The Breeds, Personalities, Temperaments and Physical Traits of the Beloved Pet Dogs of Ancient Rome

In a tail-wagging video essay, Julien Blarel of Invicta History takes a look at an often ignored facet of daily ancient Roman life – their pet dogs. Blarel explains the type of breeds available along with their physical traits, personality and temperament with the help of wonderful illustrations by Beverly Johnson.

He also reads aloud the love expressed to these animals from the language of their gravestones.

…This holds the white dog from Malita, the most faithful guardian of Eumelus bull they called him while he was yet alive but now his voice is imprisoned in the silent pathways of the night. You who passed by if you see this monument laugh not I pray though it is a dog’s grave. Tears fell for me and dust was heaped above me by a master’s hand. I am in tears while carrying you to your last resting place as much as I rejoiced when bringing you home in my own hands fifteen years ago

In other words, not much has changed when it comes to the love between humans and animals.

Dogs have always been by our sides as we’ve curiously changed tongue and appearance. But no matter what they’ve been there for our adventures.