Beer is one of the oldest drinks humans have produced. The first chemically confirmed barley beer dates back to at least the 5th millennium BC in Iran, and was recorded in the written history of ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia and spread throughout the world. Though, the ancient Chinese artifacts suggested that beer brewed with grapes, honey, hawthorns, and rice were produced as far back as 7, BC. As almost any cereal containing certain sugars can undergo spontaneous fermentation due to wild yeasts in the air, it is possible that beer-like drinks were independently developed throughout the world soon after a tribe or culture had domesticated cereal.
Chemical tests of ancient pottery jars reveal that beer was produced as far back as about 7, years ago in what is today Iran. In Mesopotamia, the oldest evidence of beer is believed to be a 6,year-old Sumerian tablet depicting people consuming a drink through reed straws from a communal bowl.
A 3,year-old Sumerian poem honouring Ninkasithe patron goddess of brewing, contains the oldest surviving beer recipe, describing the production of beer from bread made from barley. In China, residue on pottery dating from around 5, years ago shows beer was brewed using barley and other grains. The invention of bread and beer has been argued to be responsible for humanity's ability to develop technology and build civilization.
Beer may have been known in Neolithic Europe as far back as 5, years ago,  and was mainly brewed on a domestic scale. Beer produced before the Industrial Revolution continued to be made and sold on a domestic scale, although by the 7th century AD beer was also being produced and sold by European monasteries.
During the Industrial Revolution, the production of beer moved from artisanal manufacture to industrial manufactureand domestic manufacture ceased to be significant by the end of the 19th century.
Today, the brewing industry is a global business, consisting of several dominant multinational companies and many thousands of smaller producers ranging from brewpubs to regional breweries. Chemical tests of ancient pottery jars reveal that beer was produced about 3, BC in what is today Iranand was one of the first-known biological engineering tasks where the biological process of fermentation is used.
Also, archaeological findings show that Chinese villagers were brewing fermented alcoholic drinks as far back as BC on small and individual scale, with the production process and methods similar to that of ancient Egypt and ancient Mesopotamia.
The earliest archaeological evidence of fermentation consists of 13,year-old residues of a beer with the consistency of gruelused by the semi-nomadic Natufians for ritual feasting, at the Raqefet Cave in the Carmel Mountains near Haifa in Israel.
In Mesopotamia ancient Iraqearly evidence of beer is a 3,year-old Sumerian poem honoring Ninkasithe patron goddess of brewing, which contains the oldest surviving beer recipe, describing the production of beer from barley via bread. Beer is also mentioned in the Epic of Gilgameshin which the 'wild man' Enkidu is given beer to drink. Confirmed written evidence of ancient beer production in Armenia can be obtained from Xenophon in his work Anabasis 5th century BC when he was in one of the ancient Armenian villages in which he wrote:.
Beer became vital to all the grain-growing civilizations of Eurasian and North African antiquity, including Egypt —so much so that in James Death put forward a theory in The Beer of the Bible that the manna from heaven that God gave the Israelites was a bread-based, porridge-like beer called wusa.Di Na Muli (Official) - The Itchyworms
These beers were often thick, more of a gruel than a drink, and drinking straws were used by the Sumerians to avoid the bitter solids left over from fermentation.Beer is one of the oldest    and most widely consumed  alcoholic drinks in the world.
It is also the third most popular drink overall after water and tea. During the brewing process, fermentation of the starch sugars in the wort produces ethanol and carbonation in the resulting beer.
Other flavouring agents such as gruitherbs, or fruits may be included or used instead of hops. In commercial brewing, the natural carbonation effect is often removed during processing and replaced with forced carbonation.
Some of humanity's earliest known writings refer to the production and distribution of beer: the Code of Hammurabi included laws regulating beer and beer parlours,  and "The Hymn to Ninkasi ", a prayer to the Mesopotamian goddess of beer, served as both a prayer and as a method of remembering the recipe for beer in a culture with few literate people. Beer is distributed in bottles and cans and is also commonly available on draughtparticularly in pubs and bars.
The brewing industry is a global business, consisting of several dominant multinational companies and many thousands of smaller producers ranging from brewpubs to regional breweries. Beer forms part of the culture of many nations and is associated with social traditions such as beer festivalsas well as a rich pub culture involving activities like pub crawling and pub games.
Beer is one of the world's oldest prepared drinks. The earliest archaeological evidence of fermentation consists of 13,year-old residues of a beer with the consistency of gruel, used by the semi-nomadic Natufians for ritual feasting, at the Raqefet Cave in the Carmel Mountains near Haifa in Israel. Some of the earliest Sumerian writings contain references to beer; examples include a prayer to the goddess Ninkasiknown as "The Hymn to Ninkasi",  which served as both a prayer as well as a method of remembering the recipe for beer in a culture with few literate people, and the ancient advice "Fill your belly.
