It is certified by the history, that the oil cultivation dates back to 6.000 years ago, about.
Some traditional tales, together with religious books and archeological discoveries, bear witness of this fact. The tree comes probably from Syria, where it was transformed from wild plant into a domestic one.
From Syria it got the Islands of Egeo Sea, the sunny hills of the ANATOLIA, in order to be transplanted in Greece, where it found an unexpected luck and application.
The Greeks, probably, planted the olive-trees on the coast lands of Apulia, Calabria, Sicily and Campania.
Someone maintains that the first Italian region, where this tree has been cultivated, was the Liguria. The tree was brought here surely by the Crusaders, after the year 1000, because they had known it in Palestina.
Most of the credit which permitted the olive tree to survive in Italy was attributed to some religious monastic orders.
Some peasants and agricultural workers, in fact, wanted to leave the countries where they had worked for centuries, so the monks tried to persuade them to remain and to dedicate themselves to more profitable coltures, like the olive trees for example, in order to let them free from deep poverty conditions. That fact influenced todays' countries too, where the cultivation of the olive tree is one of the most important of the Mediterrranean Sea.
The beauty of the olive tree is often celebrated by the Authors of the Old Testament and it is considered a Holy plant by many People, not only for its caloric aspect, but also because it is a long-live tree, resisting during the time.
However, the Jews considered it a symbol, explained also in the "Dove's tale", that came back to the Noah's Ark with an olive-branch in its beak.
The oil was a wealth, happiness and friendship image, characterized by a strenght and wisdom symbol. Who lived in those countries had surely a great richness: the olive tree. They ate its raw fruits, its excellent oil, and they used it in medicine, too, as a cosmetic product and like an help for the massages and the ointments of the Sovereigns. It has also a curious use: people made soaps with the olive-tree. However, the oil always remained a rare and refined nourishment, which not everybody could have. Its great alimentary value remained valuable during the time, till nowadays.

During the Antiquity the oil was obtained in the following way: after the harvesting, the first operation, the pulp should be separated from the hazel-tree; as the olive skin is strong enough, the separation was made by the crushing of the fruit, which was pressed, then. Subsequently, they could made a second and a third pressing, too, and each of them had an inferior quality if compared with the first one. In this way, they obtained three different kinds of oil: the first quality was used to cook, while the two others had a cosmetic use. During the Antiquity, they used also another way to obtain an high quality oil, that we call today "Extravergine", obtained without pressing: the olives were put inside a sort of basket, from which the oil fall down drop by drop in a container. Otherwise, the high quantity of olives was put in a rocky dome place, from where the oil strained through a hole down. In both cases, the weight of the olives pressed themselves.

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