Photograph by Supreme Council of Antiquities, AP
Published January 3, 2014
The stunning tomb of an ancient Egyptian brewer has been found on the west bank of the Nile. Paintings on the walls depict scenes of worship and daily life from 3,000 years ago, reports a Japanese archaeology team. (See "Tombs of Ancient Egypt.")
The tomb belonged to Khonso Im-Heb, who was head of granaries and beer-brewing for the worship of the Egyptian mother goddess, Mut.
In December 2007, the Japanese researchers, led by Jiro Kondo of Waseda University in Tokyo, began excavating in El Khokha, near the royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings.
The area had recently been cleared of modern houses during the removal of Qurna village, just to the north, and was already known as a locale for tombs of ancient nobles.
While clearing the forecourt to a tomb numbered TT47, which had belonged to an 18th-dynasty royal official, the team discovered the entrance to Khonso Im-Heb's T-shaped tomb.
The walls of the brewer's tomb are decorated with rare, beautifully preserved scenes of daily life, such as interactions between the brewer and his wife and children, and depictions of their ritual practices.
Egypt's Minister of Antiquities, Mohamed Ibrahim, has ordered the site to be secured during the remaining excavations and would like to restore the location for eventual tourism.
...and cue Sam Calgione and Dr. Pat to translate the hieroglyphics into a new DFH Ancient Ales project...
There is a theory that humans transitioned from hunter gatherer nomadic tribes to farming communities because we discovered how to make beer.
@Rico Cottrell Probably true. Studies have shown that the tribes that learned how to smoke pot just sat around and watched it grow.
Both approaches involve plants. Beer comes from grain, which is grown, just like pot. Also, both affect the cognitive process and have their own version of a high (e.g., drunk, stoned).
So, there must be something else that I am missing here that helped the transition to farming communities.
Maybe grain was available for beer but not pot in the part of the world where farming communities first appeared? Maybe humans had not yet arrived in the part of the world where pot grows?
@Dov Todd @Mark Miller @Rico Cottrell Hallucinogens were available, the ancient Hebrews made huge statuary of mushrooms in what is now desert. When they made them it was still humid, and mushrooms proliferated. The Sphinx was also originally made with a lion's head, which the rains shrunk and disfigured, leaving those who saw the head sticking out of the eventual sands resculpted it into a man's head. Originally archaeologists thought incorrectly the pharoah who built the Great Pyramid nearby was the resculpted sphinx's head, and that both had been made in the same generation, but later discoveries of illustrations of his head have disproven that theory, for those at least not foolishly wed to the original theories.
How beer may have led to agriculture per se may have occurred when the brewers and others saw the bounty they could collect to make beer and thought, Why don't we do this with food too? Which came first, ag or beer? (i vote ag.)
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