The Romans, using an old Greek word, called southern Italy Oenotria, the land of wine; the Greek word draws attention to the way Greek colonial settlers in southern Italy brought with them the vine and their own wine culture.’

Wine is a constant theme in my life, even though I don’t actually drink it in any serious sense, being strictly and religiously limited to a single glass of champagne at the start of a meal and an even smaller glass of Hungarian tokay at the end.  Italy is another constant theme, though I can’t speak a word of its language (yet).  The idea of Italy as wine’s wonderland therefore provides poetic completion.

‘Italy was and remains wine’s wonderland.’

See also the quote-mosaic review of Harry Eyres’ splendid book on the charm and continuing relevance of Horace.

 

Source: Harry Eyres, Horace and Me: Life Lessons from an Ancient Poet (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013), p. 41

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