By Signe Isager, Jens Erik Skydsgaard
The preliminary concentration of old Greek Agriculture is firmly at the paintings of agriculture right, the instruments and the procedure, the vegetation cultivated and the animals reared. Thereafter, Isager and Skydsgaard specialise in the location of agriculture within the society of gods and males within the Greek city-states . The arguments of old Greek Agriculture are reinforced by way of the book's shut adherence to modern Greek assets, literary in addition to archaeological, warding off using later in addition to Roman fabric.
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Extra info for Ancient Greek Agriculture: An Introduction
21 Pulse was an important part of the daily diet and undoubtedly played a considerable role, being rich in protein and thereby covering a very large deficiency in a fare where meat was not plentiful. It is a matter of debate, however, whether pulse should be classified as part of gardening rather than agriculture in the proper sense of the word; it must be assumed that over a very modest area many attempted to satisfy their requirements by intensive growing. This applies to a number of vegetables, the growing of which is described in the seventh book of Historia Plantarum.
The ground is broken up in the spring before grass and weeds have seeded so that by ploughing down before the spreading of seeds they can serve as green manure. The sun dries and makes the soil friable in the course of the summer when the earth should be ploughed as often as possible (hoti pleistakis). At the beginning of the rainy season in the autumn sowing with the most plentiful grain takes place in the rich soil, less so in inferior, but there is no reference to hoeing in of the seed. 1. Here he distinguishes between the treatment of light and heavy types of soil, and digging or hoeing (skaptein) is mentioned as an alternative to ploughing.
A. Snodgrass (1977; 1987) maintains – together with others – that we are dealing with an essential limitation of farming in favour of extensive cattle-breeding, in other words, from a certain evolutionist point of view, a cultural step backwards. 11 It is, however, still an open question whether the collapse of the Mycenaean culture as an economic 11. Snodgrass 1977 maintained that there was a drastic decline in the population in the post-Mycenaean time and an even more drastic increase of perhaps 4 per cent yearly during the geometric period.