This is the summary of 'Pepper: A Cherished Spice on the Silk Roads' from our Webzine SILKROADIA VOL. 4. NO.1. To find out more, please download the Webzine.
We can find the pepper almost always on our table for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Pepper is the most expensive of the spices which were traded from the Silk Roads.
The origin of using pepper is confirmed by archeological evidence. The peppercorn vine is native to southern India, but today, pepper is grown throughout the world. Archeological evidence of humans using pepper goes back to at least 2000BCE (Heasman) and suggests human use of the pepper plant in Vietnam as far back as 7000BCE (Smakousz).
Then let us follow the route of pepper throughout history. After the fall of Rome, Arabs took over the pepper trade. Gradually, the trade of pepper goes all over the world, not just ending along the traditional Silk Roads, but also Europe and Western.
Like this, the pepper on your meals is not just simple spice. It includes many significant histories of the Silk Road.