Cats have always been popular. New research shows that they even helped in Viking ships.
Already thousands of years before the cat got a dominant position in contemporary internet culture, they were very popular animals, new research shows.
In the world’s first large-scale DNA study on ancient cats French scientists show that cats came to Eurasia and Africa together with farmers and sailors, among them Vikings, writes videnskap.dk.
The researchers examined DNA from 209 cats from more than 30 archaeological digs in Europe, Middle East and Africa. They found, among other things cat remains in a Viking grave north of Germany.
The Vikings may have brought cats on site to keep rats away, says researcher Eva-Maria Geigl, who presented the study, wrote Nature. While emphasizing to the researchers that there is still much we do not know about ancient cats.
– There are so many interesting observations in this study. I did not even know Viking cats existed, says researcher Pontus Skoglund at Harvard Medical School in Boston USA, who was present when the research results were presented at a conference in Oxford.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today