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The excessive use of sulphur and creation of stomme-v2.pdf (303.17 kB)

The excessive use of sulphur and creation of stomme as an early modern cellar technique in Dutch wine trade

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posted on 2023-03-24, 12:31 authored by Mariëlla BeukersMariëlla Beukers, Rob Blijleven

On the basis of study of early modern literature and other period sources we describe the production and use of stomme, used by Dutch wine merchants in the 17th, 18th and 19th century. We conclude that stomme was made by using excessive amounts of sulphur dioxide, thereby creating health hasards. The States General of the Dutch Republic acknowledged that danger, and banned the use of stomme  in 1613. However, the ban was never implemented and stomme remained in use for a long time. We argue that the ban was inspired by the risks posed to the health of the wine drinkers, but that economic reasons for a continuance of use prevailed. 


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Lead author country

  • Netherlands

Lead author job role

  • PhD Student

Lead author institution

University of Utrecht

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