The Exotic History of the Pineapple

PineappleNicola here.  Today I am celebrating the history of the pineapple as a European sweet treat. The pineapple was one of the fruits that was first brought to Europe by Columbus and it quickly became an item of celebrity and curiosity. Although English horticulturalists tried to cultivate it, it was two hundred years before they were successful. As a result, in the seventeenth century the pineapple was both expensive and sought after, affordable only for royalty and the very rich. In a work of 1640, John Parkinson, Royal Botanist to Charles I, described the pineapple as:

Scaly like an Artichoke at the first view, but more like to a cone of the Pine tree, which we call a pineapple for the forme… being so sweete in smell… tasting… as if Wine, Rosewater and Sugar were mixed together. (Theatrum Botanicum)

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