The Garden Guide

Book: History of Garden Design and Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 1: Gardening in the Ancient World

Historic fruit cultivation

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32.The first fruit tree cultivated by man is said by all the most ancient writers to be the fig. The vine is the next in order, the fruit of which serves not only for food, like that of the fig, but also for drink. The almond and pomegranate were early cultivated in Canaan (Gen., xliii. 5. 11.; and Numb., xx. 5.); and it appeal's by the complaints of the Israelites in the wilderness, that the fig, grape, pomegranate, and melon, were known in Egypt from time immemorial. That fruits were in general cultivation among the Greeks there can be no doubt. Aristius of Athens was the first who cultivated the olive; the fig was introduced to Athens from Crete, and the chestnut from Sardis. The olive, the fig, and the vine are enumerated in Solon's laws.