HOMING PIGEON

 

Short story – Presentation

The pigeon is the first species of birds domesticated by the man: the first ancient remains of dove-cots date back besides 3000 years B.C., that is about 5000 years ago.

Known and appreciated in Mesopotamia and in the ancient Egypt, besides representing a source of nourishment, they were considered holy animals, symbol of fecundity, in fact for the Greeks and the Romans the pigeon was dear to Aphrodite and Venus, the goddess of love. In the antiquity Persians, Assyrians, Phoenicians and ancient Egyptians used the pigeon in order to convey informations: in the course of ages it was the fastest among the means of communication, in fact Caesar used it, during  the conquest of the Gaul and the Saracens used it during the Crusades.

In spite of the military use, the pigeon, for many religions, remains the symbol of peace and reconciliation: in the Old Testament, a dove announce Noé the end of the Flood and for the Christianity it embodies the Holy Spirit.

In the indian tribes of America, the note of the dove is of good omen against the drought, for its likeness to the roar of rain.

In the Middle Age, in some belts of Europe, only the Aristocrats could build dove-cots and, at the same time, breed pigeons.

The beginning of the modern sport of pigeons is in 1871, during the siege of Paris: the Parisians, surrounded by the prussian troops, communicated with the external part of the city only through different messages entrusted to the doves and during the two World Wars the military importance of the carrier pigeon was remarkable.