Skip to comments.How Ancient Greeks Named Their Puppies
Posted on 07/16/2012 10:00:55 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
Dogs played a special role in ancient Greek society and mythology; Cerberus guarded the gates of Hades, the goddess Artemis used dogs in her hunt, and Greek citizens employed dogs for hunting and protection.
To the ancient Greeks, picking your new pup was an important decision, just as it is today. But, according to Stanford University researcher Adrienne Mayor, writing for Wonders & Marvels, the process could have been just a little bit different.
Like moderns, the ancients looked for an adventurous and friendly nature, but one test for selecting the pick of the litter seems rather heartless today. Let the mother choose for you, advises Nemesianus, a Roman expert on hunting dogs. Take away her puppies, surround them with an oil-soaked string and set it on fire. The mother will jump over the ring of flames and rescue each puppy, one by one, in order of their merit.
Mayor says that dogs were typically given short names that evoked ideas of things like power, speed, or beauty. Then again, the more things change, the more they seem to stay the same. According to Mayor,
Popular names for dogs in antiquity, translated from Greek, include Lurcher, Whitey, Blackie, Tawny, Blue, Blossom, Keeper, Fencer, Butcher, Spoiler, Hasty, Hurry, Stubborn, Yelp, Tracker, Dash, Happy, Jolly, Trooper, Rockdove, Growler, Fury, Riot, Lance, Pell-Mell, Plucky, Killer, Crafty, Swift, and Dagger.
(Excerpt) Read more at blogs.smithsonianmag.com ...
A mosaic of Hercules with pet Cerberus.
Ancient Doggie Ping
There were dogs in those years? Who knew?
What, no Wizzer?
I had a dog named Happy.
That is what I get for being asked what to name him when I was about 8 years old I guess.
The little guy looked like he was Happy to me.
Wow did that dog go through the wringer with me and my older brother. Great breed for that part of my life, an English Springer Spaniel.
No mention of Kenyans that eat dogs though.
“There were dogs in those years? Who knew?”
Dogs are our oldest domesticated species. Some scientists believe the relationship between man and dog began as far back as 100,000 years ago. If true then man and dog literally evolved together.
I had a dog named Happy when I was in high school.
Unfortunately we had to leave him with my Aunt and Uncle when we were away on Vacation.
He managed to dig his way out from under the garage (stone floor) and came looking for us.
We never got him back and I never found out what happened to him.
“Here Arfimedes...C’mon, boy!”
Our dog is an ESS. She’s 16 now, but she’s been by my son’s side since the day we got her.
He’s a grown man now, and she’s still sleeping in his bed. Best friends forever.
|GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach|
Reminds me of the old joke about the Indian boy who asked his father how people got their names.
His father replied: “Why do you ask two dogs f*&^ing?”
I don’t see Humper either. ;-)
Seems like there should be some adaptable methodology here for the political ring involving fire and oil.
My dad had three pups once. Blackie was the blackest, Brownie was the brownest, and Liberace was the pianist.
No “Cujo”, either...
Did he ever have to jump over a ring of fire to save them? And if so, which was first?
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