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© 2016 Wolfgang Bitterolf
...a blog about the lighter side of wine...
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January 11, 2016

The Oldest Wine Drinking Party


It may not have been a New Year's party, but it would appear that some 4500 years ago the Sumerians knew how to have a good time. The Standard of Ur depicts a king with a goblet in his hand, some of his buddies with goblets facing him, and even some musicians to liven up the party. As best as I know it is the earliest depiction of drinking what presumably was wine.

I don't know if I would have wanted to go to this event; I am not much of a men only party person.


Occasionally we go beyond the lighter side of wine and add some educational content:

The Standard of Ur is a fascinating piece of ancient history. It is a wooden trapezoid shaped box 19.5 inches long by 8.5 inches tall. It dates to about 2500 BC. The images on one side depict war, the other side peace. The scenes are inlaid mosaics made from shells, lapis lazuli, limestone and bitumen. Its function is a mystery; it could have been a container for money, a soundbox for a musical instrument, or have served a plethora of other purposes. It was found in the corner of a tomb in Ur (southern Iraq) in the 1920s by the archaeologist Sir Leonard Woolley; it was reconstructed and is now on display at the British Museum in London.


Sources: There is a lot of fascinating information about the Standard of Ur at WikipediaKhan AcademyThe British Museum and many other sources.

To the best of my knowledge all images are in the public domain.


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