Animals in the Ancient World

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Animals in the Ancient World

<p>For millennia animals and birds have been our pets, workmates and even our gods. Our relationship with dogs, cats, horses and a surprising variety of other creatures is revealed by archaeology,

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For millennia animals and birds have been our pets, workmates and even our gods. Our relationship with dogs, cats, horses and a surprising variety of other creatures is revealed by archaeology, ancient texts and artefacts from the Near East, Egypt, Greece and Rome. This course will show how the development of our interaction with companion animals revolutionised our attitudes to nature, travel, warfare, food production and family life.


SUGGESTED READING

  • Arnott, W.G., 2007, Birds in the Ancient World, Routledge, NY
  • Germond, P. and Livet, J., 2001, An Egyptian Bestiary: Animals in Life and Religion in the Land of the Pharaohs, London
  • Hays, J., 2008, Ancient Horsemen: First Chariots, Mounted Riders and the Bontai and Sintashta-Petrovka Cultures, e-article – http://factsanddetails.com/Asian.php?itemid=2705&catid=65&subcatid=422
  • Houlihan, P.F., 1996, The Animal World of the Pharaohs, New York
  • Littauer, M.A. and Crouwel, J.H., 2002, Selected Writings on Chariots and Other Early Vehicles, Riding and Horses, Ed. Peter Raulwing, Leiden
  • Newmeyer, S.T., 2011, Animals in Greek and Roman Thought: a sourcebook, London


COURSE OUTLINE
This course will examine the relationship between humans and animals such as cats, dogs and horses from the Neolithic to the Roman period using iconographical and literary sources from ancient cultures including those of Egypt, the Near East, Greece and Rome. It will primarily study companion animals, but will also include material on birds, animals in agriculture and the role of animals in sacrifice.

  • Week 1 – Introduction. Cats, Monkeys and Ichneumon and other animals
  • Week 2 – Dogs and horses
  • Week 3 – Birds. Animals in agriculture and sacrificial cult.


PLANNED LEARNING OUTCOMES
By the end of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Discover how and when the relationships between humans and animals formed.
  2. Enhance comprehension of the geography and chronology of the ancient world by taking an enjoyable tour around the Mediterranean and Near East looking at this topic through ancient artefacts and modern archaeology and forensic science.
  3. Gain appreciation of the various cultures represented through their relationship to companion animals.
  4. Enter the world of ancient sacrificial ritual.