Day and night make merry" to Gilgameshrecorded in the Epic of Gilgameshby the ale-wife Siduri may, at least in part, have referred to the consumption of beer. Unlike sakemold was not used to saccharify the rice amylolytic fermentation ; the rice was probably prepared for fermentation by chewing or malting. Almost any substance containing sugar can naturally undergo alcoholic fermentation.
It is likely that many cultures, on observing that a sweet liquid could be obtained from a source of starch, independently invented beer. Bread and beer increased prosperity to a level that allowed time for development of other technologies and contributed to the building of civilizations. Xenophon noted that during his travels, beer was being produced in Armenia.
Beer was spread through Europe by Germanic and Celtic tribes as far back as BC,  and it was mainly brewed on a domestic scale.
Alongside the basic starch source, the early European beers might contain fruits, honey, numerous types of plants, spices and other substances such as narcotic herbs. InWilliam IVDuke of Bavaria, adopted the Reinheitsgebot purity lawperhaps the oldest food-quality regulation still in use in the 21st century, according to which the only allowed ingredients of beer are water, hops and barley- malt.
During the Industrial Revolution, the production of beer moved from artisanal manufacture to industrial manufactureand domestic manufacture ceased to be significant by the end of the 19th century. This innovation has since been accepted worldwide and prevents harmful rays from destroying the quality and stability of beer.
As ofthe brewing industry is a global business, consisting of several dominant multinational companies and many thousands of smaller producers ranging from brewpubs to regional breweries. InChina's beer consumption hit million hectolitres 45 billion litresor nearly twice that of the United States, but only 5 per cent sold were premium draught beers, compared with 50 per cent in France and Germany. A recent and widely publicized study suggests that sudden decreases in barley production due to extreme drought and heat could in the future cause substantial volatility in the availability and price of beer.
The process of making beer is known as brewing. A dedicated building for the making of beer is called a brewery, though beer can be made in the home and has been for much of its history.
A company that makes beer is called either a brewery or a brewing company. Beer made on a domestic scale for non-commercial reasons is classified as homebrewing regardless of where it is made, though most homebrewed beer is made in the home.
Brewing beer is subject to legislation and taxation in developed countries, which from the late 19th century largely restricted brewing to a commercial operation only. However, the UK government relaxed legislation infollowed by Australia in and the US inallowing homebrewing to become a popular hobby. The purpose of brewing is to convert the starch source into a sugary liquid called wort and to convert the wort into the alcoholic drink known as beer in a fermentation process effected by yeast.
The first step, where the wort is prepared by mixing the starch source normally malted barley with hot water, is known as " mashing ". Hot water known as "liquor" in brewing terms is mixed with crushed malt or malts known as " grist " in a mash tun. The grains are now washed in a process known as "sparging". This washing allows the brewer to gather as much of the fermentable liquid from the grains as possible.Our BeerXpress program lets you browse and shop for beer from anywhere.
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A fermented beverage brewed by traditional methods that is then dealcoholized so that the finished product contains no more than 0. A carbonated beverage produced by a method in which the fermentation process is either circumvented or altered, resulting in a finished product having an alcohol content of no more than 0.
A beverage made from extracts of roots and plants: birch beer. Brewing an alcoholic drink brewed from malt, sugar, hops, and water and fermented with yeast. Compare ale. Brewing a slightly fermented drink made from the roots or leaves of certain plants: ginger beer ; nettle beer.
Old Saxon, Old High German bior ]. See also alcohol ; fermentation ; wine. Switch to new thesaurus. This is small beer compared with his usual work. Mentioned in? References in classic literature? I was sent from the house, half a mile away, to carry to him a pail of beer.
History of beer
View in context. Most statistical tables are parchingly dry in the reading; not so in the present case, however, where the reader is flooded with whole pipes, barrels, quarts, and gills of good gin and good cheer. Kneips are held, now and then, to celebrate great occasions, like the election of a beer king, for instance. He was a short man, stout from excessive beer drinking, with a heavy moustache and long, unkempt hair.
Cautiously as he had been instructed, tenderly and with much beerMulcahy opened his projects to such as he deemed fittest to listen. On a hanging table, which swung to and fro with the rolling of the vessel, were a pot of beer and three glasses.
She saw me looking at it, and she said, "You could drink without hurt all the strong beer that's brewed there now, boy.To save this word, you'll need to log in. The pub brews its own beer. I'll have a beerplease. These fine dining restaurants are offering takeout or delivery," 10 Apr. Stay home. Send us feedback. See more words from the same century From the Editors at Merriam-Webster.
Accessed 19 Apr. Keep scrolling for more More Definitions for beer beer. Please tell us where you read or heard it including the quote, if possible. What does capricious mean? Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way. Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free! We have a hard decision to make. Or 'unessential'? And who put it there, anyway?
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Login or Register. Save Word. Log In. Definition of beer. Examples of beer in a Sentence Would you like beer with dinner? Recent Examples on the Web Bucks County, north of Philadelphia, adds a pinch of Sesame Place to its collection of soothing images, which includes a covered bridge, a lavender farm and barrels of beer at a brewery. First Known Use of beer before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1.
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