Thracian wines heredity

Thracian wines Mavrud

Thracian wines heredity today, some words to focus on it.

The historical area of Thrace includes the southeastern part of the Balkan Peninsula and is nowadays in the territory of three countries: Bulgaria, the Nordern part of Greece and the European part of Turkey. Anyway the country that has mostly preserved the historical heritage of the Thracians and can be therefore considered as their inheritor is Bulgaria. There are different theories about the origins of the Thracians, an Indo-European population established in the Balkan Peninsula at least 4 millenniums before Christ. The question if the Thracians are indigenous population of the area or have arrived from somewhere else is still an argument of debates. What has thracian wines to do with this piece of history and what kind of traces can be still discovered?

Thracian wines

Since very remote times the cultivation of the vines and the winemaking has been a distinctive characteristics of the Thracians. They were making wine in opened stone vats producing rich and dense wines which were then drank directly from the vats with something similar to a straw. In their religious rituals the Thracians were using the wine as a means to get in contact with a supernatural world and to predict the future. They were the first to venerate a wine divinity: Zagreus, the God of Wine, adopted later by the Greeks as Dionysos and by the Romans as Bacchus.

If we accept the recent theories according to which wine originated around 6000 years ago  in the Caucasus region ( nowadays Georgia) we can then accept that the Thracians were the ” historical bridge” for the first wines produced by humanity. The  diffusion of the vine and wine culture in Europe became successively  possible thanks to the contribution of the Greeks and the Romans who planted vines throughout their conquests in Europe.

A curiosity: the Greeks were usually drinking wine adding water while the Thracian wines were drinked pure. Seems also that Homer narrated that Odyseus  in order to inebriate Polyphemus  and escape, made him drink the wine from the ancient Thrace!

The thracian wines heredity: the Mavrud 

What traces remain today from this ancient heritage? Of course one can not affirm with “mathematical” proofs that what we have today as a red grape called Mavrud, autochthonous for the area of southern Bulgaria, can be considered a direct heritage from the Thracian wines.

The term ” Mavrud” comes from the Greek word màvros, which means black, but in Bulgaria it is also a person’s name. In order to understand better the meaning of the could be useful a local legend. According to it in 9th century A.C. the local Bulgarian kind Khan Krum ordered that all the vineyards in the kingdom must be destroyed. Some years after this order a lion escaped from a cage in the palace and was terrorizing the population. A young guy, called Mavrud, courageously entered in fight with  the wild animal and killed it. The king then wanted to know which was the secret of his courage and strength and the mother of Mavrud answered that secretly she has kept a small vineyard in their yard and that Mavrud was drinking each day its wine. It was the wine that was conferring him power and courage. After this day the king ordered to replant again the vineyards in the kingdom and named the wine after the young guy.

In order to enter in contact with all this heritage of culture, history and traditions the best thing is.. to visit personally wine estates, as Neragora, which are committed to preserving and developing a erritory with its proper traditions and identity.

What more would you like to learn about this area and its thracian wines?

Please contact us and we will do our best to welcome you in our wine estate and let you discover the hidden treasures of our region!

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