Eggplant history.

  • juels 12 years ago
    Eggplant is native to India. The Chinese were using it by at least the 400s.
    It was brought to the Mediterranean during the Middle Ages, and to Spain by the 1100s.
    Until the 1950s, eggplant in N. America and Britain was considered an ornamental plant.
    Where did the name come from? It's not because there is an egg inside.The first eggplants in the English-speaking world were grown as ornamentals, with white and yellow fruit about the size of eggs - thus the name, eggplant. You can still grow these varieties today, called "white egg".
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  • jimrug1 11 years ago said:
    Below is an excerpt from an article published by the Oxford University Press in Sept 2008. I thought everyone might find it interesting.

    "It was found that the earliest record of the eggplant documented in ancient Chinese literature was in a work from 59 BC. As far as is known, this is the earliest reliable and accurately dated record of eggplant in cultivation. The analysis reveals that the process of domestication of the eggplant in China involved three principal aspects of fruit quality: size, shape and taste. These traits were actively and gradually selected; fruit size changed from small to large, taste changed from not palatable to what was termed at the time sweetish, and that over time, a wider variety of fruit shapes was cultivated. "

    Here is the link for the entire abstract. http://aob.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/mcn179v1
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  • juels 11 years ago said:
    Thanks, Jim for this amazing research and providing a link for us!
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