Discovery of First Horse Riding Bit

Archeologists David W. Anthony and Dorcas Brown of Hartwick College, Oneonta, NY, USA discovered microscopic bit wear damage done to a horse’s premolar teeth by a horse riding bit used with a bridle of bone, leather, or rope in its teeth remains found in burial sites near Ukraine and Kazakhstan dating back to 4000 BCE. The discovery proved that horseback riding existed 2,000 years earlier than previously believed.

      4000 BCE
      David W. Anthony
      Ukraine, Kazakhstan

Additional Information:

  • A Little Big History of Horses (article) | Khan Academy
    The earliest evidence of humans riding horses is 5,000-year-old fossils of worn-down horse teeth that indicate a riding bit was placed in the animal’s mouth.
  • Domestication of the horse – Wikipedia
    A number of hypotheses exist on many of the key issues regarding the domestication of the ….. On the other hand, any domesticated riding horses were probably the same size … The bit must be manipulated by a human or the horse must move it with its … While wear facets more than 3 mm deep were discovered on the lower …
  • Bit (horse) – Wikipedia
    A bit is a type of horse tack used in equestrian activities, usually made of metal, or a synthetic …. The mouthpiece of a horse’s bit is the first factor most people think of when assessing the severity and action of the bit. …. in horses who were anxious to begin a horse race in the days before the invention of the starting gate, the …
  • In Marks of Ancient Bit, Clues to Earliest Riders – The New …
    Jun 26, 1990 – The finding could mean that horseback riding, not the invention of the wheel as most scholars have thought, was the first significant innovation …
  • Archaeologists Find Earliest Known Domestic Horses …
    Mar 8, 2009 – The discovery suggests that horses were both ridden and milked. … Their findings strongly suggest that horses were originally domesticated, not just for riding, but also to … for ‘bit damage’ caused by horses being harnessed or bridled. … on the first Saturday in May, Thoroughbred horses reach speeds of …

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