
of t e n b e i n g e s s e n t i a l f o r s u c c e s s f u l seed development. Guest (1930) recommended t h a t t h e a r e a of Linum usitatissimum, Brasica iicpus, Ricinus cornmunis and Sesamum indicum c u l t i v a t i o n should be i n c r e a s e d s i g n i f i c a n t l y in
I r a q , and a s t h e s e a r e much more p r o f i t a b l e t h a n c e r e a l c r o p s i t i s perhaps
s u r p r i s i n g t h a t t h i s h a s n e v e r been d o n e .
For a few s p e c i e s t h e extreme
t e m p e r a t u r e s and t h e h o t b u r n i n g winds of summer can p r e v e n t s e e d - s e t t i n g ,
e.g. i n GZycine max and Papaver somniferum, b u t f o r t h e m a j o r i t y , given
s u f f i c i e n t i r r i g a t i o n water, c o n d i t i o n s would seem t o w a r r a n t a g r e a t e r
a r e a of l a n d t h a n i s p r e s e n t l y d e v o t e d t o o i l p l a n t s .
Examination of t h e two p r i n c i p a l r e p o r t s on t h e economy o f I r a q shows
t h a t , a s f o r t h e p u l s e s , t h e r e i s l i t t l e mention made of t h e o i l seed
c r o p s , Poyck r e c o r d i n g t h a t 1.2% of t h e t o t a l farmland c u l t i v a t e d i n t h e
summer i s under Sesamum indicum (1962, 39).
The o n l y o t h e r o i l p l a n t t o
One p o s s i b l e r e a s o n f o r t h e a p p a r e n t
be r e c o r d e d i s Linum usitatissimum.
u n d e r - c u l t i v a t i o n of t h e s e p l a n t s may be t h e l a c k of s u i t a b l e marketing
r o u t e s f o r t h e produce.
The biotogy o f the o i l plants
a. Chromosome number and ptoidy ZeveZ
There i s l i t t l e p o l y p l o i d y , Ricinus communis h a s t r i p l o i d and t e t r a p l o i d
[There a r e
f o r m s , and t h e r e a r e t e t r a p l o i d forms of Papaver somniferum.
two s u b s p e c i e s of poppy, P. somniferum s s p . somniferum - t h e Opium poppy,
grown f o r opium, and P. somniferum s s p . hortense, which i s grown f o r i t s
o i l seed ]
The v a r i o u s Brassica s p e c i e s a r e l i s t e d on Table 5 .
.
i
- OZea europaea
and Prunus amygdalus.
iv. a siliqua
- Brassica napus.
v . an achene
- Cannabis sativa
I
and Carthamus tinctorius.
t t u i t d e h i s c e n c e c h a r a c t e r v a r i e s n o t o n l y between s p e c i e s and w i t h i n spe-
(la8 ( d o m e s t i c and wild f o r m s ) , b u t a l s o between d o m e s t i c c u l t i v a r s , as
,human s e l e c t i o n can push them
'mating.
The two p r e d o m i n a n t l y
oil-seed s u b s p e c i e s ) and GZycine
t o the f r u i t - f l e s h s p l i t t i n g a t
until considerably l a t e r .
towards n o n - d e h i s c e n c e a s an a i d t o h a r d e h i s c e n t s p e c i e s a r e P. somniferum ( t h e
m m ; i n Prunus amygdaZus d e h i s c e n c e r e f e r s
m a t u r i t y ; seed d i s p e r s a l i s n o t e f f e c t e d
Both d e h i s c e n c e and n o n - d e h i s c e n c e can have good and bad p o i n t s :
d o h i s c e n t c u l t i v a r s of Sesamum indicum must be c u t between seed m a t u r i t y
md t h e o n s e t of seed d i s p e r s a l , b u t , once c o l l e c t e d , t h r e s h i n g of t h e cap# u l e s i s u n n e c e s s a r y , t h e p l a n t s b e i n g i n s t e a d hung on r a c k s above mats o r
When h a r v e s t i n g t h e n o n - d e h i s c e n t
c l o t h t o c o l l e c t t h e seed a s i t f a l l s .
c u l t i v a r p r e c i s i o n i n t h e timing i s n o t s o e s s e n t i a l , but t h e subsequent
t h r e s h i n g , winnowing and s i e v i n g p r o c e s s e s r e q u i r e d t o g i v e c l e a n seed s a r e
A s t h e c a p s u l e s of Ricinus communis may
much more time-consuming.
d i e c h a r g e t h e i r s e e d s v i o l e n t l y , t h e y a r e s p r e a d on t h e ground o r on a m a t
a f t e r h a r v e s t i n g t o r e s t r i c t seed l o s s , and a f t e r a week o r s o , when t h e
m a j o r i t y of t h e s e e d s have been d i s p e r s e d , t h e c a p s u l e s are pounded t o
T h r e s h i n g i s e s s e n t i a l f o r Linum usitatissimum,
reduce any r e s i d u a l ones.
Carthamus tinctorius and Cannabis sativa.
It can be v e r y d i f f i c u l t t o e s t a b l i s h w i t h any c e r t a i n t y a t what s t a g e
i n a p l a n t ' s e v o l u t i o n n o n - d e h i s c e n t c u l t i v a r s were s u c c e s s f u l l y s e l e c t e d
f o r , and s o a t p r e s e n t we can o n l y c o n j e c t u r e a s t o whether t h e s p e c i e s
c u l t i v a t e d i n Sumerian t i m e s e x h i b i t e d seed d e h i s c e n c e o r n o t .
The seed
Seed s i z e r a n g e s from c a . 0.1 cm. d i a m e t e r i n Brassica napus t o t h a t of
which i s up t o 2.0 cm. i n l e n g t h and 1.5 crns. broad.
Prunus amygdazus
b. Morphology
The o i l p l a n t s of Mesopotamia s h a r e few common f e a t u r e s o u t s i d e t h e
p o s s e s s i o n of o i l - r i c h t i s s u e , u s u a l l y i n t h e seed b u t i n t h e c a s e of t h e
o l i v e t h e f l e s h y p a r t of t h e f r u i t .
I n t h e b r i e f d e s c r i p t i o n s below I
have t r i e d t o f i n d f e a t u r e s t h a t may be u s e f u l i n t h e i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of
p l a n t s from t h e i r d e s c r i p t i o n s i n c u n e i f o r m t e x t s .
The fruit
The f i v e t y p e s of f r u i t a r e :
- Sesamurn indicum, Linwn usitatissimum, Papaver somniferum and Ricinus communis.
i. a c a p s u l e
ii. a pod -
GZycine m m .
Sowing practice and harvest method
The small-seeded Linum usitatissimum i s t y p i c a l l y b r o a d c a s t o n t o a seedbed w i t h a f i n e t i l t h , and t h e n l i g h t l y c o v e r e d . T h i s i s a l s o t r u e f o r t h e
m a j o r i t y of r e p o r t s c o n c e r n i n g t h e sowing of Sesamum indicum, b u t t h e r e i s
R r e c o r d s u g g e s t i n g t h a t i t may n o t be s o p a r t i c u l a r i n i t s r e q u i r e m e n t s :
"an e x c e l l e n t c r o p of sesame was r e c e n t l y s e e n on an e s t a t e n e a r Suwairah
where t h e seed had m e r e l y been s c a t t e r e d among b a r l e y s t u b b l e w i t h o u t any
f u r t h e r c u l t i v a t i o n " (Guest 1930).
Another small-seeded c r o p , Papaver somniferum i s sown i n rows a p p r o x i mately 70 crns a p a r t .
Carthamus tinctorius and Cannabis sativa may be
b r o a d c a s t o r sown i n rows by d r i l l i n g ( p r e v i o u s l y d i b b l e d ) , t h e former i s a
Charles
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
w i n t e r sown c r o p and i s sometimes grown i n an a d m i x t u r e w i t h wheat and
b a r l e y , when i t i s b r o a d c a s t sown.
H a r v e s t i n g i s by:
lta t. I (> s
*~I~
tabrn
II
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
Mesopotamia,
a l t h o u g h Sesamum indiczuri and GZycine m m a r e com-
41s1IIL Lvely d r o u g h t - t o l e r a n t .
Only s m a l l a r e a s of land a r e c u l t i v a t e d i n
I I W summer, w a t e r b e i n g i n s h o r t s u p p l y , and t o w a r r a n t i t s p l a n t i n g t h e
must be f a i r l y c e r t a i n of growing s u c c e s s f u l l y and of t h e produce
a s a l e a b l e commodity.
Only Sesamum indicum seems t o be sown on
Ilc+ ltls where c e r e a l c r o p s have been grown t h a t w i n t e r and h a r v e s t e d , a s
v r l l a s on w i n t e r f a l l o w l a n d , t h e r e s t b e i n g sown i n t h e l a t e s p r i n g on
Cannabis sativa may be sown a s l a t e a s June
fa1 low l a n d , u s u a l l y i n A p r i l .
acrl I s n o t h a r v e s t e d u n t i l November o r December. (Among t h e legumes,
!'l~ctr~r?olus
aureus i s sown a f t e r a w i n t e r c r o p of wheat o r b a r l e y ) .
,101)
fw 111):
a . c u t t i n g o r r e a p i n g - Sesamum indicum, Linum usitatissimum,
Ricinus communis and GZycine m m .
b. p u l l i n g o r u p r o o t i n g ( a l s o known a s p l u c k i n g ) - Carthamus tine
torius and GZycine m a .
c. picking (of f r u i t )
(
- OZea europaea
and Prunus amygdaZus.
f l u ecology of the oil-plants
( t h e c a p s u l e s of Ricinus communis a r e c u t , r a t h e r t h a n t h e whole p l a n t , and
t h i s may be c o n s i d e r e d a s coming w i t h i n t h e l a s t c a t e g o r y ) .
Use of t h e s t r a w seems r e s t r i c t e d t o t h e b u r n i n g of Sesamum indicum
s t a l k s f o r f u e l ( t h e a s h i s c o n s i d e r e d a good f e r t i l i z e r ) , w h i l s t t h a t of some
Brassica s p e c i e s and GZycine m m a r e r e a s o n a b l e f o d d e r o r f o r a g e c r o p s .
R i c i n , a t o x i c s u b s t a n c e p r e s e n t i n s e e d s and v e g e t a t i v e p a r t s of Hicinus
communis, means t h e s t r a w must n o t be fed t o l i v e s t o c k .
Sowing rates and harvest yields
Sowing r a t e s f o r t h e o i l - p l a n t s tend t o be low compared w i t h t h o s e f o r the
c e r e a l s , a r e f l e c t i o n of growth form, i . e . p l a n t s f a r a p a r t , much b r a n c h e d ,
g i v i n g a h i g h seed y i e l d p e r p l a n t ; w i t h h i g h e r sowing r a t e s t h e p l a n t s
grow t a l l e r , a r e l e s s branched and c o n s e q u e n t l y have a lower seed y i e l d
( c f . f l a x and l i n s e e d forms of Linum usitatissimwn). R a t e s from I r a q a r e
e q u i v a l e n t t o t h o s e from o t h e r s i m i l a r a r e a s .
;rri(gins & ancestraZ plants ( T a b l e 2)
k'tom t h e modern d i s t r i b u t i o n of t h e o i l - p l a n t s a n d , where h o w n , t h e i r wild
nc~c-clstors, i t seems t h a t t h e m a j o r i t y of t h o s e concerned h e r e had t h e i r
I g i n s i n and around t h e Near E a s t e r n and M e d i t e r r a n e a n c e n t r e s .
The
nxc.ca p t i o n s a r e Cannahis sativa
and Prunus amygdaZus - i n C e n t r a l A s i a ,
~;l!ycinem m - E a s t A s i a , and Ricinus comrnunis - I n d i a l A f r i c a , a l l of which
, . ~ ) t ~ lhave
d
a r r i v e d i n Mesopotamia q u i t e e a r l y on.
The d i s c o v e r y of a wild
crrl Hame i n I n d i a (Bed i g i a n , t h i s volume), p r e v i o u s l y t h o u g h t t o be l i m i t e d
~ I I tropical
A f r i c a i n i t s n a t u r a l d i s t r i b u t i o n , emphasizes t h a t o u r
kc~owledge of t h e n a t u r a l d i s t r i b u t i o n and e v o l u t i o n of t h e major c r o p
~ t l i i n t s i s n o t w i t h o u t i t s gaps.
N,rbitat & distribution ( T a b l e 2)
,I.
p l a n t s apparently r e s t r i c t e d t o southern I r a q
Papaver somniferum, Brassica
sativa and GZycine m a .
napus,
- Linum usitatissimum,
Ricinus
communis,
Cannabis
Yield f i g u r e s , where a v a i l a b l e f o r Mesopotamia, a r e low, o n l y t h o s e f o r
Ricinus communis comparing f a v o u r a b l y w i t h o t h e r c o u n t r i e s
It i s d i f f i c u l t t o e s t i m a t e t h e y i e l d p o t e n t i a l of Mesopotamia i n t h e p a s t from
t h e s e modern f i g u r e s , remembering t h e c o n t i n u i n g s o i l f e r t i l i t y d e p l e t i o n
and t h e worsening s a l t problem.
I ) . p l a n t s r e s t r i c t e d t o s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia - a l t h o u g h grown i n s o u t h e r n
Mesopotamia Prunus amygdaZus i s c h i e f l y o r n a m e n t a l t h e r e , i t s f r u i t
production being g r e a t l y reduced.
Seasonality
,.. p l a n t s
.
of b o t h n o r t h e r n and s o u t h e r n Mesopotamia
-
Sesamum indicum and
OZea europaea.
a. The winter crops
These , Linum usitatissimum, Papaver somniferum,
Brassica napus and Carthamus tinctor<us, r e c e i v e n o mention i n e i t h e r a g r i c u l t u r a l s u r v e y , and i t seems t h a t t h e i r c u l t i v a t i o n t a k e s p l a c e l o c a l l y on
a s m a l l s c a l e . Guest (1930a) i n an a r t i c l e on l i n s e e d c u l t i v a t i o n g i v e s us
a v e r y d e t a i l e d a c c o u n t of t h i s s p e c i e s , s e r v i n g t o emphasise t h e l a c k of
p u b l i s h e d m a t e r i a l on o t h e r s p e c i e s .
He recommends t h a t sowing be done i n
O c t o b e r , t h e y i e l d b e i n g halved i f sown i n December, and reduced t o one
q u a r t e r of t h e autumn c r o p ' s y i e l d i f p l a n t e d i n t h e s p r i n g . [Compare t h e
o b s e r v a t i o n t h a t f l a x a s grown i n B r i t a i n i s a non-frost-hard y p l a n t which
must be sown i n t h e s p r i n g ( G i l l & Vear 1980). I
b. The summer crops, Sesamum indicum, Cannabis sativa, Ricinus communis
and GZycine m m , can o n l y be grown w i t h i r r i g a t i o n , whether i n n o r t h e r n o r
'I'ile p r e s e n c e of Ricinus communis, Cannabis satiua and Gzycine marc seems t o
t h e r e s u l t of e x p e r i m e n t a l work c a r r i e d o u t a t t h e A g r i c u l t u r a l S t a t i o n s
(,I' Rustam and Abu Ghraib.
Guest (1930) i n an unpublished r e p o r t on t h e
work conducted a t Rustam p r i o r t o h i s a r r i v a l , s t a t e s t h a t t h e c u l t i v a t i o n
O F GZycine max and Carthamus tinctorius had proved u n s u c c e s s f u l and t h a t
I l ~ e s es p e c i e s could n o t be recommended f o r Southern I r a q .
S a l t t o l e r a n c e measurements a r e n o t a v a i l a b l e f o r many of t h e
o i l - p l a n t s ; Sesamum indicum h a s a low t o l e r a n c e and r e q u i r e s w a t e r w i t h a
low s a l t c o n t e n t , o t h e r w i s e i t i s s u s c e p t i b l e t o d i s e a s e , w h i l e Linum usit;atissimum h a s moderate s a l t t o l e r a n c e .
Charles
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
@har l e s
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
F r o s t can a d v e r s e l y a f f e c t OZea europaea, t e m p e r a t u r e s of l e s s than
2' C can damage t h e f r u i t and below -9" C t h e tree.
Ricinus comrnunis i s
a l s o susceptible t o f r o s t injury.
a2 extraction
Oiz type8
I , Rendering S u i t a b l e o n l y when t h e o i l i s s t o r e d i n t h e f l e s h y p a r t of
the f r u i t r a t h e r t h a n t h e s e e d , e.g. i n Olea europaea, whose f r u i t i s
picked i n w i n t e r a f t e r i t h a s turned b l a c k , i n d i c a t i n g maximum o i l c o n t e n t .
the f r u i t i s heaped i n t o p i l e s on c l o t h and l e f t i n t h e s u n , and t h e exuded
o i l i s c o l l e c t e d on t h e c l o t h , which can t h e n be "washed o u t " t o e x t r a c t
the o i l .
( O l i v e s are a l s o p r e s s e d ) .
F a t s and o i l s
appearance a t
p o i n t becomes
above 300" C.
Table 3
a r e s i m p l y terms a p p l i e d t o t h e same c h e m i c a l , based on i t s
room t e m p e r a t u r e ( c a . 25" C);
a f a t heated t o i t s meltingan o i l .
O i l s n o r m a l l y s t a r t t o decompose a t t e m p e r a t u r e s
There a r e two t y p e s of o i l of economic importance :
1. The fixed o i l s - g r e a s y , n o n - d i s t i l l a b l e s u b s t a n c e s , n o n - v o l a t i l e
and o b t a i n e d from o i l - r i c h s e e d s . They a r e used f o r c o o k i n g , i l l u m i n a t i o n ,
soapmaking, e t c . ( s e e s e c t i o n on u s e s below).
2. The essential o i l s - non-greasy, v o l a t i l e , o f t e n s t r o n g l y a r o m a t i c .
These a r e g e n e r a l l y p r e s e n t , i n low c o n c e n t r a t i o n s , i n t h e v e g e t a t i v e p a r t s
of t h e p l a n t ;
t h e r e a r e s m a l l amounts of p u n g e n t , v o l a t i l e e s s e n t i a l o i l s
T h e i r u s e s tend t o be
i n t h e s e e d s of c e r t a i n Brassica s p . ( T a b l e 5 ) .
r e s t r i c t e d t o t h e f i e l d s of m e d i c i n e and c o s m e t i c s , though some a r e food
flavourings.
T b r e a r e two b a s i c methods of o i l e x t r a c t i o n , r e n d e r i n g and
Wlich i s used d e p e n d s on how t h e o i l i s s t o r e d by t h e p l a n t .
20 Pressing
a . drying o i l s - u n s a t u r a t e d , h i g h ' i o d i n e v a l u e s ' o v e r 150; s u i t a b l e
f o r p a i n t s and v a r n i s h e s - l i n s e e d .
b. semi-drying o i l s - i o d i n e v a l u e s 100-150; cooking and s a l a d o i l s ,
s o a p s and a s p a i n t s and v a r n i s h e s - sesame, poppy, rape o r c o l z a , s a f f l o w e r
and s o y a o i l s .
c . non-drying o i l s - f a i r l y s a t u r a t e d , low i o d i n e v a l u e below 100;
s a l a d o i l s , v e h i c l e s f o r m e d i c i n e s and perfumes, o c c a s i o n a l l y a s i l l u m i n a n t s - o l i v e , c a s t o r and almond. Prone t o r a n c i d i t y .
a . Cold pressing ( F i g . l a ) :
The s e e d s a r e f i r s t broken up by pounding,
m i l l i n g o r g r i n d i n g t o produce an u n e x t r a c t e d meal. T h i s i s t h e n p r e s s e d ,
the e x p r e s s e d o i l b e i n g f i l t e r e d o f f l e a v i n g t h e cake of crushed husks and
need k e r n e l s .
F i l t e r i n g i s t h r o u g h a c l o t h o r f i n e mesh s i e v e .
The r e s i d u a l cake i s s t i l l o i l - r i c h (3-15%) and may be f u r t h e r processed by a n o t h e r
a hot
pressing
treatment
is applied.
cold
pressing
or
instead
A l t e r n a t i v e l y i t can be fed t o l i v e s t o c k , b e i n g r i c h i n p r o t e i n and a
v a l u a b l e f e e d , o r i n d e e d , i n t h e c a s e of sesame, t o humans.
When cont a i n i n g a t o x i n o r of poor q u a l i t y i t i s used as a f e r t i l i s e r .
Fig. la.
Cold pressing sequence
SEED
crushing
1
' V I R G I N OIL'
q u a n t i t y of v. h i g h q u a l i t y o i l )
"smla
1 pressing
&
filtering1
l i v e s t o c k feed ( o i l &
protein rich)
I
I
i
I
(3-15% o i l )
OIL
human consumption ( r a r e :
sesame & ( ? ) p o p p y )
processing/
refining
I
Soya o i l can be c o n v e r t e d from a n o n - d r y i n g t o a d r y i n g o i l by d e h y d r a t i o n .
pressing.
either cold or hot.
We a r e h e r e concerned o n l y w i t h t h e f i x e d o i l s .
The h i g h e s t q u a l i t y o i l s
a r e sesame and s a f f l o w e r , two s e m i - d r y i n g o i l s w i t h a l a r g e range of u s e s
from food o i l s t o s o a p s ( s e e Table 3 ) . I n b o t h c a s e s t h e p r i n c i p a l o i l s
c o n t a i n e d a r e t h e same, i.e. O l e i c , L i n o l e i c and P a l m i t i c .
O l i v e and hemp
o i l a r e a t t h e o t h e r end of t h e q u a l i t y s p e c t r u m w i t h c o n s e q u e n t l y fewer
p o t e n t i a l uses.
One of t h e most i m p o r t a n t p r o p e r t i e s of an o i l i s i t s d r y i n g , t h i s
r e f l e c t s t h e l e v e l of s a t u r a t i o n and i s measured by i t s p o t e n t i a l of i o d i n e
u p t a k e (which i s e q u a l t o a i r u p t a k e ) :
Figs. la & b
CLEAN OIL
(cold-drawn, high
quality o i l )
Q
~
~
i
~
LOW
OIL
(hot-drawn, high impurity content
May be cleaned / r e f i n e d t o
remove n o n - g l y c e r i d e s )
~
~
b. Hot pressing ( F i g . l b ) :
T h i s can be a p p l i e d t o e i t h e r t h e
u n e x t r a c t e d meal o r , as mentioned above, t o meal a l r e a d y cold-pressed
Hot
p r e s s i n g i s much more e f f i c i e n t t h a n cold p r e s s i n g , g i v i n g an i n c r e a s e d
y i e l d , b u t w i t h a c o n c o m i t a n t i n c r e a s e i n i m p u r i t i e s , g i v i n g t h e o i l a much
more pronounced c o l o u r .
The o i l t h u s produced i s r e f i n e d a c c o r d i n g t o
i n tended use
- 51 -
.
.
Charles
Legumes and o i l p l a n t 8
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
Fig.
l b . Hot p r e s s i n g s e q u e n c e
SEED
grinding
I
MEAI,
filtered
OIL ( s m a l l q u a n t i t y of
v. h i g h q u a l i t y o i l )
heated
011 s t o r a g e
I'roviding t h e o i l i s s t o r e d c o r r e c t l y , i n a r e a s o n a b l y c o o l p l a c e o u t of
d l r c c t s u n l i g h t i n s e a l e d c o n t a i n e r s , i t w i l l keep f o r f a i r l y l o n g p e r i o d s
( w v e r a l months a t l e a s t ) .
When exposed t o a i r t h e d r y i n g o i l s t a k e up
n l r and harden t o a f i l m o r c o a t i n g .
Semi-drying o i l s t h i c k e n and event r ~ i ~ l lhya r d e n , a t a r a t e d e t e r m i n e d by t h e i r i o d i n e v a l u e and how t h i n l y
wpread t h e y a r e .
Non-drying o i l s r a n c i f y a s t h e g l y c e r i d e s b r e a k down
( b y h y d r o l y s i s ) i n t o g l y c e r o l and f a t t y a c i d s .
MEAL+OIL
I
I
Fig.
pressing & f i l t e r i n g
lc.
MELTED FATIOIL
I
OIL
hot-drawn, low q u a l i t y d e p e n d i n g on t e m p e r a t u r e
of t r e a t m e n t
I
I
CAKE
( a s above)
Heat t r e a t m e n t = b o i l i n g w a t e r ,
h e a t i n g o v e r f i r e , i n p o t s (C.
t i n c t o r i u s ) given s u f f i c i e n t l y
h i g h t e m p e r a t u r e o i l i s exuded
d i r e c t from meal, o r s e e d s .
+
I
ALKALINE SOLUTION
(e.g. c a u s t i c s o d a / p o t a s h )
boiling
[SAPONIFICATION]
+
The p r o c e s s of e x t r a c t i n g hot-drawn o i l from Carthamus t i n c t o r i u s , which
y i e l d s a t h i c k , b l a c k v i s c o u s m a t e r i a l used f o r w a t e r p r o o f i n g , i s t h e o n l y
one d e s c r i b e d i n any d e t a i l f o r I r a q , and i t i s w o r t h o u t l i n i n g t h e proced u r e s h e r e ( a f t e r C h a k r a v a r t y 1976):
SALT ( b r i n e )
[LIXIVIATION]
I
+
+
1. s e e d s p l a c e d i n a n e a r t h e n p o t i n v e r t e d o v e r s i m i l a r p o t b u r i e d i n
the earth.
A s i e v e o r p e r f o r a t e d p l a t e o v e r mouth of f i r s t p o t p r e v e n t s
seeds f a l l i n g out.
LYE
I M P U ~ E SOAP
SAPONIFIED FAT
COLOURINGS e t c .
s a l t water +
g l y c e r o l (recovered )
+
ALKALINE SOLUTION
boiling
2. u p p e r p o t i s h e a t e d .
3. exuded o i l d r i p s i n t o lower p o t .
A f t e r 2 h o u r s a t 300" C t h e o i l
produced i s poured i n t o c o l d w a t e r , forming a t h i c k b l a c k g e l a t i n o u s mass,
s u i t a b l e a s a n a d h e s i v e f o r g l a s s and o r n a m e n t a l s t o n e s .
SOAP SOLUTION
s a l t w a t e r washing ( t o remove f r e e a l k a l i )
b o i l i n g with water
A f t e r 24 h o u r s a t 307" C t h e hot-drawn o i l d e s c r i b e d above i s g e n e r a t e d .
An o i l y i e l d of 20-38% i s r e c o r d e d by C h a k r a v a r t y f o r Carthamus t i n c t o r i u s ,
presumably of t o t a l d r y s e e d w e i g h t , though t h i s i s n o t s p e c i f i e d .
The s e e d s of R i c i n u s cornmunis c o n t a i n a h i g h l y t o x i c s u b s t a n c e , r i c i n ,
and t o e n s u r e t h a t i t i s l e f t i n t h e meal a f t e r t h e o i l i s e x t r a c t e d t h e
p r o c e s s must be done c a r e f u l l y .
S i m i l a r l y i n Linum u s i t a t i s s i m w n p r u s s i c
a c i d (hydrogen c y a n i d e ) can be g e n e r a t e d i f t h e c y a n o g e n e t i c g l u c o s i d e i n
t h e s e e d s b r e a k s down, and t o a v o i d t h i s b o i l i n g w a t e r s h o u l d be used i n
the o i l preparation.
F o r t h e e x t r a c t i o n of o i l from sesame, s e e t h e
p a s s a g e quoted by B e d i g i a n , p. 160 below.
Soap making
I
SOAP
m i l led/pressed
i f necessary
SOAP
+
IMPURITIES
O i l uses
1. E d i b l e food o i l , e .g. a s a s a l a d o i l
-
o l i v e and sesame
2. Cooking o i l , d e p e n d s on r e s p o n s e t o h i g h t e m p e r a t u r e s - s a f f l o w e r and
sesame. Bread and c a k e s may be coated p r i o r t o baking.
3 . P a i n t s & v a r n i s h e s ( p r o t e c t i v e c o a t i n g s ) , d r y i n g and s e m i - d r y i n g o i l s
w i t h h i g h i o d i n e v a l u e s - l i n s e e d , poppy & s a f f l o w e r .
- 53 -
Charles
Legumes and oil plants
I
4. Illurninant - hemp and rape.
5. Soap-making or for fulling
!
-
most oils suitable to some extent (Fig. lc)
6. Perfwnery (cosmetics), as medium for scents etc.
for anointing.
-
Legumes and oil plants
Charles
MarDonald, Sir M. & Partners
Diyala and Middle Tigris Projects.
1959
Payck, A.P.G.
I962
sesame & almond, also
"Farm studies in Iraq", Mededelingen van de ~andbouwhogeschool te Wageningen - ~ederland62, 1-99.
7. Medicine, either as a medium or vehicle of application, or as a remedy castor oil as purgative, linseed for suppurations.
Yur~eglove,J.W.
1968
Tropical crops, Dicotyledons (Longman; London)
8. Leather softening/dressing and as an aid to weaving.
#lmmonds, N.W.
Evolution of crop plants (Longman; London)
1976
9. Other uses - lubricant, vehicle for various chemicals, resins and
water-proofing.
Townsend, C. C. & Guest , E.
I966
Flora of Iraq, Vol. 11 (Min. of Ag., Baghdad).
1974
Flora of Iraq, VoZ. 111: Leguminales (Min. of Ag. & Agricultural Reform, Baghdad).
BIBLIOGRAPHY
vrr~i Dam, J.G.C.
Bernstein, L.
1981
"Effects of salinity and soil water regime on crop yields",
in D. Yaron (ed.), Salinity in irrigation and water resources
(Dekker)
Bland, B.F.
Crop production: cereals and legumes
1971
1955
.
"Examination of soils and crops after the inundations of 1st
of February 1953, Pt. 11: The influence of salt on the chief
vegetable crops", etherl lands Journal of Agricultural Science
3/i, 2-14.
Chakravarty, H.L.
Plant wealth of Iraq (A dictionary of economic plants).
1976
Baghdad: Ministry of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform.
TABLES 1 TO 5
Dielman, P.J. et al.
Reclamation of salt affected soils in Iraq.
(Soil hydro1963
logical and agricultural studies.
Publication No. 11,
International Institute for Land Reclamation and Improvement
(ILRI).
Table 1 : Distribution, ecology & agronomic details of the legumes
Table 2 : Distribution, ecology & agronomic details of the oil plants
Gill, N.T. & Vear, K.C.
Agricultural Botany, I: Dicotyledonous Crops.
1980
Guest, E.
1930a
1930b
Table 3 : Characteristics of the different oils
Table 4 : Oil plant fruits
The cultivation and marketing of linseed in Iraq (Department
of Agriculture, Iraq: Bulletin, 21).
Table 5 : Brassicas
"Notes on miscellaneous crops in Iraq" (unpublished manuscript).
Hillman, G.C.
1973
"Agricultural productivity and past population potential at
Aqvan", in Anatolian studies 23, 225-240.
Hutchinson, J.
The families of
1959
(Oxford; 2nd ed.)
flowering
plants,
VoZ.
I.
Dicotyledons
II
The tables are intended to give the characteristics of the plants as
may be relevant to their identification in the cuneiform sources;
they are by no means complete, and I would be grateful for any more
information concerning their cultivation in Mesopotamia.
Charles
Legumes and oil plants
Ohrrles
Table 1 (ctd.)
SOWING
FLOWER
HARVEST DETAILS
yield
(kglhectare)
I
I
I
I
I
em.0.30.6; lg.
0.6-0.9
brd. & dr.
60 [56-135 Feb
Turkey//1
dr.
?aut
[67-112 fr.
0.5-0.8
200-335 dry* 1
brd. & dr.
ca.
[34-45 India* aut
0.5-1.2
30 Turkey//]
brd
?aut
ca. 0.35
[ 70 Turkey//I
L. ca.1.5 brd. & dr.
3.0x2.5 90-155, ca.56 midL. ca.1.C mix w. cereal Oct
brd
?aut
0.6-0.7
[40-45*]
.
.
1.0x0.8
1
0.4-0.6
x
0.2-0.4
0.4
x
0.3
I
dr.
45-67 [3950 E.Asia*]
brd. & dr.
[15-30 T.Africa & USA*]
brd. ( ? )
[95-180
~urkey//
,GB]
brd
.
0.2-0.6
Apr-Jun
1000
[400-1680*]
I
D
I I [2508 fresh;
+
2240 dry*]
Apr-Jun
Feb-Apr
D
?
1
I / N1 +1 1
MarApr
?spr
Jun-Oct
(700-)
+ 1120-2240
1
I
D
£1 JunJul; fr D
Jul-Aug
[450-1800
India*]
[700 Turkey//]
?
I
Mar-Apr
I
I
N + +
May-Jun
(-Jul )
1
+
I
I
~605-2400
1
[450-672 Trop.
Africa*,
1000-2800 USA*]
+
(May-)
June- (Aug-)
Sept
July
Turkey//,GB]
I
£1 Mar115-25 Apr; fr
I Oct Apr-May
0.3-0.5
X
0.2-0.3
brd.
dr.
L.= length
=
=
£1
fr
broadcast
drilled
aut
spr
=
=
=
=
1
l
.
I I I I
l
l
flowering period
fruiting period
autumn
spring
[
(
)
]
=
l
l
*=J.W. Purseglove
//=G. C. Hillman
figures from outside Iraq
figures for crop sown with cereals
Legumes and o i l p l a n t s
Char Les
Table 2
brd. = b r o a d c a s t
dr. = drilled
[
(ctd.)
£ 1 = flowering period
f r = f r u i t i n g period
]
f i g u r e s from o u t s i d e I r a q
*=J.W.
Purseglove
Charles
Legumes and oil plants
Legumes and oil plants
Clrrr les
Table 4 : Oil plant fruits
Table 3 : Characteristics of the different oils
Fruit type
capsule
S. indicum
capsule
1,. usitatissimum
capsule
P . somniferum
siliqua
R . napus
achene
C. tinctorius
achene
C. sativa
drupe
0 . europaea
capsule
R. comrnunis
Name
-
-I;.
max
-P . amygdaZus
pod
fruit
Size
7.0 x 2.0
1.0 x 0.75
2.0-6.0 diam.
5.0-11.0 long
ca.l.0 x 0.4-0.5
0.5-0.6 x 0.4
1.3-5.0 x 0.6-2.0
2.5-8.0 x 0.8-1.5
3.0-4.0 x 2.0-2.5
Dehiscence
dehiscent & non-deh.
indehiscent
dehisc. (non-deh. cvs)
? dehisc.
non-shattering
non-shattering
non-dehiscent
some cvs deh., most
non-dehiscent
dehiscent
splits at maturity
cvs
=
cultivars
Table 5 : Brassicas
&
+--Itrassica
I,.
0 = Oleic
L = Linoleic
P = Palmitic
E = Erucic
Ln = Linolenic
COMMENTS
OIL TYPE
LATIN NAME
&
1
NAMES
Field
mustard
campestris
I
fixedoil
I
1 Flowers yellow.
I
x0.2-0.3
Cooking
I
' kg/ha.;
30-38% fixed oil Flowers
(?)India
Indian
+ a volatile oil 0.3 cm.
or
mustard
1 Cooking
1 Near East (
ssp. sarson
I-I
I
Fruit siliqua 4-8
cm. Annua1,50-80 cm tall.
oil. Sowing rate: 4.5-5.5
yield 878-1380 kg/ha.
yellow. Siliqua 3-5.5x0.2Annua1,30-80 cm tall.
oil.
2n=20 self-sterile
itrassica juncea (L.)
Czern
.-.--& Cross
ssD. s e r e ~ t a n a
I
I
2n=36 self-fertile
/ Eurasia 1 28% fixed oil 1 Flowers yellow. Siliqua 1-2x0.15Black
Hrassica nigra (L. )
Koch
1I +a small % of
Oil used in medicine,
as a preparation for
KHARDAL
mustard
2n=16 self-sterile
I
volatile oil (I%)/many cooked/pickled foods.
Sinavis aZba L.
I White
I Mediter- 130% fixed oil
1 Flowers yellow.
cm long. Annual, 25-100 cm.
mustard
ranean
( Oil ground with B . nigra for table
I
I
I mustard.
2n=24 self-sterile
I
I
1 Near East1 30.7% fixed oil I Oil similar to mustard oil.
Wild
Brassica
toumefortii
I turnip ( ( ? )
I
I
I
I
I
I
I
FINDS OF SESAME AND LINSEED IN ANCIENT IRAQ
Jane M. Renfrew
(Lucy Cavendish Cot Zege, Cambridge)
'I'hc most frequently found oil-bearing seeds from ancient Iraq belong to
cultivated flax, but the most common description on the cuneiform tablets
rclfers to ~~ma>~&ammu,
usually translated as "sesame". Could there be an
vrror in the translation or is it possible that sesame seeds have been
r~r~der-representedin the archaeological record?
This is the main hub of
Llle discussion.
My main purpose here is to draw together the evidence for
L11e cultivation of both species in this area in ancient times.
Flax, Linurn usitatissirnurn L., appears to have been domesticated from
the wild Kurdish pale flax, Linurn bienne Mill. (formerly known as L. angustifolium Huds.) in the foothill region north and east of the TigrisEuphrates plain, where it still grows wild today at altitudes of 1,8003,000 feet (600-1,000 m) above sea level.
It appears to have been domestcated shortly after 6,000 B.C.
The following finds are recorded in the
literature:
Site
Nimrud
Date
ca. 600 B.C.
Khafajah B
Khafajah A
Ur
Old Bab.
'Ubaid
' Ubaid
Arpachiyah
Choga Mami
Halaf
Samarran
T. es Sawwan
5,800 B.C.
Preservation
Seed measurements in mm.
L. 4.41 (3.66-5.31)
[50 seeds]
B. 2.29 (1.83-2.75)
Chalk replica
L. 4.76; B. 2.75
Carbonized
(no measurements)
Seed impressions L. 4.21; B. 2.20
L. 4.39; B. 2.56
L. 4.39; B. 2.38
Carbonized
L. 3.84; B. 1.83
Carbonized
"largest on record; no
measurements"
Carbonized
L. 4.0; B. 1.83
Carbonized
(Note: It should be remembered that when comparing carbonized seed measurements with those of impressions and chalk replicas, a shrinkage in length
of about 13% should be taken into account).
In Iraq today flax varieties are preferred which develop several stems
and a strong root.
The seeds are sown in late October and irrigated
during dry spells.
The harvest takes place at the beginning of May,
before the scorching summer heat can cause emergency ripening which would
threaten the quality of the crop.
In Iraq the crop is cut at harvest, not
pulled as in Egypt (Guest 1930).
In areas of limited rainfall it has been
shown that the oil-seed varieties do better than those grown for their
linen fibres:
fair yields can be obtained with an annual rainfall of
300-350 mm.
For successful storage the seeds must contain less than 10% moisture.
They normally contain 30-40% oil and 20-25% protein.
A little cold-
Renfrew
Finds of sesame and linseed
pressed oil is produced and used for cooking.
The seeds are normally
heated before pressing and the resulting hot-pressed oil is a drying oil
which will keep indefinitely in air-tight containers, but forms a hard film
on exposure to the air. It is chiefly used in paints and varnishes.
Seed residues from hot pressing contain 33-43% protein and can be used
for cattle feed.
Those from cold pressing contain cyanogenic glucosides
which make them poisonous.
The whole seeds were used as food by the
Greeks and Romans; in ancient Egypt linseed oil was only used for lighting
Nowadays it is used for seasoning Vicia faba
(Darby et al. 1976, 783f
beans.
.).
It is important to note that linseed contains cyanogenetic glucoside,
and if seeds are allowed to soak in cold water enzymes will break down the
glucoside, resulting in the production of poisonous hydrogen cyanide
(prussic acid).
