Tilted Forum Project Discussion Community  

Go Back   Tilted Forum Project Discussion Community > Chatter > General Discussion

LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 04-11-2004, 08:13 AM   #1 (permalink)
Apocalypse Nerd
Astrocloud's Avatar
Evidence Points to Earlier Cat Domestication

Some of the earliest tame cats may have
resembled this African wildcat,
Felis silvestris lybica
(Image: Ingrid Van Den Berg/Animals Animals)

Ancient remains could be oldest pet cat

19:00 08 April 04

NewScientist.com news service

People tamed cats as pets at least 9500 years ago, say researchers who have unearthed the grave of a prehistoric tabby in Cyprus. The Stone Age moggy appears to have been carefully placed alongside a human corpse, along with offerings including jewellery and stone tools.

Until now, historians thought the ancient Egyptians first domesticated cats about 4000 years ago. But evidence suggests cats were culturally important outside Egypt long before that. Stone and clay figurines of cats up to 10,000 years old have turned up in Syria, Turkey and Israel.

And archaeologists have found cat bones more than 9000 years old on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, which has no native feline species.

"The first discovery of cat bones on Cyprus showed that human beings brought cats from the mainland to the islands, but we could not decide if these cats were wild or tame," says Jean-Denis Vigne of the French research organisation CNRS and the National Museum of Natural History in Paris.

Now Vigne and his colleagues have discovered the remains of a Neolithic cat at the ancient village of Shillourokambos in Cyprus, and the manner of its burial suggests the animal was a pet.

Pointing west

The cat belonged to the species Felis silvestris, the wild cat from which domestic cats descended. Its remains lie just 40 centimetres from a 9500-year-old human grave containing valuable offerings such as polished stones and seashells.

Furthermore, the human and cat skeletons have identical states of preservation. The skeletons were positioned symmetrically, with both heads pointing west, which may have been intentional.

The cat died when it was about eight months old, and while the cause of death is a mystery, there are no signs on the bones that the animal was butchered for food.

Vigne thinks the proximity of the human skeleton suggests a strong bond with the cat, which might have been killed to go to the grave with its master. It would have made sense for early agricultural societies to mingle with cats, he adds, because cats could have killed the mice that nibbled precious grain supplies.

Journal reference: Science (vol 304, p 259)

Astrocloud is offline  
Old 04-11-2004, 06:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
Location: Right here
As a cat owner, I think this post is pretty cool. Thanks for the info.
"The theory of a free press is that truth will emerge from free discussion, not that it will be presented perfectly and instantly in any one account." -- Walter Lippmann

"You measure democracy by the freedom it gives its dissidents, not the freedom it gives its assimilated conformists." -- Abbie Hoffman
smooth is offline  
Old 04-11-2004, 08:30 PM   #3 (permalink)
Location: Ouuuterrrr Spaaaaacccceeee
That's a cool looking cat.
RoboBlaster is offline  
Old 04-11-2004, 08:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
Metal and Rock 4 Life
Destrox's Avatar
Location: Phoenix
Power to the cats.
You bore me.... next.
Destrox is offline  
Old 04-11-2004, 10:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
Very intresting information. Kitties own.
Aletheia is offline  
Old 04-12-2004, 12:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
bundy's Avatar
Location: Tokyo
thanks for the story astro.

btw, clean out your pm box.
bundy is offline  

cat, domestication, earlier, evidence, points

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 11:27 AM.

Tilted Forum Project

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2
© 2002-2012 Tilted Forum Project

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73