Beer Q

Pubs are places where citizens and visitors can interact and weave the social fabric through discourse.

It is a well known fact the beer drinkers score in the upper quartile in intelligence tests. However what may not be so widely known is that beer drinkers also 'skew the bell-curve' when it comes to the knowledge of ancient history as well. For those of you readers who are not beer drinkers but want to try to keep up with us in terms of general historical knowledge then the information below will help you hold your own in the presence of hop heads. As we all know it was the ancient Egyptians who created beer, this is obvious to beer drinkers – what would you rather drink in a sand strewn parched desert? No need to state the obvious...

The first brewers were men and women of good intentions but they were also quite a bit superstitious. So going back from our enlightened age to some tombs more than 4,000 years ago to the 5th Dynasty modern day beer drinkers have discovered a tomb that was made to honor a chief dentist and two assistants who treated the teeth and bridgework of the Pharaohs and their families. What us modern beer drinkers have been able to ascertain through the study of hieroglyphics figures carved covering the pillars in the doorway of the chief dentist's tomb is nothing less than remarkable. It tells beer drinkers much about his life and habits. They depict the chief dentist and his family immersed in daily rituals — playing games, slaughtering animals and presenting offerings to the dead, including the standard 1,000 loaves of bread and 1,000 vases of beer. These would "magically provide food and sustenance for the spirit of the dead person for all eternity." Well there is no beer left in any of those thousand vases now...

Meandering back and forth through time like well stocked beer travelers tend to do we appear But back in 1470 BC in the midst of one of ancient Egypt's most raucous rituals, the "festival of drunkenness", which celebrated nothing less than the salvation of humanity. I'll raise a mug to that. Archaeologists and beer drinkers say they have found evidence amid the ruins of a temple in Luxor that the annual rite featured sex,...(hummm), drugs....(that's not mine) and the ancient equivalent of rock 'n' roll. The excavation effort at the Temple of Mut has been going on since 2001. After many mugs of analysis, beer drinkers have been able to establish that our ancient brothers and sisters come together in a community to get drunk. "Not just a little tipsy, not just to take the edge off, but knee-walking, fall down drunk, absolutely passed-out drunk." The temple excavations turned up what appears to have been a "porch of drunkenness", associated with Hatshepsut, the wife and half-sister of Thutmose II. After the death of Thutmose II in 1479 BC, Hatshepsut ruled New Kingdom Egypt for about 20 years as a female pharaoh, and the porch was erected at the height of her reign. She obviously know how to have fun. Some of the inscriptions that were uncovered at the temple link the drunkenness festival with "traveling through the marshes", which is an ancient Egyptian euphemism for having sex. The sexual connection is reinforced by graffiti depicting men and women in positions that might draw some tut-tutting today. Beer drinkers have been able to establish that the rules for the ritual even called for a select few to stay sober serving as "designated drivers" for the drunkards. On the morning after, musicians walked around, beating their drums to wake up the revelers. The festival was held in the first month of the year, just after the first flooding of the Nile. The first month of the year was called Thoth and was from June 15 - July 15. Ah, summer....

Beer drinkers have worked closely with UNESCO and the World Heritage Organization recently to help put some important pre-historic settlements back on the map in so to speak. A Tel is Hebrew for a pre- historic settlement mound - and Israel is home to more than two hundred. Those at Megiddo, Hazor and Beer Sheba are enormous outdoor treasuries of Iron age artifacts. They present extraordinary examples of the dense urban community life in the Iron Age --fifteen centuries ago, complete with amazing details of the agriculture, water-collecting, government, commerce and domestic life thousands of years ago.

The home décor industry owes much to our ancient cousins back in Egypt as well. The ancient craft of creating the look of real wood with paint is making a comeback. Faux bois as it is known is becoming popular for environmental reasons and because it's cheaper than exotic woods. Faux bois, an ancient technique that dates back to the Egyptians. The ancient method is more realistic than the modern synthetic techniques but takes longer. Wood grainer's had their own secret recipes and tools and one of the most common ingredients was beer. The the grainer's would tell the customer to have a half liter or two ready when they arrived to grain a door. They would use about two ounces for brush graining and drink the rest. Since wood was scarce in the desert, people would wood grain clay pots and other objects to look like rare woods. During the 1800s in Europe, wood graining peaked, a lot of forests had been cut down, so the art of wood graining grew in order to meet the demand for the look of wood. The main issue of graining is as relevant today as it was to our desert dweller Pharaohs. Environmental people were worried about chopping down trees...



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