Annals of Botany

Medieval emergence of sweet melons

Medieval emergence of sweet melons
Medieval emergence of sweet melons

Sweet melons, Cucumis melo, are highly prized today; however, the lack of enthusiasm for melons in Mediterranean antiquity indicates that they did not possess the sugary sweetness of modern melons. Paris et al., through an extensive search of medieval literature, find evidence for the existence of sweet melons in Central Asia in the mid-9th century. Sweet melons, evidently casabas, were grown in Andalusia in the late 11th century, which probably arrived from Central Asia by a mostly maritime trade route. Climate and geopolitical boundaries may have caused the delay in the diffusion of sweet melons into the rest of Europe.

About the author

Annals of Botany Office

The Annals of Botany Office is based at the University of Oxford.

1 Comment

Click here to post a comment
  • Visitors to our site, where we linked to the paper, are saying that despite promises to the contrary, they are unable to download the paper, even though it is still National Biology Week, or whatever. Could you investigate, please.