This volume presents contemporary evidence scientific, archaeological, botanical, textual, and historical for major revisions in our understanding of winemaking in antiquity. Among the subjects covered are the domestication of the Vinifera grape, the wine trade, the iconography of ancient wine, and the analytical and archaeological challenges posed by ancient wines. The essayists argue that wine existed as long ago as 3500 BC, almost half a millennium earlier than experts believed. Discover named these findings among the most important in 1991. Featuring the work of 23 internationally known scholars and writers, the book offers the first wide ranging treatment of wine in the early history of western Asia and the Mediterranean. Comprehensive and accessible while providing full documentation, it is sure to serve as a catalyst for future research.