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With barley, too, the food called ptisan1 is made, a most substantial and salutary aliment, and one that is held in very high esteem. Hippocrates, one of the most famous writers on medical science, has devoted a whole volume to the praises of this aliment. The ptisan of the highest quality is that which is made at Utica; that of Egypt is prepared from a kind of barley, the grain of which grows with two points.2 In Baltic and Africa, the kind of barley from which this food is made is that which Turranius calls the "smooth"3 barley: the same author expresses an opinion, too, that olyra4 and rice are the same. The method of preparing ptisan is universally known.

1 Similar to our pearl barley, probably.

2 "Anguli." Dalechamps interprets this as two rows of grain; but Fée thinks that it signifies angles, and points. The Polygonum fagopyrum of Linnæus, he says, buck-wheat, or black-wheat, has an angular grain, but he doubts whether that can possibly be the grain here alluded to.

3 There is no barley without a beard; it is clearly a variety of wheat that is alluded to.

4 Triticum spelta of Linnæus.

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    • A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities (1890), AEDI´LES
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