For this reason it is important that linseed gruel should
be prepared with boiling water (Gill & Vear 1958, 143).
There are very few palaeoethnobotanical finds of sesame seeds.
Most
relevant is the find reported by Piotrovsky of Urartian pots full of carbonized sesame seeds and cuneiform tablets at Karmir Blur, dating to between 1,000 and 600 B.C. (see Bedigian, this volume, pp. 168-70).
Other
early, finds of sesame, Sesamum indicum, come from further east. A lump of
sesame seeds was found at Harappa (Vats 1940, 466-7), and sesame has also
been reported from Ch'ien Shan Yang, a Late Neolithic Lung Shan culture
site in Chekiang Province, China (Chekiang 1960).
There are no detailed
accounts of these finds. Recently G. Willcox has identified sesame in 2nd
millennium levels at Shortugai, Northern Afghanistan (pers. comm.).
Wild sesame does not grow in the Middle East today.
Nayar & Mehra
1970 consider that it must have originated as a crop plant either in India
or in Ethiopia, or in both areas.
The most likely wild ancestors of the
cultivated form are either Sesamum capense or Sesamum schenckii both of
which occur in Africa, India and the Far East, and both of which have proOn balance they consider S.
duced viable F1 hybrids with S. indicum.
schenkii to be the most likely ancestral species.
Sesame is important as an edible-oil crop of traditional agriculture in
dry climates, and is grown widely in India, Pakistan, Iraq, Syria, Turkey,
Sudan, Egypt and the more humid tropical regions of Africa.
It has high
heat and light requirements.
Growth and fruiting are best at temperatures
It is a drought-resistant crop in areas with a winter rainaround 27" C.
fall of 400 mm.
The seeds mature 90-100 days after the first appearance
of the seedlings.
Seed maturity is uneven: the same plant may still be
flowering at the top when the seeds at the base have ripened in their
upright pods.
In the Near East sesame is sown in the late spring after the last rainfall. It may be grown as a single crop - planted through a funnel attached
to a native "nail" plough in rows 50 cm apart, or it may be grown as a
mixed crop, as in India with the seeds of both crops being sown broadcast
and lightly covered with a harrow.
Harvest starts when the lower pods
nf rew
Finds of sesame and linseed
ve ripened, and the plants are left to dry before threshing. The seeds
ntain 45-60% oil.
The most useful property of the oil is its high stality, so that it does not turn rancid.
The seeds are used in baking and
Oonfectionery. They may be pressed to extract the bland, edible oil.
The
011 cake remaining after pressing is a valuable concentrate for feeding to
domestic animals, being rich in protein (20% or more) calcium, phosphorus
and miacin (Arnon 1972, 381f.).
Renfrew
Finds of sesame and linsee
BIBLIOGRAPHY
PULSES RECORDED FROM ANCIENT IRAQ
Crop production in dry regions, 2, 381-387.
(Lucy Cavendish CoZZege, Cambridge)
Jane M. Renfrew
Arnon, I.
1972
Chekiang
1960
Chekiang Province Cultural Properties Control, 1960: Report
on the first and second seasons of excavations at the site of
Ch'ien Shan Yang in Wu-hsinghsien, Chekiang, K'ao ku hsue
pa6 2, 84-7.
/1
1
t
Darby et al.
1976
Delougaz, P.
1940
W.J. Darby, P. Ghalioungui & L. Grivetti, Food: the Gift o
Osiris, Vo1. 2, 783-4.
&
Jacobsen, T.
The Temple Oval at Khafajah, (Oriental Institute Publication8
LII, Chicago) (report on seeds by E. Schiemann).
1
Lentils, Peas, Grass Pea/Blue Vetchling, Chick-pea, Horse-bean and Bitter
Vetch all appear to have been cultivated in Iraq in antiquity, though none
are found as frequently as cereals in the early deposits. In addition on
the earliest sites in this area, as in Khuzistan in neighbouring Iran,
@@ads of a number of small wild legume species have also been found: in
particular the seeds of small vetches, Trigonella, Medicago, Astragalus and
Coronilla have been identified, but not in such quantities as to suggest
ellat they were being grown or collected on a significantly large scale.
The following finds have been recorded:
22
Gill, N.T. & Vear, K.C.
1958
Agricultural Botany (Duckworth; London).
Guest, E.
1930
Helbaek, H.
1959
.rl
U
G
a
Site
The cultivation and marketing of
Baghdad )
linseed (Govt.
Press,
"Notes on the evolution and history of Linum", in Kuml
103-129.
"Ecological effects of irrigation in Ancient Mesopotamia",
in Iraq 22, 192.
"Early Hassunan vegetable food at Es-Sawwan near Samarra",
in Swner 20, 45-48.
"The plant remains", in M.E.L.
Remains, 11, 613-618.
Mallowan, Nimrud and it8
"Samarran irrigation agriculture at Choga Mami", in Iraq 34,
39.
Nayar, N.M.
1976'
Vats, N.S.
1940
Simmonds,
"Sesame", in N.W.
(Longman; London & New York).
Evolution
Excavations at Harappa, I (Calcutta), 466-7.
of
crop
Date
plants
Nehrwan Canal
T, Bazmosian
N Lmrud
T. Bazmosian
T. ed-Der
Tcll Taya
Tell Yelkhi
T.Bazmosian
T, Qurtass
Ilr (Royal Gr.)
T, Chragh
Choga Mami
Jurmo
Islamic
Islamic
700-600 BC
ca.1500 BC
19-18th C BC
2300 BC
2200-1800 BC
2100-1800 BC
2100-1800 BC
2500 BC
3500 BC
Samarra
6700 BC
r
d
,
: -U 3- "d a,, b uh;u
c
O
.
d
I J ! % c J u x m
I
I
( Publication
I
Helbaek 1965a
Helbaek 1965a
Helbaek 1966
Helbaek 1965a
van Zeist 1985
Waines 1973
Costantini 1985
Helbaek 1965a
Helbaek 1960c
Ellison et al. 1978
Helbaek 1960c
Helbaek 1973
Helbaek 1960a,1965a
1. Lentils - Lens esculenta Moench./Lens culinaris Medic.
Lentils appear to have been domesticated from the wild Lens orientalis
which, at present, has a wide distribution from Turkey, Syria, Palestine,
North Iraq, to West and North Iran.
They belong to the spectrum of crops
tirst domesticated together with cereals at the beginning of agriculture in
As a crop they are not very hardy,
the Near East (Hopf & Zohary, 1973).
although they can withstand a certain amount of heat and drought, but they
are very sensit-ive to excess soil-moisture.
The pods split open on
maturity (70-100 days after sowing) revealing one to three lens-shaped
tieeds. The seeds have a high protein content and are more easily digested
than animal protein.
They are often eaten in soups and stews.
The
following measurements are available for the early finds of lentil, and
Renfrew
Pulses from Ancient Ira
nf rew
show that most of them belong to ssp. microspemna, the small-seeded
variety. Some, however, from Nimrud are larger and may be classed as ssp.
macrospemna.
occurred in an early 2nd millennium oven and in an Akkadian oven, in both
cases associated with naked and hulled wheats and barley, and in the
Akkadian examples also with peas and lentils. They were found with Bitter
Vetch in the deposit from Fort Shalmaneser, Nimrud.
Lentil measurements
Site
Date
Nimrud
T. Bazmosian
Assyrian
Hurrian
Isin-Larsa
Ur 111
3500 BC
Samarra
6500 BC
T. Qurtass
T. Chragh
Choga Mami
Jarmo
This is one of the hardiest of the legumes, being drought-resistant and
also withstanding waterlogging better than the other pulses.
Because of
its drought-resistance, it is a famine crop and will survive in seasons
when the cereals fail.
In Iraq it occurs as a weed in cereal crops especially in irrigated fields.
It is used in much the same way as the other
pulses, but it will cause the disease lathyrism if eaten in large quantities, and this results in partial paralysis of the lower limbs.
Measurement
diam.
diam.
diam.
diam.
diam.
diam.
diam.
up to 5 mm
1.83-4.94 mm
2.42-4.58 mm
3.34 (2.38-3.84) mm
2.93 mm
3.13-3.75 mm (+ some 2.0 mm)
2.5-3.0 mm
4. Chick-pea - Cicer arietinum
Three finds of chick-peas are reported from Iraq: some were found in a
rilver water-pot with an attached gold drinking tube in Queen Pu-abi's
grave at Ur.
Here they were preserved as mud impressions (Ellison et al.
1978).
Carbonized chick-peas were found in the Isin-Larsa levels at Tell
Bazmosian, with a diameter of 4.56 mm, and in the later Hurrian levels at
At Nimrud there
the same site they measured 4.03-4.60 mm (Helbaek 1965).
was a greater range in size from 3.67 to 5.44 mm in diameter (Helbaek
1966).
Chick-peas are widely cultivated in the warm, semi-arid areas
around the Mediterranean and Near East.
They prefer medium to heavy
soils. The plant is susceptible to excess humidity and will not thrive on
poorly drained soils.
They are the most tolerant of pulse crops to soil
salinity, and are extremely sensitive to frost.
They form an important
human food eaten raw, boiled, salted or sugared, roasted, or in soups or as
a purge.
They can also be used as a pot herb.
The green parts of the
plant and the haulms are toxic and so are unsuitable for use as fodder.
In some of the early finds they are associated with other crop plants. At
Tell Taya they occurred in an Akkadian oven together with Hordeurn vuZgare
(principal component), Triticum dicoccum, T. aestiuum, Lathyrus sativus,
The find from Tell Qurtass (end of 3rd millennium
and Pisum satiuum).
B.C.) consisted chiefly of lentils found in a pot, and not much puffed by
the carbonization process. A single lentil was found in a deposit of tworow barley at the 4th millennium site of Tell Chragh.
The lentils at Tell
ed-Der occurred with both cereals and other pulse crop seeds.
At Nimrud
lentils formed the chief pulse crop found with chick-peas in the citadel
and with bitter vetch and grass peas in deposits from Fort Shalmaneser.
2. Peas - Pisum sp.
Field peas have been reported from Jarmo, Choga Mami, Queen Pu-abi's grave
at Ur and in the Early Dynastic and Akkadian deposits at Tell Taya, and at
Tell ed-Der.
They are usually found with wheat and barley, and occasionally with other pulses.
Those found at Ur were very small, measuring
2.4-3.5 mm in diameter, average 2.9 mm.
Those from the Early Dynastic
levels at Tell Taya measured 3.0 x 3.0 mm and 3.5 x 2.7 mm respectively.
The cultivated pea, pisum sativum appears to have been domesticated from
its closely related wild forms piswn eZatius and/or Pisum humite.
clearest indicator of domestication is the replacement of the rough seedIn regions of mild winters
coat with a smooth one (Hopf & Zohary 1973).
and low rainfall peas are grown as a winter crop.
A minimum precipitation
of 300 mm is needed, and they are best suited by light to medium soils with
a high calcium content.
Irrigation at the beginning of flowering is
highly beneficial, in dry regions, and may increase the yield by 30%; if it
is continued whilst the pods are swelling it may again increase the yield
(Arnon 1972).
3. Grass pea/Blue vetchling - Lathryus sativus
This is another pulse crop of great antiquity in this area, having been
found at Jarmo and Choga Mami. At Tell Bazmosian it formed the chief component of one deposit with a small admixture of lentils.
At Tell Taya it
Pulses from Ancient Iraq
I
I
I
5. Broad bean - Vicia faba L.
So far this species has not been found in the earliest contexts in Iraq,
but it is known that the beginnings of its cultivation go back to about
6000 B.C. at Jericho.
Helbaek reported the earliest finds known to him
in Iraq as from the excavations of 1957-1958 of the large weir on the
Nahrwan Canal east of Khafajah (Safar 1960), where the seeds had a maximum
length of 18 mm (Helbaek 1965).
The Islamic broad beans from Tell Bazmosian measured: ,
Length
8.0-14.0 mm
av. 10.5 mm
Breadth 6.0-10.0 mm
av. 7.3 mm
Thickness 3.8-7.0 mm
av. 5.0 mm
All these finds are of the large-seeded broad bean.
One seed is reported by Giles Waines from inside an Akkadian oven at
Tell Taya (Waines 1973).
It measured 13.0 x 8.0 mm.
It was found
together with Lathyrus sativus, Vitis vinifera, Triticum dicoccum, Hordewn
vuZgare, OZea europaea and Quercus sp.
They are probably the least drought-resistant of all the pulses and
are best suited to medium and heavy soils, and respond well to a high
calcium content.
Irrigation is of great benefit during flowering, podset and seed formation in dry areas (Arnon 1972).
Renfrew
Pulses from Ancient Ir
6. Bitter or Camel Vetch - Vicia ervizia
In the Ur 111 period at Tell Qurtass 40 Bitter Vetch seeds were found in
pot which was chiefly filled with lentils.
Helbaek described the seeds a
being angular-roundish and often having small depressions about the hilum
while the radicle is situated in a triangular, almost flat surface (Helbae
1960).
They measured 2.93-4.03 mm in diameter with an average of 3.48 mm
The only other find of this species from Iraq comes from a deposit in For
Shalmaneser, Nimrud, where they occurred with Grass Peas and lentil8
(Helbaek 1966).
This species was probably first domesticated in Anatolia where it i r
commonly found on early farming sites, and became very popular in late
Neolithic times in the southern Balkans.
Very few palaeoethnobotanical
finds occur to the east of Anatolia.
It is used as a fodder plant especially for sheep, and may be used as an excellent green manure. Because of
its bitter taste it is used as human food only by the very poor or in timee
of famine.
Pulses from Ancient Iraq
lanl rew
BIBLIOGRAPHY
hrnon, I.
Crop production in dry regions, 2.
1972
I
1
(:OH tantini
, L.
1985
"Le piante de Yelkhi", contribution to Ezio Quarantelli
(ed.), La terra tra i due Fiumi (I1 Quadrante Edizioni,
Torino), 57-60.
I
Kllison et al.
1978
R. Ellison, J.M. Renfrew, D. Brothwell & N. Seeley, "Some
food offerings from Ur, excavated by Sir Leonard Woolley and
previously unpublished", in JourmaZ of ArchaeoZogicaZ Science
5, 167-177.
Ilc 1 baek ,
H.
1960a
"The palaeoethnobotany of the Near East and Europe", in R.J.
Braidwood & B. Howe, prehistoric Investigations in Iraqi
~urdistan (Chicago).
1960b
"Ancient crops in the Shahrzoor Valley in Iraqi Kurdistan",
Sumer 16, 79-81.
1965
"Isin Larsa and Horian food remains at Tell Bazmosian in the
Dokan Valley", Sumer 19, 27-35.
1966
"The plant remains from Nimrud", Appendix
Mallowan, flimrud and its Remains, 11, 613-618.
1973
"Samarran irrigation agriculture at Choga Mami", Iraq 34, 39.
7. Small legumes
Seeds of wild leguminous plants have been found at Choga Mami in the
Samarran levels (Helbaek 1973).
They belong to the Ray-podded Medick
Medicago hispida, clover Trifoliurn, Milk Vetch Astragazus, and a number of
vetch and vetchling species.
Seven seeds of unidentified vetches were
found at Tell Bazmosian, together with a single seed of CoroniZZa scorpiurus, crown vetch.
These small legumes do not appear to have played a
significant role in the economy of the settlements in which they were
found.
I in M.E.L.
Hopf, M. & Zohary, D.
1973
"Domestication of pulses in the Old World", Science 182,
887-893.
Safar, F.
1960
"Excavations on the weir of the Nahrwan canal" (in ~rabic),
Sumer 16, 3.
van Zeist, W. & Vynckier, J.
1985
"Palaeobotanical investigations of Tell ed-Der", in L. de
Meyer (ed ) , Tell ed-~erIV.
.
Waines, J.G.
1973
"Plant remains from Tell Taya, Iraq", Iraq 35, 185-187.
A NOTE ON THE VEGETATION ON THE URUK VASE
Harriet Crawford
(Lucy Cavendish College, Cambridge)
Tha cover of this bulletin is decorated at the top with the frieze of ani-
m a l ~shown on the Uruk vase; at the bottom is the frieze of plants which
forms the lowest register of decoration on the vase.
The vase is usually
dated to the end of the Uruk period and was found in Level I11 of the great
Ralrna precinct at Warka. It is made of alabaster and stands about lm high.
I L is undoubtedly one of the outstanding examples of early art anywhere in
the world, and the ancient repairs indicate how highly it was prized at the
tlrnc.
The theme of the decoration is clear, even if some of the details
arc obscure.
It shows the presentation of harvest offerings to Inanna, or
ttrc. priestess who represented her.
The figure of the main human parl lcipant is unfortunately missing, only an attendant, a "page-boy", survlves, holding what seems to be a great tassel, apparently part of the
rrgalia.
The figures are arranged in horizontal bands running round the vase;
helow each of the bands with figures is a blank register; below these is a
f 1 le of animals, sheep or goats, the males with great horns and beards.
l'l~c lowest band depicts two types of plant apparently growing on the edge
0 1 a watercourse.
Although this part of the vase was extensively damaged
wllcn it was found, enough remains to substantiate the reconstruction shown
on the cover where what are plainly ears of corn, either wheat or barley,
c~lternatewith another plant.
The ears of corn are very stiff and styl ised as are the representations of grain on other artefacts, such as the
mttcehead from the Iraq Museum. This macehead may also depict the second of
our pair of
but the photograph is inadequate for definite
[dentification.Tlandns seals too, where corn is shown as an offering , as an
rtppurtenance of grain gods/goddesses and in at least one case over the
hticks of a file of handsome cattle, there is little attempt at realism.
An exception to this can be seen on the fine steatite vase from Ur which
ctlso s2ows a file of cattle with ears of what is apparently six-row
barley .l
Fig. 1
Flax
The second plant on the vase has a tall, thick stem with pairs of
leaves growing from it; near the top it divides into three smaller stems
Crawford
Vegetation on the Uruk vasa
each topped with a flower or seedcase.
Frankfort interpreted this second
plant as a date palm, but it lacks the great sagging bunches of fruit on
either side of the trunk which usually characterise the palm in Sumerian
art, as shown for example on a stone plaque from ~ello.3 As with the ears
of corn, this plant is clearly stylized, and allowing for this, it seems
reasonable to compare it with a drawing in Gill and Vear's AgricuZtural
Botany, I, of Linum usitatissirnum L. , flax or linseed which has the same
tall stem, short leaves and smaller branches at the top (see also p. 72).
E. Strommenger in an article on a stele fragment from Uruk has already tentatively suggested that this second plant on the Uruk vase should be idenShe also illustrates a cylinder seal
tified as hemp or flax (Fig. 1) .5
from Jemdat Nasr, which although badly damaged shows three different plants
of which two appear to be our pair and the third resembles Prosopis, or
some other fodder plant, thus if the identifications are correct, representing the three main types of plant on which the Sumerian farmer depended
(Fig. 2) .6
Another representation of this same pair of plants occurs on a
seal impression from the Stampflehmgebiiude in the Eanna precinct (Fig. 3)j
stylistically this impression appears to be of the same date as the vase.
The impression also shows two men, apparently in a watch-tower or similar
building, perhaps watching over the crops.
Crnwf ord
I
a tllfferent plant with pods or buds growing from a stylized m~untain.~ In
cases the artist seems to be trying to convey the generalised idea of
"fodder" rather than any specific plant.
The same may be true of another
I r o u p of seals showing animals eating eight-petalled flowers, a form which
Ir virtually unknown in nature. The eight-petalled flower is closely simiIrr to the stone and clay flowers which are typical architectural decorat Lon around 3,000 B.C.
It is perhaps significant that at A1 Ubaid,
allghtly later, they are found associated with the great frieze depicting
t hc temple herds.
It seems possible that the artist may even be convoying the idea of the feeding of the temple herds on some kind of
celestial food.
Certainly it is no ordinary feeding: on two of the seals
In question the symbol of Inanna is prominent in the design and in another
wc4 see the fasade of two temples. lo
The herdsmen in the first two seals
urder discussion are wearing the curious net skirt which seems to have some
ritual significance, but which was certainly not the everyday wear of farhotti
mcrs.
Even a superficial review of the decorative art of the late 4th/early
Ird millennia seems to show that in general stylization rather than natura-
Ii~mwas the fashion in depicting plants.
The artists seem to have wished
- grain, fodder or reeds - rather than a particular variety; the same convention can be seen on the Jemdat Nasr painted
pottery and on the slightly later Scarlet wares.
This tendency towards
rtylization strengthens the case for identifying the second plant on the
lowest register of the Uruk vase as Linwn, probably grown for its fibre
rt~ther than oil, and explains any botanical inadequacy in its portrayal.
I t was not necessary according to the prevailing artistic canons to attempt
n naturalistic rendering.
It seems entirely logical that two such economically important plants as corn and flax should complete the decoration on
this great vase with its theme of the offering of the fruits of the earth
L O the great goddess.
to portray classes of plants
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
If this second plant is indeed Linum, we have another shred of evidence
for its cultivation in the Uruk period, in spite of its absence from the
archaeological record at this period.
It is interesting to note that in
all the examples quoted the emphasis is on the tall, thick stem, suggesting
perhaps that the plant was being grown for flax fibre rather than for oil.
Today denser sowing, when growing for flax fibre rather than linseed oil,
produces a taller plant with a thicker stem.
There is no mention of oil
extraction as early as this in the textual material, but from Uruk I11
there are references to gada or linen fabric (see Hartmut Waetzoldt, this
volume, p. 77).
The tendency towards a stylized representation of plants rather than a
naturalistic one, can also be seen on a number of cylinder seals from the
Protoliterate period which show different sorts of animals being hand fed.
One seal from Khafaje shows two cervids being offered a spiky branching
plant by a mythical creature standing on its hind legs.
The charming
seal, also from Khafaje, with two goats or deer grazing, shows them eating
Vegetation on the Uruk vase
1
Crawford
Vegetation on the Uruk va
NOTES
Macehead is illustrated in Faraj Basmachi, Treasures of the Iraq Muse
(Baghdad 1972), fig. 28.
ÖLPFLANZEN UND PFLANZENÖLE IM 3. JAHRTAUSEND
Hartmut Waetzoldt
(~eideZberg)
This Vase is illustrated in Basmachi, op. cit., fig. 27.
H. Frankfort, Art and Architecture of the Ancient Orient (Peiican), p
25.
N.T.
Gill & K.C. Vear, AgricuZturaZ Botany I (Duckworth 1969), fig. 38
P. 145.
After E. Strommenger, "Zu ein Frühsumerischen Stelenfragment aus UrukM,
in Archäologischer Anzeiger, 1967, Heft I, Abb. 1 on p. 2.
After E. Strommenger, ibid., Abb. 4 on p. 5.
I am greatly indebted to Dr. Uwe Finkbeiner for a drawing of thie
impression (W 24012, 15), which is to be published in UVB 33/34, and to
Prof. J. Schmidt for permission to make use of it. Scale 1:l.
H. Frankfort, ~tratified CyZinder Seals from the Diyala Region (Chicago
1955), P1. 6, no. 34 and P1. 10, no. 71.
H. Hall, A Sseason's Work at Ur (London 1930), p. 249 and fig. 231, and
H. Hall & C.L. Woolley, Ur Excauations I: AZ 'Ubaid (Oxford 1927), pp.
118-9.
E. Strommenger, Art of Mesopotamia (London 1964), P1. 17, and H.
Frankfort, Stratified CyZinder Seals from the DiyaZa Region, P1. 6, no.
31.
Pie älteste in den Texten bezeugte Ölpflanze ist nicht etwa Lein oder
Iream, sondern der Ölbaum. Texte aus Ebla, die aus der Zeit kurz nach 2500
V, Chr. stammen, zählen tausende dieser Bäume auf.
So wachsen auf 2260 gana-keFda.KI 1000 Bäume, auf 1100 gana-keHda.KI
500 oder auf 600 gsna-keFda.KI 500 ~äumel. Demnach stehen durchschnittlich
Leider wissen wir nicht, wie
2,2 oder nur 1,2 6lbäume auf 1 gana-keZda.KI.
aross dieses Flächenmass ist, um feststellen zu können, wie dicht die Bäume
mchsen.
Die Bezeichnung für diesen Baum ist giX-Z-gix, seltener auch
abgekürzt giF-i2. Wörtlich kann man das übersetzen mit "Baum des Baumöls",
brw. "Ölbaumw. Das Olivenöl wird I - ~ ~ E also
~ , wörtlich wohl "Baumöl"
Eine
andere
Ölsorte
ist
m.W.
in
den
Ebla-Texten
nicht bezeugt.
'enannt.
In Mesopotamien begegnet Olivenöl erst rund 400 Jahre später in Texten
aus ~ i r s u ~ .Interessanterweise gibt es dafür kein sumerisches Wort, sondern es wird das akkadische, nämlich serdu (AHw 1037) verwendet. In den
sehntausenden von Ur-111-Texten ist Olivenöl m.W. nicht bezeu t. Erst in
den rund 250 Jahre jüngeren Mari-Texten finden wir es häufiger
Das Holz
des Olivenbaumes lässt sich allerdings früher in Mesopotamien nachweisen
als das Öl. Daraus wurden nach einem altakkadischen Text (BIN 8, 260:4)
die Füsse eines Bettes angefertigt. Die Seltenheit der Belege spricht eindeutig für Import sowohl des Ölbaumholzes als auch des Olivenöls.
5.
Ein anderer Baum, dessen Früchte ab der altakkadischen Zeit zur
Ölgewinnung benutzt werden konnten, scheint aber im babylonisch-assyrischen
Raum gewachsen zu sein. Dafür könnte die relative grosse Zahl der Belege
sprechen. Es handelt sich um den Mandel-Baum, dessen Holz zu verschiedenen
Gegenständen6 und aus dessen ölhaltigen ~ r ü c h t e nÖl
~ gewonnen wurde8. Die
genannten Mengen sind aber stets gering.
Der Vollständigkeit halber sei auch noch das Vorkommen von Zedernöl
erwähnt. Hierbei ist allerdings unklar, ob es sich um Öl handelt, das aus
den Samen gewonnen wurde oder um irgendein Öl, das 2.B. mit Zedernharz
'parfümiert' wurde9
Nach dieser kurzen Einleitung nun aber zum Hauptteil, zu Lein und
Sesam:
Flachs lässt sich archäologisch m.W. etwa seit dem Ende des 6.
Jahrtausends nachweisenlO, in den Keilschrifttexten ab der Schicht Uruk
111, also etwa der Jemdet Nasr-~eitll. Die Pflanze und die Fasern, bzw.
die daraus gefertigten Fäden heissen sumerisch gu, Leinengewebe gada. Das
Akkadische unterscheidet dagegen nicht zwischen der Pflanze, den Fasern und
Leinsamen findet nur
dem Leinenstoff , alles wird mit kitii bezeichnet 12.
sehr selten Erwähnung, Leinöl fehlt m.W. sowohl in den sumerischen als auch
~
in den akkadischen ~ e x t e n lvöllig.
-
77
-
Waetzoldt
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöl
Waet zoldt
In altakkadischen ~ e x t e n lbegegnet
~
eine Brotsorte ninda-gu, doch musr
offen bleiben ob es sich um Leinsamenbrot oder um ein Brot aus einer
u l ~
Mehlsorte handelt.
später ~ l - ~ genannte
der Zahl der Belege für die Felder und besonders nach den verbuchten
Ölmengen grösser gewesen zu sein als bei Flachs.
In einem Text werden
über 5% der gesamten Feldfläche als ki-giX-3 bezeichnet (HLC 111 141,
373.111.7).
Die Ernte des Flachses erfolgte in LagaX im x11.16, in Umma im I.
~ o n a t l ~das
,
entspricht etwa Aprill~ai. In dieser Zeit wird auch die
Gerste geerntet. Da Flachs eine Wachstumszeit von 3-4 Monaten hat, muss er
etwa DezemberIJanuar gesät worden sein. Flachs war also in Mesopotamien
eine ~intersaatl~~.
2. gab es Spezialschiffe für den Transport dieser Pflanze: r n ~ - ~ i X - P ~ ~ .
Die Bauern, welche Flachs anbauen, werden engar(oder 16-gu)
genannt. Manchmal bezeichnete man sie auch als Gärtner1$ was sicher als
Hinweis gewertet werden kann, dass Flachs relativ kleinflächig angebaut
wurde.
Dafür spricht auch die verhältnismässig geringe Menge des geernteten Flachses.
Die Anbau-fläche machte nur einen Bruchteil der
Getreideanbaufläche aus. So werden nach einem Text (CT 9, 47, 20015:l-13)
von insgesamt Ca. 579 Hektar Fläche nur 4,2 Hektar oder 0,7% als I ~ i - ~ u l ~ ,
also als Flachsland, ausgewiesen.
Die Deutung von gu als FlachsILein ist m.W. in den letzten Jahrzehnten
nicht mehr in Zweifel gezogen worden. Dazu bestand auch keinerlei Anlass.
Auf einige Punkte des gerade Gesagten werde ich später aber noch
zurückkommen müssen.
Soviel sei aber jetzt schon zu Leinöl gesagt: In
vielen Kulturen wurde Flachs nur als Faserpflanze angebaut, ohne dass man
Öl aus den Samen gewonnen hätte20. Es spricht alles dafür, dass dies in
Mesopotamien auch der Fall war.
Aus dem Samen, der je nach Sorte und
Standort zwischen 30 und 44% Öl enthält21, kann man ein Öl gewinnen, das
rasch ranzig wird und an der Luft relativ schnell trocknet. Die heutigen
Verfahren zur Herstellung eines stabiles Leinöls für Speisezwecke, waren in
so früher Zeit wohl noch nicht bekannt.
Technisch ist Leinöl als
Grundmaterial für Lacke und Firnisse bestens geeignet22.
-
78
-
h.
4. wird in TU 114 I1 llf. und V 25f. die Wertrelation zwischen Datteln
und
giX-i angegeben.
5. nannte man die Frauen, die das Öl aus den Samen pressten, gerne-giXt-sur-sur (CT 3, 20.VII.28-VIII.3, STA 2.1V.4, TU 101.1V.15) oder abgekürzt
gerne-giX-3 (MVN 6, 492 Rs. 2,5).
7. in einer Abrechnung über Sesam (TLB 3, 152) heisst es als
Schlussvermerk "Abrechnung über giX-3" (ni-kasx-aka giX-P), nicht Xe-giX-3.
Zusammenfassend lässt sich feststellen, dass mit giX-3 hauptsächlich
die Pflanze, aber auch als Abkürzung für Xe-giX-3 der Samen bezeichnet werden konnte.
Schwierigkeiten für eine Interpretation als Sesam werden auch in den
Wörtern giX-3 und 3-giX selbst gesehen. Dies liegt an dem Element giX, das
Est trifft selbstmeist mit "Holz" oder "Baum" zu übersetzen ist31.
verständlich zu, dass giX in der Regel Hölzer und Bäume bezeichnet, doch
dient es im Sumerischen ebenso zur Benennung von kleinen verholzten
Gewächsen.
Die Körner, bzw. Samen der hier zu diskutierenden Pflanze werden in den
Texten mit sumerisch Xe-giX-P und das daraus gewonnene Öl mit 3-giX
bezeichnet.
Nur in Texten aus der Akkad-Zeit findet man dafür auch
~ - ~ i 3 - 3 ~ 3 .F. R. Kraus vertritt in seinem gerade zitierten Artikel (S.
115a) die Meinung, es gäbe keine Pflanze mit dem zu rekonstruierenden Namen
giX-3. Dies trifft jedoch nicht zu:
Pflanze bestellte Felder als ki-gi~-324
Flachs- oder Zwiebelfelder als ki-gu oder
Feldern sind Leute bei Arbeiten an den
eingesetzt (BIN 5, 272:194) oder beseitigen
MVN 12, 15:3).
Die Anbaufläche scheint nach
3. werden die Pflanze, bzw. deren Samen beim Verkauf häufiger gis-3
genannt27. Dies verdeutlicht besonders ein rief 28.
Darin werden erst
135 Kor Xe-giX-3 erwähnt und dann, als es um den Verkauf geht, steht nur
aig-3. Ähnlich auch in Amherst 117 :lff. : Bei der Einlieferun tragen die
Kirner die Bezeichnung Xe-giX-P, danach nur noch einfach giX-3
6. hiessen die Bauern, die diese Pflanze anbauten engar-giX-330 oder
ongar-Xe-giX-3 (MVN 1, 208:2, UET 3, 1129 Rs. llff., 1443:17).
Über Sesam und ob es sich bei Xe-giF-3 wirklich darum handelt, wurde
schon viel diskutiert. Zitieren möchte ich nur die grundlegende Arbeit von
F.R. Kraus in JoumaZ of the American Orientat Society 88, 112-119. Dort
sind sehr viele Argumente zusammengetragen, die für eine Interpretation als
Sesam sprechen. In diesem Artikel wurden allerdings die Quellen aus dem 3.
Jahrtausend nur in geringem Masse berücksichtigt. Hier soll versucht werden, diese Lücke zu schliessen.
1. werden mit dieser
bezeichnet, ähnlich wie
ki-sum25.
Auf diesen
Bewässerungseinrichtungen
Unkraut ( ? ) (giX gi 6 26,
Ölp£lanzen und Pflanzenöle
I
Die Ebla-Texte könnten aber ein völlig neues Licht auf die Herkunft des
Wortes giX-3, bzw. 3-giX werfen. Dort verwendete man - wie wir gesehen
haben - die Sumerogramme giX-3-giX, bzw. abgekürzt giX-i für den Olivenbaum
und 3-giE
für Olivenöl.
Nun die provokative Frage: Sollte man in
Mesopotamien diese Bezeichnung eines Pflanzenöls von der Olive einfach auf
den Sesam übertragen haben? Dann würde sich das Wort von selbst erklären
und es wäre auch verständlich, warum in Mesopotamien das Olivenöl mit dem
semitischen Namen bezeichnet wurde und nicht etwa mit einem sumerischen,
denn das beste dafür mögfiehe sumerische Wort war schon für eine andere
Ölpflanze verbraucht. Eine gewisse Parallele liegt möglicherweise bei der
Bezeichnung für Silber k3:babbar vor. In Mesopotamien wurde Silber in der
präsargonischen Zeit kil-luh-ha genannt, das in Ebla übliche ku-babbar
taucht nur selten und dann vorwiegend in literarischen Texten auf32. In
der Akkad-Zeit hat dann die aus Ebla schon lange bekannte Bezeichnung
k3:babbar das mesopotamische k3-luh-ha völlig verdrängt33. Wie ich erst
-
79
-
Waetzold t
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöl
Wae t zoldt
nachträglich bemerkte, nachdem ich diese Zeilen bereits geschrieben hatte
vermutet auch Kraus (JAOS 88, 115) in seinem Artikel über Sesam, dass 2-gi
bzw.
Fe-giF-3 Entlehnungen aus einer dritten, nicht-mesopotamische
Sprache sein könnten.
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöle
l a t damit gemeint, dass Unkraut auf diesem Feld beseitigt wurde, um den
Boden für die kommende Saat vorbereiten zu können.
Eine gewisse Bestätigung für die oben aufgestellte These könnte man
auch in der zeitlichen Stellung der Texte sehen. Die Ebla-Texte lassen
sich in die Zeit um 2500 V. Chr. datieren. Die frühesten Belege für dia
Bezeichnungen giF-T, Fe-giF-i und i-giF in Mesopotamien stammen aber erst
aus der Akkad-Zeit. Besonders etwa seit der Zeit NaramsZns gibt es relativ
.
liegen also rund 250 Jahre zwischen den
viele ~ r w ä h n u n ~ e n ~ ~ Es
Ebla-Texten und dem häufigeren Vorkommen dieser Bezeichnungen in
Mesopotamien.
Die Saat erfolgte in der Provinz LagaS nach den Texten aus der Zeit
kurz vor 2000 v.Chr. also in den Monaten Mai/Juni, selten erst Anfang Juli.
/
/
!
i
Die Pflanze giF-i und ihr Öl sind also in mesopotamischen Texten nicht
Bei Ausgrabungen kann man folglich
vor etwa 2250 V. Chr. na~hweisbar~~.
erst in Schichten aus dieser Zeit Samen dieser Pflanze in nennenswerteren
Mengen finden.
Wo und auf welche Weise die Mesopotamier diese neue Pflanze kennenlernten, muss derzeit offen bleiben. Möglich wäre, dass man sie während der
Kriegs- und Beutezüge Sargons und seiner Nachfolger irgendwo im syrischassyrischen ~ a u oder
m ~ ~in Elam vorfand. Doch könnte sie, bzw. ihre Samen
auch aus einem anderen Gebiet zusammen mit anderen Dingen importiert worden
sein. Auffällig bleibt aber, dass, wenn in der Zeit kurz vor 2000 v.Chr.
Fe-giS-3 importiert wurde, dieses in der Regel aus dem Gebiet von Karhar
stammt37. Diese Stadt Karhar wird in das Ost-Tigris-Land zwischen Arrapha
und dem Dijala-Fluss lokalisiert38. Interessanterweise war dieses Gebiet
nach freundlicher Auskunft von K. Deller - auch noch in der Zeit der
Nuzi-Texte, also rund 600 Jahre später, eines der bedeutendsten
Auf Importe aus Susa, bzw.
dem elamischen
Anbaugebiete für Fe-giF-3.
Gebiet dürfte RT 22, 1900, 153, 2 hinweisen. Der Transport erfolgte auf 6
Schiffen mit je 60 Kor ~ra~fähi~keit~'.
Zusammenfassend lässt sich zu Saat und Ernte sagen, dass im Mai/Juni,
relten später gesät wurde. Wir haben es also - im Gegensatz zu Flachs eindeutig mit einer Sommerfrucht zu tun. Auch im heutigen Iraq ist Sesam
eine ~ommerfrucht~~.Das Datum der Ernte nennt m. W. bisher kein Text
ausdrücklich, doch konnte der 5. Monat (August/September) für die Provinz
LagaS wahrscheinlich gemacht werden.
-
Über die einzelnen Arbeitsgänge, die nach der Ernte notwendig sind,
also über die Nachreife, Ausklopfen und schliesslich das Reinigen durch
Sieben und vielleicht auch
berichten die Texte leider nichts.
Nur die letzte Arbei;, das sieben? (und worfeln?) ist einmal belegt (s.
oben).
Ob die mit BUR bezeichnete Arbeit an Fe-giF-i hierher gehört (MVN
1, 208:5), lässt sich derzeit nicht entscheiden.
Die aus Karhar angelieferten Mengen sind mit 135 Kor oder rund 34.100
Litern40 recht beträchtlich.
Die sonst in den Texten genannten Mengen
liegen mehrfach in diesem Bereich, nur selten höher41.
Die grösste
Quantität erwähnt ein Text aus Ur mit insgesamt 470 Kor oder Ca. 118.720
~itern~~.
Die Einsaat ist nicht direkt bezeugt, dafür aber die Ausgabe von
Saatgut. Diese erfolgte in der Provinz LagaS in der Regel im 2. ~ o n a t ~ ~ ,
nur einmal ist der 3. Monat bezeugt44. Die erwähnten Mengen an Saatgut
sind,mit Ca. 126 bis 505 Litern relativ gering. Ein einziger Text nennt 10
Kor oder Ca. 2526 ~iter45. Wieviel Feld man damit einsäen konnte, muss
wegen fehlender Textangaben aus dieser Zeit offen bleiben. Legt man den
Wert aus einem altbabylonischen rief^^ mit einer Saatmenge von 7 sila je
iku (ca. 5,894 Liter je 3528 m2 oder Ca. 16,704 Liter je Hektar) zugrunde,
so hätte man mit diesen Ca. 2526 Litern rund 151,2 Hektar oder Ca. 1,5
km2 bestellen können.
