Signs of mice have been around since the dawn of mammals on Earth. They might look cute, but they’ve been annoying, scaring, and endearing people to them for thousands of years. Cultures throughout time came up with ways to control mice infestations. Some of those practices have been debunked, but some have just been updated for a more modern era. If you’re curious about house mice near Chicago, here’s a little history lesson.

Where Did They Come From?

The name “mouse” can apply to more than 1,000 species of mice or mice-like rodents. The most common mouse, though, is considered the house mouse as it is typically found in or around homes and buildings. It’s believed that the mouse originated in central Asia. Through the influence of human trade and exploration, mice spread into different countries through travel routes. Through this frequent traveling, either by sea or land, to countries around the world, the common mouse has become one of the most adaptable creatures in the world. Due to this amazing adaptability, mice, or some close rodent cousin, can be found on all seven continents around the world.

Are There Historical References?

Signs of mice can be seen throughout the mythology and history of several ancient cultures. Ancient Greeks, Egyptians, Indonesians, Africans, and many more all have stories surrounding either the mischievous side of mice, the courageous, or the side to be feared. Archaeologists have found signs of ancient Egyptians as some of the first mice exterminators. They saw the mouse, and its goddess of pestilence Sekhmet, as a bringer of doom. Though they feared and respected mice greatly, they would use rocks and other deterrents to plug up holes in their homes. Ancient Greeks and Romans shared a similar outlook on mice in their mythology. Though the Greeks acknowledged the mischievous side of the mouse, it was also associated with the god Apollo as a healer. The Romans depicted the mouse as a courageous helper, such as in Aesop’s Fable, “The Lion and The Mouse.”

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