Okay, this isn’t your typical question. I know that corn aka maize comes from the Americas, and hence wasn’t known in Europe until after Columbus made his mathematically-challenged trek across the Atlantic.
So how come the Greeks and Romans keep talking about corn? I just reread through Edith Hamilton’s Mythology, and all the way through it you’ve got talk about corn. Goddesses of the corn. Cornucopia. Corn as the staff of life.
I see two possibilities. Either the distinguished Edith Hamilton was a lousy translator (which doesn’t explain cornucopia), or the ancient story tellers were actually talking about something else.
Which is it? And what grain were they actually talking about?