Vines and wines in France from the Neolithic to the Middle Ages. Integrated approach in archeosciences.

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VINICULTURE aims to integrate innovative methods in archeosciences, in order to identify the characteristics and diversity of the vines and wines produced and consumed in France from Prehistory to the Middle Ages. From Protohistory, wine has played a major social and symbolic role. It is a sought-after exchange product, which travels long distances. The vine then stands out as a major species from an economic, landscape, cultural and symbolic point of view. In recent years, archeology has made impressive progress in the history of viti-viniculture in France: wine exchange circuits, extension of viticulture with Romanization, production sites and techniques, vineyards and methods of planting. However, fundamental aspects affecting the characteristics of the vines cultivated and the wines produced remain very poorly understood. Before the Middle Ages, the wines were best known by texts, of exogenous origin, and by inscriptions on scattered amphorae. As for the vines, the textual descriptions are practically unusable, the first lightings are delivered by archaeobotany.

We take advantage of recent methodological developments (both in the fields of morphogeometry and high-throughput sequencing) to offer a multiscalar and integrated approach, making it possible to no longer consider vine and wine as generic categories, but to describe their diversity and to analyze the spatio-temporal and geo-historical dynamics in relation to the environmental and socio-economic changes which took place at the scale of France, from the Neolithic to the Middle Ages.

Main coordinator : L Boulby, Univ. Montpellier