Ebenfalls aus dem 2. Monat stammt ein ~ e x über
t ~ ~Arbeiter, die auf
einem 'Sesam'feld Sträucher, Rohr und (Un)kraut ausschnitten. Vielleicht
Die Erntezeit lässt sich anhand der Texte weniger genau festlegen, da
.W.
kein datierbarer Text direkt von der Ernte berichtet. Überblickt man
jedoch die einschlägigen Texte aus der Provinz Laga'ES, so fällt auf, dass
auffällig viele in den 5. ~ o n a t ~etwa
~ , August/September datiert sind.
Dies legt die Vermutung nahe, dass in diesem Monat die Ernte stattfand, wir
folglich mit einer Wachstumszeit von gut 3 Monaten zu rechnen haben. In
der Nachbarprovinz Umma war Fe-giF-i im 11. Monat versandfertig49, müsste
also vorher geerntet, getrocknet, gedroschen und gereinigt worden sein.
Wenn man für all diese Arbeiten 2 Monate ansetzt, käme man für die Ernte
atwa in den Monate November/Dezember. Dies scheint etwas spät, da Sesam
meist nach gut 3 Monaten, höchstens nach 6 Monaten reif ist50. Der einzige
Text (TU 16410:2f.), der von gesiebtem? ~ e - ~ i F - i ~spricht,
l
ist leider
undatiert. Spezielle Siebe sind einige Male bezeugt (Salonen 1965,72e).
1
I
Leider ebensowenig sind wir über die Einzelheiten der Ölgewinnung
informiert. Wir erfahren nur aus mehreren Texten, dass man in LagaS aus
300 sila Fe-giF-3 60 sila ~ - ~ i F - ö presste53.
l
In Umma erreichte man nach
einem unveröffentlichten Text Ca. 66 sila. In Liter umgerechnet heisst
das, aus 252 Litern Samen gewann man in Laga'ES 50,5 Liter Öl, in Umma einmal
56 Liter. Die Ölausbeute betrug folglich nur 20 bis 22%.
Interessanterweise wird auch in einem Buch aus dem Jahre 1 8 0 6 ~berichtet,
~
dass man aus
Die ÖlgewinnungsSesamsamen zwischen 22,2 und 25% Öl gewinnen könne.
methode scheint sich demnach in der langen Zwischenzeit nicht verbessert zu
haben, denn Sesam enthält nach W. ~ i s c h e r ~zwischen
5
47-57% Fett. Die
Ölausbeute wäre damals also nicht sehr hoch gewesen.
Der Terminus für die Ölgewinnung ist sumerisch sur. Er kommt besonders
und
Ln der Berufsbezeichnung der Ölpresserinnen (gerne-(giF-)i-sur-(sur)
in der Gebäudebezeichnung 6-3-s~r-ra~~,
sonst aber selten vor58.
Einige Aufschlüsse geben auch die Preise für Fe-giS-i.
Für 1 Sekel
Die Texte sind
~~
Silber konnte man zwischen 60 und 100 sfla ~ ö r n e rkaufen.
Leider nicht nach Monaten datiert, so dass man nicht feststellen kann, ob
es saisonale Schwankungen gab ob Qualitätsunterschiede den Preis bestimmen.
- 81 -
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöle
Waetzoldt
Wae t zoldt
Der Preis des 3-giF-Öls betrug in LagaX und Nippur 1 Sekel Silber für
bis 12 sila Ö160.
In Umma erhielt man für 1 Sekel Silber nach eine
~ e x t ~rund
l
10 sila Öl. Ein Dokument unbekannter..Herkunft weist auf eine
Wertrelation von einem Sekel Silber zu 12,8 sila 0 1 ~ ~ .In Notzeiten, alb
die Hauptstadt Ur von der Versorgung durch die anderen Provinzen abgeschd.h. das Öl
nitten war, erhielt man für 1 Sekel Silber nur 2,5 sila
war 4,8 mal so teuer wie sonst.
1. In der Textilindustrie benutzte man das 3 - Ö l , selten auch das
"gute 1-~iH-Ö1"73 neben Alkali-haltiger Asche zum Walken und Waschen der
fertig gewebten Wollstoffe. Das 3-giF-Öl muss sich also zur Herstellung
von Seifen bestens eignen, denn es wird besonders für Stoffe bester
Qualität verwendet.
Billigere Stoffe behandelte man dagegen mit
#chweineschmalz. Beim Walken wurde der Stoff in einer Seifenlauge behandelt, die aus 1 Teil Öl und 4 bis 5 Teilen Alkali hergestellt worden war.
Beim anschliessenden Waschen bestand die Seife aus 1 Teil Öl und 8 bis 10
Teilen Alkali. In letzterem Fall war die fettlösende Wirkung also deutlich
8tärker74.
Vergleicht man nun den Preis der Körner mit dem des Öls, so ergibt sich
meist eine Relation von 1:5 oder 20%. Das bedeutet, dass die Körner nur
115 des Öls kosten oder anders ausgedrückt, der Wert der Körner bestimmte
sich durch den Ölgehalt, denn wir haben ja gerade festgestellt, dass man
aus den Körnern Ca. 20% Öl gewinnen konnte.
Die Preisunterschiede des Öls dürften zum Teil durch Qualitätsiinterschiede, zum Teil auch durch jahreszeitliche Preisschwankungen bedingt
sein. Um den Preis des 2-giH richtig bewerten zu können, hier noch einige
Preise für andere Öle und Fette.
Für 1 Sekel Silber konnte man in der
Regel folgende Quantitäten kaufen: 15 sfla
Schweineschmalz, 20 sila
Schaffett, 30 sila Fischöl, aber nur 10 sila 'Butterschmalz' (X-nun) oder
~ ~ .Preis des T - H - 1 s liegt
5 sila "gutes Öl/~ett*'( ~ - d u ~ ~ - ~ a )Der
folglich zwischen dem des 'Butter1- und des Schweineschmalzes.
Wichtig für die Bedeutungsbestimmung von He-giH-i und 3-giH ist aber
weniger der Preis als die Verwendung des Öls. Grosse Mengen dieses Öls
~ , muss also annehmen,
werden zu Nahrungszwecken und Opfer ~ e r b r a u c h t ~man
dass es ein gutes Speiseöl war. Gegessen wurden übrigens auch die Pressrückstände66 und die ~ ö r n e r ~ ~Die
. Körner konnten auch in Brot verbacken68
und das Öl bei der Herstellung von Früchtekuchen verwendet werden69.
Das Fe-giF-% besass eine gute Lagerfähigkeit, denn es wurde ganzjährig
für die Weiterverarbeitung ausgegeben und daraus Öl gepresst. Auch konnte
es offenbar ohne Qualitätsverlust über grössere Strecken (z.B. von Susa in
die Provinz LagaE (Transportzeit wahrscheinlich etwa einen Monat) transporDie Lagerfähigkeit des i-giH-Öls scheint
tiert werden (RT 22, 153:2).
ebenfalls recht gut gewesen zu sein, denn die Vorratshaltun erfolgte in
grossen Tongefässen mit Ca. 84 bis 174 Litern Fassungsvermögen5 0 Auch gab
es keinerlei Schwierigkeiten, das Öl über grössere Strecken mit dem Schiff
zu transportieren so z.B. von Ur nach ~ i ~ ~ u r Diese
~ l . Strecke beträgt rund
150 km und zu Schiff konnte man sie damals in 10 bis 11 Tagen bewältigen72.
Schätzt man die Zeit von der Herstellung des Öls bis zum Verbrauch in
diesem Fall auf 15 Tage, so wäre Leinöl kaum noch zum menschlichen Verzehr
geeignet gewesen.
.
Von besondere Wichtigkeit scheint mir auch der technische Gebrauch des
~-~iH-Öls.Und zwar sind 4 Bereiche zu unterscheiden:
1.
2.
3.
4.
Textilindustrie und 'Seifen'
Lederindustrie
Holzindustrie
Sonstige Verwendungen
Das 3-giF-Öl wurde sicher auch zu 'Seifen' für die Körperpflege verarbeitet, wenn dies auch bisher nicht mit Sicherheit anhand der Texte nachcuweisen ist. Aus Mari stammen einige Texte, die über die Lieferung von
1-giH zum Baden von Gottheiten (U-na PU-mu-uk GN, RA 69, 24ff.) berichten.
Da in einigen Fällen danach noch Zedernöl (i-giH-eren) genannt wird, ergibt
die Lieferung des 2-giH m.E. nur Sinn mit der Annahme, dass es - zu Seife
'verarbeitet' - zum Reinigen der Götterstatuen und das Zedernöl zum anschliessenden 'Parfümieren' (und 'Glanz-Geben') verwendet wurde.
Diese
Deutung wird durch ARM 21, 117 :6ff
bestätigt: "~-~iH-öl
zum Waschen (U-na
me-si-i) der Füsse der Götter (giri-dingir).
.
2. Leder wird nach den Texten aus der frühen Isin-Zeit mit 3-giF oder
auch Schweineschmalz (3-Hah) behandelt.
Es handelt sich dabei höchstwahrscheinlich nicht um Fettgerbung, sondern um Einfetfsn des Leders, um es
für den Gebrauch haltbarer und geschmeidiger zu machen
Aus der Zeit der
3. Dynastie von Ur ist mir derzeit nur JCS 29, 122,4:4 und Nik I1 438:lff.
bekannt. Danach wird Ö11~ett ( 3 ) und i-giH bei der Herstellung von Leder
oder Ledergegenständen verbraucht. [Durch MVN 13, 895 lässt sich die
Fettgerbung mit Sicherheit ausschliessen, da ein 'Lederarbeiter' (aHgab) in
6 Monaten nur 10 sila 3-giH-Öl für die Lederverarbeitung (kuH-aka)
verbraucht.
Diese Menge würde für die Fettgerbung bei weitem nicht
ausreichen.]
.
3. In den holzverarbeitenden Industrien verwendeten sowohl die Schreiner
als auch die Schiffsbauer i-giF.
Der Schreiner benutzte es z.B. bei
' Stühlen' $,gi3gu-za)76
für nicht näher bezeichnete Gerätschaften
(giHFu-k~r) , Wagen (iiHgigir ) l8 oder besonders häufig für Türen von
~ ~Schiff
.
bau wird i-giH (einmal "gutes 3-gix", UET
Palästen und ~ e m ~ e l n Im
von Lastschiffen und des
3, 76.Rs.II.3ff .) für die Querbalken (gixh~rn)~~
königlichen Schiffs verwendet.
Diese Querbalken mussten besondere
Beanspruchungen aushalten und an ihnen wurde der Mast befestigt. Ob sie
mit dem Öl eingerieben wurden, oder ob das Öl zum Tränken des
Dichtmaterials , das zwischen die Ritzen gedrückt wurde, diente, muss offen
bleiben.
Beide Verwendungsweisen lassen sich nach Salonen 1965, 149f.,
nachweisen. Ausser 3-giF und Schweineschmalz konnte auch Fischtran beim
Schiffbau benutzt werden (ibid., 149).
4. Zwei weitere Verwendungsweisen des 3-giH seien hier der Vollständigkeit halber erwähnt, auch wenn sie bisher m.W. nicht in Texten aus dem 3.
Jahrtausend, sondern erst ab etwa 1800 v.Chr. nachweisbar sind. Danach
wird 3-giF als Öl für Lampen ebenso gebraucht wie als Basis für Parfum (ARM
21, S. 127; ARM 23, S.416ff.).
Beide Verwendungsweisen verlangen ein
länger haltbares Öl, das nicht so rasch eintrocknet wie Leinöl.
Waetzold t
Fasst man die technischen Verwendungsweisen des 2-giF-Öls zusammen, so
ergibt sich Folgendes: Die technischen Eigenschaften des f-giF scheinen dem
Schweineschmalz ähnlich, denn es kann sowohl in der Textilindustrie, als
auch in der Leder- und Holz-verarbeitenden Industrie durch Schweineschmalz
ersetzt werden.
I
1
:
Bevor ich zur Diskussion übergehe, ob Fe-giF-i wirklich Sesam(körner)
und I-giF Sesamöl sind oder nicht, müssen noch die vorkommenden Qualitäten
besprochen werden. Se-giF-i wird erst ab etwa 1800 v.~hr.~lin Qualitäten
eingeteilt, nicht aber m.W. in den Texten des 3. Jahrtausends. Die normale
Bezeichnung des Öls ist f-giz. Das "gute i-giF" (2-giFdul0-ga) begegnet
In den
weitaus seltener und kommt nur in relativ geringen Mengen vor82.
Texten findet man die beiden Qualitäten in der Regel in folgender
~ n o r d n u :n ~ ~ ~
3-nun-dulo-ga
3-giF-dulo-ga
T-nun
i-giF
Nur ein geringer Teil des Fe-giF-3 wurde ganz offensichtlich dem b6rarka genannten Ölgewinnungsverfahren unterzogen, denn die höchste genannte
Quantität ist 39 sila (C. 32,8 Liter, s. Text 2 BM 14297:l-8) dafür ausgegeben. Die höchste Menge an 2-giF-b6ra-aka beträgt nur 3,5 sila (ca. 2,9
Liter, AfO 24 Tf. XIX Truro 4:l). Nach Text 2 erhalten Frauen wohl täglich
(der Text ist auf den Tag datiert, was in LagaX äusserst selten und daher
von besonderer Bedeutung ist) 5 oder 6 sila Fe-giF-3.
Mehr konnten sie
offenbar nicht an einem Tag erarbeiten^^. Die weitaus grösste Menge des
Be-gig-3 wurde dem normalen Ö~~ewinnungsverfahren,das wohl mit sur
bezeichnet wurde, zugeführt. Interessanterweise gibt es auch - wie M. Stol
gezeigt hat - nach den altbabylonischen Texten zwei Gewinnungsverfahren:
Nach YOS 2, 58 = AbB 9,
das seltenere haZäl;u und das übliche gahätu.
58:8f f könnte es sogar sein, dass die Ölsamen beiden Verfahren nacheinander unterzogen werden konnten (erst haZäl;u, dann sahätu).
In diese
Richtung lässt sich wohl auch CT 8, 8e:lf. und 9f. (9 gur Fe-giF-T, b6ra-ga
Ya-Zu-U'S-ti I-giF; U-na itu-1-kam Fe-giF-i i-ga-ha-tu-ma) interpretieren.
.
"gutes Butterschmalz"
"gutes 3-giF-Öl"
"Butterschmalz"
**~-~i~-öl
Nach den Texten aus der Zeit der 3. Dynastie von Ur gibt es noch
Als Beispiel
weitere Qualitätsbezeichnungen bei I-giF und 2-giF-dulo-ga.
sei UET 3, 1017:7ff. aufgeführt; in diesem Text findet man Öle und Fette in
folgender ~ e i h e n f o l ~ e ~ ~ :
I*
Nach dieser Einordnung zu urteilen, wird Butterschmalz höher eingeschätzt
Für 1 Sekel
als 2-giF. Dies wird durch die Preise bestätigt (s. oben).
Silber konnte man meist 12 sila 3-giF, aber nur 10 sila Butterschmalz und
sogar nur 5 sila "gutes Ö1/I?ettw erwerben. Da das "gute P-giF" nur in
geringen Mengen anfällt und sicher von höherem Wert war, handelt es sich
dabei wahrscheinlich um das erste Öl, das bei der Ölgewinnung abtropft.
Man könnte dazu das 'olio vergine', das "Jungfernöl", vergleichen, das nach
dem Mahlen der Oliven abläuft.
Leider geht aus den Texten des 3. Jahrtausends nicht hervor, auf welche
Weise man die Körner zerkleinerte und das Öl herauslöste.
Die
Zerkleinerung der Körner könnte in einem Mörser mit Hilfe eines Stössels
oder in einer Handmühle erfolgt sein (vgl. dazu den Beitrag von M. Stol).
Für das Trennen des Öls von den festen Kornteilen gibt es wiederum zwei
Möglichkeiten: 1. durch Pressen des entstandenen Öl- reis z.B. durch ein
Tuch oder 2. durch das Hinzufügen von warmem Wasser, wobei nach dem Kneten
der Masse das Öl aufsteigt und abgeschöpft wird.
Diese Methode hat G.
Dalman in palästinaE14 beobachtet. Auf ein Pressen durch ein Tuch könnte
möglicherweise der Terminus b6ra-aka oder b6ra-ga hinweisen85, der mehrfach auf T-giF, bzw. Fe-giF-i folgt. Dieses b6ra-aka/ga ist in lexikalischen Listen mit h a Z ~ ugeglichen, was W. von Soden in AHw (313 haZsu I
1-2) als "ausgepresst" und CAD (H 50) mit "pressed out (said of sesame
seeds)" deuten (s. dazu ausführlicher den Beitrag von M. Stol). Man könnte
sich vorstellen, dass man den Brei in einen ~ a c koder ein Tuch füllte und
dann so lange presste, bis kein Öl mehr abtropfte. Die Ölausbeute dürfte
bei diesem Verfahren nicht allzu gross gewesen sein. Das mit b6ra-aka/ga
bezeichnete Öl erfreute sich ganz offensichtlich hoher Wertschätzung, denn
einmal quittiert der Stadtfürst selbst den Empfang, das andere Mal ist das
Öl für das königliche Fest des 'Bierausgiessens' in Tummal bestimmt86.
Worin sich das I-giF-b6ra-aka von dem T-giF-dulo-ga unterscheidet, lässt
sich derzeit nicht feststellen.
Mit ziemlicher sicherheit scheint
i-giF-dulo-ga kein anderer Terminus für I-giF-b6ra-aka.
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöle
Wae t zoldt
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöle
I-giF-dulo-ga giF a-r6-6
6mal (benutzt ) "
3mal (benutzt)"
(1
I,
I.
.<
-3
"gutes ~ - ~ i s - Ö lHolz/Holzgerät
,
I-nun- "
,.
,,
,.
I,
-3
"gutes Butterschmalz, ~olz/Holzgerät
i-giF-"
.,
,.
'
'
1
"gutes i-giF-Öl, Holz/Holzgerät
i-nun- "
I.
II
" "
-1
I-giF-
II
"gutes Butterschmalz, Holz/Holzgerät
lmal (benutzt)"
"gutes ~-~ix-Öl"
I,
I
"gutes 3-gix-Öl , Holz/Holzgerät
I,
"
_____ __ _ _
3mal (benutzt)"
lmal (benutzt) "
Am Anfang des Textes steht wieder die beste, am Ende die schlechtere
Qualität. Das gute %-giF-Öl, das auf irgendeine Weise sechsmal bearbeitet
wurde, ist folglich das hochwertigste Öl.
Leider bleibt völlig im
unklaren, welches Holzgerät für diesen Prozess verwendet wurde.
scheint mir, dass auch das I-nun, das ich vorläufig mit "Butterschmalz"
übersetzen möchte, diesem Prozess unterzogen wurde. Welchen Reinigungsoder Verarbeitungsvorgang kann man sowohl an einem tierischen als auch an
einem pflanzlichen Öl, bzw. Fett durchführen? Sollte es sich um irgendeinen Reinigungs- oder Raffinations-Prozess handeln?
wichtpa
Für die Deutung wichtig ist noch, dass dabei ein Verlust entsteht:
Amherst 50 IV 10f.:
Eu-nigln 5 sila 2-giF giF a-r6-2, izi-kG-bi 3 sila
"insgesamt 5 sila (=ca. 4,2 Liter) -gi-Öl, Holz/Holzgerät
zweimal (benutzt), der dabei (entstehende) Verlust: 3 sTla
( = Ca. 0,42 Liter)".
Waetzoldt
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenö lu
Hier entstand also ein Verlust von fast 9,1%. Bei sechsmaliger Anwenduiig
dieses Holzgeräts dürfte der Verlust noch deutlich höher gelegen haben.
Bei diesem Verlust handelt es sich nicht etwa um Pressrückstände oder
ähnliches - diese heissen duh-(Fe-)giE-I
- sondern um tatsächlicliu
Verluste, bzw. nicht mehr verwendbare Rückstände am Gerät oder Gefäss. Man
nahm also Verluste in Kauf, um eine bessere Öl- oder Fettqualität zti
erzielen. Der Vorgang konnte bis zu sechsmal wiederholt werden.
Der Vollständigkeit halber seien noch 2 Bezeichnungen angegührt, dicl
jeweils nur einmal vorkommen: 1. I-giE I-~ID (NATN 556:l) und 2. I-giF-sil
(vor sull-lum-su TU 128 V 6).
Beide Bezeichnungen vermag ich nicht zti
deuten.
Nun kurz eine Zusammenfassiing der wichtigsten Ergebnisse: giE-I war.
eine Sommerpflanze, die wohl auf bewässertem Feld bei der grossen sommerlichen Hitze des Iraq besonders gut gedieh. Aus dem Samen gewann man iii
der Regel 20% Öl, die Pressrückstände dienten Menschen und Tier als
Nahrung. Das Öl war offenbar - trotz der Hitze - über mehrere Wochen haltbar, ein sehr gutes Speiseöl, das zum Backen und Herstellen anderer Speise11
Verwendung fand.
In der Industrie diente es zur Herstellung von Seifen,
Leder wurde damit behandelt und allerlei Holzgegenstände und Schiffsteile.
Bei den Samen lassen sich bisher keine Qualitätsunterschiede feststellen, wohl aber beim Öl, das verschiedenen Prozessen, die Möglicherweise
der Reinigung dienten, unterworfen wurde. Bei diesem Arbeitsgang entstanden Verluste.
Abschliessend muss die Frage diskutiert werden, ob giE-I, He-giE-I und
I-giF, Sesam, bzw. Sesamöl oder FlachsILein, bzw. Leinöl ist. Jean-Pierre
Gregoire stellte einmal die Frage, ob es nicht sein könne, dass man iri
Mesopotamien den Faserlein mit gu, den Öllein aber mit giE-I, bzw. Fe-giF-i
bezeichnete. Gegen diese im ersten Moment sehr verlockende These gibt es
m.E. gewichtige Argumente:
1. wird gu, also Flachs, im Winter und giE-I in Hochsommer angebaut.
2. gehören der Flachsanbau und der gix-$-Anbau zu ganz anderen
Organisationen. Die Flachsbauern heissen engar-gu und die giF-IBauern engar-(Xe-)giF-%.
3. beim Anbau des Faserleins müsste man die Samenkapseln und beim
Anbau des Öllein die Stenge1 mit den Fasern weggeworfen haben, denn
es sind weder Öl der gu-Planze noch Fasern der giF-I-Planze bezeugt.
Eine solche Verschwendung von Rohmaterialien halte ich für kaum
denkbar besonders da Faser- und Öllein den Boden sehr auszehrten und
man ihn nur in mehrjährigen Abständen auf demselben Feld anbauen
kanng0.
4. ist Leinöl kein gutes Speiseöl, sondern wird rasch ranzig und
trocknet relativ schnell ein. T-gix-Öl war aber länger haltbar und
ein vielseitig verwendbares Speiseöl.
5. Die einzige Verwendung von 2-gig, die eventuell für eine Deutung als
Leinöl sprechen könnte, wäre die häufige Anwendung auf Holz.
Leinöl bildet auf Holz in wenigen Tagen einen wasserfesten,
undurchlässigen Film, wie er gerade für Türen oder Schiffsteile
Ölp£lanzen und Pflanzenöle
W;ietzoldt
geeignet wäre. Dieser Deutung widerspricht aber eindeutig im technischen Bereich, die Austauschbarkeit des I-giE mit dem billigeren
Schweineschmalz.
Für eine Deutung von gi'ET-1, Fe-gix-T und 2-gig als FlachsJLein,
I,c.insamen und Leinöl gibt es also m.E. überhaupt keine gewichtigen Gründe.
GiE-I ist nach meiner Überzeugung mit Sicherheit nicht "Flachs/Lein", sontlcrn eine andere Pflanze mit sehr ölhaltigen Samen. Dafür kommt - soweit
i i i i r bekannt - nur Sesam in Frage, besonders da es aus philologischer und
technologischer Sicht m.W. nur Argumente gibt, die für Sesam und Sesamöl
hprechen, nicht aber eindeutig dagegen. Wohl das gewichtigste Argument für
Scsam ist der Anbau im Sommer, was m.W.
die anderen Ölpflanzen und ganz
I)c~sondersLein ausschliesst
.
Ölpflanzen und Pflanz
Waetzoldt
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöle
RS
I.
BM 14134 (Ur 111, Herkunft: Girsu, Datum -/IIII
vs
.
1)
0.2.1 Xe-giX-ril (gur)
2)
i-bi 0.0.2 6 sila (gur)
vs
I
.
I
.
7)
5 sila nin-ki-HAR-Fa6
H)
5 sila ama-DI.NE
Y)
a-r5-2-kam
1 0) [ ba]ra-aka-d2
11) ugula gerne-nin-ban-da
1
3) giri ba-an-da-kuqg2
(unbeschriebene Zeile)
12) itu-GU4-DU.NE.S[A]R, u4-8 ba-zal
13) mu-6s-sa
d t b ~ i ld-sCkn1
4) 33-bi-ta
5)
53 sila i
3.
6) kiFib ba-an-da-kuq
.
7)
Rs
Rs
1
5 '113 silal giri g6me-dnin-~~~'.KI(?)
93
.
BM 141 79 (altbabytonisch, Herkunft: unbekannt, ohne Datum)
vs
8) 0.0.1 1 sila (gur) dug-bi 1-3m
9) giri XeX-kal-la
I
10) 0.0.2 i '516' sila (gur)
.
I)
1.1.0 gur Fe-giX-i
2)
3)
iZ-me-i-a, dumu PU-'a4-bi95
2 dskn-Zar-ru-wn
4) dumu <i>-pi-iq-nu-nu
5)
0.4.0 (gur) Fe-giF-i
12) 15-i 4 sila 10 gln i
13) nin-ba-a-1 [U]ig4
14) iru-ezen-dlig-si4
(unbeschriebene Zeile)
] X X -inkig7, rFel-giF-i, i-&-Zu
[
2.
BM 14297 (Ur 111, Herkunft: Girsu, Datum: IS 2/II
vs
1)
.
6 sila Xe-giF-i
2) nin-dumu-ab-ba
3)
6 sila ama-DI.'NE1
0.0.1 2 sila (gur) nin-ki-HAR-Fa6
4)
5) a-r5-1-kam
6) 5 sila nin-dumu-ab-ba
O)
Ölp£lanzen und Pflanzenöle
Waetzoldt
ANMERKUNGEN
I
G. Pettinato, EbZa S. 174 und 208 (TM 75 G 1767) = SEb 2, 7f. = B.
Foster, BiOr 40, 300 mit Anm. 4; ARET 3, S.353 S.V. giF-T-giF.
B.
Foster, BiOr 40, 300 lehnt ohne Begründung, die bisher allgemein akzeptierte Übersetzung "Olivenbaum" ab, ohne einen neuen Deutungsvorschlag
zu machen. Die bbersetzung "Olivenbaum" ist aber zwingend, wenn man
die für den Gersteanbau verwendeten Feldflächen vergleicht. Nach ARET
2, 26 reichen 7000 g5na.KI für die Versorgung der Stadt, 720 für die
Gersterationen und 3600 g5na.KI für die Versorgung des VerwaltungsZentrums (vgl. ARET 2, 27 und 27a).
Daher muss gana.KI ein relative
grosses Flächenmass bezeichnen. Vergleicht man nun, dass nur etwa 1 2 giF-T(-giF)-Pflanzen
auf so einer Fläche stehen, so kann es sich einzig um Bäume handeln. Von den Früchten dieser Bäume stammt das eizzigc
Öl, das m.W. in den Ebla-Texten erwähnt wird. Damit stimmt aucl die
These F. Pomponio's (OrientaZia Lovaniensia ~eriodica 14 [I9831 8f.,
12) überein, dass 1 g 6 n a - ~ ~von
g ~ Ebla
~
in etwa 1/10 eines mesopotademnac'~
s ~ ~ Ca.
mischen iku entspricht (1 iku = Ca. 3600 m2, 1 g a n a - ~ ~
360 m2, also eine Fläche von Ca. 19 X 19 Metern).
Z.B. ARET 3,104 passim.
Ölp£lanzen und Pflanzenöle
Wae t zoldt
1
15 B. Foster, USP S.lll d schreibt zu ninda-gu "perhaps a kind of bread
made with chick peas", ähnlich AOS 32 E 29. Nach HLC 1,14,27l:lff.
muss es sich aber um eine Gerstemehlsorte handeln, da eine Lieferung
von Gerste als "für (Herstellung) von gutem gu-Mehl" bezeichnet wird.
16 MVN 7, 95.Rs.lf.,
TMHNF 1-2, 163:lff.
17 AnOr 1,164:lff.
17a Vgl. Dalman 1932, 188,298f.
I8 R1A 6, Leinen S 4b.
19 Vgl. ki-mun-gazi ASJ 3,60,9 I 9; ki-sum(-ma)
St Pohl 9 S.616,
ki-gG-gal, ki-ibdigkur usw. YOS 4,307 :4,6,8. S. unten zu ki-giF-I mit
Anm. 24.
20 Z.B. Dalman 1932, S.298f. nennt keine alte Verwendung von Flachs
für die Ölgewinnung, nur modern, s. S.355.
21 Fischer 1948, S .31: Faserlein 30-38%, Öllein 38-44%.
22 Fischer 1948, S.32, 67.
Vgl. MEE 2, S.16f.; ARET 3, S.358
SV.
I-gix.
RTC 216:l. - Zum Verbreitungsgebiet der wilden Vorläuferin der Olive
(Olea sativa) s. P. P. Vertesalji, Babylonien zur Kupfersteinzeit [Beihefte zum Tübinger Atlas des Vorderen Orients, Reihe B (Geisteswissenschaften) Nr. 35, Wiesbaden 19841, 179,
23 Z.B. RTC 127 VIII 16, ITT 2,5742:l.
24 Z.B. Belege aus Girsu: aAk ITT 1,1379:4; Ur 111 CT 7,32,18394:5,8 (mit
~flu~rindern)
, ITT 5,7684 = TCS 1,356 (Opfer), MVN 9,72:4 (mit Fe-giF-T
als Saatgut?), HLC 3,141,373 111 7. Umma: BIN 5,272:194.
AHw 1037; aus Babylon: VS 22, 83:40 I-giF se-er-du-um.
MAD 3, 283
26 Z.B. AAS 177:4, RTC 353:7, TCS 1,258:5.
SQD.
Nach Fischer 1948, 49, Ölanteil zwischen 40 und 50%.
Belege s. MAD 3, 282 SQD, BIN 8, 296: 1 (dazu Foster , USP 122'mit Anm.
79), 318:3, 339):3, MVN 10, 2 2 8 ~ 2= RA 73, 30,24.
C. USP S. 120f., RTC 109:5 und AHw, CAD S.V. erznu. Für 'parfümiertes'
Öl könnte VS 22,84: 22 (aB) T-giF e-re,-ni und RA 69, 26 sprechen, vgl.
T-giF 's'u-ur-man ARM 22, 269:1.
R1A 6,,Leinen % 1.
ATU Zeichen 401+402, Texte 617 I1 4, 624 I1 4, 625 I 2, 629 I 2f., 643
I 2, 649 I 2 und z.B. W.21671 (unpubliziert).
R1A 6, Leinen 8 3.
R1A 6, Leinen 8 8 und AHw, CAD
S.V.
kitu.
USP 35:3,7,8,10,12 usw.; 36:1,5,7,10 usw., s. dazu ibid. S.lll d.
27 Z.B. AJSL 29,1912-13, 126ff. Nr.3
1964, 101, 48, YOS 4,290:ll.
=
RA 57,197, 51, Lau 148:2, RA 58,
28 TCS 1,135:4+8.
E. Sollberger interpretiert andere Textstellen, an
denen giF-I genannt wird, abweichend: S.122:249 GI~.NI "a kind of
wool?"
.
29 Ferner NATN 511:1, MVN 11, L 18, vielleicht noch in Feldnamen a-m-gix2-gaba-X-li UNL 111, Nr. 393 = MVN 11,90:8.
30 AAS 135 V11 13, ASJ 4,119, 19.111.25, TJA pl. 56, IOS 26:3, IOS 29:3,
UCP 9,200,78:25.
31
S. dazu JAOS 88, 115a.
32 Zu k3 und k3-luh(-ha) s. z.B. BIN 8, 10 I 1, 46:11, RTC 27 I 1, ZA 72,
175, 14, MVN 3, 10.II.ll, VI.l', MVN 10, 82 I 1, 4, 83 I 1, 85 I 1,
4; SR S.222 und FAOS 6, 203ff.; zu k3-babbar ibid. S.206, 321; OIP 99,
S.49:95 (Abu Salabikh).
Waet zoldt
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenölr
33 CT 50, 70:1, 72:1, 73.1.2+4, 78:2, BIN 8, 144:19, 156:16, ITT 2, pl,
76 4598:1, MVN 3,l I 1, V11 8', 97 I 1, 102:1, Or 51, 1982, 355 I 9,
I1 3, 363:l.
34 Z.B. RTC 127 VIII 16 und s. Belege bei B. Foster, USP S. 119 und zur
Datierung S. 156 und P. Michalowski, RA 75, 1981, 173ff.
35 Vgl. dazu auch I. J. Gelb, JAOS 87, 3b, dessen Feststellung mir Dr.
Gebhard
Selz, Freiburg, freundlicherweise bestätigte. Ihm ist kein
präsargonischer Beleg aus LagaX bekannt.
36
In altbabylonischer Zeit gab es grosse Anbaugebiete im Königreich Mari,
s. ARM 22, 276 und ARM 21, S. 128f.
37 MVN 3, 299:1+4; H. Sauren, TCE 264 A+B 1+5 und vgl. MVN 3, 298 und 305.
Stets liefert Guzana Fe-giF-3.
38 R6pGeo 2, S. 91, R6pGeo 3, C. 131.
39
In Susa sind relativ viele Texte, die sich auf Fe-giF-i oder i-giX
beziehen, gefunden worden, z.B. MDP 10, 73, 125:l; MDP 14, 68,7:3,5;
MDP 18, 25f., 83, 86; 34ff., 109, 114, 122; MDP 28, 121ff., 504-509;
ihre Datierung ist zum Teil schwierig, die ältesten stammen aber
höchstwahrscheinlich aus der Zeit der Akkad-Dynastie.
40 MVN 3, 299:l (Umrechnung mit 1 sila
=
0,842 Liter).
4 1 MVN 3, 347:12 116 Kor, MVN 7,460:l 120 Kor, TCS 1, 135:4 135 Kor und
HSS 4,3.1.4 197 Kor.
42 UET 3, 1129 Rs. 11+13 zusammen 470 gur 3 213 sila.
43 MVN 12, 400:lf., Lau 102:lff.; dazu wohl auch MVN 11 L 18: Ein Bote ist
mit giF-i unterwegs, er bringt wahrscheinlich Saatgut an seinen ZielOrt.
44 ASJ 2, 28, 82:lff., MVN 3, 305:5ff. mit itu-kur-ga-na-Fe,
genau bestimmbar ist.
der nicht
Waetzold t
51 Die genaue Bedeutung des Terminus (Fe)-giF-2-a ist noch nicht geklärt,
ich halte "Sieben" (einschliesslich Worfeln?) für die wahrscheinlichste, da 2.B. auch Hülsenfrüchte (gG, MVN 12, 157:32f.) dieser Behand52 JAOS 88, 117ff.
lung unterzogen werden (anders AAS S. 128ff.).
53 MVN 5,155 I11 5 f., HSS 4,3 IX 19f., Amherst 50 I 6f. und Text 1
(BM 14134):lf.
Vgl. zu den altbabylonischen Belegen M. Stol, AbB 9, S.
43 Anm.
a zu 58 und UET 5,595:l mit 24,16%, TEBA 14:19f. mit 20, bzw.
25%, BIN 7, 158:llf. mit 20%.
54 Christian Gottfried Whistling, Oekonomische Pflanzenkunde für ~ a n d und Hauswirte, Gärtner, Künstler usw., 3. Theil, Leipzig 1806, Die Oel=
Spinn= Färbe= Gerbe= und Fabrikpflanzen S. 243: aus 9 Pfund Samen
einen Ölertrag von 2 Pfund oder "nach anderer Quelle" aus 2 Pfund 3
. Pfund Ölertrag.
55
1948, S.59f. und in vorliegendem Band den Beitrag von D. Bedigian.
56 Z.B. CT 3, 20 V11 28 - VIII 3, STA 2 IV 4, TU 101 IV 15; gerne-i-sur ITT
2, 766, ITT 5, 9863, UET 3, 1077 I1 13, 1413:3, 1443:6.
57 UET 3, 762:2.
58 UET 3, 1465:4.
Möglicherweise gehört noch MVN
engar-Fe-giF-T-ka-ke4-ne
hierher.
60 TU 122 V1 10f. (9 sila), Amherst 50 IV 16 und HSS 4,3 XI 9f. (je 12
Unbekannsila). Nippur: NATN 563 Rs. 3 (9 sfla), 160:115. (12 sila).
ter Herkunft:
UDT 179:lf. (12 sila).
Zu den altbabylonischen
Preisen s. ARDer S. 40 mit Anm. 7; nach W 20472,88:10ff., 15ff. konnte
man für 1 Sekel Silber in Uruk 7,08 sila i-gix, bzw. 12 sila Schweineschmalz erwerben. Mittelbabylonisch s. V. Donbaz, JNES 41, 207:16f.
und 208:32£.
61 MVN 1, 240 I1 6f.
46 S. Beitrag von M. Stol Anm. 7.
62 MVN 3, 343:lO.
47 MVN 12, 15:3 6 Fe gur-lugal, 6-hun-ga, ki-giF-i-ka giF-gi-G-26.
63 UET 3, 1165:lff., 1201 I 4f., Rs. 111 3.
49
S. NATN 236:lff. (Lieferung von Fe-giF-i von einem Feld).
.,
K. Butz, OLA 5, 386 und in
50 Zur Wachstumszeit s. JAOS 88, 118f
vorliegendem Band den Beitrag von D. Bedigian.
-
92
-
1, 208:2 ni-sur
59 NCT 44:214f. (60 sila), UCP 9, 199, 78:19 (60 sfla), TLB 3, 152:4f.,
10f. (100 sila), NATN 694:lf. (90 s3la).
Auf Ca. 84 sila kommt man
bei Vergleich von UET 3, 1103:5f. (Preis in Datteln) mit 1083 und 1084.
Vgl. dazu den Preis aus der Isin-Larsa-Zeit TCL 10, 17:3ff. = Jean,
Larsa 127 (RZmsZn 2) mit 75 sila.
45 S. die Anm. 43-44 erwähnten Texte.
48 Genannt werden (He-)giF-i oder Pressrückstände (duh-gix-3): Amherst 83
= RA 54, 124, 13; RA 58, 101, 48; 105, 90; MVN 5,266; RTC 192; UET 3,
944.
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöle
64 S. LaP C. 151ff.
65 Z.B. ITT 2, 4097:2, 5, 10 (Prinzessin), TCS 1, 179:4, RA 58, 105, 88,
TU 16419:llff, UET 3, 1633:2f.; Opfer 2.B. ITT 2, 819:lff., 829:1,
3175:1, 3213:3; ITT 3, 6061:1, 6172:l; Umma: Or 47-49, 442:1, YOS 4,
299:8; Ur: UET 3, 251:1, 252:1f., 255:lf.
Waetzoldt
Ölpflanzen und Pflanzenöla
Ölp£lanzen und Pflanzenöle
Waetzold t
86 AOS 32 P 21 = H. Sauren, TCE 269:lff., AfO 24 Tf. XIX Truro 4:lff., HSS
4, 3.V.15ff.
