Poster session 5.5

Tzvetana Popova (Institute of archaeology – Sofia) and Hana Hristova (Sofia University “St.Kl. Ohridski”)

paleobotani_tz@abv.bg and hkh@mail.bg

Use of Pinia (Pinus pinea) – for food or ritual?

The Pinus pinea or the so-called Umbrella-pine is a typical Mediterranean plant.

The collection of cones with fruits seems to have been quite often in the Near East as well as in Cyprus and in Greece. Many Roma authors such as Plino, Columela, and Paladius have mentioned the consuming of these fruits with likable taste.

The purpose of this report is to summarize the findings of P. pinea depending on their context from the territory of Bulgaria. In Bulgaria fruits of this pine have been already found in several archaeological sites.

The Pinus pinea is connected with ritual treating. Evidence of it provides it’s repeatedly findings in graves.  The fruits were burned in tombs during ritual acts related to fertility. The recurrence of the finds in the tombs indicates their significance as ritual fruits related to the life of the deceased. Judging by the context of the discovered remains, it is obvious that on the territory of the country it was used both for consumption and rituals.