Visit Lanuvio means getting lost in the fall in long walks in the picturesque streets, or between ancient ruins and marvel to the alternation of beautiful landscapes and monuments: the Fountain of rocks, dating back to 1675, the turreted medieval castle, surrounded by its original walls still ; the Collegiate Church, the ancient village, at the Palazzo Colonna, in his main facade incorporates a Roman marble sarcophagus of the third century. AD, from Villa Sforza Cesarini, where they were found evident traces of the ancient acropolis Lanuvina, the remains of the monumental temple of Juno Sospita.
In ancient castle tower, known as “rock” and built in the fifteenth century, was set up a veritable museum of wine in which they are preserved old farm tools and the place inside which is also the municipal wine cellar, as well as being become a gathering place and meeting place, is mainly a way to learn about the ancient tradition that has made Lanuvio place of production of fine wine Doc. A truly unique opportunity to enjoy the wine culture Lanuvina is the New Wine festival held every year in mid-November, this beautiful jewel of the Castelli Romani.
In such circumstances the public is offered a tasting of the appreciated local red wine, whose history has its roots in ancient times. In fact, the history of wine is also, in a sense, the history of mankind. It is therefore very complex, but also extremely important to trace the course: each population has its own history of wine, even though its origins probably lie in the East, the cradle of civilization. It even appears that the vitis vitifera, to which almost all modern varieties of grapes, dates back to prehistoric times chronologically. The Bible, in Genesis reports that Noah just got off the ark after the flood, he planted a vineyard to get wine, thus providing evidence of the fact that the wine-making techniques were well known even in an age very remote.
The Egyptians were masters and keepers of these methods, as witnessed by the many hieroglyphics that show accurate records of all phases of the production process: from the vineyard to work in conservation. Through the Greeks and Phoenicians, the wine spread throughout Europe and the Homeric poems amply testify the presence and importance of the drink: Polyphemus, for example, propionate is a pure wine, according to the customs of the time, was diluted with water. In Greece, the ritual of commensality was expressed through the separation of activities related to food – the banquet (deipnon) – and those relating to drinks – the symposium (symposion) – according to specific patterns remained unchanged over time.
At the banquet followed the symposium, in which they used salty foods, sweets and, finally, wine in abundance.
Because drinking the precious pure liquid was considered barbaric custom, it was always served diluted with cold or warm water: the task was to decide its symposiarch proporzioni.Quindi in a central crater – from which the butler drew with ladles to pour the drink in glasses of the guests – was prepared by mixing water and wine. At Locri, in Magna Graecia, the laws of Zaleuco even predicted the death penalty for those who had drunk pure wine without a prescription.
During the symposium are the guests surrounded the head with bandages, flowers and wreaths, offered libations to the gods, were given to attending to musical shows and entertainment. Ubiquitous ingredient in ancient Roman cuisine was cooked wine, profuse without limitation, employee, or simply seasoned with honey, the sweet version, Sapa, and the defrutum caroenum. The honey wine was obtained quite simple: just mix a few tablespoons of honey to drink more so dense that in ancient times, wine was not filtered or pasteurized. The passage, taken from grapes made precisely to “pass” on racks, may be compared to the current “Marsala” or “Pantelleria”. The ancient recipe conditum paradoxum – wonderful spicy wine – De Re Coquinaria handed down by Apicius, reveals his Greek already nell’aggettivo paradoxum, derived from the greek paràdoxos fact, that was just to indicate the effect yielded assumption the drink. Despite the use of pepper truly remarkable, this wine had the characteristic of being very sweet: for 9 or 10 liters of liquid tempered even with 4 or 5 pounds of honey. The presence of powdered stones of dates syrup also gave medical properties.
During the Empire the techniques related to viticulture reached very high levels and use of this drink was so popular among the people that the wayfarers, even on the way, could not give up the habit, the whole Roman, to flavor wines and customize They, in fact, always carried with them a little honey and a jar of pepper flavor to the spot with which the wines served in taverns and thermopolia they met along the way.
Unlike the Greeks, who kept the wine in earthenware amphorae, the Romans began to use wooden barrels and glass bottles, introducing the concept of “aging”. Viticulture in the Castelli Romani was already widespread in the early years of the Empire, so that the wine was exported in all of Lazio region, which is why Ostia had become a very important wine-making store.
The intensive cultivation of the vine in the Roman countryside and the huge importance of the fruit juices are also attested by the religious denominations in the area, the disclosure of which is evidenced by several findings. In 1908, during the course of agricultural work, was discovered in the village of Tower Hall, in ager lanuvinus, a prized Pentelic marble bas-relief depicting Antinous (amasio the Emperor Hadrian, drowned in the waters of the Nile in 130 AD) in likely form of Silvanus, the Roman goddess equated with rural greek Silenus, who cut the grapes of vines with a sickle contested right, but perhaps in his left hand he held a bunch of grapes. The presence of statues of worship of Dionysus spread attests, and thus the love of wine ager lanuvinus fed by the inhabitants. For example, at the intersection of Booty on and off the Hill Knight Lanuvio, was found a statue of Dionysus into several fragments, white veined marble: the god, young-looking, covered with a Nebrid (deer skin) , was represented in the act of pouring wine from a kantharos ovoid, while his other hand was holding a small panther.
The traits of Dionysus embodied the spirit of all that is life: he is the god of the rural rich vegetation and fertility god, the principle by which living things produce living things. Not only that Dionysus is the god of grapes and wine and, therefore, is the tutelary god of drunkenness and loss of reason. Dionysus takes away the inhibitions, the men back to their original state and wild, makes them dance, cry, shake, leads them to an exaltation which leads to violence and the orgy: But all this is meaningless negative since nothing can be considered just or unjust in enthousiasmos delusional.
In Greece, Dionysus was the only god who gave to women and slaves to participate in its rites: in the land of the gods was the wine of all and for all, without distinction. For women, who normally were not allowed to symposia, the Bacchic mysteries were perhaps the only chance to escape from the rigid limitations imposed by their social role and feel finally free.
In Rome, however, wine was forbidden and they drank and enjoyed only by free men and mature. If the Greeks Dionysus was the patron of evasion and was the controlled valve that guaranteed the stability of the system, it was not for the Romans.
Looking ahead Hellenic rites of Bacchus had a double function: on an individual level to provide relief in life and prepare for a good death, at Community level to ensure peace sociale.2 symbol of such a deep sense of freedom could also be the ‘ counterpart, the Latin Liber, patron saint of prosperity, but the Roman senate felt the spread of the Dionysian cult among the people as extremely dangerous for social stability to the extent that, in 186 BC, decreed laws aimed at limiting both in Rome and in Italy the worship of Bacchanalia, orgiastic feasts in honor of Dionysus. Despite these restrictions, the spread of Lanuvio Bacchic ritual is attested in an extraordinary way, the painting in fresco with scenes of Dionysian initiation, dating to the Augustan age 3, whose fragments are preserved in a shrine of the Museum Lanuvini, true temple memory of the history and traditions of this ancient land.