MVN 2, 16:lf.; ITT 2, 2601:l-5; UET 3, 1427:l-7.
Bisher m.W. nicht explizit in einem Text, doch anzunehmen, da auch XegiH-X als Öl/Fett-~ation(2-ba) ausgegeben wird, 2.B. RA 54, 126, 19,
RA 58, 105, 90.
87 Vgl. dazu den altbabylonischen Text YOS 5, 93:lff.
CT 5, 48 IV 18 (diesen Hinweis danke ich J.-P. Gregoire).
88 Ähnlich UET 3, 1051:lff., 1153:lf. und besonders UET 9, 1370 I lff
gix a-r&-1 MVN 7, 162 Rs. 1.
AnOr 1, 40:14 (X-giX ninda-aka-da).
89 K. Butz, WZKM 65/66, 37.
MVN 3, 311:lf., Or 47-49, 295:6f., 11, 14ff., UET 3, 1149:5f.
90 R1A 6, Leinen 8 4a.
UET 3, 1130:lff., vgl. 1181:8f.
91 Den Trustees of the British Museum und Herrn T.C. Mitchell danke ich
für die Publikationserlaubnis für diese 3 Texte. Herr C.B.F. Walker
kollationierte noch einige Zeichen, wofür ich ihm ganz herzlich Dank
sage.
Nach H. Sauren, TUU 10 Anm. 31.
.; 2-
UET 3, 1766:3'f.
92 Eine Lesung ba-an-da-tu und Deutung "Er/Sie wurde mit ihm/ihr geboren/
erschaffen" ist ebenfalls möglich.
UNT S. 159, 162f., 169ff.
M. Stol, R1A 6, Leder 8 25.
93 SO wohl ZU
-dnin+!?-rumki
ITT 3, 4948:lf.
lesen, da andere Möglichkeiten hin-i5!?-na
(vgl. urum,(fi.~.HA)~~
S. JCS 33 [I9811 56) m.W.
oder
ohne
jede Parallele wären.
UET 3, 281 Rs. lOff., 1145:lff., 1175:lff.
Orient 16, 83, 122:lff., vgl. ibid. S. 77, 112 I11 79f. Schweineschmalz
um einen Wagen "schön zu machen" (Ha6).
ITT 3, 4948:lff., 4964:lff., JCS 29, 122, 4:1+4, RA 58, 103, 67:lf.,
UET 3, 281 Rs. laff., 1145:lff., 1175:lff.
MVN 9, 63:lff., UET 3, 76 Rs. I1 4ff. Zu giHhum
3-giH für Schiffe (zum Teil wohl als Opfer)
Orient 16, 77, 112 I 12ff. Schweineschmalz und
24 Tf. XIX Truro 4:lff. und der sehr ähnliche
Sauren, TCE 269:lff.
s. Salonen 1939, S.94.
NFT 185 AO 4200:lff.,
2-giH für Nägel(?) AfO
Text AOS 32 P 21 = H.
94 Möglich wäre auch eine Lesung nin-ba-a n[a]r ("Sängerin" aber schwierig
(wogegen das Formular derarwegen des Kontextes) oder nin-ba-a-ka[m]
tiger Texte spricht).
95 Vgl. PN ruffä.bumUET 5, 385:7 = AHw 933. Nach freundlicher Mitteilung
liegt aber an der in AHw genannten
von M. Stol (Brief vom 2&9.1984)
Stelle der Ortsname URU
ra-HA-bu-wn vor (ein mit PN gebildeter
Ortsname?).
96 Z. 5-7 entweder Nominalsatz oder 2.7 etwa [i-sa-ha-t]u4 zu ergänzen?
(Vorschlag von M. Stol; für TUM = tu nannte er folgende aB Belege: AbB
7,125 Rs. 16, TCL 17, 34:24, UET 6, 496:2, 19).
97 Ergänzung zu [
liessen.
S. Z.B. ARM 22, 276 IV 16-26.
UET 3, 1511:7 6 Kor; meist aber,nur einige sila oder gln (= 1/60
sila): ibid. 76 Rs. I1 3, HLC 2, 62, 23 V1 6f., ITT 3, 5155:7, STA 8
IV 6, XIV 12 i-giH: HSS 4,3 I1 2 über 64 Kor.
LagaE: HSS 4,5 I1 17ff., RTC 304 I1 llff., TU 126 IV 24ff.; Umma: AnOr
7,303:90ff.; Ur: UET 3, 95:lf. Werden i-nun-dulo-ga und X-giH-dulO-ga
in einer Abrechnung summiert, so wird als gemeinsamer Terminus
i-dulo-ga-hi-a
"verschiedenes gutes Öl/~ett'' verwendet (HSS 4,
5.11.19ff.
+ VI.10).
1932, 296f.
AOS 32 S. 129 P 21 a und M. Sigrist, JCS 29, 175 zu Z. 35.
- 94 -
] ri?-si?l-inki nach den Spuren nicht völlig auszusch-
61pflanzen und PflanzenSle
Waetzoldt
BIBLIOGRAPHICAL ABBREVIATIONS
Dalman ,
1932
Fischer
1948
CULTIVATION OF LEGUMES AND MUN-GAZI PLANTS IN UR 111 GIRSU*
K. Maekawa
Arbeit und S i t t e i n Palastinu, Bd. 11. (Giitersloh)
ijZpfZanzen
-
PfZanzenijle.
(Kyoto)
(Stuttgart; Frank' sche Verlags-
buchhandlung)
Salonen
1939
Die Wasserfahrzeuge i n Babylonien. (Helsinki)
Die Hausgeriite der Alten Mesopotamier, T e i l I . (Helsinki)
I. The agricultural regime after TuT 5 (Shulgi 47)
1.1
The purpose of this article is to study the cultivation methods of
legumes ("big pulses" gG-gal-(gal) and "small pulses" g6-tur(-tur))
and the
mun-gazi class of plants such as coriander (Be-16) in Girsu in the Ur 111
period (ca. 2100-2000 B.C.).
In order to obtain an introductory
understanding of agriculture in Ur 111 Girsu, however, I should first like
to refer to Reisner, TuT 5. The text, which I have already presented as
Table 1 in my BSA article [Maekawa 1984, 90-911, is indeed one of the best
source materials for a bird's-eye view of Ur 111 land management.
TuT 5 records the total area of the domain land (g6n-guq) which
various public institutions of Girsu (i.e. "temple" and other establishments under the direct control of the governor of Girsu) cultivated in the
47th regnal year of Shulgi. The grand total of cultivated area reaches
3,744 bar 14i iku (24,266 ha.; 1 biir[=18 iku]= approx. 6.48 ha.), and
approximately the same area of land was probably left unseeded in Shulgi 47
under the system of alternate-year fallowing of winter crops. In addition
to the domain land (g5n-gu4) the management of which is recorded in TuT 5,
the other two types of public land, i.e. the land allotted to the personnel
of public institutions (g5n-!$~~~)
and the tenant land leased out to the
personnel (g5n apin-15/g6n nlg-g5l-la), must have existed extensively in Ur
111 Girsu. My present opinion is that the public land of Girsu was several
times as extensive as that of the neighboring province of Umma.
According to TuT 5, barley was planted in the Girsu domain land of
3,664 bbr 2f iku (23,744 ha.), which occupies 97.8% of the total area of
land under cultivation in Shulgi 47, while emmer plots and wheat plots were
respectively 64 bar (415 ha.: 1.7%) and 5 bar 12 iku (37 ha.: 0.15%) in
area. So, TuT 5 has been quoted by Jacobsen and me as evidence for intensifying salinization of land in the Ur 111 period [Jacobsen & Adams 1958,
1252; Jacobsen 1982, 16, 30, 53; Maekawa 1974, 41; 1984, 81, 881.
- -
*The Trustees of the British Museum have generously permitted me to quote
many unpublished BM tablets in this article.
BM 24956, BM 15292 and BM
23585 are especially presented here as Tables 2 and 3 by their permission.
I should also like to express my gratitude to Mr. T.C. Mitchell and to Mr.
C.B.F. Walker, of the Department of Western Asiatic Antiquities of the
British Museum, for their kindness in facilitating my study of unpublished
BM tablets.
Maekawa
Cultivation of legume
TuT 5 classifies the cultivated plots into eight categories accordi
1.2
to the different amounts of cereals to be consumed per unit area (bar). Fo
example, barley plots are classified into three: "plots of 1 gur 150 sTl
(=1.5 gur) of barley per bar" (Category A), "plots of 1 gur 240 sTla (=1.
gur) of barley per bar" (Category B ) and "plots of 1 gur 60 sTla (=1.2 gur
of barley per bar" (Category C) [l gur = 300 sTla, 1 sTla = approx.
litre].
As for the first two types of plot, each amount points to th
barley which is to be required as seed (Fe-numun) and animal fodde
(mur-guq) for sowing one bar of land. This is why I have given the nam
"seed-and-fodder texts" to a group of Girsu agricultural documents the bee
example of which is TuT 5 [Maekawa 1984, 76ff ] In Category C plots, o
the other hand, 1.2 gur of barley was solely consumed as seed.
..
TuT 5 gives the generic name (g6n) ki mun-gazi to the plots of 11 bar
(71 ha.) which were exclusively managed by the personnel of the "temple" of
11 (bar) g6n ki mull-gazi
Ningirsu (Category H plots; TuT 5 Obv. 1.7-8:
0.2.3.0-ta,
Fe-bi 5.2.3.0
gur). According to the text, barley was consumed
I
at the rate of 0.5 gur (=I50 sTla) per bar for Category H plots.
conclude that this amount of barley was given to plow animals, and in fact,
BM 12309 (Maekawa 1981, Text 9), calculates the animal fodder (mur) for
sowing the plot named (gdn) ki mun-gazi at the rate of 0.5 gur per bar.
My assumption is that legumes (gG-gal(-gal) : hatliiru, "big pulses";
gG-tur(-tur)
: kakkii, "small pulses") were cultivated as well as other
plants such as coriander (He-1G : kisibirru) in the mun-gazi plots in Ur
111 Girsu.
11. The term mun-gazi
11.1
Oppenheim assumed that the element gazi in the term mun-gazi describes a "special quality of salt (rnun)", while admitting that gazi (kas;)
usually denotes an "odoriferous plant of still unidentified nature" ( =
cassia ?).
Oppenheim interpreted the term ki mun-gazi in TuT 5 as
"territory (covered with) salt dust" [Oppenheim 1948, 73.
According to Landsberger , gazi ( kasii) means mustard and mun-gazi
(literally "salt - mustard") is a generic term for spices. He interpreted
the passage in question in TuT 5 as "(11 bar of) field where spice plants
grow (with little by-product of barley)" [Landsberger & Gurney 1957-58,
337-381. Landsberger was the first to quote Nies, UDT 1 as a reference to
three generic words for legumes, spices and aromatics: Rev. 1) [X.X.X.X
(sTla) gG-hd [gur], 2) [X](?).0.0.8
sTla mun-gazi-hd, 3) [XI ma-na Tim-hd.
The term mun-gazi(-hd) in UDT 1 is undoubtedly a generic word for a certain
group of plants/products. Landsberger's interpretation of (gdn) ki mungazi in TuT 5 is much to be preferred to that of Oppenheim, though the
expression 0.2.3.0-ta
that follows (g6n) ki mun-gazi does not denote the
barley as a "by-product".
Landsberger's identification of gazi (kasii) as "mustard" has, however,
often been questioned [Snell 1982, 219 (cassia ? ) ; Geller 1982, 194 (Beta
vulgaris, or the common beet);
Butz 1984, 316 (Solanurn nigrm/Sotanurn
miniatum ? ) I .
If either of the latter two identifications is to be
-
98
-
bekawa
Cultivation of legumes
accepted, the semantic range of mun-gazi was more extensive than the connotations of English "spice"/"spice plants". First of all, salt (mun) and
"bricks of salt" (sigq-mun : Zibitti tiibti) [Potts 1984, 259; Butz 1984,
2971) as well as plants were also classed among the mun-gazi products.
11.2
The term mun-gazi(-hd)
occurs as a generic word side by side with
g6(-hd)
("legumes") and Tim(-hd)
("aromatics") in UDT 1.
It should
however be noticed that several Ur 111 texts use the term mun-gazi for a
wide range of plants and products including legumes.
The following plants and products are classed as mun-gazi.
The
and gG-tur(-tur)
Akkadian equivalents haZZiiru and kakkii to gG-gal(-gal)
are translated as "chick-peas" and "lentil (or small bean)" in the Chicago
Aesyrian Dictionary. In view of doubts raised about these identifications
at the 3rd meeting of the Sumerian Agriculture Group (June 29-30th, 1984),
and since I cannot offer new evidence that might be helpful in identifying
these two kinds of legumes, in this article I have provisionally adopted
the literal, neutral translations "big pulse" and "small pulse" for gGgal(-gal) and gG-tur(-tur) respectively.
1. Pinches, Berens 22 Obv.I.10-12,
19, Rev.IV.13 (Girsu):
gii-gal (haltiiru : "big pulses"), Fe-16 (kisibirru : coriander), zi-zibl-a-nGm (zibiiinu : "black cumin").
2. Pinches, Amherst 69 (Girsu):
gii-gal(-gal) , gG-tur (kakkii : "small pulse"), 6 . ~ 1(kcmunu
~
: cumin ? ) ,
Fe-lG, gazi (kasQ : a nagive spice plant), Fe.zi-bl-tum
(zibitu : an
[ninii ? : a medicinal
aromatic seed), U.KUR (=U.KUR.RA(Fim.bi.ri.da)?
plant]?), numun za-hi-li ([za-hi-li : sahlii : cress]: cress seed), KU.MUL
(ku-mu1 = Sargonic ga-mul ? (= cumin?) [Snell 1982, 227]), hu-rl-um
(huri'u : a spice), sigq-mun (libitti tiibti : bricks of salt [Potts
1984, 259; Butz 1984, 2971, mun (tdbtu : salt).
3. MVY I 74 (Umma):
gG-gal, gG-tur, Te-16.
4 . MVN I 75 (Umma):
gG-gal, gG-tur, Fe-16.
5. MVN 1 104 (Umma),:
gazi-[kum](?),
U.KUR, Fe.zi-bl-tum, za-hi-li, ga-ma-am-tum ( k m m t u : a
(H1.sar = H1.IS.sar : hassu : lettuce).
vegetable), NIG-NAGAR, H1.sar
6. TCL V P1. XXII-XXIII (AO,6037), Obv. 11.20-111.11 (Umma):
gG-gal, gG-tur, Fe-lG, U.TIR, numun sum-sikil ([sum-sikil : 's'u3ikitlu :
garlic (Gelb 1965, 57)l: garlic seed), za-ha-tin (sahatinnu : an onion
[Gelb 1957, 2381).
In five of the six texts quoted above, legumes (gG-gal(-gal), gG-tur(-tur))
are listed first among the mun-gazi plants and products. Even onions and
garlic are referred to in the last text as in the mun-gazi class of plants.
Maekawa
Maekawa
Cultivation of legumes
Cultivation of legume
Many other Ur I11 tablets group the same kinds of plants and products the
occur in the above texts into one class without the explicit mention o
mun-gazi (e.g. RTC 307 Obv. 111.20-IV.20;
ITT I1 892 Qbv. 111.17-IV.21),
and legumes usually occur first in the group in these texts.
CT X 18-19 (BM 12922) dated in Amar-Suen 2 records the total yield
11.3
from the domain land of various "temples" in Girsu (Table 1).
A total of
24 gur7 2691 gur 47 sila (89,091 471300 gur : 26,727,347 litres) of barley,
emmer and wheat was harvested early in the 2nd year of Amar-Suen (1 gur7 r
3,600 gur, 1 gur = 300 slla, 1 sila = approx. 1 litre).
Since 1 gur7 825
gur (4,425 gur : 1,327,500 litres) of barley was allotted to "cultivators"
(engar) and their subordinates as their provisions (Xe-ZUKU-~~
engar), the
remaining 23 gur7 1866 gur 47 sfla (84,666 471300 gur : 25,399,847 litres)
accrued to the administration in Amar-Suen 2. According to CT VII 8 (BM
12926) dated in the same year, in fact, this amount of 23 gur7 1866 gur 47
sila reached about 85% of the grand total income of Girsu in Amar-Suen 2.
The following yield of winter crops other than barley, emmer and wheat
came from the Girsu domain land in Amar-Suen 2: 66 gur 275 sila (20,075
6 gur 20 sila (1,820 litres) of
litres) of "big pulses" (gG-gal(-gal)),
coriander (Fe-lG), 295 sila (295 litres) of,black cumin(?) (zi-zi(-bl)a-dm), and 10 sila (10 litres) of cumin(?)(U.TIR).
All of these plants
are under the classification of mun-gazi in the texts quoted in Part 11.2,
though CT X 18-19 does not refer to the term in question. "Big pulses"
came from the lands of Ningirsu, Ninmar.ki and other small "temples", and
Dumuzi in Amar-Suen 2, and of the four plants the amount of "big pulses"
was the largest. It might be a sound assumption that legumes and other
plants such as coriander were cultivated in the (g6n) ki mun-gazi plots of
Ningirsu in Shulgi 47, three years earlier than Amar-Suen 2, and that legumes, especially "big pulses", predominated in these plots.
111. "Legume plots", "mun-gazi plots" and "vegetable plots"
of Category C plots, and 1 bar 9 iku (10 ha.) of "mun-gazi
nun-gazi).
plots" (g6n
The descriptions of BM 21363 on the "mun-gazi plots" are as follows:
Obv. 1.3)
1 (bar) 3 (iku) g6n mun-gazi, 4) mur-bi (blank),
Rev.
111.3) 6 (iku) g6n ki gG, 4) mur-bi 0.0.5.0,
IV.lO) Xu-nigh 1 (bar)
9 (iku) g6n mun-gazi, 11) mur-bi 0.3.4.0.
Both "mun-gazi-plots" (Obv.
1.3) and "legume plots" (Rev. 111.3) are again classified as "mun-gazi
plots" in the summary description (Rev. IV.lO).
....,
....,
The term (g6n) ki SAR occurs side by side with g6n gG (e.g. C T X 10-11:
BM 24959 ["round tablet"]) and with g6n mun-gazi (e.g. BM 15292 [=Table 3:
"yield text"]).
Since the word SAR can be used as a generic term for vegeThe "vegetable
tables, (g6n) ki SAR probably means the "vegetable plot".
plot" ((g6n) ki SAR) which was under the management of the "cultivator"
(engar) should be distinguished from the "gardenlorchard" ((GI~.)sAR),
managed by the "gardener" (~U-GI~.SAR). But my tentative interpretation is
that in Ur 111 Girsu the main plants in the (g6n) ki SAR plot were onions
and garlic and that they also grew in the "gardenlorchard". In fact,
Barton HLC 111 362 (Pl. 137), a record of smoked fish (ku6-izi [~nell1982,
onions and garlic
226; cf.
Oppenheim 1948, 8; Salonen 1970, 194]),
has a summary expression "account of
(sum-sikil, sum-gaz, sum.za-ha-tin),
fish and vegetables" (nfg-S1~-akkug SAR) [Gelb 1965, 60-611.
Girsu "yield texts" often mention legumes (gG-gal(-gal),
gG-tur(-tur))
and mun-gazi plants such as coriander (Fe-lG), cumin(?) (~.TIR) and black
cumin(?) (zi-zi(-bf)-a-dm),
side by side with the three main winter crops
(barley, emmer and wheat).
I have already discussed CT X 18-19 (Table 1)
as an example. On the other hand, BM 17782 (unpublished) is the only Girsu
"yield text" known to me that records a harvest of garlic (sum-sikil) as
well as barley, emmer, legumes (gG-gal-gal, gG-tur) and coriander.
and gG-tur(-tur))
were planted
111.2
Two kinds of legumes (gG-gal(-gal)
prevaj-lingly in the plots called (g6n) ki gG in Ur 111 Girsu.
They are
always listed before other mun-gazi plants in Girsu "yield texts".
111.1
Three terms occur in the "seed-and-fodder texts" and "yield texts"
of Ur 111 Girsu to denote plots where plants other than barley (Fe), emmer
(zfz) and wheat (gig) are cultivated: (gCn) ki gG, (g6n) ki mun-gazi, and
(g6n) ki SAR. The literal meanings of the first two terms are "plot of
legumes" and "plot of mun-gazi plants" respectively. But the term (g6n) ki
mun-gazi is actually used in two ways in the texts. 1) The term denotes
the plot where the mun-gazi plants other than legumes are cultivated.
2) It also refers to plots where legumes as well as other mun-gazi plants
grow, or it is used as a generic term for both mun-gazi plots in the strict
sense and legume plots. In TuT 5 the term (g6n) ki mun-gazi seems to be
used in the second connotation.
The first occurrence of these legumes is in the texts of the Sargonic
period (ca. 2350-2100 B.C.):
e.g. BIN VIII 132 Obv. 1.7-8 (gG-gG-gal,
gG-gG-tur); RTC 108 Obv.3-4 (gG-gG-gal-gal, gG-gG-tur-tur).
On the other
hand, pre-Sargonic Girsu texts dating to ca. 2370 B.C. mention a kind of
legume called gG-gG(-GUq) and coriander (Fe-16) as being planted in the
ki-sum-ma plots (literally "onion plots") (e.g. VS XIV 40 [Bauer 1972,
74-84]) [Deimel 1925, 1-33].
It is evident, however, that onions and
garlic were by far dominant in the ki-sum-ma plots in pre-Sargonic Girsu.
Although onions and garlic grew also in the "gardenlorchard" (SAR) in the
pre-Sargonic period (e.g. DP 384), no texts mention the cultivation of
legumes or coriander in the "gardenlorchard".
Both of these two usages are found in BM 21363, an unpublished "seedand-fodder-text" dated to Shulgi 43.
The text records the barley expenditures for cultivation of the following plots under the final supervision
of a certain ur-d~a-6: 218 bar 6 iku (1,415 ha.) of Category A barley
plots, 85 bar 3 iku (552 ha.) of Category B plots, 59(?) bar (382(?) ha.)
The plots of legumes and other mun-gazi plants ((g6n) ki gG, (gh) ki
mun-gazi) seem to have been separated from the plots of onions and garlic
((g6n) ki SAR) in the Ur 111 period at the latest, probably as a result of
the increasing popularity of legume cultivation.
I do not know whether
-
100 -
Maekawa
pre-Sargonic gG-gG(-GU4)
later periods.
Cultivation of legu
denotes either of the two kinds of legume found
CT X 18-19, the final record of harvest from the domain land of a
111.3
the "temples" of Girsu in Amar-Suen 2, suggests that the yield of "b
pulses" (gG-gal(-gal))
was usually much larger than that of "small pulse
in the "temple" land of Girsu. On the land where conditions were rath
different from those of the "temple" land, however, plots of "small pulse
may have been as extensive as those of "big pulses".
For example, BM 19739 (Maekawa 1981, Text 5), an "account of cereals
Susa" (nlg-zl~-ak Fe-&inki),
only mentions "small pulses" (gG-tur-tu
other than barley, emmer and wheat: Obv. 1.1) [XI gur7 400.4.3.6
213 a 1
Fe gur-dFul-gi, 2) 3(?).4.3.0
ziz gur, 3) [X](?)+1.4.0.0
gig gur,
[10](?)+8.4.0.0
gG-tur-tur gur, 5) g6n-guq,
10) 103.2+[2].0.[2](
gur, 11) 1.1.0.0
zlz gur,
12) 0.0.1.0
gig, 13) 1.1.0.2
sfla gG-tur-tu
gur, 14) g6n apin-16,
, 111.1) 171 (bar) g6n 3.0.0.0 gur-ta, 2)
3) Fe-numun mur-guq-b
(bar) 153 (iku) g6n giF-gab-tab 2.0.3.0-ta,
521.0.3.2
3 sfla gur, 4) 63 (iku) g6n 2.0.3.0-ta,
5) gG-numun-bi 0.3.4.
3 sfla, 6) mur-guq-bi 0.1.3.7
3 sfla, 7) g6n-ur,-a,
, Rev. VII.3'
2300+[ll(?)+[X.X.Xl.l
sfla Fe gur, 4') 5.0.3.0
zlz gur, 5') 1.4.1.0 g i
gur , 6 ' ) 19.0.0.9
3 sfla gG-tur-tur gur , VIII .l) [16-NI-Qm] ,
....
....
....
....
The text records that
(2.3 ha.) (Obv. 111.4-6).
tur-tur ("small pulses")
barley, emmer and wheat in
"legumes" (gG) were sown in the plots of 63 i
But the term gG must be an abbreviation of g
because only "small pulses" occur together wi
the descriptions of "income" and "remainder".
According to Obv.III.1-3, barley was consumed as "seed-and-fodder
(Fe-numun mur-guq) at the rate of 3 gur per bar (139 litres per ha.) fo
171 bar (1,108 ha.) of barley plots, while 2 gur 30 sfla (=2.1 gur) o
barley was sown per bar (97 litres per ha.) with the use of the giF-gab-ta
implements for barley plots of 3 bbr 153 iku (25 ha.).
I assume that th
sowing rate of barley was also fixed to 2.1 gur per bar in the plot
classified as gan 3.0.0.0
gur-ta, and that 0.9 gur of barley was given t
animals which plowed one bar of land.
In other words, the barley wa8
solely consumed as seed at the rate of 2.1 gur per bar for the plots called
g6n giF-gab-tab 2.0.3.0-ta.
The term giF-gab-tab points to the implement with which a team of men
sowed cereal seed. The giF-gab-tab iqplement was usually used without the
It might be a long pole with
aid of draught animals [Maekawa 1984, 801.
which a team of men stand parallepso as to drop cereal seeds into a number
of furrows by hand simultaneously.
In fact, TuT 17 and BM 19045 (Maekawa
1982, Text 15) demonstrate that a team of twelve men worked with one giggab-tab implement [Maekawa 1982, 87-89].
The Sumerian compound verb gab
- tab means "to hold (something) to the breast" [Riimer SKIZ, 2541.
The two standard amounts of "seed-and-fodder" for barley plots of the
"temple" in Girsu were 1.5 gur per bar (Category A plots) and 1.8 gur per
bar (Category B plots) near the end of Shulgi's reign.
One gur of barley
was sown per bar for Category A plots, while the rate of animal fodder was
0.5 gur per bar.
For Category B plots, the rate of barley seed and that
-
102
-
Maekawa
Cultivation of legumes
of animal fodder were respectively fixed at 1.2 gur and 0.6 gur per bar
[Maekawa 1984, 77-79].
On the other hand, the barley seed to be sown with
the aid of the giF-gab-tab implement was usually 1.2 gur per bar (Category
C plots) but sometimes 1 gur per bar (e.g. CT IX 32 [BM 211371 Obv.8-12,
15, Rev.6-7).
It should also be noticed that men set up twelve furrows
(ab-sin) at the basic seeding unit of one square nindan (approx. 6 metres)
for the plot where 1.2 gur of barley was to be sown per bar.
If my assumption that the sowing rate of barley for the land described
in BM 19739 was fixed at 2.1 gur per bar, i.e. approximately twice as large
as that in the "temple" land, is to be accepted, conditions of the land in
BM 19739 were very different from those of the common "temple" land of
Girsu. I conclude that the land in question was situated far beyond the
eastern border of Girsu, because the text mentions the rations of barley to
the laborers (UN-51) who were "stationed at (or dispatched to) Susa", and
those who were "dispatched from Girsu" (Obv.IV.10 [=Rev.VI.l']) UN-I1
ta
[libir]( ? ) SuFinki DU. [
], Rev.VI. 3 ' ) Fe-ba UN-f1 ~ l r - s u ~ ~ -gen-na)
.
According to BM 19739, Obv.III.4-6, the amount of "small pulse" seed was
2 gur 30 sfla (2.1 gur) per bar.
Since 973 sfla of barley was given to
the animals which plowed 63 iku of "small pulse" plots, the rate of animal
fodder was 270 sfla (0.9 gur) per bar. The amount of "small pulse" seed and
that of barley fodder per unit area are exactly the same as those of barley
seed and fodder used for the common barley plots of BM 19739.
BM 19739 is the only available Ur 111 source of information on the
amount of legume seed per unit area.
But it is highly improbable that the
same sowing rate (2.1 gur per bar) was applied for the "temple" plots of
legumes. My assumption is that one gur of legume seed or mun-gazi seed was
sown per bar in the "temple" land of Girsu near the end of the reign of
Shulgi
.
The standard amount of barley fodder given to animals which plowed the
"temple" land was 0.5 gur per bar both for barley plots and for plots of
legumes and mun-gazi plants.
The principle which BM 19739 suggests is
that the same sowing rate as well as the same rate of animal fodder is
applied both for barley plots and for "small pulse" plots. If this might
also be true of the "temple" land, men usually sowed one gur of legumes or
mun-gazi seed per bar on "temple" land.
IV. Land classification according to BM 24956
IV.1 BM 24956, an unpublished British Museum tablet dated in Shulgi 43, is
a record of domain plots under the designation of either "deficit" (la-NI)
or "excess" (diri).
By the generous permission of the Trustees of the
British Museum, BM 24956 is presented here as Table 2 prior to my future
publication of the copied text.
Since the "temples" referred to in BM
24956 are the same as those which occur in TuT 5 (Maekawa 1984, Table 1 :
Shulgi 47) and CT X 18-19 (Table 1 : Amar-Suen 2), I safely conclude that
the text calculates the total area of the "deficit" land and the "excess"
land in Girsu in Shulgi 43.
Maekawa
Cultivation of legume
Cultivation 0t
Maekawa
i
The terms "deficit" and "excess", which are naturally in complementary
distribution in each land description for each public institution, seem to
denote the discrepancy between the land area that was calculated in the
latest cultivation planning and the area of the land in the original survey.
If the area of the land which men decide to cultivate anew exceeds
that which the original test survey has already calculated, the extra plots
expected to be under cultivation seem to be designated as "excess".
In
fact, the terms "excess" and "deficit" occur in Reisner TuT 17, a record of
sowing of the land which had been left unseeded for some unknown reasons.
to be expended as fodder of plow animals for sowing one bar of the plot.
question.
It is still unknown whether mun-gazi plants such as coriander were also
to be cultivated in these "plots of legumes" in BM 24956. In the summary
description of BM 21363, the unpublished "seed-and-fodder text" which
records the cultivation of the domain land under a certain u ~ - ~ B ~in
-G
Shulgi 43, 1 bar 13 iku of mun-gazi plots (gSn mun-gazi) and 6 iku of
plots of legumes ((g6n) ki gG) are again under the classification of g6n
- GBM 21363 is identified with the man of the same name
mun-gazi. u ~ - ~ B ~in
who occurs in BM 24956 together with a certain ~ r - ~ ~ ~ - aas
l ibeing
m
responsible for the management of the land of Ningirsu.
u ~ - ~ B ~managed
-G
the
land of Ningirsu including 11 iku (4 ha.) of "plots of legumes" under the
classification of "deficit" in Shulgi 43. "Plots of legumes" and "plots of
vegetables" classified either as "deficit" or as "excess", reached around 3
bar 144 iku in all in the Girsu domain land in Shulgi 43 ("deficit": 3 bar
1++[~](?) iku; "excess": 13 iku).
The final "seed-and-fodder text" written for calculation of all the
expenditures for cultivation of the entire domain land of Girsu in Shulgi
43, which could naturally be similar to TuT 5 dated in Shulgi 47, has not
as yet been found. Thus, we are obliged to reconstruct the general pattern
of cultivation of the Girsu domain land in Shulgi 43, by relying on BM
24956.
IV.2
In Shulgi 43, barley plots were classed into five according to the
different amounts of "seed-and-fodder" consumed per bar: 1 gur 240 sila
(=1.8 gur) of barley per bar, 1 gur 180 sTla (=1.6 gur) per bar, 1 gur 150
sfla (=1.5 gur) per bar, 1 gur 60 sila (=1.2 gur) per bar, and 1 gur 30
sila (=1.1 gur) per bar. Barley plots of 1.8 gur per bar, 1.5 gur and 1.2
gur are also found in TuT 5 of Shulgi 47, and they are respectively called
plots of Categories B y A and C in my article in BSA 1 (1984).
More important is the fact that BM 24956 refers to "plots of legumes"
or "plots of vegetables" under the designation of either "deficit" or
"excess" for almost all the "temples" of Girsu.
Almost all the "temples"
may actually have cultivated "plots of legumes" or "plots of vegetables" of
one or two bar in area in Shulgi 43.
If this assumption is accepted, the
management of "plots of legumes" and "plots of vegetables" in Shulgi 43 is
quite different from what TuT 5 describes for the 47th year of Shulgi.
TuT 5 only mentions 11 bar of mun-gazi plots ((g6n) ki mun-gazi) under the
control of the "temple" of Ningirsu as the land where crops other than
barley, emmer and wheat grew in Shulgi 47.
The corollary is that the
yearly variations in the cultivation of legumes and other mun-gazi plants
in the Girsu "temple" land were so large near the end of Shulgi's reign.
The basic principles in the land classification in Shulgi 43 are not so
different from those in Shulgi 47. Both in BM 24956 and TuT 5, Category A
plots (plots of 1.5 gur per bar) were the most extensive, and Category B
plots (plots of 1.8 gur per bar) come after them. It is only in the land
of the "temple" of Ninmar.ki that Category B plots exceeded Category A
plots in area in Shulgi 47, and BM 24956 seems to point to the same peculiar condition of the land of Ninmar.ki.
~ r - d ~ a -managed
G
the cultivation of 1 bar 13 iku of mun-gazi plots and
6 iku of legume plots for the "temple" of Ningirsu in Shulgi 43 (BM 21363),
and approximately the same area of land was probably reserved for these
plants under ~r-d~g-alim,the other administrator of Ningirsu.
But the
grand total area was probably much smaller than 11 bar, the figure which
TuT 5 mentions as the area of mun-gazi plots of Ningirsu in Shulgi 47.
According to TuT 5, almost all of the Category C plots (plots of 1.2
gur per bar) were situated in the land of "oxen of the boots(?)" (gu4suhGb) and the E.SU.DAR field (a-S3 E.SU.DAR),
both of which were under the
direct management of the governor of Girsu.
In Shulgi 43 also, those who
were independent from the "temples" cultivated 1.2 gur plots and 1.1 gur
plots.
V. Small-scale cultivation of legumes and mun-gazi plants
Since plots of 1.6 gur per bar and those of 1.1 gur are no longer
attested in TuT 5, written in Shulgi 47, these categories seem to have been
re-classed into Categories A and C respectively by that year.
V.1
According to BM 20055 (Maekawa 1982, Text 1) and BM 28407 (unpublished), the grand total of the cultivated domain land of Girsu reached
It is now possible for me to
4,034 bar 17% iku (26,147 ha.) in Shulgi 41.
discuss the general cultivation pattern of the Girsu domain land in Shulgi
41, because many "seed-and-fodder texts" for the land cultivation of individual "temples" have now become available to me.
IV.3 BM 24956 (Table 2) mentions "plots of legumes" ((g6n) ki gG 0.2.3.0ta) under the classification of either "deficit" or "excess" for the lands
of Ningirsu, Ninmar ki, Ningishzida, Igalim, Nanshe , Gatumdu and Dumuzi,
while the text alludes to "plots of vegetables" ((g6n) ki SAR 0.2.3.0-ta)
in the designation of "deficit" for the "temple" of Shulgi. But the term
(g6n) ki mun-gazi does not occur in BM 24956.
The expression 0.2.3.0-ta
in these passages undoubtedly means that 150 szla (=O.5 gur) of barley was
.
-
104
in
It is only the "seed-and-fodder texts" of the "temples" of Ningirsu and
Igalim that mention the cultivation of "legume plots" in Shulgi 41.
In
this year both ur-d~a-6 and d~tu-mu controlled the "temple" land of
Ningirsu. BM 19093 (Maekawa 1981, Text 6) and BM 25035 (unpublished) are
-
I
-
105
-
Maekawa
Cultivation of legumc,:i
:.l;lekawa
Cultivation of legumes
the two fragments of the "seed-and-fodder text" for the land managed Ily
~ r - d ~ a - G . According to them, 1 bar 9 iku (10 ha.) of land was reserved fc11
cultivation of legumes:
V.3,
The word He in the term Ee.mun-gazi in BM 24973 and MVN VI 288 should
1 1 0 tbe interpreted as a determinative.
The reason is simply that mun-gazi
BM 25035 Obv. 1.8) 14 (iku) gbn gG Eabra-6,
9) mur-bi 0.2.0.0
16
0.0.0.5
sila, 10) a-E2 gfr-nun,
BM 19093 Obv. 1.3')
13 (iku) gbn g f ~
Eabra-6, 4') mur-bi 8.1.5.0,
5') a-E3 za-ha-tin,
Rev. IV.6) Fun i g h 0.3.4.5
sPla mur-guq gG 1 (bar) 9 (iku) g5n-kam.
Reisner TuT 1 may be offered as a support for the interpretation of
Te.mun-gazi as 'ETe mun-gazi ("(a mixture of) barley and mun-gazi yield").
t lle following expressions for the yield of legumes are found in TuT 1, the
11,xtof yield from the land of Namhani in an unknown year (Tables 4 and 5):
,:G-gal (Obv.I.2: 19 gur 180 sila), gG (1.32: 1 gur), Ee.gG (Rev.VI.11: 270
sila), gG-gal (VI.12: 10 gur 60 sfla).
The term Ee-gG in Rev.VI.11 is to
l ~ c read
~
as Xe gG ("cereals and legumes").
If we were to adopt the
~~~terpretation
of Xe here as a determinative, we would be unable to explain
wl~y gG-gal occurs without Ee in the next line.
....,
....,
d~tu-mu also managed 1 bar 13 iku of legume plots for the "temple" 0 1
Ningirsu in Shulgi 41 [BM 18356 (Maekawa 1981, Text 10); duplicate: Itbl
12401 (Maekawa 1981, Text 7) + BM 21145 (unpublished)]:
..
BM 18356 Obv.
1.5)
1 (biir) g6n gG Eabra-6, 6) a-E2 gfr-nun,
.,
11.19) 13 (iku) g6n gG Eabra-161, 20) a-33 za-ha-tin,
Rev. ZV.7)
<Xu-nigfn> 0.4.1.8
1/3 sfla mur-guq gG [gsn] 1 (bar) 13 (iku) g5n-u,,-akam
...,
.
l~lantsare never under the classification of "cereals" (Ee).
It should also be noticed that the expression Ee gb comes between the
~l,~scriptionof yield of cereals (Rev.VI.10) and that of "big pulses"
tVI.12).
My assumption is that the 'kultivator" harvested a mixture of
c~realsand legumes (more exactly "big pulses"")rom
some furrows where he
11.1dseeded cereals and legumes in admixture.
1
Thus the four legume plots of Ningirsu, which were in the fields namc.11
a-Fa gfr-nun and a-E3 za-ha-tin, were specially cultivated by the m;jo~domo (Eabra-6).
It should also be noted that a-E3 za-ha-tin is translatcx~l
as "field of za-ha-tin onions".
It does not follow, however, that legumes and mun-gazi plants were not
cultivated in other fields for the "temple" of Ningirsu in Shulgi 41.
111
my opinior?, men actually sowed a very small amount of legume seeds a~ltl
mun-gazi seeds in several other "barley" plots of Ningirsu in Shulgi 41.
In other words, the "seed-and-fodder texts" only mention the large scal I *
cultivation of legumes and mun-gazi plants.
Thompson's interpretation of Ee.gG, Ee.gG-tur and Ee.gG-gal
I,,gumesonly is unsubstantiated [Thompson 1949, 95, 1051.
as denoting
V.4.
