The Origins of the Sugarcane Industry and the Transmission of Ancient Greek and Medieval Arab Science and Technology from the Near East to Europe

A one day international conference organized by Dr Konstantinos D. Politis (European Social Fund Post-Doctoral Researcher, University of Athens), convening scholars from diverse fields to present and discuss the archaeology of the Sugarcane Industry as excavated in various sites in the Near East and eastern Mediterranean islands.

The program includes an oral communication and a poster proposed by POMEDOR member E.J. Stern



09:00   Registration and coffee/tea

09:30   Opening and welcome address by, Asst. Professor Dr Dimitris KARADIMAS (Scientific Advisor, University of Athens), The Sweetness of Philology: What did the Ancients know about Sugar?

10:00   Dr Konstantinos D. POLITIS (European Social Fund Post-Doctoral Researcher, University of Athens), Earliest Evidence for an Arab Sugarcane Industry with a focus on the southern Bilad ash-Sham.

10:30   Ms Ruba ABUDALU (Ministry of Education of Jordan), The Story of Sugar Production in the Eastern Jordan Valley.

11:00   Dr Hamdan TAHA (Palestine), The Sugarcane Industry in Jericho Region of the Jordan Valley.

11:30   Discussion

12:00   Coffee/tea break

Sessions chaired by Asst. Professor Georgios A. PAPAIOANNOU (Ionian University).

12:30   Dr Edna STERN and Mr Nimrod GETZOV (Israel Antiquities Authority), Sugar Production in the ‘Akko Plain from the Fatimid to the Early Ottoman periods.

13:00   Mr Yeshu DRAY (Restoration of Ancient Technology), The Sweet Industry – Sugar Production Technology.

13:30   Discussion

14:00   Lunch break

14:30   Dr Marie-Louise von WARTBURG MAIER (Universität Zürich), Medieval Cane Sugar Production in Cyprus: A Review of Archaeological and Textual Evidence with a focus on Specific Technological and Economic Developments.

15:00  Dr Marina SOLOMIDOU-IERONYMIDOU (Antiquities Department of Cyprus), Sugar Production in Medieval Cyprus.

15:30   Professor Dr Constantin CANAVAS (Hamburg University), Sugarcane Production in Medieval Crete: An Historical Perspective.

16:00   Discussion

16:30  Asst. Professor Georgios A. PAPAIOANNOU (Ionian University), Documenting, Archiving and Publicising the Origins of the Sugar Cane Industry: From Fieldwork to Articles, Books, Websites and Museum Exhibitions. Tribute to the late Professor Dr Tsugitaka SATO’s seminal work and book on sugar.

Introduction of posters exhibition by Ms Maria MICHAELIDOU (Culture Ministry of Greece) Medieval Sugar Production on Rhodes, Mr Anthony GREY (Museum of London) Sugar Pots from Safi and other conference participants. Presentation of medieval sugar pottery fragments (courtesy Department of Antiquities of Jordan).

17:00  Closing remarks with respondents.

Proposal for joint communiqué on terminology will be made for future use and publications.

17:30   Break

18:00   Keynote lecture by Jerker BLOMQVIST, Emeritus Professor of Greek (Lund University), Hippocratic Medicine and Technology from East to West: Ancient Revisions, Medieval Manuscripts  and Modern Editions.

18:45 – 20:00   Reception 

Time & Place
Saturday, 23 May 2015 (All day)
University of Athens
Europe Direct Centre, 50 Academias Street,
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