Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology

Editors: Claire Smith

Grapes: Origins and Development

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0465-2_2178

Basic Species Information

It is difficult to discern the true wild ancestor of cultivated grape (Vitis vinifera L.) because the Mediterranean Basin has a wide variety of wild forms. These include escapees and seed-propagated weedy types growing in natural habitat, occurring mainly in disturbed surroundings and cultivated clones of the grapevine (Zohary & Hopf 2001: 152). Recent genetic studies have proven that cultivated grapevines growing in different regions have genetic diversity and heterozygosity which can only have been established through an influx of genes from nearby wild V. sylvestris populations (Imazio et al. 2006: 1009). Vitis sylvestris C. C. Gmelin is now considered to be the wild race of the cultivated grape and is indigenous to southern Europe, the Near East, and the southern Caspian belt (Zohary & Hopf 2001: 152).

Vitis vinifera (L.) (grape) is the sole Mediterranean representative of the genus Vitis (Zohary & Hopf 2001: 155). The plants are monosexual with the...

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Further Reading

  1. Borgongino, M. 1999. Suburban agriculture, in A. Ciarallo & E. De Carolis (ed.) Pompeii: life in a Roman town:89-91. Milan: Electa.Google Scholar
  2. Ciarallo, A., 2000. Gardens of Pompeii. Rome: L'Erma di Bretschneider.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of ArchaeologyUniversity College LondonLondonUK