Archaeologists in Egypt have recently uncovered a brewery in Abydos that produced beer for royal ceremonies. The structure dates back to the first dynasty and the reign of King Narmer, around 3100 BC. Experts estimate the beer factory could produce as much as 5,000 gallons of beer for use in burial rituals. Ancient hieroglyphics had previously indicated that beer was used in such rituals, but the brewery was never discovered until now.
Why were the ancients, all over the world so taken with beer and similar brews? Back in those days, nobody knew what bacteria and viruses were. They were completely unknown and so they didn’t think it was a bad idea to drink the same water they bathed in or pooped and peed into. Modern understanding of microbes and their pathology is only about 350 years old. Sanitary sewers and potable water treatments took another couple of hundred years to become widely adopted. Therefore, any brewing of water (including tea, coffee, and cider, as well as beer) was likely to result in a much safer drink, than water straight from a river or stream. People who drank mostly brewed water were more likely to survive than those who did not.
Some questions that remain to be answered are “What did the ancient brews taste like?” “How strong were they?” and “Where did they rank on the IBU scale?”
Regardless of the answers to those questions, it remains clear that the Egyptian Pharaohs were among the first members of the Ancient Order of Beer Overlords (renamed in modern times to simply Beer Overlords). We’re taking this as direct evidence of the Global Beer Conspiracy, which consumes our every waking thought, except for when we are drinking a nice oatmeal stout, a nutty brown ale, a micro-brewed IPA, a lager, pilsener, or porter, or a margarita.