Prelude / Preludio

The Role of Precooked Staples in Everyday Life in Antiquity: Some Documentary Evidences for the Case of χόνδρος


Different species belonging to the genus Triticum, and, to a lesser extent, Hordeum, can be processed yielding a product that the ancient Greeks called χόνδρος. In this paper the production methods of χόνδροc in circum-Mediterranean countries during Antiquity will be described.  Several documentary sources attest a very ancient use of χόνδρος that we find mentioned in Graeco-Egyptian papyri as early as the third century B.C. These documents have been analyzed in parallel with Greek literary sources. In particular, attention has been centred on some passages of Greek comedy (Aristophanes and other authors) that echo a debate born in Rome in the second century AD around the origin and uses of χόνδρος.


Chondros; athera; wheat; barley; papyri

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