, Volume 11, Issue 1-2, pp 17-22
Date: 10 May 2014

Food remains from Bronze Age-Archondiko and Mesimeriani Toumba in northern Greece?

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Finds of fragmented cereal grain from the sites of Mesimeriani Toumba and Archondiko in Macedonia, northern Greece, dated to 2100-1900 cal. B.C. provide the basis for the experimental investigation of the effects of a) fragmentation before and after charring, b) treatment of grain with water and c) charring conditions, on the morphology of the fracture surface. The experiments indicate that it is possible to distinguish fragmentation before and after charring and, with low charring temperatures, it is possible to distinguish prior treatment of grain with hot water. Comparison of the archaeological grain with the grain produced experimentally suggests that both archaeologieal finds represent ground grain, and at least those from Mesimeriani correspond to some type of wheat bulgur, probably intended for human consumption. These finds mark the prehistoric origins of a foodstuff widely used in Mediterranean cuisine. Further experimentation along the lines followed here would be desirable.

Received January 8, 2002 / Accepted April 1, 2002