Agricultural times - 10.000 years)  19th century




Founder species
of the early euro-mediterranean agriculture

By "Founder species," we mean the main plant and animal species first domesticated in the Middle-East (def.), then transferred to other mediterranean areas, subsequently spreading to Northern Europe.
The following founder species can be mentionned : 


  • wheat (Triticum dicoccum L. ; Triticum aestivum/durum),
  • oat (Hordeum vulgare L.) , 
  • pea (Pisum sativum L.), 
  • lentil (Lens esculenta Moench), 
  • Vetch (Vicia narbonensis L.) , 
  • Evergreen pea (Lathyrus sativus L.), 
  • and flax (Linum usitatissimum L.)
  • dog (Canis familiaris),
  • pig (Sus scrofa domesticus),
  • goat (Capra hircus hircus),
  • sheep (Ovis aries),
  • cow (Bos taurus).

These species were used as the starting basis for agricultural development within the whole Euro-Mediterranean area. Cereals (def.) and many other domesticated species did not exist as wild plants in Europe. They were transferred from the Middle-East through the Danube River and the Mediterranean Sea.

The birth of agriculture in Europe was accompanied by a revolution in human foods. Mediterranean people stopped using food-plants from the "Founder garden" and learned to consume food-species coming from elsewhere. 

HomepageAgropolis-Museum | History of food & agriculture | Agricultural times | Next