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Maize
(809 words)

The domestication of maize (Zea mays) from the wild grass teosinte took place 6,000 years ago in what is now southern Mexico. From there, the cultivation of maize spread across North, Central, and South America [5]; [6], and it formed the nutritional basis for the pre-Columbian high cultures [3. 166]. The European history of maize began with the very first voyage of Columbus, who discovered and described maize plantations on the islands of the West Indies in 1492. Participants in his second expedition took the first kernels to Europe [6]; [5]. The crop spread rapidly in Europe, …

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Mahlerwein, Gunter, “Maize”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 18 November 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_023612>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20190801



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