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Did the Romans eat seaweed? - Printable Version

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Did the Romans eat seaweed? - ParthianBow - 11-20-2012

I've been asked by an acquaintance if it's known whether the Romans ever ate seaweed?

I know that there's anecdotal evidence (at least) of them using seaweed medicinally, but my copy of Apicius makes no reference to it being eaten.

Can anyone help?

Thanks in advance.


Did the Romans eat seaweed? - Vindex - 11-21-2012

Perhaps enquire of this chap:

http://pass-the-garum.blogspot.com.au/


Did the Romans eat seaweed? - ParthianBow - 11-21-2012

Thanks, Moi, I've emailed that blog.


Did the Romans eat seaweed? - richard robinson - 11-21-2012

I am sure there are members of Apicius.org on here. It is a yahoo group that is very knowledgeable about all things dietary gk and roman. they are lovely and share much deep knowledge, recipes, etc

regards
Richard


Did the Romans eat seaweed? - Epictetus - 11-21-2012

Quote:I know that there's anecdotal evidence (at least) of them using seaweed medicinally...

Yes, Pliny's Natural History mentions many of its medicinal uses. See Book 26 Chapter 66, for instance. But he doesn't seem to consider it as a food. Although sometimes he talks about it being ingested, most of its uses appear to be topical.


Did the Romans eat seaweed? - Narukami - 11-21-2012

This from the Pass The Garum Face Book page:

Interesting question! I'm yet to encounter a seaweed recipe, but that doesn't mean that they never ate the stuff. There is a quote by the Roman poet Horace which reads: "But birth and virtue, unless [attended] with substance, is viler than seaweed." (You can find this here: http://bit.ly/SRIhVo). Whilst he is not talking about eating seaweed, it's interesting to see that he thinks of it as being 'vile'.

https://www.facebook.com/PassTheGarum/posts/308626915912684?comment_id=1512017&notif_t=feed_comment_reply


In a humorous dialogue between Ulysses and Tiresias, he exposes those arts which the fortune hunters make use of, in order to be appointed the heirs of rich old men.

BESIDE what you have told me, O Tiresias, answer to this petition of mine: by what arts and expedients may I be able to repair my ruined fortunes-why do you laugh? Does it already seem little to you, who are practiced in deceit, to be brought back to Ithaca, and to behold [again] your family household gods? 0 you who never speak falsely to any one, you see how naked and destitute I return home, according to your prophecy: nor is either my cellar, or my cattle there, unembezzled by the suitors [of Penelope]. But birth and virtue, unless [attended] with substance, is viler than seaweed.


http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus:text:1999.02.0063:book=2:poem=5&highlight=seaweed

:wink:

Narukami