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Metella

Corn vs Grain Dole vs American Indians

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Well ... I had been under the impression that Europeans had never encountered corn aka maize .... until coming to the American contenent.

 

Why am I reading in multiple books - some published in the 1960s and some up to recently - that mention the corn in the field and corn in other aspects near or in Roma ?

 

Wouldn't it be barley and other grains of that type ?

 

What the heck, eh?

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Well ... I had been under the impression that Europeans had never encountered corn aka maize .... until coming to the American contenent.

 

Why am I reading in multiple books - some published in the 1960s and some up to recently - that mention the corn in the field and corn in other aspects near or in Roma ?

 

Wouldn't it be barley and other grains of that type ?

 

What the heck, eh?

 

I believe in England corn was a general word for grain crops, there meaning mostly wheat, in the U.S. maize. As American English has spread in influence it's becoming more and more the word for maize only I think. Most of the old translations of Caesar's Gallic Wars for instance use 'corn' meaning wheat since most of those were written by writers living in England. At least that's how I understand it.

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humph.    Well I don't like the loosey-goosey use of that word ....

 

So the Romans would have used their Latin word for grain, yes ? 

 

It is only our modern usage that has done this ?    I ask because of my writing - and I want to use grain - but didn't want to miss some fine point.  My book is from a Roman Republic point of view ... so I am thinking grain ....

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This has been really annoying me for some time too.... I knew corn wasnt over there during this period, but half the books I read has the Romans chomping down on ears of corn and making popcorn ...... it was something I knew was wrong, but was to embarrassed to bring up, given everyone somehow already knew what 'corn' meant except me.

 

My guess was some university elites started it as a gag, and the zombie students accepted it.... but Virgils explanation sounds better.

 

Though the image I had of Nero flicking at a piece of corn stuck between his teeth for a evening was a comic idea I had from this.

Edited by Onasander

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Wheat. The Romans needed it to make bread, their staple diet, and later would rely on Egyptian imports to supply the eternal city (that's why Augustus kept it as a personal preserve). Hopwever we know that supplies were sometimes prone to the vagaries of agriculture, and note that at one point shortages forced Augustus to send away 'useless mouths' to maintain enough food supplies for everyone else.

 

As it happens. Nero was very fond of sumptuous dinners, delighting his guests with all manner of unexpected treats.

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My theory of sexuality is derived in big part from the satyricon, I know about the dinner.

 

What varieties of wheat? I know the sub species vary across present day europe.

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Roman sexuality wasn't much different from today albeit sex was more readily available via slaves or cheap prostitutes. However, the idea that all Romans behaved like Nero's party guests is a bit off target - many Roman's were very moral, although wealth was always the problem. With prospertity comes free time and that encourages the looser side of human nature.

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