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TagArcheology and myth

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EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND  Bobby a Skye Terrier monument

Can Myths About Dogs Give Us a Clue re Their Origins?

A French historian studies the relationship between ancient stories told about dogs and information from genetics and archeology

Just how and when dogs originated has been the subject of much research. In one account, “Dogs originated from wolves domesticated in Europe, 19,000-32,000 years ago,” based on DNA studies (2013). But other research points to many other possibilities: “Central Asia, the Middle East, South Asia or Southeast Asia” some time between 10,000 and 38,000 years ago. Some think they were tamed twice. Historian Julien d’Huy of the College of France in Paris suggests another approach, looking at stories about dogs: “With mythology, we can have explanations of archaeology, we can have reasons for domestication, we can test hypotheses,” he says. D’Huy found three core storylines for the earliest myths related to dogs: The first links dogs with the afterlife,…