Drink

A 5,000-Year-Old Brewery Has Been Discovered, And It Could Be the World's Oldest

The site is estimated to date back to the era of King Narmer.
IMAGE SHUTTERSTOCK
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Over the weekend, archaeologists in an Egyptian-American mission announced their discovery of a mass-production brewery from thousands of years ago, most likely the oldest known. This is beer history right before us.

It's still unclear just how old it is, but the current estimate is at over 5,000. "[The brewery] likely dates back to the era of King Narmer," said Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities secretary-general Mostafa Waziry. (FYI: King Narmer is an ancient Egyptian pharaoh who ruled in 3100 BC.)

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In a statement on Facebook, the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities said: "The joint Egyptian-American archaeological mission, headed by Dr. Matthew Adams of New York University, and Dr. Deborah Fishak of Princeton University, working in North Abydos, Sohag, has uncovered what is believed to be the oldest high-production brewery in the world."

The factory reportedly is made up of eight large sections with each containing about 40 earthenware pots. That's a lot of beer. Over 22,400 liters of beer, to be exact, were produced at a time. The crazy news doesn't stop there. According to the lead archaeologist Dr. Adams, there's evidence that the site was used to supply beer for royal rituals and sacrificial rites.

The brewery was discovered first at the beginning of the 20th century, but its exact location had not been determined until now.

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Paolo Chua
Paolo Chua is the Associate Style Editor of Esquire Philippines.
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