The term Xe mun-gazi ("barley and mun-gazi yield") in BM 24973 and
,,~ ,l l- hVI 288 probably connotes the small-scale cultivation of mun-gazf plants
wliich none of the "seed-and-fodder texts" mentions explicitly. "CultivaI ors'probably seeded a mixture of barley seeds and mun-gazi seeds in a
.111all
number of furrows in their "plots of barley".
In other words, the
I.inc!s of "barley and mun-gazi plants" were under the overall ciassification
~f "barley plots" in the "seed-and-fodder texts'".
V.2.
BM 24973 (unpublished) records that twenty "cultivators" (engar)
brought harvest early in Shulgi 40 under the supervision of d~tu-mu,major
The actual area of the land is not mentioned ill
domo (Eabra) of Ningirsu.
this text.
BM 24973 classifies the harvest into two kinds: yield 01
barley, emmer and wheat (Ee gig 8-a) and "(a mixture of) barley (antl
emmer?) and mun-gazi yield" (Ee mun-gazi).
The total yield of cereals
reached 3,991 gur 289 sfla (1,197,589 litres), while 38 gur (11,400 litres)
of "barley and mun-gazi yield" was brought to the administration.
Thirteen of a total of twenty "cultivators" brought "barley and mungazi yield" as well as cereals: eight "cultivators" 3 gur of "barley ant1
Th(t
mun-gazi yield" each, three "cultivators" 2 gur each, and two 4 gur.
reason why all the amounts of "barley and mun-gazi yield" are expressed ill
the integral gur-figures is still unknown to us.
According to MVN VI 288 (L. 7297), the same type of record of yield
from the "temple" land of Namhani in Shu-Suen 2, as many as thirty-three ol
a total of thirty-eight "cultivators" brought "barley and mun-gazi yield"
(Ee mun-gazi) as well as yield of cereals.
In each case the amount ol
"barley and mun-gazi yield" is very small. The occurrence of 1 gur is most
usual, while the maximum amount is 1 gur 60 sila (1.1 gur).
This might also be true of the "seed-and-fodder texts" dated in Shulgl
The "seed-and-fodder texts" of Ningirsu and 1gaLim mention the
1.1rge-scalecultivation of Legumes in Shulgi 41, but the personnel of these
'1-emp1es'"robably
cultivated legumes and mun-gazi plants on a very small
.vale in their "barley plots'>lso,
It is a natural assumption that a
.mall amount of legumes and mun-gazi plants also came from the '"arrley
~~Lots"
of other "temples" in Shulgi 41-42.
1 1 and 47.
Althoguh TuT 5, dated in Shulgi 47, only refers to 11 biir of "mun-gazi
~'lots" of Ningirsu, the small-scale cultivation of legumes and mun-gazi
1)Lants might also be observed in the "barley plots".
But this type of
legume/mun-gazi cultivation on a small scale does not necessitate any
,;eriouscorrection of the conclusion I obtained from TuT 5 as to the relati.ve proportions of the land area of different crops.
BM 15292 and BM 23585, which are the fragments of one large "yield
~ c x t " ,are another source of information on the small-scale cultivation of
mun-gazi
plants.
Although the lines for the year formula are badly
ilefaced, the original tablet was certainly written in the 30's or 40's of
r he reign of Shulgi when ~ r - ~ ~ awas
m agovernor of Girsu.
Meekawa
Maekawa
Cultivation of legumes
Cultivation of legume
The summary descriptions of the original tablet are found in BM 15292:
Rev.11.1')
2')
-
3')
4')
5')
6')
7')
8')
9')
10')
11')
[Xu-niginIr720'+120+[X (bar) X (iku) gbn]
Xu-nigin 186 (bar) 4 (iku) [gbnl-na[m]
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
Xu-nigin
.....
13 (bar) 16$ (iku) gb[n] UDU
11$ (iku) gbn zlz
1 (bar) 133 (iku) gbn mun-gazi
17$ (iku) gbn k i SAR
(iku) g6n ki SAR Eabra
1 (bar)
94 (bar) 83 (iku) g6n SIR
2 (bar) $ (iku) g6n SIR UDU
Xe-bi 2 gur7 2207.1.0.7
s2la gur-lugal
zlz-bi 9.1.2.6
213 s2la gur
+
The total area of mun-gazi plots (gbn mun-gazi) is 1 bar 133 iku (11 ha.),
There also existed "plots of vegetables" ((gbn) ki SAR, (gbn) ki SAR Xabra)
of 2 bar (13 ha.) in all.
All the descriptions that record that "cultivators" managed mun-gazi
parcels as well as plots of cereals are excerpted from BM 15292 and I3M
23585 (Table 3).
Table 3 demonstrates that all of the mun-gazi parcelr
are very small in area (2 iku, 1 iku, and 13 iku).
On the other hand, tllr
average area of the domain unit which each "cultivator" managed was 6-8
bar (39-52 ha.).
Since the grand total of mun-gazi parcels is 1 bar 1 3 i
iku, in its original perfect condition the tablet would have recorded
approximately thirty mun-gazi parcels.
My assumption is that about half
of the "cultivators" managed mun-gazi parcels as well as plots of cereals.
A different management principle seems to have been applied to "plots
of vegetables". The latter plots occur only once in BM 15292; BM 15292
Obv.11.7')
[XI++ (iku) gbn Xe k i SAR,
8') [X (iku)] gbn ki SAR.
Thin
suggests that "plots of vegetables" were not divided into so many small
parcels.
3) d~nanna-kaharvested 10 gur 60 s2la of "big pulses" (gG-gal) from the
plot of 1 bar 2 iku. Although he also brought 270 slla of "barley and
legumes" (Xe gG), the area reserved for "barley and legumes" is not menL ioned explicitly.
The descriptions 1 and 3 are the sole sources that inform us of the
productivity of legumes per unit area (description 1: 14 gur 210 slla per
bar [681 litres per ha.];
description 3: 9 gur 54 slla per bar [425
These two plots of "big pulses" (gG-gal) under the managelitres per ha.]).
~nent of Ba-zi and d~nanna-kawere situated in the field named a-Xa SIR-gbn
d~in-dar-a, and they are relatively large.
On the other hand, the text does not refer to the actual figures of the
;lrea of the lands from which Ur-g5 and d~nanna-ka brought "legumes" (gG)
ilrid "barley and legumes" (Xe gG) respectively. The reasons are probably
that Ur-g5's land for legumes was very small in area, and that a mixture of
barley seeds and legume seeds was sown in some furrows in the land of
(1 Inanna-ka
.
VII. Conclusions
Two different cultivation patterns for legumes and other mun-gazi
plants can be observed in the Girsu texts.
First, only a limited number
of the "cultivators" working for each "temple" managed both plots of
csereals and plots with other kinds of plant. The consequence is that in
cach of these cases the plots reserved for plants other than cereals were
remarkably large in area. This type of large-scale cultivation seems to
have undergone considerable yearly variations. TuT 1 (Tables 4 and 5), the
Lext of the yield from the land of Namhani in an unknown year, illustrates
but legume
this type of large-scale cultivation of "big pulses" (gG-gal);
cultivation is mentioned neither in the "seed-and-fodder text" written in
Shulgi 41 for Namhani (BM 25013, BM 25017 [both unpublished]), nor in TuT 5
of Shulgi 47.
The other cultivation pattern is represented by a considerable number
of "cultivators" who sowed legumes and mun-gazi seeds on a very small scale
VI. Large-scale cultivation of legumes
Reisner TuT 1, the record of yield from the "temple" land of Namhanj. tn
an unknown year near the end of Shulgi 's reign, points to the large-scal e
cultivation of legumes by a limited number of "cultivators".
quite different from the cultivation of small mun-gazi parcels attested in
BM 15292 and BM 23585.
TuT 1, which I have already tabulated in my 1974
article [Maekawa 1974, Tables 6-71, is reproduced here as Tables 4 (Obv.
1.1-V.l) and 5 (Obv. V.2-Rev. IX.l).
The text records that three out o t
twenty-six "cultivators" brought yields of legumes to the administration:
1) A "cultivator" named Ba-zi brought 19 gur 180 s2la of "big pulses"
(gG-gal) from his "legume plot" (g5n gG) of 1 bar 6 iku (Obv. 1.1-9).
2) Ur-g5 harvested 1 gur of "legumes" (gG).
But the text does not mention the area of land from which the "legumes" came (Obv. 1.31-11.7).
-
108 -
within their domain plots.
This kind of small-scale cultivation is not
mentioned by "seed-and-fodder texts" but by "yield texts" such as BM 24973
tiiscussed in section V.2 above, BM 25292 and BM 23585 (Table 3), and TuT 1
(Tables 4-5).
A general tendency was probably that legumes ("big" and "small pulses")
were often planted in the large plots, while "cultivators" often sowed
other mun-gazi plants such as coriander on a very small scale.
Almost all the texts of land management which I have quoted in this
article are dated near the end of the reign of Shulgi. An interesting
question is whether or not changes took place in the cultivation of legumes
and mun-gazi plants after his reign, but that is beyond the scope of this
article.
Maekawa
Cultivation of legu
BIBLIOGRAPHY
Mae kawa
1984
Cultivation of legumes
"Cereal cultivation in the Ur
I11 period", Bulletin on
Sumerian Agriculture 1, 73-96.
Bauer , J
1972
AZtswnerische Wirtschaftstexte aus Lagasch (Studia ~ o h l9).
Butz, K.
1984
"On salt again
...
Lexikalische Randbemerkungen", Journal
the Economic and Social History of the Orient, 27, 272ff.
Oppenheim, A.L.
CataZogue of the Cuneiform Tablets of the WiZberforce Eames
1948
BabyZonian CoZZection in the New York Public Library (American Oriental Series 32; New Haven).
Deimel, A.
1925
"Der Gemiisebau bei den alten Sumerern", OrientaZia SP 1, 1-3
Pettinato, G. & Cagni, L.
1974
"Miscellanea neo-sumerica: Collazioni a G. Reisner, Tempelurkunden aus Tezloh", Oriens Antiquus 13, 199-210.
Gelb, I.J.
1957
Gzossary of Old Akkadian (Materials for the Assyrian Dictlo
I'otts, D.
1984
nary, III).(Chicago).
"The Philadelphia Onion Archive", in H.G. Giiterbock &
Jacobsen (eds.),
Studies in Honor of Benno Landsbergo
(Assyriological Studies 16; University of Chicago Press),
57-62.
Geller, M.J.
1982
Salonen, A.
1970
Snell, D.C.
1982
"On salt and salt gathering in Ancient Mesopotamia", J o u m Z
of the Economic and SociaZ History of the Orient 27, 225-71.
Die Fischerei im alten Mesopotmien.
Ledgers and Prices.
(Yale Near Eastern Researches 8; Yale
University Press).
"A recipe against SU.GIDIM", Archiv fiir Orientforschung,
Beiheft 19 (Vortrlige gehaZten auf der 28. Rencontre Assyrior
Zogique InternationaZe in Wien, 6.-10. JuZi 1981), 192-7.
Thompson, R.C.
1949
A Dictionary of Assyrian Botany.
Hoffner, H.A.
Aliments Hethaeorum: Food production in Hittite Asia Minor,
1974
(American Oriental Series 55).
Jacobsen, Th.
Salinity and Irrigation Agriculture in antiquity. (Bibliotheca
1982
Mesopotamica 14, UNDENA Publications, Malibu).
TABLES 1 TO 5
Jacobsen, Th. & Adams, R.McC.
"Salt and silt in ancient Mesopotamian agriculture", Scienoo
1958
128, 1251-58.
Table 1
CT X 18-19 [BM 129221
Table 2
BM 24596
Landsberger , B. & Gurney, O.R.
1957-58
"Practical Vocabulary of Assur", in Archiv fiir Orientforschung
18, 328-41.
Table 3
BM 15292 + BM 23585
Table 4
TuT 1 Obv. I 1 - V 1
Table 5
TuT 1 Obv. V 2 - Rev. IX 1
Maekawa, K.
1974
"Agricultural production. in sncient Sumer", Zinbun: Memoire
of the Research Institute for Humanistic Studies, Kyoto
University, 13, 1-60.
"The agricultural texts of Ur I11 Lagash of the British
Museum, (I)", Acta ~wneroZogica3, 37-61.
"The agricultural texts of Ur I11 Lagash of the British
Museum, (11)", Acta ~umeroZogica4, 85-127.
- 110
-
Remarks to Table 1:
Remarks to Tables 3-5:
Table 1 (CT X 18-19
[BM12922] ; Amar-Suen 2)
Table 2 (BM 24596; Shulgi 43)
GiRgunfl bbabbir
*(pin) kl SAR
Table 3 (BM 1 5 2 9 2 + BM 23585)
text, column
C3
C
t-'
rt
P.
C
P,
rt
P.
0
s
t-'
tD
m
Table 4
( TuT 1 Obv. I 1
- V 1; ugula
Ma-an-sPn )
Maekawa
Culti.vation
Cultivation of legumes
Maekawa
Hemarks to Table 1 (CT X 18-19 [BM 129221)
Item A: The figures presented as Item A seem to point to the yield of the
three main winter crops (barley, emmer and wheat), which came from the
domain land (ggn-guq) of various "temples" in Girsu early in Amar-Suen 2.
The grand total (84,666 gur 47 sIla [23 gur7 47 szla] : 25,399,847 litres)
which is referred to in Rev. V 19-21 might be equal to the total of the
Item A figures plus the amount of cereals designated as Fe 6-kin-g6 (Item
Y : Rev. V 16-18).
The meaning of Fe C-kin-g6, however, is not as yet
known to me.
The figure in Rev. V 19-21 is again attested in CT VII 8 [BM
129261, the final record of the income and expenditures of cereals in Girsu
) . amount reaches
in the same year (nzg-S1~-akHe-kilPb-ba ~ ~ - ~ l r - s u ~ ~The
about 85% of the grand total income of Amar-Suen 2 (99,595 gur 52 sTla [27
gur7 2,395 gur 52 sIla] : 29,878,552 litres).
The complete expression gd-gal-gal occurs in Obv. I
Item B: gd-gal(-gal)
5, Rev. IV 18 and VI 12, while the abbreviated form gd-gal is referred to
But the principle observed in many other Ur 111 texts is
in Obv. I1 13.
that gd-gal-gal/gG-tur-tur is used at the word's first occurrence, but
gd-gal/gG-tur at the_ second occurr_ence and thereafter. Although it has
been assumed that GU.GAL.GAL and GU.GAL represent two different kinds of
legume in Hittite texts [Hoffner 1974, 95-61, this is not substantiated in
the 3rd millennium B.C. Mesopotamian sources.
The term denotes the barley which was distriItem G: 3e-SUKU-ra engar
buted to "cultivators" (engar) and their subordinates (dumu-da-ba, dumuguq-gur).
The ?Je-&JKU-ra engar figures recorded in CT X 18-19 occur
again in MVU I1 191 of the same year [Maekawa 1984, 531.
The Ur 111 "cultivator" managed the domain unit of 6 to 8 bar in area.
A principle in Ur 111 Girsu was that a plot of 6 or 12 iku with a domain
unit of 6 to 8 bar was specially reserved for the "cultivator" (~UKUengar:
"allotment (land) of the cultivator").
The barley to be allotted to the
"cultivator" (3e-SUKU-ra engar) seems to have come from the SUKU engar
plot.
In Ur 111 Girsu, the administration surveyed the public land just
before harvest so as to assess the expected amount of yield from the land.
The so-called "round tablets" seem to be records of the results of the survey [Maekawa 1984, 83-41
I assume that the amount of the Fe-SUKU-ra engar
barley was also determined at this survey so that the amount, which is
often represented as the integral gur-figure in Ur 111 texts, approximates
the actual yield from the reserved SUKU engar plot of 6 or 12 iku.
The term ?Je-SUKU-ra engar also points to the barley which was distributed to "cultivators" in the months so distant from the harvest season.
.
Maekawa
Cultivation of legum
Remarks to Table 3 (BM 25292 and BM 23585)
REMARKS ON THE CULTIVATION OF SESAME AND THE EXTRACTION OF ITS OIL
Item C: gln-UDU (gsn udu ? )
I have interpreted the term gbn.UDU as g$
udu ("plots (of barley) for sheep (where sheep had grazed young bar1
buds)" [Maekawa 1982, 96; 1984, 831.
BM 19971 (Maekawa 1982, Text 1
demonstrates that the yield designated as He.UDU came from the gln.U
plot.
The term He.UDU should be distinguished from UDU.SAR (1u.SAR).
Th
latter term (e.g. N 407 [Revue dfdssyrio20gie 55, 941) is an abbreviatio
of lu-Gb.SAR (Zaptu : turnip).
I still hesitate to adopt the interpretations of gln.UDU and Fe.UDU
gdn-lu
("plots of turnip") and He lu ("(a mixed yield of) barley a
turnip")
.
Remarks to Tables 4 and
5 ( TuT 1)
1. For collations of this text see Pettinato & Cagni 1974, 200.
2. nu-bal (Table 5)
This term might be translated as "(the cereals have)
not as yet been delivered (to the administration)".
M. St01
(Amsterdam)
In 1968, F.R. Kraus published in Essays i n Memory of E.A. Speiser (=JAOS
8811 = AOS 53) his article "Sesam im alten Mesopotamien", where he showed
that the etymology of the Akkadian word 's'ma6nSammi and the textual information about its cultivation are compatible with the identification of
'gama6ns'ammi with sesame (rather than linseed, as held by others).
Here, I
would like to make some additional observations on "sesame", not discussed
by Kraus, but corroborating his point of view.
In present-day Iraq there are two possible seasons for growing sesame:
nomnal - April to June (Harvest: September and October)
ear2y-planted - mid-March (Harvest : mid-July ) l
Can we find these seasons in Old Babylonian texts? We will give a list of
dated rentals of fields for the cultivation of sesame (sometimes together
with other crops).
Thendate of the rental is the terminus ante quem for
sowing sesame, we
Month I : YOS 12 484,' 502.
Month 11: YOS 12 215, 543, 286, 490;
YOS 13 417, 494; BIN 2 91; Haverford Symposium 230 No. 3.
Month 111: YOS 8 173; YOS 12 174, 220, 492, 493, 534; BE 6/2 124; BIN 2
79; TCL 1 141; YOS 13 372; BIN 7 177; TJDB 94 MAH 16.531; JCS 5 82 MAH
16413, 84 MAH 15982, 89 MAH 15909, 90 MAH 16180, 92 MAH 15890.
Month I V : YOS 12 105, 298, 545; Boyer, CHJ 23 HE.193; Grant, Smith College
Documents No. 264; RA 27 83f. ; JCS 5 88 MAH 15985; YOS 13 510, 528; cf.
AbB 1 102.
7
Month V: YOS 12 4941 TJA 74ff. UMM H 13.
Month VI: YOS 12 300.
Month VII: ZA 36 95; TLB I 214.
Month VIII: none.
Month IX: none.
Month X: YOS 12 550.
Month XI: YOS 12 554; RA 12 149; RA 72 150.~
Month XII: YOS 12 328, 385, 480; TJBD 96 MAH 16.429. Cf. VAS 7 27:ll-15
and AbB 7 154:18f.
Month XIIa: YOS 12 398; Riftin 41.
Months XI-XI1 and months 11-IV have a higher density than the other
months, so the contracts dated to XI-XI1 could refer to "early-planted"
Dr. G. van
sesame and those dated to 111-IV concern "normal" sesame.
Driel (Leiden) pointed out to me that the few Neo-Babylonian and Persian
texts referring to sesame seed (for sowing) are dated to months 111, IV
(=normal ? ) and XI1 (=early ? ) .4
We actually have in Akkadian some references to "early" sesame
(xe.gix.2 harpum)5, and the early sowing was apparently called harZipwn D in
Akkad ian
- 119 -
.
St01
St01
The planting of sesame was called epsxum, lit. "to make, to do", in
Akkadian ,7 and a field planted with sesame is nZpexZt ~amaSs'amm~.8 Unique
is the phrase "The 2 PI, 3 seah, of sesame which you sent me I sowed
(az-ru-C), 7 sila per ikuw.9
The verb z a r h "to sow seed broadcast" I 8
almost neverlo used for seeding.
Mostly it means "to winnow".
"For this he roasts some sesame over the fire, then places it with the
flesh of dates in a mortar and pounds the two together, sounding his pestle
against the sides of the mortar.
Then, removing the pulp from the mortar
little by little, he strains it by placing some into a corner of his ritual
robe and squeezing it through the linen into a bowl.
When this pounding
and straining are ended, the misha is transferred to a bottle, and then a
little of it is poured into small drinking-bowls. "28
The harvesting of sesame (naszhum, lit. "to tear out") takes place in
A text menthe 7th month (Kinunum), says a Mari text; this is 0ctober.ll
is dated to month v111.l~
tioning harvesters (niisih He.giH.3)
period as harvesting season is confirmed by some Neo-Babylonian texts.13
"Sesame makes stringent demands for precision in timing the harvest,
If the crop be permitted to stand too long on the field, the seed will fall
out of the pods and become lost."l4
This unhappy eventuality is called
"falling" in Akkadian (maqEtum), as F.R. Kraus already saw in his seminal
article on sesame. 15
For the yield of sesame, see Butz 1979, 383-386.
After the harvest, the sesame can look "plump" (kabrutum) ,l6 "white"
or can be **excellent1*
( bunnttum) l 7a,
( pegdtum; only Neo-Babylonian) ,
Other adjectives refer
**second-class*.
( gurnm) ,l8 "sweet1*(matqZtm) l9
.
in medical
to specific treatments of the sesame:
"dry" (%GbutGtum;
texts),2O "wet'* (ratbiitwn, written A = durug) 21 "pressedmv(b6ra.ga),22
'* (dc~iitum)
.25
"crushed1*( pahfiitum) ,23 "powdered1*( sikiitum) ,22 *'
...
Extracting oil from sesame seeds can be done in three steps, according
to a French handbook written in 1902: "On fait subir aux graines troie
les deux premieres donnent de
pressions, deux 8 froid, une 8 chaud;
l'huile comestible;
- la premiere, dite de froissage, est estim6e B peu pres autant que celle
d'olive plus fine. On l'emploie aussi en parfumerie;
- les qualit6s moyennes servent 8 l'gclairage et 8 la lubrification dee
machines.
- L'huile de troisieme pression ne peut servir qu'8 la fabrication dee
savons "26
.
It would be most useful to have a description of the traditional techThe only one that I could find does not
niques used in the Near East.
help us much in elucidating the ancient methods, but at least the passage
can be quoted:
this is what ~etermann saw in "SOq esch Schiuch", a
Mandaean village:
"Ein ander Ma1 ging ich mit dem Priester zu einem Sesamgl-Fabrikanten,
und sah, wie der Sesam zuerst gewaschen wird, damit die Hiilsen von den
Kgrnern abgehen; dann wird er auf einen Ofen gelegt, der unten gelinde
geheizt wird, um ihn zu erwzrmen, und endlich kommt er in eine Miihle, die
von einem Pferd oder Ochsen gedreht wird.
Durch das Reiben zwischen den
beiden Miihlsteinen wird das Oel ausgepresst, welches unten in ein Gefzss
geleitet wird. "27
Certainly atypical, but still instructive for us, is Lady rower's
description of the preparation of the sacred oil (misha) of the Mandaeans:
-
120
-
Sesame
Or, elsewhere:
"The sesame was cooked a little over a fire, its husk was removed, and
it was then laced in a mortar (hawan) and pounded, together with some
$9
dates (...)".
I dare not go into the question as to how the Babylonians extracted
their oil, as long as I have no clear account of the traditional local
techniques. But it will not be out of place to present the Babylonian
terms.
The two verbs in Akkadian for extracting oil from sesame seeds are
hatzsum and FahZtum.
The Chicago Assyrian Dictionary (CAD) suggested two
techniques for extracting oil from sesame seeds:
- h a ~ ~ ~ which
d 0 , applies light pressure and probably uses a sack through
which the oil oozes out.
- I;ah~t&l, a term also used in connection with the pressing of wine,
which is also performed by the ~Ehituand yields the oil usually called
**
smu.
On haZsmoi1, Sumerian 3.b6ra.ga, CAD remarked: "Sum. bbra.ag could be
taken to indicate that a sack (b6ra) was used to extract the first and best
oil from the sesame seeds".32
Six years later, commenting on the verb sahZtum "to extract oil", CAD
wrote: "The verb seems to refer to the whole process of obtaining oil from
sesame and, in late texts, a type of wine from grapes.
The specific
translation "to press" is to be abandoned, since sesame oil is obtained by
boiling the seeds and skimming off the oil and not by pressing the seeds.
(....) This suggests the more restricted meaning of drawing this liquid
into vessels, which also fits the operations performed on wine and sesame
oil.
As to the processing of sesame, the verb hat@u used in this connection could describe the roasting and grinding of the sesame seeds (see
sahitu), as well as the straining of the liquid through a cloth, while
sahEtu could refer to the final stage of skimmin
and filling the jars,
and be used by extension for the entire process. 1839,
Lastly, CAD on the sZhitum "preparer of sesame oil": "The characteristic equipment of the sEhitu were the oven in which he roasted the
sesame seeds and the millstone on which he ground them into a pulp which
was mixed with water and boiled in order to extract the oil".
Dietlinde Goltz (see note 30) does not believe in the boiling of seeds,
but she does not know how to distinguish halagurn from sahZtum.
A complicating factor is that hatzsum is also a verb used for treatments of flax,
hair, wool, and even
During the discussion of our Group it was
suggested by Dorothea Bedigian and others that we could possibly distinguish two techniques:
St01
Sesame
- pounding the sesame seeds in a mortar (see below, esittu);
dripping from the resulting cake is the best oil (haZZsum);
the 01
NOTES
-
crushing the (warmed) seeds in a mill (see below, eri?) and extracting th
sesame from the pulp (6ahZtum).
Hardly less confusing are the various Akkadian words for "(sesame
oil" :
-
*.
samnwn, the general word for any oil, but demonstrably sesame oil in
number of cases.35
.
- *samnum
halgum or hitgum, obviously the oil?resulting from the ha158
treatment.
- ellum, according to the dictionaries specifically "sesame oil". Th
word occurs in two Old Babylonian texts as B-Zi-im, e-la-ad6, whic
suggests a word elm.
In later tradition the word was etymologized a
ellum "pure".
The Sumerian words for "finest oil", G.li and Z.li, als
suggest a word with one 2.
These words occur only in literary texts, a
does Akkadian ulc.
It crossed the minds of some participants at ou
could be etymologically related to Latin oleurn, Gree
meeting that el(i!)um
elaion, "olive oil" or "any oil substance"; and ultimately our word "oil"
This suggestion gains unexpected support from Hartmut Waetzoldt's contribu
tion to this issue of the Bulletin.
The following tools are used in processing the sesame:
kannum 3a sahZti, A.32086: 137.
I relied upon the ubersichtstabellen in the thesis Mauer 1980, with a
few additions.
Rental ana Ee.muE5 ("late barley"
A.32086:2 / BIN 7 218:4.
A.32086:3
/ YOS 12 342:2.
-
not xe gb ! ) ic 'ESe.giX.3.
Strassmaier , Nabonidus 226 (Month 111) , Cyrus 27 (Month XII) ; GCCI, 11,
281 (Month IV).
JCS 17 (1963) 82f. No. 8 (PUL 199);
Landsberger 1926, 168 (7.c).
CT 39 20:137.
Sumerian nim; cf.
ARMT 13 39:lOf.
E. Grant, Haverford Symposium (1938) 203 No. 3:lO;
AbB 1 102:13; PBS 7 7:6.
BIN 7 56:4, cited CAD NI2, 167b n@e'6'tu
(collated; RA 70 90).
Christian 1969, 31ff No. 9 (=A.7460),
AHw 1516b, 2. "(aus)siien",
na4 era 3.giF / na4.HAR Xe.giF.Z,
esittu 3.giX / giF.KUM Fe.giF.2,
Poyck 1962, 42, using unpublished'sources.
1.c.
BE 612 124:7;
Also in TCL 11 188:4
lines 4-8 (OB letter).
gives two certain Assyrian references.
Kupper 1973, 269, with further evidence (note 16).
(date 5 .VIII)
.
Also AbB 7 152:5
VAS 9 22.
dug.Xagan! Fe.giF.3,
mashattu(??)
, CT
YOS 12 342: 1.
8 38a:5,738.
maXhalu, AMT 1, 2:14(=BAM
remains in this sieve.
5 494.i.39'):
the "dust" (eperu) of sesame
The residual cake that is left after oil expression is the "oil cake"
r anda ksSbe
~ in~ Syria.
~
known in the Near East as kus(u)b; kusup in ~
It is used as food for cattle.41
We find this oil cake and the very word
kus(u)p
back in Akkadian kupsu; its Sumerian equivalent is duh Fe.giF.3,
lit. "draff of sesame".42
We see that deliveries of sesame, obviously after the harvest, are
during the following months:
madelexpected bylfrom the farmers (err&)
VI ( Nabonidus 883) , VII ( ~uiZ-~erodach11; Nabonidus 167, 791; Cyrus
166 [in 1. 2 1TU.DUL - collated by W.H. van Soldt] ; Speleers, Receuil
291), VIII (Nabonidus 362, 640, 644, 725, 802; Cyrus 70, 204), IX (YOS
17 314), X (YOS 17 326). I owe these references to G. van Driel.
A source used by Poyck 1962.
Kraus 1968, 118, F.
AbB 9 127:lO; M. Burke, RA 55 (1961) 210 note 7 (OB).
BIN 111:19; YOS 3 180:6; YOS 17 209:4.
writes on black and white sesame.
BAM 4 409:21 (medical text).
ARM 22 276.ii.3,9,15, etc.;
YOS 5 204:3.
Butz 1979, 285 note 84
Sesame
Sesa
St. Dalley, OBTR no. 23:14; cf. 1 silag X.gi3 matqu, 11.
(1960) p. 18 SH.113: 1 a.3a ma-at-qfi-tu.
In Sumer 1
39 Meissner 1901, 173; cf. Meissner 1904, 747.
40 Barthglemy 1935, 716, "marc ou torteau'de sgsame".
AHw. 1120b, 1.
41 Cf. Lijw 1924, 111, 11, with much more evidence on kusup.
ARMT 11 No. 77:2 with p. 134f.
Akkadian hal(;um (or: hitsum ?).
204: l?
ARM 22 276.ii.2,34,40, etc.;
YOS 5
42 See CAD and AHw; also UET 5 522:9, 588:1, 20.
"Flour of dried (UD.DU
= EZbuZu) sesame draff" in BAM 2 124.111.48.
For duh = tuhhii "draff"
see St01 1971, 1$9ff. -- See also R. Labat, MDP 57 (1974) 257, on ada-pa Ea ~E.GIS.I in his no. IX v.9.
YOS 12 433:13.
ARM 22 276.iii.42, iv.12,20.
ARM 22 276.ii.6,14,
CAD S szku A "powdered, crushed".
BIBLIOGRAPHY
iv.22.
Barthglemy, A.
1935
Dictionnaire Arabe-Frangais, diaZectes de Syrie. Paris.
Janville 1902, 45.
Petermann 1861, 129.
Butz, K.R.
1979
Drower 1956, 247.
Drower 1937, 133, with Plate 23b.
halli~um: Goltz 1974, 38f.; M.L. Burke, ARMT XI (1963) p.134; H.
Petschow, Mittelbabylonische Rechts- und Wirtschaftsurkunden der
~ilprecht-~ammlungJena (1974), p.103.
gahZitum: Goltz 1974, 38f.; Dalley 1980, 56 note 16.
Cf. M. Stol, AbB
9 (1981) p.43 ad No. 58.
Also in YOS 13 359 (10 days for 1 kor of
sesame), 444 (5 seah of sesame yields 1 seah of oil; in 10 days).
Note
PBS 812 221: 2 PI of oil(??) (3e.giX.I) from 4 PI, 4 bsn, 2 silag 3e.
gi3.I;
BIN 7 158:ll-12: 60 silag of sesame; its oil is 12 sila3 (in
both texts no verb).
CAD H (1956) pp. 40b and 51b.
Christian, J.B.
Some unpublished Old Babylonian letters at the University of
1969
Chicago. (Chicago, dissertation).
Dalley, S.M.
1980
Durand, J.-M.
1983
See CAD, AHw, and Durand 1983, 132-3.
Syllabic &ni-ni in ~abonidu? 22:12, 692:3, 777:4,6 (Neo-Babylonian).
For containers (nssepu) of I.GIS: GCCI I 186; YOS 17 366.
In UET 5 73 (a letter) and BAM 4 393 (=HS 1883) (a medical text).
also Landsberger 1968, 69f.
See
A.32086, an Old Babylonian contract in the Oriental Institute, Chicago,
is published by R.M. Whiting and the author below, pp. 179-80.
CAD M/1, 323b, considers this a by-form of mashartum (a container for
oil) occurring in the same text. J.-M. Durand independently thought of
mashatum, "vase 03 l'on presse l'huile" (ARMT 21 p. 273 note 31).
-
124
-
"Old Babylonian dowries", Iraq 42, 53-74.
Drower , Lady E.
1937
The Mandaeans of Iraq and Iran.
Press).
1956
CAD S (1962) p. 61.
"Ur i n altbabylonischer Zeit als Wirtschaftsfaktor", in E.
Lipinski (ed.), State and TempZe Economy in the Ancient Near
East. I (=Orientalia Lovaniensia Analects, 5: Leuven, Departement Orizntalistiek), 257-409.
Goltz, D.
1974
Water into Wine.
(Oxford, At the Clarendon
(London).
"Relectures d'ARMT VIII, 11: ARMT VIII, 89 et le travail du
m6tal 5 Mari" , MARI : Annales de Recherches Interdisciplinaires 2, 123-139.
Studien zur altorientalischen und griechischen Heilkunde.
Therapie
Arzneibereitung
Rezeptstruktur. (Wiesbaden,
Franz Steiner Verlag).
-
-
Janville, P. de
Atlas de poche des plantes utiles des pays chauds Zes plus
1902
utiles pour le commerce. (Paris, Paul Klincksiek).
Kraus, F.R.
1968
"Sesam im alten Mesopotamien", in Journal of the American
Oriental Society 88 [=American Oriental Series 531, 112-119.
- 125 -
Sesa
Kupper, J.-R.
1973
BEANS, PEAS, LENTILS AND VETCHES IN AKKADIAN TEXTS
"Le calendrier de Mari", in M.A.Beek (ed.), Symbotae bibtio
et mesopotamicae F.M. Th. de Liagre BahZ dedicatae (Leide
E.J. Brill), 266-270.
Landsberger , B.
"Schwierige akkadische WBrter. 2. "friih" und "spzt"", Arch
1926
fur Orientforschung 3, 164-172.
"Jungfriiulichkeit: ein Beitrag zum Thema 'Beilager und Ehe
schliessung'", in J.A. Ankum (ed.), Symbotae iuridicae e
historicae Martino David dedicatae, tomus alter, 41-105.
LBw, I.
1924
Mauer , G.
1980
Meissner, B.
1901
Die Flora der ~uden,111. (Reprint Hildesheim, 1967; G.Olms)
Das Formular der altbabylonischen Bodenpachtvertrzge (Munich;
Inaugural-Dissertation).
"Neuarabische SprichwBrter und Rzthsel aus dem Iraq",
Mitteitungen des Seminars fiir Orientatische Sprachen, 2.
Abt., IV, 137-174.
review of F.Kiichler, BKBM, in Gattingische GeZehrte Anzeigen,
166-11, 739-757.
Petermann, H.
1861
Reisen im Orient, 11. (Leipzig).
Poyck, A.P.G.
1962
"Farm studies in Iraq. (An agro-economic study of the agriculture in the Hilla-Diwaniya area in Iraq)", in ~ededetingen van de ~andbouuhogeschooZte Wageningen
~edertand,
vol. 62 (I), 1-99.
-
Stol, M.
1971
"Zur altmesopotamischen Bierbereitung", Bibtiotheca OrientaZis 28, 167-171.
General
Barley and emmer were the main crops in ancient Mesopotamia. Other crops,
less im ortant, were called sihhirtu, lit. "small"; they are the "minor
In Aramaic they were called qitnit, with the root q$n "small".
The Sumerian term is Xe.nLg.tur.tur
and we learn from some recently
"water
published texts that these minor crops were sahtii (zB.hi.li),
cress"2, kibtwn, "wheat", gG.nLg.Br.ra,
"vetch", but here "lentil(?)" .3 It
is possible that in a bilingual literary text the major crops are called
'2le.gal.gal = seJum rabih; they include "white" barley, "black" barley,
(ground) emmer.
The minor crops are Xe.TUR.TUR
= 's'e'um
sehherwn and
The "(ground) emmer" in this list (and
include hattiiru, kakkii, kirianu.
other grains in similar passages) poses some problems that we will not study; maybe this also belonged to the "minor crops".4
*#
Gudea distinguished between gig, zLz and gG.gG, "wheat, emmer and
various pulses"5;
the Hendursanga Hymn gig, zlz and g~.ga16, when
describing all crops on the fields.
Concentrating now on the Old Babylonian period, we note the following:
The pulses were grown on fields and we have them all together on two small
tablets from Shemshara, where we read about fields for matqiitu (a kind of
sesame ?)7, app5nu (otherwise attested only in the Mari texts), gG.ga1,
gG.tur, and ki>!ian$.
In Babylonia proper we only find gG.ga1 and gG.tur
out of these crops; gG.nLg.ar.ra
is attested only a few times.
GG.ga1 = hattiirwn is best known. In rentals of fields sometimes sesame
and gG.ga1
are mentioned together; sesame is a summer crop.9
Barley,
sesame and gG.tur are named in one breath in rentals of field from Susa
(Elam).l0
There are big differences in the "Zahl-Termin" in these
contracts (generally months V or XII): are they winter and summer crops?
Other texts give us information on the seasons when the fruits of these
crops are available. Many texts from Mari inform us of the "King's Meal"
(naptan zarrim; "repas du roi").
They have been studied in a dissertation
by Ronald R. ~laeseman.l l On the king's table appeared gG.ga1, gG.tur and
appiinu. 12 Studying Glaeseman's Appendices, one discovers that the supply
of these products was nil or very low in particular months:
KinGnum
IGI.KUR
IGI KUR
.
-
Dagan (VII-VIII)*
for gG.gal
Dagan (VI-VIII)
for gG.tur
(VI)
for appZinu
[*Month VI is our August-September; VIII is October-November]
St01
Beans, peas, lentils & vetchel
A group of texts from Babylonia proper records the delivery of gG.gr1
Most of these texts are dated to month)
VI-~11~3,
one to month v14 and one to month ~ 1 1 1 ~ ~According
.
to D.O.
Edzard, this means that the giving (or borrowing) of these products an4
zerani "aslfor seed(s)" precedes the sowing16. If this is true, the gG.gal
would be a winter crop.
ana zZrZini, "as seed(s)".
The sowing of lentils and chick-peas for winter cropping takes
place in the month Ayliil (VI; September).
the harvest is i n
In Palestine the
'Azyar (11; May), according to Ibn wahziyyai7.
chick-pea is often cultivated in summer, rarely in winter18. Thc
broad bean is another winter crop in Iraq and Palestine.
St01
Beans, peas, lentils & vetches
without any doubt the chick-pea. In fact, Akkadian appiinu, lit. "nosey",
aptly describes the chick-pea, looking like the tip of a nose. Now, uppanu
is mentioned in those texts together with gG.ga1, so gG.ga1 cannot be the
chick-pea, if appanu is.
The broad bean (Vicia faba) seems to be left as the only remaining
possibility for gG.ga1 = haZZiirum.
The Hittite texts distinguish G~.GAL from G~.GAL.GAL; according to
H.A.
