Sometimes as the sun greets us ‘good morning’, so does another, slightly less welcomed friend – the mighty hangover. It’s the pain we caused ourselves and the instigator of the phrase ‘I’m never drinking again’. However, the hangover isn’t always a complete case for unproductivity, as very often it sparks our creativity and curiosity as we become scientists indulging in weird and wonderful experiments.
Will drinking raw eggs really relieve the utter distress my stomach is howling? Will an ice-cold shower, the rehydrate or a greasy McDonalds feast be the hero of the day? If you want to look at things positively – hangovers are a great time to experiment.
However, there’s another hangover themed discovery on the cards for those who are curious. Centuries-old, sparkling and a myth entwined with prevention – an ancient hangover ring was recently discovered by archaeologists, giving us some insight into the tricks of the hangover trade ancient humans utilised in eras gone by.
According to CNN, the gold and purple amethyst ring was recently discovered in Israel, excavated in the city of Yavne.
The ancient jewel was discovered on the site of the Byzantine era’s largest known winery, as the Israel Antiquities Authority confirmed.
The excavation site has been dated to approximately the 7th century, circa the end of the Byzantine era and the start of the Early Islamic period. However, officials note that the ring could be even older.
“Many virtues have been attached to this gem,” said one of the archaeologists, Amir Golani who further expressed that said virtues include “the prevention of the side effect of drinking, the hangover.”
As per Smithsonian Magazine, the word amethyst comes from the Greek word amethystos, which means “not intoxicating,” and is related to medhu, meaning mead.
“Because of their blood-like hues, amethysts, like rubies, were believed in the ancient world to contain energy and healing powers,” Golani expressed to the Times.
Ancient Greeks were sometimes known for incorporating amethysts into wine glasses or wearing the gemstones while drinking in hopes of avoiding over-intoxication, the museum confirms.
The ring was found just 150 meters away from the remains of a warehouse containing amphorae, a type of jar used to store wine.
The archaeologists express that the ring was probably worn by an affluent person (man or woman), given that the amethyst stone is set in gold.
“It is possible that the ring’s find belongs to the elites who lived in the city as early as the 3rd century CE,” the press release said according to TimesNowNews.
Elie Haddad, a co-director of the excavation further indicated that the treasure may have even belonged to the owner of the magnificent winery – or to an “unlucky visitor, who dropped and lost their precious ring.”
And so, it might be time for us to take advice from the ancient and affluent and head over to our nearest gem-store the next time we want to try and stride two steps ahead of our drinking experiences – even if those steps are inspired by the past. Additionally, we’ve got some of our own hangover cures right here in the Mother City if rocking an amethyst ring doesn’t work out.
Picture: Dafna Gazit/Israel Antiquities Authority