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Fruit and vegetable species from selected sites
(Murray 2000b: table 24.2-4)

English name/Latin name Probable Origin First Finds Frequency of finds Harvest pictures
Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera) Near East Predynastic? then MK occ.during NK autumn sherds
Dom palm (Hyphaene thebaica) Sudan/Egypt Late Palaeolithic more common in Upper Egypt autumn  
Argun palm (Medemia argun) Sudan? Fifth Dynasty occasional spring  
Sycamore fig (Ficus sycomorus) East Africa Predynastic common 3 crops a year  
Common fig (Ficus carica) Eastern Med. Predynastic occasional summer  
Pomegranate (Punica granatum) S. Caspian/NE Turkey Late MK occasional autumn pendant / fruit
Persea (Mimusops granatum) East Africa Third Dynasty occasional evergreen  
Egyptian plum (Cordia myxa) Tropical Asia Middle Kingdom rare summer  
Carob (Ceratonia siliqua) Eastern Med. Twelfth Dynasty rare autumn/winter  
Christ's Thorn (Ziziphus spinachristi) East Africa ? Near East ? Predynastic frequent autumn  
Grape (Vitis vinifera) Transcacasia Predynastic frequent autumn see wine
Olive (Olea europaea) Mediterranean 13th Dynasty occasional from 18th Dynasty autumn  
Onion (Allium cepa) Central Asia 13th Dnasty? then 18th Dynasty rare spring  
Leek/kurrat (Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum, var. kurrat Mediterranean basin/Near East date unknown single find summer  
Garlic (Allium sativum) C. Asia/Near East 18th Dynasty rare winter/spring clay models
Lettuce (Latuca sativa) W. Asia/Mediterranean TIP/Ptolemaic/Roman none winter/sumer faience model
Celery (Apium graveolens) S.W. Asia/Europe 18th Dynasty rare winter/spring  
Water melon (Cirtrullus lanatus) N.Africa/W.Asia Predynastic occasional summer  
Colocynth (Cirullus colocynthus) C. Asia/Near East Neolithic Predyn. -occ. Dyn.- rare summer  
Melon (Cucumis melo) Asia/Africa Predynastic rare summer/autumn  
Chate melon (Cucumis melo var. chate) Africa not distinguished from above not distinguished from above summer  
Cucumber (Cucumis sativus) N. India none confirmed none confirmed summer/autumn  
Radish (Raphanus sativus) Med/Africa/Caspian Sea? Twelfth Dynasty ? single find winter/spring  
Chufa, tiger nuts (Cyperus esculentus) Egypt? Predynastic frequent summer/autumn  
Lentis (Lens culinaris) Near East Predynastic frequent winter/spring  
Pea (Pisum sativium) Near East Predynastic occasional winter/spring  
Chick (cicer arietenum) Near East 18th Dynasty rare spring  
Faba Bean (Vicia faba var. minor) Near East Fifth Dynasty rare spring  
Coriander (Coriandrum sativum) Near East/East Med. Predynastic, then 18th Dynasty rare winter/spring  
Cumin (Cuminum cyminum) C. Asia ? 18th Dynasty rare autumn  
Black cumin (Nigella sativa) Near East 18th Dynasty single find winter/spring  
Dill (Anethum graveolens) Med. basin/W. Asia 18th Dynasty rare summer  
Fenugreek (Trigonella foenumgraecum) Eastern Med./Near East Predynastic, then 18th Dynasty rare summer/autumn  

Food production in Egypt


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