Before the first millennium, ice was harvested in ancient China for the purpose of keeping drinks cold. The Greeks and Romans built large, insulated storage pits and filled them with the last of the winter’s snow in an attempt to enjoy a refreshingly cool drink for as long as possible. If you lived in a warmer climate you could act like an Egyptian and carry your drink containers to the roof at the end of the day to have them cooled by the night air. By the 1600’s Frenchmen were cooling their drinks by rotating long-necked bottles in a solution of saltpeter and water which could actually produce very low temperatures and even make ice!
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