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Water of Life: A History of Wine-Distilling And Spirits; 500 BC - AD 2000 [Hardcover]

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Item description for Water of Life: A History of Wine-Distilling And Spirits; 500 BC - AD 2000 by C. Anne Wilson...

This important book looks at the entire history of distilling in the Middle East and Europe from the earliest experiments by the Pythagorean alchemists of Ptolomaic Egypt in the fourth century BC to the commerical production of spirits to drink in the British Isles to the year 2000.

Ms. Wilson has explored byways of early history that have been little noticed by previous scholars. She links the art of distilling to alchemical practice; to the Dionysian cults of ancient Greece and Rome; to the development of the art by the Gnostic mystic Christian sects (who greatly influenced the Coptic church in lower Egypt and Ethiopia); to the research of the Persians and Arabs; to the preservation of the art by various heretic cults in western Europe, such as the Bogomils and Cathars and, of course, the Templars; into more mainstream development by the medieval and Renaissance alchemists; before comparative relaxation into the domestic history of distilling in England for the manufacture of strong liquor and the making of medicinal and perfumed waters by members of the landed gentry.

There are twelve chapters divided into three sections. The first section consists of: The Ancient and Early Medieval World; The Eastern Mediterranean Region; The Later Middle Ages; Western Europe; From Early Modern Times to AD2000: The British Isles.

While dealing extensively with the mystical, cultish and religious origins of distilling, as well as its links to early science, Ms Wilson looks closely at all forms of distilling in the British Isles. This includes the manufacture of spiritous liquors such as whisky, gin and others, and the central part played in country house domestic life by cordial waters and other distillations manufactured with great skill by generations of housewives as home medicine and perfumery. The book does not treat, at any length, the history of spiritous liquors, including brandy, on mainland Europe.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   310
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.5" Width: 5.83" Height: 1.18"
Weight:   1.32 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Oct 31, 2006
Publisher   Prospect Books (UK)
ISBN  1903018463  
ISBN13  9781903018460  

Availability  0 units.

More About C. Anne Wilson

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! C. Anne Wilson was for many years in charge of the special collection of cookery books at the Brotherton Library in Leeds, England. She is the author of Food and Drink in Britain and many other studies of British food history.

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > New & Used Textbooks > Social Sciences > Archaeology
2Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > Drinks & Beverages > Spirits
3Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > Drinks & Beverages > Wine > Wine & Winemaking
4Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > Gastronomy > History
5Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > General
6Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Social Sciences > Sociology > General

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