When da Gama arrived in Calicut, the existing Arab traders who were fluent in Arabic and Spanish asked him what had brought him there. “Christians and spices,” he declared. His successful voyage was the start of 450 years of Portuguese colonialism over India.
When was black pepper first traded?
The history and spread of black pepper have been based on trade and access to South Asia, from ancient to Medieval and more modern periods. Europe and China both had developed a taste for black pepper by the late 1st millennium BCE. It became a spice that became common to many cuisines in the Old World.
Is black pepper healthy?
Black pepper (Piper Nigrum L.) is an important healthy food owing to its antioxidant, antimicrobial potential and gastro-protective modules. Black pepper, with piperine as an active ingredient, holds rich phytochemistry that also includes volatile oil, oleoresins, and alkaloids.
Which crop is king of spices?
Black pepper (Piper nigrum L.) universally acclaimed as “Black Gold” and also known as “King of Spices” is one of the great economically important agricultural commodities of commerce and trade in India since pre-historic period.
Why did black pepper become popular?
Over the next few hundred years, black pepper’s popularity skyrocketed—so much so that when Alaric the Visigoth sacked Rome in the 5th century, he demanded 3,000 pounds of peppercorns as part of his ransom. It was even used as a form of currency in some cases, much like salt before it.
Is black pepper from the Old World?
Black pepper (Piper nigrum), the true pepper, is economically the most important species of the pantropical pepper family (Piperaceae). … It is native to Java, whence it was introduced into other tropical countries.
How did black pepper become popular?
As it happens, black peppercorns, which come from the piper nigrum vine, came to prominence on the Western table as an also-ran. In ancient times, when spices were both medicine and food, a different member of the piperaceae family ruled. … As a result, the spice was popular in ancient Greece and Rome.