[Sca-cooks] sugar and rice in Iberia
lilinah at earthlink.net
Wed Jul 4 10:30:06 PDT 2007
>711? Rice and sugar in Europe, even if you include Iberia, that
>early? That is much earlier than I had gathered from earlier
The Muslims - a combined Arab and Maghribi Amazight (Berber) force -
began their invasion of the Iberian peninsula in 711. They defeated
the Visigoths, whose own people were not fond of them, and there are
reports that in some places the populace opened the city gates to
admits the Muslims.
>I'm surprised they wouldn't have spread north from there
>within centuries of then. I got the impression from earlier
>discussions that both came in from the east, not from the southwest.
>Or is this complicated by the fact that while known in Spain they
>weren't really widely used because they were still items that had to
>be imported from the east?
I rather doubt they were growing sugar and rice quite as early as the
initial invasion - folks need a little time to settle down. But
around 750 'abd al-Rachman arrived and became the ruler of the rather
cultured region of al-Andalus.
He was the last surviving member of the Umayyad dynasty, chosen by
the last of the Rightly Guided Ones who succeeded Muhammed to rule
Dar al-Islam from the capital of the Caliphate in Damascus. The
Umayyads were assassinated and otherwise murdered by the 'Abbasids
who decided to take over. 'abd al-Rachman's mother was Amazight and
it took him a few years to make it to his mother's family, who were a
bit uncomfortable with him, fearing his presence would draw the wrath
of the 'Abbasids, who moved the capital city to Baghdad. But he was
welcomed in al-Andalus
So it is possible that sugar and rice were grown in the Iberian
Peninsula within the 8th century, and they were there by the 9th.
Another crop - not food related - was also brought around this time:
Urtatim (that's err-tah-TEEM)
the persona formerly known as Anahita
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