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Prussian layer classification

Until the middle of the 17th century were in Germany Layer names to highlight special wine quality or the ancestry rather unknown or not common. A first classification mentions Friedrich Bassermann-Jordan (1872-1959) in his work "History of Viticulture" from 1644, when the Council of Würzburg (Franken) classified the vineyards of the city into four groups. From the middle of the 18th century on, the quality of the Rhine wine was differentiated according to places and locations already in different sources. From the beginning of the 19th century, wine quality became increasingly an important competitive factor of German wines compared to the large competition from France. Emperor Napoleon (1769-1821) had around 1804 a "Classification of the Vine" work out. Since the Rhineland at that time belonged to France, the same valuation principles applied as for the world-famous French locations. The best locations were as Grand Cru classified. After the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo in June 1815, the Rhineland became a Prussian province at the Congress of Vienna.

The Prussians were also interested in a classification of vineyard sites, especially in order to be able to measure taxes. The "Preußische Lage classification in the Bureau of the Royal Government" was based on the plot measurement from 1818 to 1832 and the French guidelines. The vineyards were divided into eight rating classes. The classification took place first in 1868 for the district of Trier and only in 1897 for the district Coblenz. The growing area Moselle (Mosel-Saar-Ruwer) at that time covered about 6,100 hectares of vineyards (today there are about 10,000). Only 9% (560 ha) were divided into the first three classes.

The highest quality vineyard locations are oriented from south to southwest. The best wines grow on the hard to manage Hillside- or steep slopes, where the sunlight ( exposition ) is nearly vertical. The Prussian classification is, of course, to be viewed critically today, because the conditions have changed in part. But it has great historical significance. When passed in 2006 VDP classification model she was classified as a reference for the individual layers of the two growing areas Moselle and Near used.

A complete list of all classification systems for areas / wines is available at Grand Cru, The valid wine quality classes within the EU are under quality system described. A list of all area-relevant keywords can be found at vineyards,

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