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Re: maize in Europe and India: a twisted tale

Yuri wrote:
<snip a long reply to my long post>

>Also, what about those findings of ancient Indian maize pollen? This is
>another very relevant direction of research that you haven't mentioned in
>your post (as if it wasn't long enough already <grin>). Perhaps very soon
>we will have more evidence on this that will clarify things considerably?
>I think this, too, is on its way...

Actually, I just forgot this.  The pollen is equivocal in all cases.  In
some cases the pollen was from secure pre-Columbian contexts but we don't
know that it was maize pollen, for sure.  At that time they tended to
guess by the size of the grains, since most grasses (which include many
crops -- maize, Sorghum, millet, rice -- and many wild or
semi-domesticates (like Bamboo) have pollen with similar morphology..  The
pollen under discussion is a bit small but just squeaks within the lower
range of maize (this according to Mangelsdorf and others) -- so it could
be maize, but it could be other things.  

The question could easily be settled now, of course.

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