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Leopard-origins

A leopard in Egypt

The leopard is a felid in the genus Panthera characterized by its yellow fur marked with rosettes. Similar in appearance to the jaguar of the Americas,[1] it is native to Africa and Asia.

History

5th century BCE

In the wilds of ancient Greece, leopards hunted as did lions, wolves, and bears. The Spartan misthios Kassandra hunted and tamed some of them.[2]

1st century BCE

Historically, leopard furs were valued by humans in places such as Egypt for insulation against cold and windy weather, and as a status symbol: the pelts were especially sought by various priests. In 48 BCE, one leopard pelt was worth 50 drachmae.[3]

Trivia

  • Realistically and despite the Greeks having knowledge of them, leopards are not known to have been native to Ancient Greece, unlike lions. However there have been unconfirmed sighting in the past on Greek islands, especially those near the coast of Turkey.

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