Onion was extremely popular in ancient Roman times, and therefore it is probably still used in many dishes in Europe. With the conquest of Europe, the Romans took the vegetable with them to various regions, including Germany or Britain. In Rome, onions were considered an aphrodisiac.
Ovid supposedly owed his good bed form to her. Martial in turn recommended the vegetable to aged lovers. Interestingly, the Romans also associated onions with other positive properties: it was said to improve eyesight, it was ideal as a sleep aid, healed mouth ulcers, it was used on wounds after a dog bite, it was used to alleviate a toothache or it was an ideal remedy for dysentery. Pompeii confirms that onions were widely cultivated – archaeologists discovered gardens where onions grew there.
Piszczek Zdzisław (red.), Mała encyklopedia kultury antycznej, Warszawa 1983
Winniczuk Lidia, Ludzie, zwyczaje i obyczaje starożytnej Grecji i Rzymu, PWN, Warszawa 1983
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