Skip to comments.Horses tamed 1,000 years earlier than thought
Posted on 03/06/2009 8:03:54 AM PST by BGHater
Horses were first tamed at least 5,500 years ago, by peoples who not only rode them but milked them as well.
Archaeological research has shown that the domestication of horses began at least 1,000 years earlier than thought, among the Botai culture that thrived in what is now Kazakhstan between 3700BC and 3100BC.
A British-led team of scientists has discovered three lines of evidence that point to an equestrian tradition among the Botai, who lived in a region where wild horses are known to have been abundant.
The findings, published in the journal Science, also show that the animals were harnessed, for riding or for pulling or carrying loads, and that their milk was an important part of the Botai diet. While mare's milk is not a familiar drink in most of the world, it is still consumed in Kazakhstan, where it is usually fermented into a mildly alcoholic form known as koumiss. Mare's milk would have added valuable protein to the Botai diet.
DNA evidence has previously indicated that horses were domesticated either in several separate places, or from a single line of stallions that were tamed and then bred with local wild mares.
Genetic research, however, has failed so far to pinpoint when domestication first occurred.
The Botai culture has long been considered a promising candidate, because extensive horse remains have been found at its archaeological sites. The study, led by Alan Outram, of the University of Exeter, and Richard Evershed, of the University of Bristol, has found compelling evidence that it did indeed farm horses.
The domestication of horses is known to have had immense social and economic significance, advancing communications, transport, food production and warfare, Dr Outram said. Our findings indicate that horses were being domesticated about 1,000 years earlier than previously thought.
(Excerpt) Read more at timesonline.co.uk ...
“scientists baffled”! keyword added :)
I've had the opportunity to drink koumiss. Once was enough!
Oh, sure, now ya tell me. ;’) Thanks BGHater.
Earliest domesticated horses dated 5,500 years ago
AP via Yahoo! | Thursday, March 5, 2009 | Randolph E. Schmid
Posted on 03/06/2009 8:59:29 AM PST by SunkenCiv
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Oh, yeah. You gotta wonder how the human race survived it. And don’t even get me started on lutefisk...
Sacred Precincts:The moat, which is over 15 feet deep in places, was dug out of bedrock. We have found a great deal of local pottery in the moat. Surprisingly, we have also found skeletons of what at first appeared to be horses or donkeys. Later analysis showed that these were the bones of a now-extinct equid not known anywhere else in the world -- one smaller than a horse but taller than a donkey or a pony. Study of the bones revealed that the animals had not been used for hard labor or transportation. Stranger still, they were all beheaded and buried in the western moat -- the bones of their bodies at one end of the moat and their skulls at the other. We have found nearly 30 of these creatures. Were they sacred animals? Did worshipers mount them for ritual processions? Did they have some other cultic function? We are open to suggestions, and we hope that further excavations will help solve this mystery.
A Tartessian Sanctuary in Ancient Spain
by Sebastián Celestino
and Carolina López-Ruiz
Chinese Archaeologists Probe Origin Of Domestic Horses Through DNA
Xinhuanet - China View | 4-1-2006 | Mo Hong’e
Posted on 04/01/2006 2:55:30 PM PST by blam
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