Israel may be home to an arid desert with not much scope for agriculture, but ancient Israelis had sure been putting their knowledge to good use to make alcohol.
According to Times of Israel, archaeologists have discovered a 1,600-year-old wine press in the Ramat Negev region of the country. During digs by a team of Israel Authority archaeologists, a large Byzantine-era structure was discovered, which is being dated to about fourth century AD. The remains of a wine press were found housed within the structure.
Excavation director Tali Gini thinks that the structure was actually used by a Roman army unit in Israel, that was then part of the Roman Empire. “The southern Negev is known as an agricultural region which grew grapes for wine that was exported to the far reaches of the Byzantine empire,” she says.
Tali also says that while it’s unclear why the press was abandoned, it could well have been because of a plague that hit the region in the middle of the sixth century, and bright down the demand of wine in southern regions....