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2,600 year old Phoenician Wine Press Discovered In Lebanon

posted on: Oct 15, 2021

By: Anthony Bayyouk / Arab America Contributing writer


If you don’t know about the Phoenicians, they are an ancient civilization that resided in the Levant region of the middle east, which is modern-day Lebanon. It’s said that Phoenicians emerged in the region around 2500bc The Phoenicians prospered from trade and manufacturing goods such as wine. Many of their old trading ports have been discovered around the entire Mediterranean. 

The discovery has so many archaeologists excited to discover more. Archaeologists know the Phoenicians were winemakers and this discovery proves that. The delivery also gives archaeologists hope that there is more to discover about the Phoenicians. If this wine production survived over thousands of years what else could there be to find. Phoenicians were no cavemen, they had a fully functioning society. There were jobs, employees, markets, government, and so on.  

When a discovery is made it opens up so many more questions to archaeologists. Such as who taught them to make the wine? Where was the wine exported to? Where are the vineyards the grapes came from? and so on. History is a big part of Middle east culture. Many nations in the Middle East may have just declared independence 60 or 70 years but their existence goes back thousands of years. 

With over 5,000 years of record history, Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, and various Arab dynasties have shaped Lebanon’s history and culture. These discoveries are important because it answers questions as to why we do certain things the way we do. It also can lead to further discoveries. 

The site where the wine press was found is called the Tell el-Burak. From what we know it is connected to the oldest winery in Lebanon. The press dates back 2600 years which is known for being the bronze age where the economy and many industries were booming. The Phoenicians were known to be great traders mostly due to the fertile Levant region and their location in the Mediterranean.

The press could hold up to 1,200 gallons of crushed fruit, about the same amount as wine presses today. Most of the wine was sold abroad. There was always an implication that the Phoenicians had a big influence on wine but the discovery confirmed it.  

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