Hoffner "chick pea" and "broad bean"25. The Old Babylonian lexical
tradition also shows this d i ~ t i n c t i o n ~but
~ , gG.gal.ga1 does not occur in
OB economic texts or letters.
It does occur in Ur 111 texts, where it is
demonstrably identical with simple gG.ga1 (thus K. Maekawa).
hat2 iimun
The most important pulse in ancient Babylonia was the gG.ga1, lit. "big
pulse"; in Akkadian halliirum. This plant is commonly identified with the
chick-pea (Cicer arietinurn). This identification finds some support in the
use of the chick-pea as a weight unit in the Near East and in a modclrn
similar sowing practice.
We will first adduce these parallels, but
discover later that Akkadian kaZZiiru can hardly be the chick-pea.
It is interesting that the word haZZiiru in later periods was used as a
specific weight; even in
I would like to point out that this in
still the case in Iran: "The seed is named 'Nakhud', the name for an Ira111
weight equal tc~ 11144 ounce avoirdupois. The seeds weigh, on an average, f
grains eachm20. The nakkud (or: nochod) is the chick pea.
Another interesting parallel is that gG.gal
is sown by "throwin):"
Thi R
"throwing" could be the Arabic Zeq@ "Fallenlassen", the method of sowitig
chick-peas in Palestine according to G. ~ a l m a n ~ ~ .
A second pulse, attested in one Old Babylonian text, poses a problem.
This
text is a letter about cultivating fields with barley (Fe), sesame
(Fe.giF.T),
chick-peas (gG.ga1) and this g~.gal.nig*.3r.ra
[the text offers
The areas to be cultigG.gal.A.ar.ra,
which is certainly a mistake27].
vated are 36, 18, 12, 6 iku respectively.
This makes an artificial
impression; rotation (barley vs. other crops on one field) is excluded,
and I think that we have here an exercise in writing letters ("school
letter"). The mistake and the very general and repetitious contents of the
letter also point in this direction.
A gG.gal.3r.ra
is known from earlier periods; cf. Deimel, SL 106, 151
etc.; Limet 1982, 257: 'sorte de semoule des pois chiches'. And a gG.3r.ra
exists in earlier texts: RA 10 (1913) after p. 62 PI. I1 No. 14.i.12.
( nadiim) according to a recently published Old Babylonian contract2l.
Excursus The Akkadian word haZZiirum seems to have survived indirectly i n
Syriac hurZZ (Liiw 1924, 11, 437; Lathyrus) and directly in Persian ~ U Z Z ~ L P
(and variants), apparently an obscure word in Persian, generally meani-t~g
"pea" (not "chick-pea").
See the dictionaries of Junker-Alavi, p. 280a;
Steinglass, p.
471a; Eilers s.v. Erbse: frische griine Erbse, p. 298b.
Polak 1865, 11, 138 (cf. I, 122) wrote: "Erbsen (chsller), welche k1ei11
bleiben, herb und holzig schmecken".
The Arabic word for the chickBerossos tells us that tliu
pea, hummus, is a loan from Aramaic himsii.
Babylonians grew the crop ?Tehros, a word that has been translated in
various ways.
The lexicographer Sergius identified Greek Zehros wit11
Syriac hernsa23. Was Berossos referring to the chick-pea?
There are some grave problems in identifying gG.gal = haZZiirumwith tlic!
chick-pea. Botanists present at our meeting found it hard to think of tllc
chick-pea being culti.vated during summer or even winter in a land likc
Southern Iraq.
On the philological side, the Old Babylonian texts from
Mari and Shemshara pose a problem. There, we find the crop a p p & ~ u ~ ~:I ,
word that certainly is etymologically related to (later) Hebrew 'Zfen,
kakkii
The Broad Bean(?) (gG.ga1 = haZZiirum) is often followed by gG.tur, lit.
"small pulse"; in Akkadian kakkg8. The first problem is that kakki2 has a
second Sumerian equivalent, next to gG.tur: gG.nlg.ar.ra,
which is also
equated with ki>Fiianu "vetch".
It is clear that in later texts ki>?iianu is the first and main Akkadian
equivalent of gG.nlg.3r.ra;
bilingual Standard Babylonian texts show
this.29 The only evidence for an identification of gG.nfg.ar.ra with kakkii
in the earlier Old Babylonian period could come from the school letter just
discussed.
We expect in that letter gG.tur after gG.gal (as in another
school letter30), but we find gG.gal.nlg!.3r.ra.
Is this a mistake for
gG.nlg.ar. ra = kakkG?
I have the
identifications3
following
suggestion
in
order
to
explain
the
two
My suggestion is that only in the Old Babylonian period gG.nlg.ar.ra
denoted kakki2.
It was occasionally used instead of gG.tur = kakkii.
St01
Beans, peas, lentils & vetc
1. It never occurs together with gG.tur in one text;
2. In two instances, it follows gG.ga1, as gG.tur normal
does. 32
Now, there was no Sumerogram for ki>n6anu during this period; in Alala
(in the Amuq Plain) they invented for ki>n6anu the pseudo-ideogr
zi-~um (see below).
With the introduction on a large scale of the horse
the Near East during the late Old Babylonian and the Middle Babylonl
( "Kassite") periods, the vetch ( kiY6anu)became increasingly important ae
fodder crop; it was now grown in ~ i ~ ~ uFrom
r . the
~ ~Middle Babylonl
was used only and exclusively as Sumerogram f
period on, gG.nlg.ar.ra
ki>Zanu.
And gG.tur denoted the kakkii only. During the Old Babylon1
period, both Sumerograms were used to denote kakkc.
Arguments:
What crop could gG.tur = kakkii be? For a long time, the common p
(Pisum sativum) was excluded as a possibility.
Dalman once wrote "
Altertum fehlt die ~ r b s e " ~ ~But
. reportedly its seeds have been found
archaeologists and we now have to look for the common pea in the text
Let us assume that gG.tur is the common pea. If so, the seeds of th
"small pulse" should be smaller than those of the "big pulse" (gG.ga1
They are indeed smaller than those of the broad bean. Also, the seeds
the common pea are not smaller than those of the chick-pea: they are "5
or more in diameter", while those of the chick-pea are 5 - 12 mm. Hardly
difference.
Or do "big" and "small" refer to the importance of bot
crops, not their size? Economically, gG.ga1 is indeed more important the
gG.tur.
Another suggestion is that gG.tur = kakkii are lentils (Lens cutinaria),
The seeds of the lentil are indeed much smaller than those of the broa
bean or chick pea (see Van Zeist, p. 35; Charles, pp. 56-7).
The lentil i
still cultivated in Mesopotamia and Syria. It is a winter crop in Iraq
seeds need to ba
r anda ~ e r~ s i a~. ~Lentil
~~
It is eaten fol breakfast in ~
roasted or ground because they are indigestible if the outer skin of tha
seeds is not rem0ved3~. Although at our meeting the botanists informed ua
that roasting or grinding is not absolutely necessary, this would fit tho
Old Babylonian Sumerogram gG.nlg.ar.ra,
"pea for grinding" (nfg.ar.ra
samZdum).
Many scholars have identified gG.tur as the lentil, but tha
identification has never really been proved.
Cf. recently Hoffner 1974,
C
95f. "Lentil" is in Arabic and Hebrew adas,
in Aramaic teZofh.Z.
kinanu
For the identification of Akkadian ki>n6anu we are greatly helped by ite
Barth6lemy in his dictionary of
cognates in the modern Arabic dialects.
.
tells ue
Syrian Arabic gives the word kiidne "vesce noire, e r ~ " ~ ~Dalman
that the word for "Futterwicke" (Vicia sativa) in the Aleppo region ie
kiZne.39
We owe a description of the cultivation of "Wicke" (azkab'en) in
Northern Mesopotamia (Ijalanze) to Jastrow.40
In other dialects this vetch seems to be called kirsanni41, a by-form
of Arabic karsenna.
Dalman distinguishes this vetch from the kiZne of
Aleppo and calls it "Knotenwicke (Kamellinse)" (Vicia ervizia), the bitter
vetch. 42
From the descriptions of their cultivation, treatment and use,
one gets the impression that kixne and kirsanni/kirsenne are identical.
-
130
-
St01
Beans, peas, lentils & vetches
In the "classical" Arabic scientific literature there seems to be much conSyriac kaxne is identified with
fusion between karsanna
and kuxna;
~ A. Barth61emy1s and C1. Denizeau's dictionaries of
Arabic k a r ~ a n n a . ~ In
Syrian Arabic I could not find kirsenne. So kazen (Jastrow) and kirsenne
(Dalman) both seem to denote the same fodder plant.44
This vetch, whatever its name or dialectal form, is a fodder plant,
widely cultivated. Now we have to distinguish two cultivated fodder crops;
we quote Weulersse:
"Gesses [=lathyrus] et vesces [=vetch], au contraire, ne sont
utilisges que pour la consommation locale; la premiere, kerseng en Arabe
(Lathyrus cicera), donne une graine trZs dure qui est r6serv6e 3 l'alimentation des chameaux; la seconde
djibcni -- (Vicia sativa) sert a la
L'une et l'autre
nourriture du gros b6tai1, en fourrage ou en grains.
poussent sur les terres les plus mgdiocres et r6clament peu de so in^."^^
--
So Weulersse tells us that the grain of kirsenne is "very hard" which would
make grinding imperative.
His second crop is well-known an$ called
3iZbZn in Arabic (Aramaic giZb5i).
Barth6lemy writzs: djalbdn "gesse
cultivge, jarosse, vesce brune assez semblabe 3 la lentille qu'on donne aux
moutons et en hiver aux pigeons". 46
This is the chickling vetch, blue
vetch, grass pea (Lathyrus sativus),
in Iraqi Arabic h u r t u m ~ n . ~ ~Its
cultivation is mentioned several times by Ms Sweet in her book on Tell
~ o ~ a a but
n ~ ~
she
, does not give its Latin name (simply jiZbaun "vetch").
I
have the discomforting impression that the French and Latin terminology in
Weulersse should be the other way round.49
Let us now stud the Akkadian word ki6n6anu (often ki>*6enu) in the light
of this evidence.
The word occurs very often in ration lists from Old
Babylonian Alalakh (in the Aleppo area).
Perusal of these texts shows
(and its pseudo-ideogram ai-nun) was used as fodder
that kir6ane/kiY&enu
for. oxen51, h0rses5~, donkeys53 and even birds. 54
When personal names
follow the rations, human consumption may be meant, but we are not sure of
this. 55
Lexical texts mention bread (ninda) and soup (tu7) made of gG.nlg.
Br.ra, but in these (old) traditions kakkii, not ki>n6anu, is pro(MSL 11, p. 162.vi.6; 152:6;
bably the equivalent of gG.nlg.ar.ra
113 1:19).
We know from an Old Assyrian text, not yet known to the dictionaries,
that ki6n6inuwas winnowed (~ar'um).~~ Jastrow's "Wicke" (aZka3en) is also
winnowed.
57
In Shemshara ki>n6anum was a field crop, together with
other leguminosae.58 This is confirmed by a (later) Babylonian omen59 and
texts from daily life.
The Sumerograms for kiS6anu are important. We have already met with
in Old Babylonian ~ l a l a k h . ~ Normally
~
the singular zertrl, (:seedm?)
the
Su~erogramis GU.NIG.AR.RA;
the element NIG.AR.RA means that the product
(GU) was ground61.
This would fit the modern kirsenne which is to be
62
ground (grs) : the Vetch.
-0
-8
Another Sumerogram for ki>n6anu is G~.LAGAB, lit. "~6-block". This will
remind us of the "Kliisse" (Arabic dalbRZ or dahbfir), made from Bitter
St01
Beans, peas, lentils & vetches
Beans, peas, lentils & vetches
Sumerologists pointed out, however,
Vetch, water, and barley groats .63
that LAGAB does not necessarily mean "block".
Our conclusion, then, is that the Akkadian ki6n6anu means "vetch".
However, there are two vetches, both fodder crops: the Common Vetch (Vicia
satiua) and the Bitter Vetch (Vicia eruizia).
The botanists in our group
are strongly in favour of the Common Vetch for ki6n6anu. They cannot imagine that the bitter vetch was cultivated in Southern Iraq.
A Sumerogram G~.%E%, lit. "bitter pulse", occurs in Hittite texts.
Hoffner identified this with the Bitter Vetch, mainly because both
expressions have the adjective "bitter" in common. It was used for human
consumption.64
..
I could not .find the Akkadian or Sumerian word for the second fodder crop
in Syria, gztbiin, the Chickling Vetch or Grass Pea (Lathyrus sativus); in
Iraq hurtumiin. For human beings, it is a typical famine crop, causing the
disease "lathyrism".65 There exists an Akkadian word Zadiru, attestzed in
Assyrian medical texts, always occurring together with G~.GAL, GU.TUR,
vetch, and flax seed, Its seeds are used in the medical prescriptions.
This word ladiru (or: Zatiru) seems to be Assyrian and in the (late) lexical texts it is equated with ZambaZiZtu, a fodder plant occurring as early
as the Old Babylonian period.66
The word literally means "plant-offodderm67 and survived in Aramaic and even in modern Persian where it denotes fenugreek (TrigoneZZa foenwfi-graecwn); in Arabic hutba.
I would like to suggest that
Assyrian Zadiru (Zatiru).
Greek
ZambaZiZtu is. It remains an open
(and even ZambaZiZtu) exactly was:
the Greek word Ztithuros is the same as
Z6thuros is a fodder plant, as Zadiru =
question, as to what fodder plant Zadiru
Chickling Vetch or Fenugreek.
It is unusual to discover a relationship between Akkadian and Greek
words, but in the case of Wanderwtjrter this might be permitted. Elsewhere,
I connect Greek kardamon with Assyrian(!) kuddirnmu "cress" (see note 2).
Addendwn (August 1985)
After this article had gone to press I found two references to Akkadian
gG.ga1 in the Babylonian handbook "The appearance of a plant":
"[If the appearance of a plant] is green like gG.gal
G.lal is its name".
This seems to refer to its general appearance.
[....I...,
that plant,
STT I 93:84
"If the appearance of a plant is green like the ...-planta), its seed is
white like gG.ga1, G.aF is its name; a plant for removing the demon
LamaZtu"
BAM 4 379.ii.7-8
a) sah-la-nu ?
.
"White" seems to refer to the seeds of gG.gal here.
vol. 111, says on the seeds of the
-- broad bean: dark chestnut when ripe (p. 543);
-- chick-pea: pale to dark brown (p. 507).
The Flora of Iraq,
So the second reference is in favour of gG.ga1
=
=
haZZiiru
chick-pea.
Beans, peas, lentils
&
vetche
So CAD S, p. 174; W., von Soden, AHw, p.1088
In Late Babylonian Nippur
"(Ernte-)NebenfruchtW.
S.V.
~ehhertum, 2,
ahh ha rum.
Cf. M. Stol, "Cress and its Mustard", to be published in JEOL 28.
Ellis 1977, 137. Also in YOS 12 203:37. - Old Babylonian ~ihhirt
does not include sesame; see now Kraus 1984, 178 section 15. Late
Babylonian sahharu does not include sesame either, to judge from PB9
2/i, 158 and CBS 12980 (diss. M.W. Stolper).
The literary text is Cooper 1972, 72f., 1. 18.
Cyl. B xi.21 with Falkenstein 1949, 71-2 (gG.gG
&
Beans, peas, lentils & vetches
24 Mari: in the king's meals.
p. 18.
NOTES
Edzard
St01
=
gG.ga1 and gb.tur).
25 Hoffner 1974, 98f
Shemshara: on the field, Sumer 16 (1960)
.; in Hittite 3~me6~'iar.
26 'gG.ga1 - gG.gal.ga1, MSL 11 146.v.15f.
gG.ga1 - gG.gal.gal.la,
MSL 11 81, Hh XXIV:124f.
tu7.gG.gal - tu7.gG.gal.ga1,
MSL 11 69, a; 152, 15:3f.
27 Pinches 1917, 730f.
-
CAD G 151a, G~.GAL.A.KUR.RA, is wrong.
28 CAD K 58 "lentil (or small bean)";
AHw 422b "eine kleine Erbsenart".
29 Note, as a contrast, the gloss ka-ak-ku-fi to gG.tur in a text from
Ugarit, PRU 6 (1970) p.19 No. 18:15. In a lexical text is in.nu gG.
nlg.ar.ra = [tibni kilx-36-ni, not tibni kakkxtibnu = straw); MSL
11 p.84:227.
Wilcke 1976, 144:23.
30 Greengus 1979, No. 20:12.
Cf. Dalley 1976, p.41 No. 23:11, 13f. (He.%.giH
matqutum).
31
Laessoe 1960, p.18; see now the article of J. Eidem, this volume.
JCS 5 (1951) 84 MAH 15982 (16.111);
YOS 13 414; 494 (9/10.11).
.
CAD K p.58aY f ; diss. Gerlinde Mauer (1980), zbersichtstabelle 3.
Source: MSL 11 p.81, Hh XXIV:128f.
32 VAS 7 131:4 and Birot 1969, No. 14:12. - The only other non-lexical
OB reference for gC.nlg.8r.ra
known to me is JCS 29, 144 No. 6:12.
In that text, gG.tur does not appear.
33 BE 14 88; etc.
Glaeseman 1978.
34 Dalman 1932, p.272, 12.
Glaeseman 1978, pp.44£., 49 (Table 1).
35 Jastrow 1979, 73-5 sub 40f. (Mossul), and 1981, 445 sub 4f. (DBr izZor)
.
YOS 13 394; 395; 467; 501.
YOS 13 392.
Riftin 1937, No. 10.
-
YOS 12 259 (month X) is another type of text.
36 Polak 1865, 138: "Linsen (addas), behufs des schnellern Garwerdens
mit etwas Salsolapflanze gekocht, sind das gew6hnliche Friihstiick der
arbeitenden Klassen".
37 Guest et al., 1974, 547; Dalman 1932, 264; Sweet 1960, 130.
Edzard 1970, p. 63; Hunger 1976, p. 327.
El-Samarraie 1972, 68.
39 Dalman 1932, 269, 7. (als Futter fiir Rinder und Kamele in Nord-Palsstina und Syrien angebaut, Wintersaat).
Dalman 1932, 271.
Powell 1979, 101f.
40 Jastrow 1981, 276f.
Hooper 1937, 99.
YOS 13 494:14: Summa gG.gal inadd6 gG.ga1-Sunu
iteqqQ-ma
...
Dalman 1932, 271.
L6w 1924, 432, below; but Honein identified the Greek term with Titban
(LSw 1924, 438).
41 Jiha 1964, 113.
42 Dalman 1932, 269, 8.
43 L6w 1924, 484-6 (=ZA 30 [1915] 173-6); Ducros 1930, 42f. No. 75. In
the Neo-Aramaic Turoyo language the word is kusne; see Ritter 1979,
285.
1
Beans, peas, lentils & vetc
St01
Beans, peas, lentils & vetches
Pace Dalman 1932, 269 (7. Futterwicke, bEkia, bei Aleppo kixne; 8.
Knotenwicke, kirsenne).
Weulersse 1946, 149.
BIBLIOGRAPHY
Achundow, A.-C.
1893
~istorische Studien aus dem PharmakoZogischen Institute der
~aiserl. UniversitZt Dorpat, 111.
Barthglemy 1935, 116.
Dalman 1932, 270, 9 ("Graserbse").
Aykroyd, W.R.
1964
Doughty, J.
Legumes in human nutrition. (FAO).
&
Sweet 1960, pp. 70, 73, 75, 77ff., 83, 96, 264 Fig. 21.
Note the confusion between karsanna and 'g'ulban in Achundow 1893, 177
No. 104 "Dschulban".
CAD K 456f. "(a leguminous plant)"; AHw 492 "eine Hiilsenfrucht, dere
Mehl verbacken wird" [why?]. J.N. Postgate rightly observes that
a is short.
Balkan, K.
1974
Barthglemy, A.
1935
Dictionnaire Arabe-Frangais, dialectes de Syrie.
JCS 13 (1959) 19-32 No. 243:26ff.
Ibid. Nos. 240:20; 243:28; 244:2; 245:15; 246:29, 37; 249:lO; 250:4;
264:28; 261:23; 267:l.
Birot, M.
1969
Cooper, J.S.
1972
Ibid. Nos. 259:7; 265:31.
Ibid. No. 266:l.
Ibid. Nos. 237; 239; 261:20-25; 280:6. - Also not clear in the NeoAssyrian text ND 3467:lO (Postgate 1974, 399).
Dalley, S.M.
1976
Balkan 1974, 39 note 34 (kt glk 18).
Dalman, G.
1932
Jastrow 1981, 277 sub 9.
Laessse 1960, 18; J. Eidem, this volume.
CT 39 16:41.
As D.J. Wiseman saw.
in K. Bittel, Ph.H.J. Houwink ten Cate, E. Reiner (eds.),
Anatolian Studies presented to H.G. Giiterbock on the occasion
of his 65th birthday (Istanbul, Nederlands Historisch
Archaeologisch Instituut in het Nabije Oosten).
Paris.
TabZettes d'gpoque babylonienne ancienne. (Paris; P. Geuthner)
"Bilinguals from Boghazkiii, 11", in ZeitschriftfiirAssyrioZogie
62.
0 Z d ~ a b y Z o n i a n~ e x t s f r o m ~ e Zat-~imah.
l
(London; British School
of Archaeology in Iraq).
Arbeit und Sitte in PaZZstina, 11. (Giitersloh; C. Bertelsmann)
Ducros, M.A.H.
1930
~ s s a isur Ze droguier popuZaire de Z'lnspectorat des ~harmacies
du Ca'ire. (Cairo; Imprimerie de llInstitutfrangais d'archgologie orientale)
Edzard, D.O.
1970
Explicit in G ~ ~ . N ~ G . ~ .sandiiti,
R A
BAM 2 159.ii.7.
~ZtbabyZonischeRechts- und Wirtschaftsurkunden aus TeZZ ed-DZ~...
(Munich; Abhandlungend. Bayer. Akad. d e r W i s s e n s c h a f t e n , P h i l . Hist. Kl., Neue Folge, Heft 72)
Description in Jiha 1964, 113.
Edzard, D.O. & Wilcke, C.
1976
"DieHendursangaHymne",inB.L.~ichler(ed.),~r~e~Anni~ersary
voZwne (Alter Orient und Altes Testament 25), 139-176.
Dalman 1932, 269.
Hoffner 1974, 99.
Still occurring in India: cf. Aykroyd & Doughty 1964, 61-5, wi
General Sleeman's account in Appendix 4.
Dalley 1976, p. 51 No. 38 (its seed).
C
Cf. the literal meaning "fodder" (Arabic azaf) of "alfalfa", lucerna
-
136
-
Eilers , W.
1959-
~eutsch-Persisches Wdrterbuch. (Wiesbaden; 0. Harrassowitz)
St01
Ellis, M. de J.
"An agricultural administrative archive in the Free Library
1977
Philadelphia", in Journal of Cuneiform studies 29, 127-150.
El-Samarraie, H.Q.
1972
Agriculture in Iraq during the 3rd Century A.H.
Librairie du Liban)
Glaeseman, R.R.
The practice of the KingtsMeaZ at Mari. (Dissertation, Univ. o
1978
California, Los Angeles; University Microfilms 7820220).
Old Babylonian Tablets from Ishchali and Vicinity. (Istanbul
Nederlands Historisch-Archaeologisch Instituut te Istanbul)
Guest, E.R. et al.
Flora of Iraq,
1974
Agriculture).
111: Leguminales.
Mauer , G.
1980
Useful plants and drugs of Iran and Iraq. (Chicago; Fie1
Pinches, Th.G
1917
"The Semitic inscriptions of the Harding Smith Collection", in
Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society for 1917, 723-734.
Polak, J.E.
1865
Jastrow, 0.
1979
1981
Jiha, M.
1964
Powell, M.A.
1979
Riftin, A.P.
1937
Ritter, H.
1979
Limet, H.
1982
.
Staro-vavilonskie juridizeskie i administrativnye dokumenty v
sobrannijach SSSR. (Moscow-Leningrad; Izdat. Akad. Nauk SSSR)
Turoyo. Die Volkssprache der syrischen Christen des Tur '~bd~n.
B: Wiirterbuch. (Beirut)
Steingass, F.
A comprehensive Persian-English Dictionary.
1892
1970; Librairie du Liban)
Zeitschrift fir arabische Linguistik, 2.
Stol, M.
1985
"Cress and its Mustard", Jaarbericht Ex Orients Lux 28 (1983-4
Sweet, L.E.
1960
Tell Toqaan: a Syrian village. (Ann Arbor)
Die mesopot.-arab. qaltu-~ialekte11. (Wiesbaden; F. Steiner
Der arabische Dialekt von ~i~mizzin.
(Beirut)
Kiinigliche Verfiigungen in altbabylonischer Zeit (Leiden,
E.J.Bri11).
Laessse, J.
1960
"Ancient Mesopotamian weight metrology", in M.A. Powell, jr., &
R.H. Sack (eds ) , Studies in Honor of Tom B. Jones (Alter Orient
und Altes Testament 203), 71-109.
review of J. J. Finkelstein, YOS 13, in Welt des Orients 8
326-328.
Junker, H.F.J. & Alavi, B.
Persisch-Deutsches Wiirterbuch. (Leipzig; VEB Verlag Enzyklop
1965
Kraus, F.R.
1984
Persien. Das Land und seine Bewohner, IT. (Leipzig)
Postgate, J.N
Taxation and Conscription in the Assyrian Empire. (Studia Pohl,
1974
Series Maior 3; Rome, Pontificio Istituto Biblico).
Museum of Anthropology)
Hunger, H.
1976
Das Formular der altbabylonischen Bodenpachtvertrtige. (Munich;
Inaugural-Dissertation)
(Baghdad; Ministry o
Hoffner, H.A.
1974
Alimenta Hethaeorum. (New Haven; American Oriental Society)
Hooper, D.
1937
Die Flora der ~uden,11. (Reprint Hildesheim 1967; G. Olms)
(Beiru
Falkenstein, A.
Grammatik der Sprache Gudeas vonLagasch, I (AnalectsOriental1
1949
28; Rome, Pontificio Istituto Biblico).
Greengus, S.
1979
Beans, peas, lentils & vetches
Beans, peas, lentils & vetch
"The second Shemshara archive", in Sumer 16, 12-19.
"Les Sumgriens et les plantes", in Archiv fiir Orientforschung,
Beiheft 19, 257-270.
- 138 -
Weulersse, J.
Paysans de Syrie et du Proche-Orient. (Paris)
1946
(Reprint Beirut
A NOTE ON TIlE PULSE CROPS AT TELL SHEMSHARA
Jesper Eidem
(University of Copenhagen)
As mentioned by St01 in his contribution to this volume the two
tablets SH 113 and SH 105 from Tell Shemshara, published by Prof. Laesscbe
in Sumer 16 (1960) 18, provide a roster of the pulses grown in Mesopotamia
in the Old Babylonian period.
Since Laess~epublished his preliminary
survey of the "Second Shemshara Archive", to which these two texts belong,
a study of the entire text group has revealed that SH 113 in fact lists all
of the possible pulse crops attested at Shemshara.
As for the correct
identification of these crops I shall not attempt to reiterate ground
already covered by St01 and others in this volume, but merely examine this
question in the light of Helbaek's analyses of carbonized seeds from conFirst, however, it will be relevant
temporary levels at sites in NE Iraq.
to provide a brief summary of the wider context - and especially the date,
of the second Shemshara archive.
The first archive (SH 800-945) consisting of the well-known diplomatic
correspondence and a number of administrative texts, none of which deals
with agricultural produce, was found in Room 2 of the Level V palace in
1957.l
The second archive (SH (2) 100-203) stems from Rooms 27 and 34 in
the same building, and was found by the Iraqi expedition which continued
the excavation of the site in 1958-9.2
A general date for the first
archive has never been in doubt: it belongs to the Mari period, to the time
of the so-called "Assyrian Interregnum". A detailed historical analysis of
the diplomatic correspondence yields an even more exact date, and it may
now be considered virtually certain that the archive covers a period of
about three years, late in the reign of SamEi-Adad I, or more precisely his
27th to 30th regnal years.3
Writing in 1959, when only part of the second archive was as yet
available for study, Laesscbe suggested that it dated somewhat later than
the first. Subsequent work on the entire material, however, shows that the
two archives must be roughly contemporary. It is not possible in this context to present the detailed evidence for a redating, but it may be mentioned that several important persons occur in both archives, and also that
the archaeological evidence, as originally noted by Laesstje, is not really
conclusive in this respect. Unfortunately more than half the tablets from
SH 2 are in a miserable state of preservation and almost worthless, but the
archive clearly supplements the texts found in 1957 as many of them concern
agricultural products - lists of issues, deliveries, rations etc. - affairs
wholly absent from SH 1.
Returning now to SH 113 and 105 we read:
SH 113: ( 1 ) 20 ~.S&rna~at-~fi-tu(2) 20 A.S~appa-nu
(4) 11 A.~A GU.TUR
(5) 5 A.Si ki-%a-nu
( 7) 2-tu 3u-%a?-pa-a iZ-qB
(3) 10 A.S~ ~G~'.GAL
( 6 ) NUMUN %a E-ZU!
Eidem
Pulse crops at Shems
SH 105: (1) 12 A.si G~~.TUR (2) 12 A.8i G~.GAL (3) 6 A.%
(4) 10 A.Si up-pa-nu (5) NUMUN xa r ~ ~ ~ . ~ S 1
Eidem
ki!-i3-3
The reading Elu in 113, 6 is confirmed by a number of unpublished tex
among them SH 136, 1 which has E-z&~. Likewise AGA.U~ - "the soldier(s)'
in 105, 5 occurs in similar contexts elsewhere. These two texts then da
with issues of pulse seeds4 from Shemshara to a locality nearby, and
state tenants. As shown by Laesspre, Shemshara, ancient Su~arrZi,was
administrative center for the area called mat ~ t g m presumably the Ra
plain,5 and the various pulses mentioned in SH 2 texts were accordin
tQose gro#wn in this general area in the early 18th century B.C., v
GU. GAL, GU. TUR, kikndanu, uppanu, and matqiitu. Except for the problema
matqiitu, all of these crop-names are known from other areas of 0
Babylonian Mesopotamia, and it may of course be assumed that they have t
same meaning at Shemshara as elsewhere,but it is still of some interest
check the more or less generally accepted identifications independent
against the archaeological evidence.
-
A few miles downstream from Shemshara Iraqi archaeologists excavat
the large site of Tell ~azmusian.~ Ten samples of carbonized seeds we
collected from the upper levels, and later examined by Hans Helbaek, w
published his results in Sumer 19 (1963) 27-35.
Samples from Level I
which must be roughly contemporary with Level V at ~hemshara,~
contained
besides cereals - only lentil and chick-pea, but considering also the n
altogether clear stratigraphy at Bazmusian, it could perhaps be assu
that the sample of Vetchling or Grass Pea (Lathyrus sativus), taken f
Level VII (dated to ca. 2000 B.C.) indicates that this pulse was grown
the time of our archive. Two samples apparently consisting only of bro
bean (Vicia faba) were said to stem from the early Islamic Level I, b
were actually found in a later pit in Level IV, and so cannot be entire
excluded from consideration.
To the evidence from Bazmusian may final
be added samples from Tell Qurtas in the Shahrizor region, more or less
the same geographical zone, and in a roughly contemporary time range, whe
seeds of lentil and bitter vetch (Vicia ervizia) were found in a pot.8
Especially considering the accidents of discovery such evidence is n
conclusive, of course, but it seems significant that five different puls
can be adduced for the five crop names in our texts, and further that t
species more or less tally with the identifications proposed by St01
allowing the following, tentative, conclusions:
G~.GAL could well be the broad bean, but firmer evidence is needed.
G~.TUR which has been suggested as the pea or the lentil, would seem t
have been identical with the latter at Shemshara.
Pulse crops at Shemshara
But there the word is rather used just as a simple adjective about two
kinds of oil (11. 11 and 14, note the change from the singular ~ a t q u
referring to I.GIS ('6'amnu) to plural matqiitu referring to SE.I.GIS
( 3amaF5ammii))
.
In spite of the somewhat precarious nature of these conclusions, they do
seem to show that the pulse cultivation in the Zagros foothills more or
less follows the general pattern to be observed in Northern Mesopotamia in
Old Babylonian times, and that closely synchronic comparisons of textual
and archaeological data from the same area will eventually provide us with
more exact identifications of the various agricultural products mentioned
in our texts.9
NOTES
1.
See in general J. Laesspre, The ShemshZira Tablets (Copenhagen 1959).
2.
See the article in Sumer 16 mentioned above.
Prof. Laesspre has
generously suggested that I edit the final publication of all the administrative texts from the two archives, and I hope to complete this work
within the next few years.
3.
See J. Eidem, "News from the Eastern Front: the evidence from Tell
Shemshara", Iraq 47 (1985) 83ff.
4. The preliminary reading of MU for NUMUN was later corrected by Laessoe,
cf. S.M. Dalley et al., Old Babylonian Texts from Tell at-Rimah, p.167 No.
232 ad 1.15.
5.
Laesspre, Journal of the American Oriental Society 88 (1968) 120ff.
6.
See B. Abu as-Soof, Sumer 26 (1970) 67ff.
7. Ibid. 68ff.
Note that the temple shares significant architectural
details with the temple at Rimah and the one under excavation at Tell
Leilan in north-eastern Syria (cf. Archiv fiir Orientforschung 28 (1981/82)
226ff .).
8. Helbaek, Swner 16 (1960) 79f.
appanu could well be the chick-pea.
9. I would like to thank the Editors who kindly made most of the contents
of this volume available to me in manuscript, and invited me to contribute
this note.
ki'C6anu could be the bitter vetch.
matqiitu finally could be identified with the Grass Pea, although I ca
St01 cautiously suggests tha
offer no etymological connection.
matqiitu denotes some kind of sesame on the evidence in OBTR no. 23,
-
142
-
THE "OIL-PLANT" IN ASSYRIA
J.N. Postgate
( Camb&dge)
This note is confined to the evidence of the texts written in North Iraq
during the Middle Assyrian (1400-1000 B.C.) and Neo-Assyrian (1000-600
B.C.) periods.
I have occasionally referred to evidence from the Old
Babylonian and Nuzi texts from the same general area, but have made no
attempt to consider these as a corpus. As in Babylonian, the Assyrian word
for the oil-plant was the plural form '6'ama~hnmS(stated explicitly in the
in accordance with standard
Practical Vocabulary of Assur, 1. 38);
Babylonian scribal practice this is rendered with the logogram Xe.giX.2, in
contrast to the early 2nd millennium writing in the north, at Mari, Tell a1
Rimah and Nuzi, Xe.3.giX.
For the benefit of the non-cuneiformists, it
may be worth repeating that both these logograms are composed of the
Sumerian words (or rather signs) for "corn" (He) + "wood" (giz) + "oil"
(T), while the K~kadianterm appears to be composed of the two very common
words '6'mum "oil"'and '6'ammum "plant", i.e. 6aman + h?unZ "oil of plants"
This is, of course, embarrassing, because in fact
(see Kraus 1968, 115a).
the word is used to refer to the plant, and not its oil. It seems possible
to me that in fact the compound word was originally *&mma-'6'antni, which
underwent a slight metathesis in the course of time, and in any case I propose to translate the word as "oil-plant", regardless of Kraus' valid technical objections, so as to avoid committing myself in advance to a botanical identification.
V
The "oil-plant" is not to be confused with "plant-oil", often written
This logogram, used in
as the Sumerogram 3-giX (or in ligature 3+giX).
both Assyrian and Babylonian texts, is sometimes to be read '6'mu "oil".
However, whereas the logogram itself appears to imply that it was vegetable
oil ("oil+wood"), the Akkadian word '6'mu (of common Semitic stock) is not
so specific, since it can, for instance, be applied to pig's fat.
The
Akkadian word eZ(l)u (on which see Stol, above, p. 122) is also attested as
an equivalent for this logogram, and we are therefore frequently uncertain
which of the two words is intended. Whichever it is, it is construed as a
singular (cf. on h a l ~ ubelow), and there is therefore no chance that it is
In other words,. the oil is
merely another way of writing '6'ama6h6'ammZ.
strictly distinguished from the plant in the texts, as we should expect.
The processing of the oiZ-plant
M 8,N Hanhart ~ m p
Sesame, after R.Bentley 6 H.Trimen, Medicinal Plants (London, 1880)
-
144
-
Kraus 1968 lists verbs describing various processes associated with the
cultivation and harvesting of the oil-plant, but not the later stages of
processing. Information on the traditional techniques of treating sesame
in the modern world seems to be very difficult to find, but combining the
evidence presented to our meeting by Bedigian and Stol, we can distinguish
the following stages leading to the production of oil. The most complete
sequence comes from Syria in the 19th century (quoted by Bedigian, p. 160
Postgate
"Oil-plant" in Assyri
after Law's Grocers' ManuaZ), and it is not difficult to reconcile thi
with both the other modern accounts and the archaeological and textual evi
dence for antiquity presented by Bedigian and St01 (see pp. 168-9 and
120ff.).
a.
b.
c.
d.
e.
soak in water for 24 hours
pound with 20 lb hammer in cemented vessel to loosen husk8
float kernels off in salt water
"broil" seeds in oven
grind seeds at mill, catching oil in jar
In Assyrian as well as Babylonian dialect there are two verbs regularly
associated with the processing of the oil-plant, hatd~umand GahZtun?, and
Stol's quotations from the CAD (pp. 121-2) demonstrate the difficultiee
experienced by the philologists in translating these words (and their
Sumerian equivalents).
Having reconsidered the problem in the light of our
meeting and the papers submitted to this issue of the Bulletin, I feel that
it is now possible to offer a convincing explanation of the terminology,
which agrees excellently with the processing of sesame in modern times.
First it is necessary to establish certain points:
1. for (;ahdtum a meaning "press (to extract liquid)" is favoured both by
its use for the extraction of wine from grapes, and by the meaning of
cognate verbs in other Semitic languages.
2. gahZtum is the process which results in the extraction of oil: the
All oil
sahitum is a lb.Z.sur, a term meaning literally "oil-presser".
had to be produced by pressing, which is why we do not meet a commodity
called "pressed oil" (*'6'ammum gahtum), as this would be tautologous, or
"pressed oil-plant" (*'S'~ma6~gammiigahtiitu), as this would be the residue
which has other names (see Stol, p. 122).
3. There is no reason to think that gahiitum or hatiigum are alternative processes.
On the contrary, YOS 2, 58 (quoted CAD H 40a and now in an
improved version, Stol, AbB 9, 58) strongly suggests that they are consecutive processes.
The passage is worth quoting: "The hatgum oil
(2.bdra.ga) which you brought me is not good to smell. Let them hatdgwn
the oil-plant in your presence, (then) stay there and let them press
(gahatum) the oil in your presence".
That the pressing comes after the
hatdgum process also follows from the Old Babylonian contract CT 8 P1.8e,
where a big quantity (9 gur) of hatgum oil-plant (3e.giF.i bdra.ga) is to
igahhatu-ma 3.giV
be pressed and oil repaid within a month (3e.gi3.2
l.Sg.e.me3,
11. 10-11). (See also Waetzoldt, p. 85, on this point).
4. As noted above, both oil and oil-plant may be described as hatsum:
3e.giF.i hatgiitu and f.gi3 hatsum.
Translators have sometimes failed to
observe the difference between the oil-plant and its oil, but in fact the
plant was used in its own right, and was not always turned into oil: KAJ
226 lists 3e.giE.i hatgiitu between other dry vegetable commodities such as
flour, groats, fine groats, and cummin (sibibiiinu).
