The Roman politician Marcius Porcius Cato the Elder (234-149 BC) is considered an important ancient author of viticulture. He also called "Cato the Elder" (to distinguish him from great-grandchildren) or "Cato the Censor" grew up on his father's estate near Reate near Rome. He quickly reached the highest government offices (Quaestor, Aedil, Praetor, censor and consul in Spain). Cato vehemently opposed corruption, pomposity and waste and propagated the ancient Roman customs contrary to the Greek culture he regarded as dangerous and pernicious.
Because of his feared severity, he received the nickname Censorius during his tenure as a censor. He is probably best known for his legendary saying at the end of each of his senate speeches "Ceterum censeo carthaginem esse delendam", with which he spent years completely annihilating the city Carthage preached (Incidentally, I think Carthage must be destroyed). In Cato's last year of life, the outbreak of the Third Punic War actually broke out, as a result of which Carthage was completely destroyed. However, he was completely annihilated three years later in 146 BC. BC no more.
Cato wrote numerous writings on many topics. He is the only one who has preserved the work "De agri cultura" (also "De re rustica" - About rural affairs), which he wrote at the age of 80. It contains detailed instructions for the purchase and operation of an estate. He was one of the first Romans to write extensively and professionally about viticulture. Cato emphasized that viticulture requires high investments and professional, intensive care. He gave recommendations for the planting of certain grape varieties taking into account geological and topographical Nature of the vineyard, the grafting of the vines, the pruning and floor care by weed removal. He considered it important to have a high level of ripeness in the harvest as well as large ones hygiene in winemaking to prevent wine from becoming too vinegar will. He recommended cleaning the wine jugs twice a day after the harvest. He mentions the winemaking lees,
Cato's instructions are extremely practical and contain numerous facts and figures regarding economic planning. Among other things, it specifies the number of workers required and explains how many slaves could work without falling dead. The owners of larger goods are primarily addressed. The information for the necessary equipment takes into account a vineyard area of 100 Jugerum, that's around 25 hectares. The equipment of the wine press house and the nature of the tree press are derived from this ( Torggel ). For large Roman landowners, viticulture was the top source of income and Cato's recommendations were followed closely. When ranking the then popular wines, he ranked the Raeticum from Veneto right after the Falernum from Campania. The later authors Columella (1st century) and Pliny the Elder (23-79) praised his scholarship. His writing is partly in the agricultural collection Geoponika from the 10th century included.