Re: maize in ancient india: strong transpacific links are indicated

Carolyn S Hoff (
2 Jan 1997 17:55:26 GMT

why is it that this sculpture is assumed to be zea maize? it could be any number of grasses represented in an "oversized" fashion to compensate for limitations imposed by carving on stone. there are hundreds of relatives of the "zea" family which are in the old world, and this carving is probably one of them and not maize. until there is real evidence of maize in the actual archaeological record, we should completely skeptical of an artistic representation of something that "looks like" something else. the technical description could fit any number of grass seedhead types, and be completely accurate as far as that species is concerned - but not be zea maize.

if however, someone has excavated a cob, or dried kernals from a domestic area, that would constitute more acceptable physical proof.

in that event, keep us all posted.