The history of ginger goes back over 5000 years when the Indians and ancient Chinese used it as a tonic root for all ailments.

Potted ginger plants were carried on local vessels travelling the maritime trae routes of the Indian Ocean and South China Sea in the 5th century AD.

Ginger was also highly important as an article of trade and was exported from India to the Roman empire 2000 years ago where it was valued more for its medicinal properties than as an ingredient in cookery.

Ginger root was popular among the Romans, but its use died out with the empire. It remained virtually unknown in Europe until Marco Polo brought it back to European culture sometime in the late 13th centure. However, only the wealthy could afford to buy the rare ginger root.

Gingerology - the history of ginger
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