WHO HARNESSED THE HORSE? The Story of Animal Domestication by Margery Facklam
Kirkus Star

WHO HARNESSED THE HORSE? The Story of Animal Domestication

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Animal by animal, from ""Man's First Best Friend"" and the most familiar species (the chapter entitled ""Who Cooped the Chicken?"" also covers other fowl) to camels and elephants, small creatures (rabbits, bees, silkworms), ""Animals That Lost Their Jobs"" (Indian emperors' cheetahs once rode horses to the hunt), and recent innovations like ""Dolphin Divers and Monkey Butlers."" Basing her suggestions on archeological evidence and different animal characteristics, Facklam postulates how and why the first links were made, discusses the many uses of various species and how they've affected human development, and cogently weaves in topics such as selective breeding (most extensive with dogs; not done at all with elephants). She closes on a thoughtful appreciative note: ""They opened the door to civilization. Do we give them enough in return?"" The format is attractive, even though the rather undistinguished b&w illustrations sometimes fail to amplify intriguing descriptions in the text. Overall: a fascinating, lucid, and detailed survey that feeds both the intellect and the imagination. Glossary; index.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1992
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: "Little, Brown"