HaZiigum is therefore
a process which can be applied to the seeds of the oil-plant, whether it is
intended to use them as a dry commodity or to extract their oil.
Since
the fact that they have passed through this process needs to be mentioned,
presumably it could also be omitted.
Postgate
"Oil-plant" in Assyria
If we now compare the cuneiform terminology with the processes attested for
the treatment of sesame in modern times, it is clear that gahiitum "to
press" represents the final stage (e) above. This was the eponymous activity of the oil-presser (gahdtum), and made use of pestle and mortar, and
of a kannum - a specialist piece of oil-pressing equipment (cf. CAD K S.V.
and St01 & Whiting, above p. 117).
HaZdgum must therefore refer to some or
all of the stages (a) to (dl.
Our modern reports do not describe the preparation of sesame-seeds for culinary use; it is not clear to me whether
stage (d), the heating, was needed if the seeds were not destined for
pressing (nor do I know what the term "broil" implies in the quotation from
Law), but we may at least assume that removing the husks from the kernels
was a stage common to both uses of the seed. I suggest, therefore, that
hattipn refers to the recovery of the de-hulled kernels from the surface of
the water (which could have been done with a comb-like instrument, a sieve,
or even a coarse cloth - hence bsra in Sumerian), and more generally to the
process of freeing the seeds from their husks or "hulls".
The corollary
of this suggestion has to be that sometimes the seed was used (both in its
own right and for oil-production) without being de-hulled.
This may sound
unlikely, but in fact in India today sesame seeds are used to yield oil in
both hulled and unhulled condition (Weiss 1983, 583-4, quoting comparative
figures).
Given the extra labour involved, it is obvious that the hulling
process would only have been adopted because it gave a better product, and
indeed Weiss comments (of oil-seed crops in general) that "to provide a
high-quality edible oil hulling is recommended" (1983, 540).
To sum up, after harvesting the oil-plant (surely sesame!) was often
de-hulled, probably by pounding the seeds and then skimming the loosened
kernels off the surface of water, and this process was called hatdgum.
The product was probably then heated, and either stored as a dry food,
"hulled sesame" ('6'ma6n6ammE hatgiitu) , or handed on for pressing ( gahbtum) ,
In
which yields "de-hulled oil" ('s'mum hatgum) and "residue" (kuspz).
each case, a less good quality product could be obtained more quickly by
omitting the "de-hulling" process.
The Middle Assyrian sources
The Assur Temple Offerings
In one of the annexes to the national temple
of Assyria at the city of Assur, the German excavators found an archive of
some 600 tablets from the reign of Tiglath-pileser I (ca. 1110-1076 B.C.;
see Postgate 1980).
A few of them have been published, and record deliveries to the temple Steward (abarakku) by the governors of the provinces.
The contributions were in kind, in four categories: corn (xe-um.me3; proand fruit (azamru).
bably all barley), honey, "oil-plants" (Fe.giS.T.me3)
Various tablets mention such offerings (VS 19, 56; 73; VS 21, 8; 24;
Andrae , ~iedererstandeneAssur Taf 49a) , but VS 21, 21 is particularly
important, because it enables us to see the quantities supplied by each of
the provinces.
27 provinces are listed; some gave no contributions at
all, and only two gave all four categories on this occasion. Despite small
breaks, most of the total receipts can be reconstructed. This list is
given in litres (taking the arbitrary equation 1 homer = 100 q; and 1 qii .=
1 litre; the margin of error may be as much as 20%):
.
corn
honey
oil-plant
fruit
130,000
1,120
10,057
4,566
corn
23,070
93.6%
honey
160
0.65%
oil-plant
900
3.65%
Katmuhu: 18,000
92.6%
187
0.96%
540
2.78%
fruit
516
2.1%
total
This is a list of contributions to the Assyrian army
The text VS 19, 9
active on the south-eastern border near the River Diyala (although they may
actually have been delivered in Kar-Tukulti-Ninurta across the Tigris from
Three persons, perhaps military offiAssur; see Freydank 1974, 78ff.).
cials, deliver amounts of six different commodities, including oil-plants.
A second part of the text lists five single contributions of oil-plants
only. These I have given as one quantity under column 4 below, although in
fact most of it (19230 litres) was delivered by one man:
1
corn ('s'e'um)
wheat (gig.meF)
groats (ha's'ldtu)
kumi's'u
kudimmu
oil-plant
[15,3]40
[
9150
[
1175
[
7183
[
4127
[ 2,5100
2
8,418
1,445
110
655
479
800
!The text VS 19, 33
This is a small administrative note, which comes from
the 14th century archive Assur 14446. The broken second half deals with
different kinds of bread, but the first half records two issues of oilplant :
b)
The texts make it clear that these offerings were brought in by boatmen, which suggests that they were sent, in kind, from the regions in
question, rather than acquired for cash or by exchange in Assur itself.
One might therefore hope to observe regional differences in the types of
contributions, but this is not possible. Oil-plants are supplied by provinces in all directions: by Idu (modern Hit on the Euphrates), by cities
in the upper Habur basin, from Assur itself and other central Assyrian
cities, and from the Zagros foothills. Nor can we draw any deductions from
the list of provinces which contributed no oil-plants, when we consider
that some of provinces are not recorded as contributing anything at all.
All we can say is that the oil-plant does seem to have been widely distributed across northern Mesopotamia, as it was already in 1800 B.C. (Mari,
Tell a1 Rimah) and in 1400 B.C. (Nuzi).
No.
1
a)
This reveals clearly that the oil-plant was an important commodity, but
still far behind the cereals in quantity.
Contribution
3
2,890
2,888
75
1,408
558
180
"Oil-plant" in Assyria
with the Assur Temple offerings it features mostly in amounts little
greater than condiments like kudimmu (mustard or cress?l) and kumi's'u
(unknown).
1. (+)
1. (+)
1.
1. (+)
Since the number of provinces making contributions in the different categories varies, it is perhaps more useful to note the relative quantities in
the two cases where one province supplied all four:
Arbail:
Postgate
"Oil-plant" in Assyria
Postgate
4
20,940
Total
26,658
5,283
360
2,846
1,464
24,420
litres
litres
litres
litres
litres
litres
That the oil-plant was transported in consignments as large as 19,230
litres confirms its importance in the diet, but it is interesting that as
40 litres to ( ? : *.sa pi-i, lit. "at the word of " ) a person who is to
produce 8 litres of oil (T), presumably from the seeds he has received;
= gahitu),
to produce four
50 litres to an oil-presser (lG.2.sur
"ziggurrats" of 10 litres each.
Evidently these temple-towers were
fairly substantial culinary creations, and they can in fact be seen on
contemporary cylinder seals, placed as an offering on the altar of a
god (Porada 1979, 9 with Fig. 14).
The first of these entries is valuable because it suggests that the oil
pressed from the oil-seed came to one-fifth in volume of the original dry
product.
This is in fact the very ratio attested for Ur 111 and Old
Babylonian texts quoted in this volume by Waetzoldt (p. 81) and St01 (p.
124 note 31).
It is probable that this was a convenient figure, and that
in fact the oil-pressers would usually recover more than 20% from the
seeds.
As for the second entry, clearly the cakes must have included a solid
ingredient in addition to the oil. There is no reason to suppose that the
oil-pressers acted as ordinary cooks or confectioners (using the unpressed
seeds), and so their job here must have been to extract the oil in the
first instance. The volume of the cakes, being four-fifths of the original
oil-seed, shows that it must have been mixed with something else - nor
indeed can one imagine that even the gods would have enjoyed a confection
consisting exclusively of an oil-seed!
Most probably the solid ingredient
was some farinaceous product, but it is also possible that it was partly
composed of the "oil-seed residue" (duh Fe-giF-3 = kusp;; cf. Stol, p.122).
The iVeo-Amyrian evidence
As in the 2nd millennium B.C. the only textual evidence for the oil-plant
in Neo-Assyrian contexts refers to it as a commodity, not to its cultivation. In a text listing offerings due to the Assur Temple in the reign of
Adad-nirari 111 (810-783 B.C.) we have 40 litres of "de-hulled oil-plants"
as well as 4 litres of "de-hulled oil" ('s'mu halgu; see Postgate 1969,
Nos. 42-44, on pp. 93-94).
In other contexts too, both religious and secular, we repeatedly find the oil and the plant together: ADD 1036.v.5-6 has
"2,000 litres of oil-plant (and) 140 litres of oil" ("oil" here written as
3.kii [coll.], which suggests that eZZu is a serious candidate for the
Neo-Assyrian word for oil).
This was a list of contributions to the
palace.
Other probably secular references are from Tell Halaf
(north-western Habur basin), where 20 litres of oil (T) and a little under
Postgate
"Oil-plant" in Assyr
200 litres of oil-plant are stated to be owed in Kalhu and Assur, and fr
Kalhu (Nimrud) itself (12,600 litres of oil-plant and 410 litres of oil)
Even in the banquet stele of Assur-nasir-apli I1 (ca. 880 B.C.) the 01
plants are followed almost immediately by "300 (bowls?) of 01
(3+giH.meZ). 4
The curious fact is that they are listed together not merely sometime
but usually: this is in fact a high proportion of all the occurrences
the oil-plants in our texts (exceptions: KAV 197 [Postgate 1974, 363-7
ABL 638, mentioning 8,000 litres of oil-plant from the Diyala area [cf.
19, 9, above, and Waetzoldt p. 80 for other evidence of oil-plant cultiv
tion in this region]).
Moreover, in each case the volume of oil is ve
much less than that of the oil-plants - on two occasions only one-tent
elsewhere probably more.
The ratio is therefore nothing to do with t
amount of oil the relevant amount of the plant would yield, but must simp
reflect the relative quantities needed by the recipients, and the two co
modities would naturally feature together in the administrative transa
tions since they both derive from the same source.
In a 7th century archive of tablets listing deliveries to the Ass
Temple (once again!), the oil-plant occurs regularly, alongside a wi
variety of other foods.
It comes in two forms: as a "plant" (xiqpu),
which I mean an entire single piece of vegetation, or in a type of co
tainer called a lukannu or sutukannu (it seems impossible to know wheth
Other commoditi
the SU sign is syllabic or the leather determinative).
in these texts are supplied in (su)Zukannu, including '6'u1u,which see
likely to be a legume. Further, in the Assur-nasir-apli banquet stele, t
king lists "10,000 xu1u plants" (ziqpzni) immediately before the oil-plan
and since the two species both occur in the same two forms, it is quit
likely that they were of similar habit.
Unfortunately, of course, xu'
remains unidentified
.
This virtually exhausts the Neo-Assyrian evidence. It allows us to sr
that oil-plants were a commodity handled in quite large quantities.
The
were used for the production of oil, but the seeds, which are often liste
in the same contexts as the oil, evidently were used extensively as a dr
commodity. It seems as though the whole plant was also transported, but i
is not clear why this should have been.
The oil comes in much small8
quantities than the seed, and is a prized dietary item.
In offering list
it tends to be mentioned with items like honey and less common food-plant6
Yet it was important enough to figure in a list of the essentials of a go
life: "corn, silver, oil (3+giX), wool, salt for your meals and a wick(
for your lamps" (Frankena 1954, 8: Col. x.29-34).
"Oil-plant" in Assyria
NOTES
For the Assyrian word kudimmu see St01 1985; kurmi3u is known to me
only here, but St01 kindly refers me to 6 kur-me-36 ( ? ) in Kijcher,
KADP 33:20.
For the use of sesame residues for animal and human consumption, cf.
Weiss 1983.
See Weidner, Die Inschriften vom Tett HaZaf (AfO Beiheft 6), No. 14, and
Postgate, CTN 2, No. 138.
The Assur-nasir-apli Banquet Stele is published by D.J. Wiseman in Iraq
14 (1952), and a new translation given in A.K. Grayson, Assyrian Royat
Inscriptions, Vol. 2.
The Assyrian word ziqpu us2d here is translated by von Soden, AHw 1531a
as a carrying-pole ("Transportstange"), but this hardly carries conviction - locusts are carried on poles in the reliefs! I would prefer
to take it as t%e word which clearly applies to young trees in contemporary Assyrian texts (AHw ziqpu l), and assume that '6'utuand '6'amaSs'ammZ
were somehow usable in the form of whole plants. For the Assur Temple
texts see G. van Driel, The Cutt of ~rs'ur.
"Oil-plant" in Asey
Postgate
BIBLIOGRAPHY
Frankena, R.
1954
Tiikultu:
de
sacrale
Maaltijd
THE AGRONOMY, PRODUCTION AND UTILIZATION OF SESAME AND LINSEED
I N THE GRAECO-ROMAN WORLD
i n het
Assyrische
Rit
T.W.
(Leiden: E.J. Brill).
Freydank, H 1974
Kraus, F.R.
1968 .
Porada, E.
1979
Postgate, J.
1969
"Zwei
Verpf legungstexte
Gallant
(University of Florida)
aus
Kar-Tukult i-Ninurta" ,
A
orientalische Forschungen (Berlin) 1, 57-89.
"Sesam im alten Mesopotamien", Journal of the Amer
Oriental Society 88 [=American Oriental Series 531, 112-1
"Remarks on Mitannian (Hurrian) and Middle Assyrian Glyp
Art", Akkadica 13, 2-15.
.Neo-Assyrian
royal grants and decrees (Studia Pohl, Seri
Maior 1; Rome: Pontifical Biblical Institute).
The problem of explaining the absence of a specific type of evidence
from the historical record is always difficult. There may be a number of
forces at work which would militate against the inclusion or preservation
of some types of materials. In the case of the preservation and recovery
of floral remains from archaeological excavations, biasing factors may be
operative before the material is deposited, during the process of de osition, after it has been deposited, and during the process of recovery.? In
order to determine why linseed is present in the archaeological record from
the Near East and sesame seeds are not it is necessary to examine how each
of them was treated at the different stages in the formation of the recoverable archaeological record. This paper will examine pre-depositional
processes which may have affected the probability of preservation by analysing the evidence contained in agronomical treatises on the production
and utilization of sesame and linseed in the Graeco-Roman world.
Taxation and Conscription i n the Assyrian Empire (Stud
Pohl, Series Maior 3; Rome: Pontifical Biblical Institute)
review of H. Freydank, VS 19, in ~ i b t i o t h e c aOrientalis 3
67-70.
"Cress and its mustard", Jmrbericht
(1983-4), forthcoming.
Weiss, E.A.
1983
Oilseed crops (Longman).
Ex Oriente L u x
I . Sesame
There are only four authors who discuss sesame in any detail:
Theophrastos, Pliny, Columella and ~ a l e n . ~ The word used in Greek
is qaapq and in Latin either sesame or sesima. The latter would seem to
be derived from the former, which in turn, seems likely to be related to
the sa-sa-ma referred to in the Linear B document^.^
Theophrastos categorises sesame as one of the main summer crops along
with millet ( xiyxpoq ) and panic ( EXup-0~). They are well-suited to summer
conditions, requiring little moisture and having a short growing season.
In some places they are irrigated. Sesame was like the lupine in that even
animals would not eat it green.
Pliny's discussion owes a lot to
Theophrastos and so there is much repetition. He does, however, add the
interesting tidbit that originally sesame came from India where it was
Columella provides the best account of
grown for the production of oi1.5
the agronomy of sesame. In Italy, he recommends that it be sown between
the autumnal equinox and the beginning of October on a loam if possible,
although it is not a particularly fussy plant. He advises an early sowing
on wet soils and a late one if the soil tends to be dry. The season of
sowing could vary with the environment: "But I have seen the same seeds
sown in the months of June and July in districts of Syria and Cilicia and
harvested in autumn when they are ripe."6 He recommends a sowing rate of
60-90 kglha as optimal and states that each hectare requires 60 man-hours
of labour:
12 ploughing, 16 harrowing, 16 hoeing, 8 on the second
ploughing and 8 harvesting.
These should be taken as maximum fi ures:
most farmers were not as conscientious as the diligent Columella.B The
description of the plant called sesame by the ancients tallies well with
the crop called sesame today, and would, thus, appear to be the same plant.
Gallant
Sesame & linseed in the Graeco-Roman worl
In the Graeco-Roman world, sesame was used almost exclusively as
foodstuff. Of all the references to sesame oil in the ancient sourcee,
only two did not come from Egyptian papyri or refer to Egypt. Strabo sta
tes that the people of Nabatea in Asia used sesame oil because they did no
grow olives.8 The troops under Xenophon in Anatolia covered themselves i
a mixture of pig fat, sesame oil and almond oil as rotection against
snowstorm because they could not obtain any olive oil.B Sesame oil was no
an important commodity. But the seeds were eaten by humans. Because it
occupied a different ecological niche and was harvested later than the maia
cereal crops, sesame could be used as a famine food to off-set fluctuation8
in the yield of wheat and barley, but its main role would have been as
supplement to the diet. The most common sesame dish was boiled seeds mixe
with honey and spread on bread; indeed, this was the traditional weddin
food in Fifth century BC Athens. lo The gastronome and nutritionist Galen
was not keen on sesame, arguing that it filled up the stomach too quickly,
gives the body a slipcould cause nausea, was di ested slowly, and
pery kind of nourishment. **fl Nonetheless, it appears to have been common.
Inscriptions from Athens refer to sesame-sellers. l2 Perhaps the sesame/
honey mix was one of the street foods of antiquity, a forerunner of thr
semolina filled pPoGyaccoa of today.
". . .
How the seeds were prepared for human consumption provides a valuable
clue as to the potential for seeds to be incorporated into the archaeological record. The most explicit description is given by Pliny. The gathered
seeds were first soaked in a tub of hot water. After a while they would be
spread out in the sun to dry. When thoroughly dry, the seeds were rubbed.
A second soaking, this time in cold water, separated the chaff from the
seeds; the former was collected and used as fodder for cattle. The seede
were then spread out to dry in the sun once again. When dry, t
ready either to be boiled or to be ground for human consumption.
important point to note is that sesame can be made edible merely by being
immersed repeatedly in water.
2. Ftax/Zinseed
In both Greek and Latin, the same word is used for both the flax plant
and for linen - and its various derivative products such as fish nets and
lamp wicks.14
In Latin only one word was used: Zinus, whereas in Greek
there were two. The most common word used was X L V ~ V Another, puao6q ,
seems to refer only to linen from the region of Elis in Greece. It seems
to be different from X L V ~ Vbut it is not clear how: "The land of Elis is
exceedingly fertile and is es ecially well-suited to the growing of
Pliny states that the Puo06q linen from
as well as X L V ~ Vand xavvap'Lq
Elis could cost as much by weight as gold.16 It seems to be qualitatively
different from regular linen but in any case, this seems to refer to the
linen rather than to a different plant species.
.
Gallant
Sesame & linseed in the Graeco-Roman world
was noted for its linen. Columella and Pliny agree that flax requires a
good, rich soil and that it should not be planted continuously on the same
plot because it is a voracious consumer of soil nutrients. Columella warns
that it should only be grown if there is a ready market nearby.18 In his
description of the agronomy of flax, Pliny is terse: plant in spring, harvest in summer.
It could also be grown as a winter crop as well.
Columella recommends sowing sometime between early October and early
December at a rate of 216 kg/ha. If planted as a summer crop, then one
should sow around the end of February or early March at a rate of 270
kg/ha.
Sowing rates of this magnitude indicate that both Pliny and
Columella envisage flax being grown for linen production. Plants in such
dense stands would have less branches and there would be more individual
stocks. Also because flax is such a poor competitor heavy sowing would
reduce the amount of time spent weeding.19 If the aim was the production
of seeds, then sowing rates of between 80-125 kg/ha would be more practical.20
The discussions of the use of flax in antiquity make it clear that it
was grown primarily for the production of linen. Linseed was consumed, but
linseed oil does not seem to have been important. I was able to locate
only one reference to it. Theophrastos compared linseed oil to the oil
from the Christ's Thorn bush in its essential characteristic^.^^
Pliny
gives the best description of how linen was produced. The plants would be
pulled from the ground, not cut, tied into small bunches. These would be
hung upside down in the sun for a number of days. After four or five days,
all the seeds would have fallen off into a pile.h The stalks would then be
retted and turned into linen.22 Even if the production of seeds was not
the main reason for growing flax, they were certainly a useful byproduct.
Like sesame, linseed could act as a famine food or as a regular dietary
supplement.
Pliny states that the peasants of north Italy often ate a
porridge made of ground linseed and the Spartan warriors trapped on the
island of S hakteria during the Peloponnesian War ate ground linseed mixed
with honey. P 3 Galen provides the most detail: "Linseed is consumed with
fish sauce as a main dish and is sometimes mixed with honey and spread on
bread, but it is difficult to digest and provides little nourishment. It
has some diuretic power which becomes evident when it is eaten after
roasting but then it is more coortive. It is eaten most frequently by
peasants who after roasting it mix it with honey."24 Linseed has to be
processed before it can be consumed by humans. If merely soaked, then it
is poisonous. It can be made safe by cookin
most often this was; most
often this was done by roasting the seeds.4.5
Linseed was used as a
foodstuff but only after careful preparation.
."
Today distinct strains of the same species are grown specifically for
linseed or for flax linen. Through breeding, a plant with a tall stock and
small seeds has been developed for flax production.17 Whether this was the
case in antiquity is uncertain. It was an extremely adaptable plant, being
grown in regions as diverse as Gaul, Colchis, North Africa and Egypt, which
The evidence from the Greek and
Roman agronomists can provide a
possible explanation for the presence of linseed and the absence of sesame
from the archaeological record at Near Eastern sites. As Van Zeist argued
in the paper he presented at the conference, there are no readily apparent
post-depositional factors which would selectively favour the preservation
of linseed over sesame seeds. Therefore, the biasing factor is probably
pre-depositional and related to the manner in which the plants were pro-
Gallant
Sesame & linseed in the Graeco-Roman world
cessed to satisfy human needs.
Oil can be extracted from both and, in
areas where the olive could not be grown, they provided a viable source of
oil. But the crushing of the seeds in order to extract the oil effectively
destroys them and ensures their disappearance or disintegration in
archaeological deposits. Flax was primarily grown for linen, but even then
the sees would be available for human consumption. It is only in the way
the seeds are rendered edible that there is a sharp difference between the
two. Sesame seeds need only be soaked in water and then they are ready t o
be ground or boiled. None of these processes are amenable to producing
residue easily incorporated and preserved in archaeological deposits.
Linseed, on the other hand, is usually roasted, a process which would
greatly increase the probability of their being preserved in the archaeological record. Van Zeist stated in his paper that linseed recovered from
excavations in the Near East was almost invariably carbonized. The presence of linseed then would be attributable to the fact it was usually
roasted; the absence of sesame can be explained not by the argument that it
was not grown but by the fact that it was processed in a manner which did
not produce remains capable of withstanding the test of time.
Gallant
Sesame & linseed in the Graeco-Roman world
NOTES
1.
For an excellent discussion of this topic see: G. Jones, "The Ethnoarchaeology of Crop Processing: 'Seeds of a Middle-Range Methodology,"
~rchaeologicalReview from Cambridge, 2:2 (1983), 17-26.
2.
The particular works to be cited throughout are:
Theophrastos, History of Plants (hereafter, Theophrastos, HP),
Theophrastos, On the Growth of Plants (hereafter, Theophrastos, GP),
Pliny, The Natural History (hereafter, Pliny).
Columella, On Agriculture (hereafter, Columella),
Galen, On nutrition (hereafter, Galen).
3.
J. Chadwick, The Mycenaean World (Cambridge: Cambridge University
M. G. F. Ventris and J. Chadwick,
Press, 1976), 135, 144 and 227.
Documents in Mycenaean Greek, ed. J. Chadwick (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1973), 227, 582.
4.
Theophrastos, HP, 8.1.1, 8.7.3.
5.
Pliny, 18.22.
6.
Columella, 2.10.18.
7.
Columella, 2.12.5.
8.
Strabo, Geography, 16.4.26.
9.
Xenophon, The Anabasis, 4.4.13.
10. Aristophanes, Peace, 869; Acharnanians, 1092; Thesmophoriazusai, 570.
H. G. Liddell and R. Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, revised by H. S.
Jones (Oxford: Clarendon, 1968), 1599.
11. Galen, 1.29.
12. I.G.,
22.1561.23; 22.1554.40.
13. Pliny, 18.23.
14. For a discussion of the use of and terminology pertaining to flax nets,
see: T.W. Gallant, A Fisherman's Tale: An Analysis of the Potential
productivity of Fishing in the Ancient World (Gent: Miscellanea Graeca,
1985), 3-4.
15. Pausanias, Travels in Greece, 6.26.4.
16. Pliny, 19.1.
17. J. A. S. Watson and J. A. Moore, Agriculture: Its Science and Practice
(London: Macmillan, 1962), 374; I. Arnon, Crop Production in Dry
Gall.ant
Sesame & linseed in the Graeco-Roman world
~egions. volume 11: Systematic Treatment of
(London: Leonard Hill, 1972), 381-387, 393-398.
the principal Crop
See also, Herodotos, The Histories,
18. Pliny, 19.2; Columella, 2.10.17.
2.105, 4.74 and Theophrastos, GP, 4.5.4.
19. Columella, 2.10.17.
I
IS He-giH-Z SESAME OR FLAX?
Dorothea Bedigian
(crop ~ v oution
t
Laboratory, Department of Agronomy,
University of I t tinois, Urbana)
20. Watson and Moore, 374.
21. Theophrastos, UP, 3.18.3.
22. Pliny, 19.2.
23. Pliny, 19.2; Thoukydides, The ~eloponnesian War, 4.26.8.
24. Galen, 1.32.
25. This point is discussed in all the relevant literature; a detailed
exposition on it can be found in J. Renfrew's contribution to thia
volume.
The existence and identity of Sesamwn indicwn L. as a Mesopotamian oil
source have been controversial since 1966, when H. Helbaek reported that
not a single seed of sesame had been found in the Near East from earlier
than Islamic times.
The Chicago Assyrian Dictionary and some other
cuneiformists subsequently have translated He-giH-Z as 'linseed'.
Helbaek's assertion that no ancient sesame remains have been excavated is
inaccurate, but the reported finds from the Near East are late. Sesame was
a major item of agriculture in the Iron Age Urartian economy, and that
kingdom was a northern neighbor of Mesopotamia.
Many earlier Sumerian references to an oilseed, He-giH-2, are found in
cuneiform texts concerning oil rations, ritual offerings and loans for
stock seed, from about 2300 B.C. (Jacobsen, 1958).
Written evidence is
admittedly weaker than actual seed remains for positive establishment of
crop occurrence, but in the absence of seed remains we are forced to rely
on literary and linguistic data. This paper reviews and evaluates those
data.
A longer article presents evidence for cultivation of sesame
throughout the ancient world (Bedigian and Harlan, 1985).
BOTANICAL TRAITS AND SEASONAL REQUIREMENTS OF SESAME AND FLAX
Sesame can be distinguished from other oilseeds, such as flax, mustard,
rape or radish, that may have been grown in ancient Mesopotamia.
One
important distinction is sesame's growing season.
It is a warm-season
crop, and must be planted after any danger of frost is past; it adapts well
to hSgh temperature and drought stress, but it cannot tolerate waterlogged
soil. Cultivars show a wide range of variation in date of maturity: some
can be harvested after 70 days; others require 180 days to mature (Bedigian
and Harlan, 1983).
The crop can grow in a variety of soil types, with
cultivars that are specially adapted to each. Sesame is not demanding in
nutrient requirements and can follow more soil-exhaustive crops. Sesame
seeds sprout readily, without special treatment to remove germination inhibitors.
Seed color varies from white to black, with intermediates ranging from
ivory, beige, tan and olive green, to brick red, brown, and charcoal grey.
The seed surface usually looks granular when viewed with a hand lens.
Seeds are generally 2.5 to 3.5 mm long. The placental attachment (hilum)
of the seed looks round, viewed end-on, but the seed's flat sides and
raised margin give it a rectangular appearance.
Seeds of sesame contain the lignans sesamin and sesamolin. A special
property of sesame oil is its stability against rancidity, due to the presence of these natural antioxidants, that are not found in other edible
Bedigian
Is Fe-giF-X sesame or fla
oils (Bedigian, Seigler and Harlan, 1984). These compounds are also inse
ticides and powerful insecticidal synergists.
Sesame oil is regarded
gastronomically and chemically, as a superior quality oil (Levey, 1959)
Sesame seeds yield 50 to 60% oil in modern processing methods (Weis)
1971).
An ancient method of crushing sesame seeds for oil extraction is givr
in Law's Grocer's Manual (circa 1892): "Sesame is also widely cultivated 1
Syria, where, in preparing the oil, the grain is soaked in water for 2
hrs, and then placed in an oblong pot, coated with cement, on which two me
work a wooden hammer of 20 lb. weight
Efforts are not made to ma8
the kernels. The skins are separated in a tub of water, salted to a degrr
sufficient to float an egg. The bran sinks, while the kernels remain
the surface. The sesame seeds are now broiled in an oven, and sent to t
mill to be ground. From the millstone the oil drops into a jar, and i
thick, of a dark yellow colour, and sweet."
...
Sesame leaves exude a mucilaginous substance when injured (Levey, 1959
DB, pers. observ.).
Many herbarium sheet labels indicate that sesa
leaves are used for soap or shampoo (DB, unpubl. data).
Sesame fruits are capsules that vary in size from 1.5 to 4 cm
depending on the cultivar. The plant's indeterminate growth allows cap
sules to be initiated continuously throughout the season. Sesame capsul
release their seeds easily when they dry, and will spill them on the grou
if the branches are not harvested in time. Therefore, sesame branches ar
cut while still green, and sun-dried; a few weeks later the bundles o
branches are inverted and shaken onto sheets to collect the seeder
Sesame's easy-bursting (dehiscent) capsule may have inspired the "Open,
Sesame" incantation in "Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves."
Flax can be distinguished from sesame by its seasonal requirements,
Flax thrives in moderately cool temperatures (Veerhoff, 1940; Martin,
Leonard and Stamp, 1976), and is grown as a winter annual in warm climate8
Linseed is cultivated where the annual range of precipitation is from 45
to 750 mm, or under irrigation in dry climates. Drought and high temperature ( 35OC) during and following the flowering stage reduce the yield
and affect oil quality. Cool weather during the early stage, followed by
warm, dry weather, provides excellent conditions for fiber-flax production.
Flax grows best on well-drained, medium-heavy soils, especially silt loams,
clay loams and silty clays. Light soils are unsuited to seed flax, particularly in regions of deficient rainfall (Martin, Leonard and Stamp, 1976).
The cultivars of flax grown for fiber have long stems with relatively
few branches, while cultivars grown for oilseed have shorter and many more
branches and produce a greater quantity of seed (Eckey, 1954).
The fruit8
of flax are indehiscent or semi-dehiscent spherical capsules that terminate
a branch. Traditionally, in regions without mechanization, flax is harvested by pulling the plant up by the roots (nasZihu) and moving it to the
threshing floor, where the seeds are beaten out.
Flax seeds are yellow, olive green, tan and brown, and are 3 to 6 mrn in
length. They are flattened and have no raised margin. The surface appear8
-
160
-
Is Fe-giF-3 sesame or flax?
Bedigian
smooth and shiny because of its mucilaginous coating. The apical hook is a
curve at the narrow end of the seed. This curve is very pronounced on
flax seeds, though sesame seeds are occasionally curved at the apex. Oil
flax contains 32 to 42% oil.
Linseed oil has. a high degree of unsaturation, so that it reacts
readily with oxygen. The products formed from this reaction make linseed
oil highly useful in the manufacture of paints, and as a standard drying
oil (Eckey, 1954), but as a food oil, the high rate of oxidation allows
rapid spoilage with development of objectionable rancid odor.
The earliest archaeological flax remains discovered are reported from
GaySnii in Turkey, and from the Bus Mordeh phase at Tepe Ali Kosh in Iran,
both before 6000 B.C. (Helbaek, 1969; Van Zeist and Bakker-Heeres, 1975).
Seed size (3.5 to 6 mm) indicates that these were domesticated.
Seed oils of several species of Brassicaceae may have been used in
Mesopotamia. They too are cool season crops. The fruits are siliques, and
are much smaller than sesame capsules. The round seeds are 1 to 2 mm in
diameter, and seed color may be white, red, purple, brown or black. The
seed surface is marked with hemispherical contours.
The seeds yield
approximately 40% oil (Eckey, 1954; Martin, Leonard and Stamp, 1976).
Remains of charred seeds of Brassica sp. (mustard) or Sinupis sp.
(radish) were found in room 046:l and especially in "House D" in rooms
K43:3 and 5, and L43:7, 9 and 10, from the Temple Oval at Khafajah, ca.
3000 B.C. (Delougaz, 1940).
They are in the collection at the Oriental
Institute, University of Chicago, but seed preservation is inadequate for
more specific identification. Prof. E. Schiemann of the Botanical Museum,
Berlin, was able to identify some of these in room L43:lO as belonging to a
crucifer, Brassica or Sinapis, "the oil of which could be used either in
cooking or as fuel for lamps."
ANCIENT INDIA
The origins of the Indus Valley civilization are not yet understood,
although it must owe something both to the Iranian settlements and to
influences from Mesopotamia (Hawkes, 1976). Mature by 2500 B.C., it was at
its height at the same time as Sargon's empire (2372-2316; successors to
2230) and 5th dynasty Egypt (ca. 2494-2345), but was declining early in the
2nd millennium. It flourished over a wider area than these two other great
ancient civilizations, with an economy based on wheat and barley cultivated
by irrigation.
Sesame seed remains were found at the Indus Valley civilization site of
Harappa (Vats, 1940), where excavators uncovered "a quantity of lumped and
burnt sesamum" specimens. Sesame was found in mound F, trench IV, stratum
v, with burnt grains of wheat and peas, in the hollow of circular platform
P8. A number of broken jars and an underground drain were also excavated
at that level, at a depth of 2 m, in square L 1214. "A rectangular platform with a mud core which is secured on all sides [is] surrounded by
"aR~c?@i3'S LIBRARY
ORIENTAL INSTITUTE
UNEVEWSIVY
OF GHIICAGB
Is He-giH-Z sesame or flax?
Bedigian
brick-on-edge laid lengthwise. This unsubstantial construction was probably due to the necessity of economising bricks" (Vats, 1940).
he mortar
was mud but the pointing was gypsum. The purpose of the platform is not
clear. Vats reports that from stratum iv down, the Harappan site pre-date0
Mohenjo-Daro, and he attributes the sesame to ca. 3050-3500 B.C. Harappr
is the only site in India or Pakistan where sesame has been found
(Vishnu-Mittre, 1977).
INDIAN ORIGIN OF SESAME AND ITS ETHNOBOTANY
Genetic, morphological and phytochemical evidence support the h~~othesi0
that domesticated sesame originated on the Indian subcontinent (Bedigianv
Seigler and
Harlan, 1984; Bedigian, Smyth and Harlan, 1984).
Archaeological evidence just mentioned substantiates claims that sesama
cultivation began in India. The crop progenitor that we have proposed,
described as Sesamwfl orientate var. matabaricum Nar. (John, Nara~ana and
Seshadri, 1950), still occurs wild today in gravelly crevices of granitic
rock outcrops, and is weedy in many parts of India. We collected seed of
the progenitor from northern India (Delhi Ridge) to 78' E longtitude* I t
grows wild at the Walayar Forest Reserve (~amil-Nadu) and was seen weedy
along the railroad line from Delhi to Trivandrum. It is a weed in formerly
cultivated land as well as along the roadsides*
~ortus~azabaricus, a 12 volume magTlwfl Opus on the plant wealth
Malabar is a landmark contribution on the rich medicinal plant resources of
the region. ~t is the oldest publication on Indian plants in any European*
language (Manilal, Suresh and Sivarajan, 1977).
Hendrik van Rheede, a
governor of Cochin (1663-1677), here published information from his jourrials about native and traditional Brahmin medicinal plant resources* Three
Brahmin ~riest-~hysicians
dictated the names and medicinal properties of
listed in their authority, the Manhaningattnam, a text that ha@
never been found, and that may never have been written down* Thus van
Rheede preserved valuable ethnobotanical information about local plants,
accumulated over hundreds of years. His work is unsurpassed even today
(Manilal, 1980).
Van Rheede's observations are accurate morphological descriptions and
the accompanying sketches provide unmistakable confirmation of his identifications.
~innaeus and other botanists made use of the figures and
descriptions in this work as "type specimens" for establishing new genera
The wild progenitor
and species (Manilal, Suresh and Sivarajan, 1977)
Seigler
and
Harlan,
1984; Bedigian*
sesame that we have proposed (Bedigian,
smyth and Harlan, 1984) is one example of this typification- Concerning
"there are two species of EZu, Schit-EZu
sesame, van Rheede said (1689):
and car-~Zu;the first is called D~VO-Titoe by the Brahmans
Oil is
extracted from the seeds, for the benefit of nearly whomever is presented
with pains, and the indigenous people use it in a washing solution
regularly, for anointing the body and often as any are troubled by aches*"
Bedigian
1s Ze-giH-3 sesame or flax?
it, ~heede says the following: "Car-Etu is the second species of sesame;
not noted by anyone before, so far as I know. Thus it can be named Sesamum
indicum "of wide, serrate leaves, large(r) flower and blackish seed. The
~alabar ~eoplecall it ~ i d z j mHitem, for the color of the seed. ~t is
mostly the same as the first species, only it grows a little taller.
Likewise, its stalks are somewhat thicker, and the leaves, flowers and
seeds are bigger. The color is darker, and the juice is rather bitter.
m he flowers when eaten alleviate complaints of the eyes; when ground
together with fruits and made with butter into plasters, they bring
abcesses to ripeness. The oil extracted from the seeds (it goes by the
name ~irgelimoil) relieves the wind of persons of phlegmatic humor, when
liberally smeared on the body. If the Malabar people are to be believed,
the oil makes fat people thin and lean people plump, dispels cataracts, and
strengthens weak vision (when spread thick on the head).
From the same oil
are prepared ointments for wounds and ulcers -- like Amphion, the oil takes
death upon itself. The ground seed, taken with cayenne juice, dispels dizziness
Well washed and decorticated , the seeds are preserved in several
ways. "
.
A list of local names for sesame in India reveals widespread adoption
of the word ~ Z Z Uor its derivatives: Assam, Bengal, Maharashtra, Punjab,
Uttar Pradesh and the Sanskrit, Hindi and Urdu languages use tit; Gujarat
uses tat; Kerala and Tamil-Nadu use ettu; Karnataka uses yeltu; Andhra
Pradesh uses ~UVVU-tu;and Bihar and Orissa use gingiZ (Kirtikar, Basu and
An, 1918; Sampson, 1936; Indian Agricultural Research Institute, 1961).
The earliest form of the Dravidian word for sesame would be eL (that
is, e ~ l u sa retroflex
with an alternative pronunciation eLLu, the
doubling of the consonant and addition of final u being a normal alternant
in the oldest Dravidian (F. C. Southworth, South Asia Regional Studies,
~niv. ~ennsylvania,pers. comm.).
The appearance of ettu, in a non-Aryan
language (Kui~er,1955; Masica, 1978), suggests an ancient source for the
word.
~lthough the original language of Harappa is unknown, Fairservis
(1983) considers Dravidian to be a likely source. Other scholars favor a
link to 1nd0-Aryan or Munda languages (H. Hock, Assoc. Prof. Linguistics,
Univ. Illinois, pers. comm.).
There may never be a way to validate these
hypotheses.
The second E Z ~ ,Ca+EZu (capo-T~ZU in Sanskrit) could be the wild
sesame variety called jartilain Sanskrit (Kuiper, 1955) today* Concerning
Parallel linguistic evidence from ancient India suggests that sesame
(~anskrit tita) may have been the oilseed par excettence. Literally taila
(nominative taitm) means 'oil made from sesamum seed' (F. J. B. Kuiper,
pers. comm.).
