1. Explain the main the idea of the Chapter 7/write a summary of Diamond's main points in Chapter 7 of Guns, Germs, and Steel.
2.Cite two pieces of evidence from Chapter 7 that support the main ideas that you claim.
The main idea of Chapter 7 of Guns, Germs, and Steel is that plants were domesticated before modern horticulture came into being.
- Summary of Main Points:
Most domesticated plants have been derived from wild ones which were edible; however, some have come from poisonous plants which had mutations that were sweet and harmless; such is the case of the almond, which is naturally poisonous. Just as humans chose the sweet almond, so did they select plants that offered food which was flavorful. Some plants such as peas that have pods that did not burst and spread its seeds would be more likely to be eaten by humans; so, the domesticated pea is derived from this mutation. Then, because people would carry the best plants to their homes, the seeds of these superior plants germinated in the ground near people--sometimes passing through animals, which further enhanced them, leading to the domesticated varieties of plants.
Another plant that offers advantages to humans is wheat, for this grass forms all its seeds at once. Consequently, it is easy for humans to harvest these seeds at one time; also grains will last for a while, so they can be kept for longer periods than other foods. Legumes, too, are easy to harvest, and would last a long time.
Many people found growing grains and vegetables an essential venture for life. Moreover, people were able to settle in one place where they could grow crops which would feed families and populations of people. And, when people grew crops, seeds would fall and then mutate naturally which produced better and better crops.
- Two pieces of evidence that support the main points
1. By the time of the Romans, most major crops were domesticated. This supports the idea that people domesticated plants that they found.
2. Apples and fruits were not domesticated until much later: 3,500 years because some technology was needed, such as grafting. Fruits need pollinating, as well.