Origins of the breed
The world’s most prestigious cat breed owes its name, but not all its origin, to the fascinating empire of ancient Persia. It is not possible to be exact about the origins of the Persian cat. Most experts agree that long-haired cats are a result of a genetic mutation and the longhair variety of cat could be the result of mating between the European Wild Cat and Pallas’s Cat (the Steppe Cat). The wild Pallas cat was discovered around the area of the Caspian Sea and is also known in the steppes of Central Asia.
Long-haired cats were recorded in both Turkey and Persia as early as the 17th century. Today’s Persians are probably descended from a mixture of different breeds and are the result of the work of dedicated breeders over a very long period of time. Launched onto the scene at London’s Crystal Palace in 1871, the Persian’s ancestors moved in the highest spheres of European aristocracy; the breed has never been eclipsed since.