Burrow (1947) suggested that the Dravidian word is the
source of the Sanskrit word. Though this may never be proven, taila is
clearly a loanword in Sanskrit (C. P. Masica, Assoc. Prof. South Asia Area
~anguagecenter, Univ. chicago, pers. comm. ) and in time -baiza became the
general term for oil that has remained in use to the present day (Dymock,
warden and Hooper, 1893; Prakash, 1961; Monier-Williams, 1964; Nayar &
Mehra, 1970).
The Sanskrit words tita, jartita, titpinjay and titapinji,
all occur in old Vedic texts.
The Vedic scriptures (ca. 1000 B.C., no
exact date can be given) contain instructions for using sesame seeds in a
ceremonial food symbolic of immortality (Dymock, Warden and Hooper, 1893).
According to the ~rahrnapurana,titawas created by Yama, the king of death,
after prolonged penance. A Buddhist text, the Grihyasutra of Asvalayanay
-
-
162
-
163
-
Is Fe-gig-2 sesame or flax
Bedigian
directs that in funeral ceremonies sesame seeds be placed in three sacrifi
cia1 vessels containing sacred Kusa grass (~esmostachya bipinnata Stapf
S. & B.) and holy water with the following prayer: "Oh Tila, sacred t
Soma, created by the gods during the Gosava (the cow sacrifice, not no
permitted), used by the ancients in sacrifice, gladden the dead, thee
worlds and us!" Sesame seeds with rice and honey are used to prepare th
funeral cakes called ~indas, that are offered to the ancestors in thq
Sraddh ceremony by the Sapindas, or relations of the deceased (Dymock,
Tizanna, sesame-rice balls formed in the shapa
Warden and Hooper, 1893).
of cows, are offered to relatives and friends of the deceased after tha
funeral.
This ritual is enacted to say a proper 'farewell' to the
departed. The offering of sesame seeds is considered effective in removina
sins (Gupta, 1971).
The word tiZanjaZi is a derived word that means 'to
bid a final goodbye/ to leave' (~indi-~nglish
Dictionary, 1970).
On certain festivals six acts are performed with sesame seeds, as an
"expiatory ceremony of great efficacy by which Hindus hope to be freed from
sin, poverty and other evils, and secure a place in Indra's heaven"
(Dymock, Warden and Hooper, 1893).
These acts are titodvarti, 'bathing in
water containing the seeds'; tilasuayi, 'anointing the body wit?) the
pounded seeds'; titahomi, 'making a burnt offering of the seeds';
tilaprada, 'offering the seeds to the dead'; titabhuj, 'eating the seeds';
and tilavapi, 'throwing out the seeds'. In proverbial language a grain of
sesame signifies the least quantity of anything, e.g. ti2 chor so bnjjar
chor, 'who steals a grain will steal a sack'; ti2 tit ka hisab, 'to exact
the uttermost farthing' (Dymock, Warden and Hooper, 1893):
Mehra (1967)
summarizes the recorded uses of sesame in India in historic times.
ANCIENT MESOPOTAMIA
The Sumerian Xe-giF-3 refers to an oilseed crop. The identity of this
plant is undecided.
Various ancient names translated as 'sesame' are
3 - g i g - (Sumerian), '6'ama'sns'ammE (Akkadian), \s'umiZumi (Hurrian),
ssm
(Ugaritic) ,
sasama (Mycenaean Greek), sapsama (Hittite), sufm)semfin)
(Aramaic) and simsirn (Arabic) (Hoffner, 1974).
It is likely that Fe-giF-i
referred to sesame since the introduction of the plant. On the other hand,
could have applied to whatever crop was used for oil,
the word Ee-giF-T
initially, and later, when sesame was introduced, the name became affiliated with the sesame crop. It could reflect an adaptation of olive, the
earlier oil source, so as to distinguish it as the grain-like substitute
of olive.
The date of introduction of sesame to Mesopotamia from India cannot be
determined; we only know the oldest, presently available attestations,
since ca. 2400 B.C.
It is known that there were trade contacts between
the Indus valley and Mesopotamia as early as the 3rd millennium, B.C.
(Hornell, 1941; Wheeler, 1968; Gelb, 1970; Dales, 1971; Lamberg-Karlovsky,
1972).
The earliest mention of Ee-gig-3 in texts occurs just after the
middle of the 3rd millennium (Jacobsen, 1958).
It is a convenient hypothesis that sesame was cultivated widely in Sumer/Akkad from that time, and
that such cultivation was stimulated from contacts with NW India.
Bedigian
Is Fe-giF-2 sesame or flax?
Early Old Babylonian (OB) documents contain numerous references to
"3-giF = uZtu/ettu, the ubiquitous sesame oil" (Simmons, 1978).
Texts
list the expenditure of sesame oil "for the inner bolt," "for the fire
offering," "for the prince," "for the royal purification rite," "for the
inner bolt on the day of Akitu," "for the sizkur DN," for the Elunum DN,"
"for the regular offering," and "for anointing the banner." These are all
special cultic applications, uses of oil to lubricate, soap or fuel someone
or something, almost certainly at springtime festivals (W. Doyle,
Instructor of Mesopotamian Civilization, Harvard University Extension,
pers. comm.).
Von Soden, (1961), indicates that eZlu is 'good' sesame oil
(2-giE = eZZu).
The Akkadian word etzu, meaning both 'pure' and 'sesame oil' is
intriguing because of its resemblance to the early Indian word.
The
Akkadian eZZu contains two homonyms: eZZu the adjective means 'pure' or
'bright'; the noun, possibly a loanword from Dravidian, means 'sesame oil'.
Within the Akkadian context, ettu meaning, 'pure' is never found in
correspondence with Sumerian -k3-, 'pure', suggesting that it is a loan
word (W. Doyle, pers. comm.).
The Assyrian Dictionary (CAD, 1958) article for ettu gives definition
2. holy, sacred; 1.2', "clean, pure in connection with oil, etc.,
fine oil
sweet oil
pure sesame oil, sesame oil of the first
(pressing)" (Thompson, 1903), used for anointing and making perfume. Its
eZZu B article discusses sesame oil of a specific quality: eZZu (in
contrast to hitsu, 'refined oil') refers to a standard quality of sesame
oil (Hilprecht , unpubl. OB tablet).
Two products are extracted ( sahatu)
from sesame: "hitgu oil [should amount to] one-third of the eZZu oil"
(Pinches, 1899, cited in CAD, 1962).
The varieties of oil discussed by
Goetze (1956) establish the value of 3-giF at 30 times the value of Fe,
barley.
...
...
...
Records from Mesopotamia contain frequent references to the oilseed FegiF-z. Interpretation of these texts to establish the botanical identification of the oilseed requires many inferences, in the present state of
research on the records. One way to distinguish sesame from other oilseeds
that could have been grown in the region relies on the seasonal requirements of each. Other oilseeds including flax, mustard, rape and radish,
unlike sesame, are cool-season crops and should be grown during the winter
in Mesopotamia (see BOTANICAL TRAITS section). In Mesopotamia, sesame was
handled as an off-season crop by the barley industry in the manner that it
was irrigated, plowed and reaped (W. Doyle, pers. comm.).
Clarification of planting dates of the oilseed Ee-giF-3 can be useful
to ascertain whether the crop is more likely to be sesame or another
oilseed. Establishment of a spring planting date would be strong evidence
in support of sesame as the oilseed 3e-giE-T. A coherent pattern of field
rentals for sesame growing, loans of sesame seeds for planting, and deadlines for payments, would help strengthen the assertion.
Land rental contracts can help elucidate the crops grown. Legal and
administrative texts of the reign of Samsuiluna [1749-17121 (Feigin, 1979)
offer the following records of transactions involving the Ee-giF-T crop,
that Feigin translated as sesame:
Is Fe-giF-1 sesame or f l ~
Bedigian
Bedigian
Text
YBC
147
215
220
298
300
3332
6069
6039
5945
6083
6
7
7
8
6
3
2
3
10
10
25
4
?
?
490
492
6073 27
5907 27
2
3
6
20
?
occurred in the spring.
summer-sown sesame.
Rent of field to grow sesame
Rent of field to grow barley and sesame
Sub-rent of field to grow barley and sesam
Rent of field to grow sesame
Rent of 2 types of fields to plant barley
and sesame
f
Rent of ab.sln field to grow sesame
Rent of field to grow sesame
?
Rent of ield to
o grow sesa
The &ma'6n6'ammii article prepared for CAD, volume "8" (galley proofs of
mentions several texts that help to
the manuscript, p. 510-520),
identify '6'am~>~Sammiias sesame. An OB text concerned with processing the
seed (l'c) says:
"it came to 90 gur of '6'am~>~6'rnii,before it started
raining. I managed to crush 40 gur of it and the rain did not arrive
to ruin it"
(Dossin, 1933).
The rains begin in October/November in
Mesopotamia, thus the text refers to a summer crop that was harvested in
the fall.
Other records that might offer evidence of planting dates to identify
Some examples can be found 10
the crop Xe-giS-3 are loan records.
Finkelstein 1972.
22
Text
307
391
464
528
MLC 1519
4
24
MLC
YBC
YBC
MLC
4
3
1
4
10
1381
8722
3323
1727
5
5
4
Loan of silver to purchase sesame, to be
repaid in sesame
Sesame for seeding
Sesame for seeding
Sesame for seeding
Joint tenancy field lease for growing
sesame
Mesopotamian sesame was grown as a field crop, while flax was a garden
letter from N uzi
crop, grown in small plots, on enriched soil.
1959) exhorts the recipient to "plant '6'ama'S^&ammii and millet! ('6'ama6nSammii u
du-uh-na ari'6').
Since millet, be it Setaria, Panicwn, Pennisetwn or even
Sorghum, is summer-grown, it is reasonable to conclude that '6'ama>ns'ammii is a
B.C.
Herodotus ,
summer croo.
The date of this text is ca.
associates the summer planting of millet with sesame: "In winter, indeed,
they have rain from heaven like the rest of the world, but in summer
after sowing their millet and their sesame, they always stood in need of
water from the river" (111.117).
Other circumstantial evidence about sesame's growing season can be
gathered from an OB letter, suggesting that sesame was still growing after
the barley harvest in March-April. The text suggests annual alternation of
the barley fields with sesame. A letter (BM 17379) requests the recipient
to "Inform me about all fields which have been worked [tilled, but not
planted] until now and about the [growing] sesame field" (Kraus, 1964).
This letter indicates that it was off-season for planting barley, and that
the majority of the fields were idle. The barley harvest in Mesopotamia
Then barley fields could have been rotated with
According to Landsberger (1949), the spring equinox (March 15 to April
1) was the time of cutting the early barley; this activity continued
through May.
June was the time of field preparation for planting [the
summer crop]; July was the month of Tammuz, the time of storage of barley,
characterized by the ritual festival celebrating the sealing of the granary, i.e. the end of the barley harvest. The principal use of irrigation
water was in the autumn, to soak the fields before planting grain; after
germination, they tried to rely on rain.
A list of dated texts concerned with rentals of fields for the cultivra
tion of sesame (Stol, 1984) show the greatest number from the months 2, !
and 4, but tells nothing about field-sizes, rents, or give-back dates.
Tablet
Is Fe-giF-3 sesame or flax?
1
?!&na>~ammii
is assigned to the constellation Taurus (Weidner, 1967,
cited in CAD, s.v. 4'h p.519) and that is likely to indicate planting time
(H. Waetzoldt, pers. comm.).
An OB letter instructing a farmer not to soak
before the appearance of Sirius (Frankena, 1968) sup[irrigate] Se-giE-3
ports a summer planting of the crop, because Sirius rose ca. June 22
(see DISCUSSION section).
There is support for these suggestions of
astronomical controls of agronomic practice in Mesopotamia, from nature,
because the belt stars of the constellation Orion (the hunter), battling
Taurus (the bull),
point toward Sirius, the brightest star in the sky
(Menzel, 1964).
The vernal equinox was in Taurus at 2000 B.C. and would
have been seen about March 21. The sun would have been in Taurus on the
first day of Spring (March 21) and Taurus rising would have occurred in
mid-April.
The CAD article about 3ama'S^6ammii contains many references to oil
pressing, including one text (Keiser, 1917; Clay, 1919 [both NB let.])
cited in CAD S.V.
2' p. 516)] that specifies '6'ama6nBthmu pegiitu (white
'6'ama'sn6'ammii).
The texts concerning white-seeded '6'ama6ns'ammii are arguments of
considerable importance in helping to distinguish flax from sesame because
there are no flax cultivars with white seeds (J. Miller, Dept. of Agronomy,
North Dakota State Univ., who maintains the USDA's world collection of flax
germplasm, pers. comm.).
The CAD review contains other references to Se-gix-1 as food for the
royal meal, as a medicine and for making soap, with alkali and juniper
resin.
St01 (1984) indicates a textual reference to 'sweet', matqiitum, sesame,
that reminds us of the folk classification by Sudanese farmers. Sesame
used for its seeds were called 'sweet', while sesame grown for its oil was
considered to be 'bitter' (Bedigian and Harlan, 1983).
Often, the redseeded sesame cultivars had the highest oil content, but the testae probably contained high levels of tannins or other bitter-tasting
constituents. The 'sweet' sesame was white-seeded.
- 167 -
Bedigian
Is Fe-giF-3 sesame or flax?
A fragment of a Neo-Assyrian textbook tablet concerns the problem of
storage bin with 's'~ma6~s'armnii:"If ants are seen in a man's house
ants in
(ina i. E.DUB 's'~ma6~s'mZ),in the storage bin for 's'~ma6~s'mii,"followed by
a break (Ebeling, 1923 [SB Alu] cited in CAD s . V . p. 514).
This may be
strictly coincidental, but it might have considerable significance, in
view of the role of the lignans of sesame as insecticides (DISCUSSION section, this paper; see also Bedigian, Seigler and Harlan, 1984).
>
Waetzoldt (1983; 1984) indicates that the context of 's'~na6~s'ammiiin
third millennium texts much more strongly suggests the superior quality of
sesame oil than the utilitarian quality of linseed. "Large quantities of
the oil are used for nutrition, and for offerings, therefore we assume
that it can be considered a good edible oil."
It was used in temple
offerings and for royal feasts. Waetzoldt agrees that flax is cultivated in the winter, while giF-3 is cultivated in the summer. Flax farmers are called engar-gu, while sesame farmers are called engar-giE-3.
"The thing that strikes me most about sesame in Mesopotamia is that the
plant had no proper name, only '(the) oil plant' in both Sumerian and
Akkadian, and that this compound term was universally adopted in points
west. This shows that the plant was not known by any name before it was
received by the Sumerians, in Mesopotamia, and the Sumerian-Akkadian
equivalence of terms makes it not unlikely that speakers of both languages
encountered it at about the same time" (W. Doyle, pers. comm.).
Further
support for sesame as the original oil crop is the fact that the universal
word for oil, taila, in India, is derived from tila (see INDIAN ORIGIN OF
SESAME AND ITS ETHNOBOTANY, above).
Even in Swahili, the word ufuta means
both oil and sesame (A. Scheven, Dept. of Linguistics, Univ. Illinois,
pers. comm.).
Further details concerning the relationship of sesame to the
etymology of the word 'oil' will appear in a forthcoming publication.
URARTU: THE KINGDOM OF VAN
The kingdom of Urartu, a northern neighbor of Mesopotamia, presents
evidence that is highly indicative of Assyrian practice. Sesame is known
to have been grown intensively during the Iron Age on the plateau of Urartu
(Ararat), ancient Armenia (900 to 600 B.C.); the Urartians processed the
seeds for oil (Kassabian, 1957; Piotrovskii, 1950; 1952).
Is Fe-gig-% sesame or flax?
of storm, one of the three major deities of the Urartian pantheon. Karmir
Blur was an important administrative and economic center of the state of
Urartu, that flourished from the 9th c. until its destruction by invading
Scythians and the Median invasion in 585 B.C.
Teishebaini's primary function was as a storehouse and processing center of agricultural produce, as
well as a regional citadel or fortress. The size of the citadel reflects
bulk storage of crops. Excavations reveal an oil press workroom, 30.9 m
long and 3.9 m wide [Room 2 of their plan]. Stone mortars and pestles were
found on the north side of the room. The workroom's east and south corners
each held a basin-shaped stone container, 79 cm in diameter, carved from a
block of tufa. The basin joined a cylindrical pipe made of the same stone,
that allowed waste liquid to drain out beyond the citadel.
It seems
reasonable to assume (with Piotrovskii, 1950) that the basin or tub was
used to moisten the sesame seeds before working them. Sesame seeds brought
to the oil press were first washed in the basin to remove dust and soil,
then soaked to ease the removal of the tegument. Stone mortars, pestles
and graters were found that were used to remove the seed coats after the
seeds had been soaked and dried.
The workrooms were furnished with fireplaces for parching the seed.
Conical basalt rocks were used for the final pressing of the oil, expressed
from a thick, viscous residue of sesame paste that was previously poured
into baskets and macerated coarsely. The abundance of pressed cake residues, and the size of the stone vat suggest the large quantity of sesame
oil processed at Teishebaini.
A wooden press for squeezing the oil must have been burned during the
fire that destroyed the citadel, and has left no trace (Piotrovskii, 1966).
Both the area where the casks of sesame oil were stored and the pressroom
bear marks of a fire, during which the clay bricks of the wall not only
acquired a red color, but were also partly fused (Piotrovskii, 1966).
Three areas of the citadel, on the northwest (N. 1-3) were devoted to
the preparation of sesame oil. Large (ca. 1.5 m tall) clay storage jars
were found in storerooms of a workshop consisting of over 150 rooms on the
ground floor, where wine, beer and sesame oil were processed (Piotrovskii,
1950; 1952).
Stores of sesame were found in four huge clay jars, placed
together in a small pit (N. 7) on the north side of the citadel (Piotrovskii, 1966). Cakes of pressed sesame, the solid residue that remains after
seeds are crushed for oil, were also uncovered.
The Urartian empire is known for its innovations in engineering works.
Extensive aqueducts, irrigation canals and channels carried snow meltwater
from the mountains to fields in the valleys by an intricate network. This
fact, along with the plant remains of cereals and fruits, suggests that
agriculture, arboriculture and viticulture were highly developed there by
the Iron Age (Kassabian, 1957).
The only Urartian plant remains identified to date have been found at
Karmir Blur. Plant remains indicate that the principal cereals cultivated
were barley and both einkorn and emmer wheat. Remains of rye and millet
also occur. Sesame was also found in mixed stores of grain, among barley
and seeds of two legumes: chickpea and lentil.
It seems that roasted
grains and seeds were thought to be delicacies, as shown by ethnographic
parallels (Piotrovskii, 1950).
In the 7th c. B.C. the Urartian city of Teishebaini (Karmir Blur) was a
processing center for vegetable oil.
Sesame seeds were excavated at
Teishebaini, (Armenian, Karmir Blur), on the outskirts of present-day
Yerevan. The site's ancient name is in honor of Teisheba, god of war and
Urartian agriculture illustrates a successful adaptation of a people to
a severe environment. The extreme climatic conditions of the Armenian plateau made artificial irrigation a necessity for the development of the
intensive agriculture, horticulture and viticulture that resulted from
Is Ee-gi3-3 sesame or flax?
Bedigian
these efforts (Harutyunian, 1964).
Their massive irrigation works and
innovative technology permitted the entire landscape to be watered and
devoted to crops. Excavations at Toprak-kale, just east of the citadel at
Van, have yielded only a few agricultural tools: iron blades of plows or
hoes, sickles, pitchforks, and remains of grain (incidentally, unstudied to
this day) and fragments of huge storage jars, intended obviously for
storage of grain and liquids, on which hieroglyphic and cuneiform marks
indicated their capacities (Harutyunian, 1964).
SOUTWRN ARABIA: HAJAR BIN HUMEID
Reconstruction of the agriculture of ancient southern Arabia (5th c.
B.C.) was established from seed impressions from within pots that left
imprints in the clay vessels. Sesame is included among the list of useful
plants identified in this manner (van Beek, 1969).
DISCUSSION
The entire archaeological seed record from Mesopotamia is distressingly
small. Sesame seeds might be absent because the collection is not sufficiently large. Sampling for plant remains was never done systematically
from a wide variety of site types. Excavators have only recently incorporated the assistance of archaeobotanists or ethnobotanists on their study
teams.
The absence of archaeological finds of sesame seeds in Mesopotamia
might also be explained by their particular chemical composition and structure that could result in poor preservation. Cereals, such as wheat and
barley, and flax, may retain their form upon carbonization better than
sesame. The results of carbonization of sesame and flax, experimentally,
in our laboratory, showed that seeds of sesame were more friable than flax.
Carbonized sesame seeds flaked and disintegrated when rubbed between the
thumb and the index fingers, whereas carbonized flax seeds remained intact.
These experimental differences in preservation might also occur under
natural conditions. In support of this hypothesis, it should be noted that
the reported remains (Vats, 1940; Piotrovskii, 1950) are found in bulk, and
not as single seeds.
We think that the failure to find excavated sesame in ancient Iraq is
due to circumstances of excavation: sesame seeds are relatively small and
fragile. Sesame (like barley) was a field-crop, probably processed outside
the towns for flour or oil. We can assume this since it was delivered to
the towns as oil, in the texts. We need not expect to find sesame seed
among the finds of town-excavations, any more than we expect to find large
deposits of barley-grain, which are also noticeably absent (W. Doyle, pers.
comm. )
.
\.
A fragmentary Akkadian omen text that mentions sama\n~ammiiin association with ants in a storage bin [KAR 376 r. 19 (SB Alu) cited in CAD,
unpublished manuscript, p. 514 b] is noteworthy.
Its fragmentary nature
prevents conclusive interpretation, but its context seized our attention
Is He-giE-3 sesame or flax?
because sesame oil contains the lignans sesamin and sesamolin that are
powerful natural insecticides or insecticidal synergists (Bedigian,
Seigler and Harlan, 1984). Also in this regard, a candy manufacturer in
haZva
Khartoum told DB that he often wondered why ants avoided the
(tahneeya) candy made of crushed sesame seeds with sugar, stored in his
warehouses, although they were strongly attracted to the other sweets in
his inventory (Hassan Daoud, owner of Saad Sweets, pers. comm., 1980).
The estimation of the rising of Sirius given by Kraus (1968) seems late
by our calculation. If one takes precession into consideration, the date
for the rising of Sirius ca. 3000 B.C. should have been June 22 (W, Doyle,
pers. comm.; J. Kaler, Dept. of Astronomy, Univ. Illinois, pers. comm.).
This fact further favors identification of sesame as the summer-planted
oilseed.
No sesame pollen has been found archaeologically, except for a single
grain reported by Woosley (1976).
Mindful of possible contamination from
modern cultivation, the find of a single pollen grain cannot be viewed as
substantial evidence.
SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS
The evidence indicates that the sesame crop is of Indian origin and has
some archaeological presence at Harappa. It is well documented in Armenia,
Arabia, Anatolia and Greece by the 1st millennium B.C.
Earlier evidence from Mesopotamia is linguistic only. Cuneiform texts
confirm the seasonal separation of winter-grown barley and summer-sown EegiE-3. The possibility of transfer of the Dravidian word and the crop eZZu
from the Indian subcontinent needs support from philologists to establish a
connection with the Mesopotamian word eZZu.
Is He-giH-f sesame or flax?
Bedigian
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
Dales, G.
1971
William Doyle, instructor of Mesopotamian Civilization, Harvard
University Extension, 1976-77, inspired fascination for that subject in DB.
He contributed suggestions concerning the cuneiform texts during the
rewriting of this manuscript, and translated two pages from Hortu8
Malabaricus.
Abdel Halim M.
Hamid provided assistance with the Arabic
sources.
Donald B. Lawrence, Professor Emeritus of Botany, Univeristy of
Minnesota, read drafts of this manuscript and made helpful suggestions that
expanded the scope of the work.
Professor Erica Reiner, editor-in-chief of the Assyrian Dictionary
of the Oriental Institute, University of Chicago, generously granted permission to study the articles about ~ama6ns'ammZ and ' s ' m u in the galley
proofs of volume
x.
Is He-giH-3 sesame or flax?
"Early human contacts from the Persian Gulf through
Baluchistan and Southern Afghanistan", in W.G. McGinnies,
B. J. Goldman & P. Paylore (eds ) , ~ o o d , fiber and the arid
lands, 145-170. University of Arizona Press, Tucson.
.
Delougaz, P.
1940
The Temple Oval at Khafajah. Oriental Institute Publication
53. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.
Donner, H. & Rbllig, W.W.
1964
~anauniiische und Aramaische Inschriften, 2.
Wiesbaden.
Dossin, G.
1933
Harrassowitz,
Lettres de la premiere dynastie babylonienne, I. Musee du
Louvre, Dgpartement des Antiquitgs Orientales, Textes
Cun&iformes, 17. Geuthner, Paris.
Dymock, W., Warden, C.J.H. & Hooper, D.
Pharmacographia Indica. Vol. 3. Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner &
1893
Co. Ltd. , London.
BIBLIOGRAPHY
Bedigian, D. & Harlan, J.R.
"Nuba agriculture and ethnobotany, with particular reference
1983
to sesame and sorghum", in Economic Botany 37, 384-395.
1985
Bedigian
"Evidence for cultivation of sesame in the ancient world",
submitted to Economic Botany.
Ebeling, E.
1923
Eckey, E.W.
1954
Keilschrifttexte aus Assur Religiiisen Inhalts, II.
schaftliche
Verbffentlichungen der
deutschen
Gesellschaft, 34.
J. C. Hinrichs, Leipzig.
Vegetable Fats and Oils.
WissenOrient-
Reinhold Publ. Co., New York.
Bedigian, D., Seigler, S. & Harlan, J.R.
"Sesamin, sesamolin and the origin of sesame", in Biochemical
1984
Systematics and Ecology. In press.
Fairservis, W.A.
1983
"The script of the Indus Valley civilization", in Scientific
American 248, 58-66.
Bedigian, D., Smyth, C.A. & Harlan, J.R.
"Patterns of morphological variation in sesame", submitted to
1984
Economic Botany.
Feigin, S.I.
1979
Burrow, T.
1947
"Dravidian Studies vim, in Bulletin of the Schooi! of Oriental
and African studies 12, 142-143.
Burrow, T. & Emeneau, M.B.
Dravidian Etymological Dictionary.
1961
CAD
Finkelstein, J.J.
Late Old Babylonian documents and letters.
Yale Oriental
1972
Series, 13. Yale University Press, New Haven.
Frankena, R.
1968
The Assyrian Dictionary
Chaturvedi, M. & B.N. Tiwari
Hindi-English Dictionary.
1970
Clay, A.T.
1919
Clarendon Press, Oxford.
National Publishing House, Delhi.
Neo-Babylonian Letters from Erech. Yale Oriental Series,
Baylonian Texts, 3. Yale University Press, New Haven.
Legal and administrative texts of the reign of Samsu-iluna.
Yale Oriental Series. Babylonian texts, 12. Yale University
Press, New Haven.
Gelb, I.J.
1970
Briefe aus der Leidener Sammlung.
Altbabylonische Briefe in
Umschrift und Gbersetzung, 3. Brill, Leiden.
"Makkan and Meluhha in early Mesopotamian sources", in Revue
dlAssyriologie 64, 1-8.
Is He-giH-3 sesame or flax?
Bedigian
Goetze, A.
1956
Gupta, S.M.
1971
Annual of the American School of Oriental
Dept. Antiq. Govt. Iraq and ASOR, New Haven.
Plant Myths and Traditions i n India.
Helbaek, H.
1966
The Atlas o f Early Man.
Keiser, C.E.
1917
E. J. Brill, Leiden.
Harutyunian, N.V.
1964
Urartian Agriculture and Stockbreeding
Nauk Armenian SSR. Yerevan.
Hawkes, J.
1976
Kassabian, Z.
1957
"Production of vegetable oil in Urartu", in ( A r m . )
~ k a d .Nauk Arm. SSR 4, 107-116.
Laws of Eshnunna.
Research.
Is Xe-giH-f sesame or flax?
Bedigian
Letters and Contracts from Erech written i n the NeoBabylonian Period. Babylonian Inscriptions in the Collection of
James B. Nies (BIN) 1.
(in Russian).
Ixv.
Yale University Press, New Haven.
Akad.
Kirtikar, K.R., Basu, B.D & An, I.C.S.
Indian Medicinal Plants. Vol. 3. 1975 reprint. Lalit Mohan
1918
Basu, Allahabad.
St. Martin's Press, New York.
Kraus, F.R.
1964
"The plant remains from Nimrud", in M.E.L.
Mallowan, Nimrud
Dodd, Mead &
Briefe aus dem British Museum (CT 43 und 4 4 ) . Altbabylonische
Briefe in Umschrift und ubersetzung, x. E.J. Brill, Leiden.
and i t s Remains, 2 , Appendix I, pp. 613-618.
1968
Co., New York.
"Plant collecting, dry-farming and irrigation agriculture in
prehistoric Deh Luran", in F. Hole, K.V. Flannery & J.A.
h
Neely (eds.), prehistory and human ecology of the ~ e Luran
plain (Memoirs of the Museum of Anthropology,
1. Univ.
Michigan, Ann Arbor), 383-426.
Herodotus
1928
Hilprecht, H.
History.
G. Rawlinson, trans.
Tudor Publ., New York.
Unpubl. OB tablet 1883:25 and r. 15. Hilprecht Sammlung,
Jena Univ., DDR.
Hoffner, H.A.
1974
Aliments Hethaeorwn. American Oriental Series 55. American
Oriental Society, New Haven.
Hornell, J.
1941
"Sea-trade in early times", in Antiquity 15, 233-256.
Indian Agricultural Research Institute
Handbook o f Agriculture. New Delhi.
1961
Jacobsen, T.
1958
Salinity
and
Irrigation
Agriculture
in
Antiquity.
Reprinted 1982: Bibliotheca Mesopotamica 12. Undena, Malibu.
"Sesam im Alten Mesopotamien", in Journal of the American
Oriental Society 88, 112-119.
;
Kuiper, F.J.B.
~ t u d i a Indologica.
Festschrift fur
1955
Orientalische Studien N.S. 3.
W.
KirfeZ.
Bonner
Lamberg-Karlovsky, C.C.
1972
"Trade mechanisms in Indus-Mesopotamian interrelations", in
Journal of the American Oriental Society 92, 222-229.
Landsberger, B.
1949
"Jahreszeiten im Sumerisch-Akkadischen", in Journal of Near
Eastern Studies 8, 248-297.
Law, J.T. (ed.)
circa 1892 Law's Grocer's Manual. Gilbert and Rivington, Ltd., London,
(Cited after E. David, Spices, Salt and Aromatics i n the
English Kitchen, 1. Penguin Books, Harmondsworth, UK, 1970).
Levey , M.
1959
Chemistry and Chemical Technology i n Ancient Mesopotamia.
Elsevier Publ., London.
Manilial, K.S.
1980
"The implication of Hortus Malabaricus with the botany and
history of peninsular India", in The Botany and History of
Hortus Malabaricus. A. A. Balkema, Rotterdam.
John, C. M., Narayana G.V. & Seshadri C.R.
1950
"The wild gingelly of Malabar", in ~ a d r a s Agricultural
~ournaZ37, 47-50.
Manilial, K.S., Suresh, C.R. & Sivarajan, V.V.
"A reinvestigation of the plants described in Rheede's "Hortus
1977
Malabaricus" -- an introductory report", in Tmon 26, 549-550.
Joshi, A.B.
1961
Martin, J.H., Leonard, W.H., & Stamp, D.L.
principles o f FieldCrop~roduction.3rd.ed., TheMacmillanCo.,
1976
New York.
Sesamum. A Monograph.
Hyderabad.
Indian Central Oil Seeds Committee,
Is He-giH-T sesame or flax?
Bedigian
Masica, C.
1978
"Aryan and Non-Aryan elements in north Indian agriculture", in
Aryan and Non-Aryan in India. Michigan Papers on South and
South East Asia (Deshpande and Hook, eds, Center for South
South East Asia, Ann Arbor), 14, 55-151.
Mehra, K.L.
1967
"History of sesame in India and its cultural significance", in
Vishveshvaranand Indological Journal 5, 93-107.
Sampson, H.C.
Cultivated Plants of the British Empire and the Anglo-Egyptian
1936
Sudan. Kew Bulletin of Miscellaneous Information. Additional
Series XII.
Simmons, S.D.
Early Old Babylonian ~ocuments. Yale Oriental Series vol. XIV.
1978
Yale University Press, New Haven.
Stol, M.
1984.
Menzel, D.H.
1964
Is Fe-giH-T sesame or flax?
Bedigian
A ~ i e l dGuide to the Stars and Planets. Houghton Mifflin Co.,
"Some notes on sesame". Manuscript submitted for meeting of
Sumerian Agriculture Group, July 1984.
Boston.
Monier-Willaims, M.
Sanskrit-English Dictionary.
1964
Oxford University Press, New Delhi.
Mookerji, R.K.
1912
~ndianShipping. A History of the Sea-Borne Trade and Maritime
Longmans,
Activity of the Indians from the Earliest Times.
Green and Co., Calcutta.
Murray, J.A.H. (ed.)
oxford English Dictionary.
1961
Nayar, N.M.
1970
&
Clarendon Press, Oxford.
Mehra, K.L.
"Sesame: its uses, botany, cytogenetics and origin", in Economic
Botany 24, 20-31.
Pinches, T.G.
1899
Cuneiform Texts from Babylonian Tablets in the British Museum,
Vol.VII1, 8e:lO. British Museum, London.
Piotrovskii, B.B.
Kamnir Blur I,. (in Russian). Yerevan, Armenian SSR.
1950
1952
Karmir Blur II.
1966
I2 Regno di Van Urartu. (in Italian;
Edizioni delllAteneo,Roma.
(in Russian).
Yerevan, Armenian SSR.
M. Salvini, Trans.).
Thompson, R.C.
Cuneiform Texts from Babylonian Tablets in the British Museum,
1903
Vol. XVII, 39:41ff. British Museum, London.
Van Beek, G.W.
Hajar Bin Humeid.
1969
Vats, M.S.
1940
Johns Hopkins Press, Baltimore.
Excavations at Harappa. Manager of Publications, Delhi.
Veerhoff, 0.
"Time and temperature relations of germinating flax", in American
1940
Journal of Botany 27, 225-231.
Vishnu-Mittre,
1977
"The changing economy in ancient India", in C.A. Reed (ed.),
Origins of Agriculture, 569-588. Mouton, The Hague.
Von Soden, W.
1965
Article eZlu, in ~kkadisches Handwiirterbuch, I, 204-205.
Otto Harrassowitz, Wiesbaden.
Waetzoldt, H.
1983
"Leinen", Reallexikon der Assyriologie, VI, 583-594.
1984
"61pflanzen und Pflanzeniile in 3. Jahrtausend". Manuscript submitted for meeting of Sumerian Agriculture Group, July 1984.
Webstar's Third New International dictionary of the English Language.
Prakash, 0.
1961
Food and Drinks in Ancient India. Munshi Ram Manohar Lal, Delhi.
Ratnagar, S.
1981
Encounters: The Westerly Trade of the Harappan Civilization.
1967
Weidner, E.
1967
Oxford University Press, Delhi.
Rheede tot Drakestein, Henricus van.
Horti Malabarici. vol. ix:105-107.
1689
J. van Someren, Amsterdam.
Weiss, E.A.
1971
P. B. Gove, ed.
G. and C. Merriam Co., Springfield, MA.
Gestim-DarsteZZungen auf Babylonischen Tontafeln. Sitzungsberichte der Oesterreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften in
Wien, 254111, 19 no. 10.
Castor, Sesame, Safflower.
Barnes & Noble, New York.
Bedigian
Wheeler, M.
1968
Woosley, A.I.
1976
Is Ee-giH-3 sesame or flax?
A RENTAL OF TOOLS USED IN PROCESSING SESAME
The Indus CiviZixation.
Cambridge.
3rd ed., Cambridge University Press,
M. St01
and
(Am8tePdam)
PoZZen Studies in ArchaeoZogy: Correlation of the Prehistoric
PoZZen and CuZturaZ Sequences of the Deh Luran Plain, Southwestern Iran. Ph.D. diss., Univ. California, Los Angeles.
Zeist, W. van, & Bakker-Heeres, J.A.H.
"Evidence for linseed cultivation before 6000 B.C.", J o u m Z of
1975
Science 2, 215-219.
R.M. Whiting*
f Chicago)
Tools used for extracting sesame oil are listed in only a few Old
Babylonian texts: BIN 7 218, YOS 12 342 and A. 32086.
They are discussed
at the end of Stol's article on sesame in this volume (p. 122).
Here, we
publish A. 32086, a text from the Tablet Collection of the Oriental
Institute of the University of Chicago.
We thank the Oriental Institute
for giving permission to publish this text.
Transliteration: (Obv. )
giF
3 1 e-sf-tu X.giH
itu.4.kam
in.hun.gd
10 igi dutu-mu-ux-ta-a2
lugal
I Ckla-an-nu-urn 3a fa-ha-ti
1 na4 e-ru-fi 1.
4 ki i-din--dna-na-a
5 P a-wi-it-ja
6 a-na
d itu.4.kam
8 4 silag 1.giH
11 igi i-bi--dutu
(Rev.) 9 1.Bg.e
12 kixib 1G.inim.ma.bi.meF
16 si. bi
Translation: Awilja rented for four months from Iddin-Nana: one kannurn
for extracting, one grindstone for oil, one pestle for oil. (As) rent of 4
Witness: SamaX-muztal; witness:
months he will deliver four q2 of oil.
1bbi-Samaz. They applied the seals of the witnesses.
Month VII, day 30, year of king Samsu-iluna
...
"The obverse and reverse as well as the upper, left, and lower edges are
covered with seal impressions. I did not copy them because: 1) there are
at least two different seals (although apparently only one of them was
inscribed);
2) none of the impressions is complete; 3) the inscription
was impressed two lines at a time and I cannot reconstruct the proper
sequence of lines in the inscription, nor can I be certain that I can see
all the lines of the inscription; 4) the two more or less complete lines
What I can see is three
that I can see don't make much sense to me..
divine names on three separate lines, EN. [
1, d ~ [ ~ 1, ~ d . ~ [ ~ 1, ~
plus what is apparently a name, #a-ri- x -AN, followed on the next line by
KA NIR KA/SAG [XI. Next to a standing figure at the edge of the design is
~ U T Ud~-a. The x in the name is a rectangular sign that could be MA, BA4,
GIS, or 13. Of course, it looks slightly different in each impression.
Neither of the names of the witnesses listed in the text is to be found in
the seal inscription."
(R.M. Whiting, letter of 13 August, 1985)
...
*The copy and description of the tablet are by Whiting, the edition and
comments by Stol. We would like to thank R.M. Whiting for responding most
promptly to our plea for help [Ed.].
.
St01 & Whiting
A rental of tools
The man who rents the tools, Awilja (or: Awelija), is known from many
other texts, dated to Samsu-iluna years 7 to 8.
From the evidence
collected by D. Charpin, BiOr 38 (1982) 535f. "Archives L: AwTliya,
r Z J iblinwn", he appears to deal mainly in sesame and oil. More texts probably centering around this man are: Riftin 1937 no. 8; AUAM 73.2216
(Andrews University, unpublished; no. 555 in M. Sigrist's forthcoming
edition); cf. AbB 9 no. 274 rev. 4'.
Our contractants, Awelija and Iddin-Nana, are 60th witnesses in YOS 12
336:18-19.
The year-name is unfinished but should be one of the first ten years
of Samsu-iluna.