The earliest records of horseback riding go back 5,000 years.

The oldest direct evidence for horseback riding has been discovered by researchers. The proof is found in human skeletons from central Europe that date back 5,000 years. The research work was published last week in the newspaper Science Advances. The invention of horseback riding altered the course of history. According to David Anthony, it was “the fastest a human could go before the railroads.” He is an archaeologist at Hartwick College in New York and a co-writer of the report.

More than 200 ancient people’s bones from museum collections in Bulgaria, Poland, Romania, Hungary, and the Czech Republic were analyzed by the researchers. The bones date from between 3,000 to 5,000 years old, during the Bronze Age. The investigators searched for “horse rider syndrome.” Another researcher on the project, Martin Trautmann, described the illness. According to him, there are six indicators that indicate if someone rode an animal. One anthropologist at the University of Helsinki in Finland, Trautmann, listed them as wear marks on the hips, thigh bone, and pelvis. Five people who most likely rode horses were recognized by the researchers. Their estimated chronological age is 4,500–5,000 years ago.

They belonged to the Yamnaya, a Bronze Age ethnic group. Archaeologist Alan Outram works at the University of Exeter in Britain. Although he was not a participant in the study, he was complimentary of the researchers’ techniques. “This is the earliest direct evidence for horseback riding to date,” he stated, “although there is earlier evidence for harnessing and milking of horses.” Domesticating wild horses on the plains of Eurasia was a process, not a singular event, the experts said. In the past, archaeologists have discovered proof that humans drank horse milk. There have also been traces of horses managed by harnesses reaching back more than 5,000 years. However, that does not imply that people rode the horses.

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