Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

sulfur, an element that constitutes about 0.5% of the weight of the Earth’s crust and one of the more important elements for mankind. It is extremely important in wine production because of the wide-ranging uses of sulfur dioxide. A pale yellow, brittle, solid substance at room temperature, it was already known to the speakers of Ancient Sanskrit as sulvere. The book of Genesis in the Bible refers to sulfur as brimstone. In its combined form as sulfuric acid, sulfur is used in so many manufacturing processes that the tonnage consumed by a nation can be taken as an indication of the health of its economy.