When were horses first domesticated?

Horses were domesticated in the early Bronce Age
   Bronze Age deposits going back to about 2500 B.C. offer evidence in the form of bridle bits and other items of harness, of the domestication of horses. A wall drawing in southern Sweden, almost 4,000 years old, is one of the oldest representations found of the domestic horse in Europe. Babylonian records indicate that domestic horses were known there in 2300 B.C. These tamed animals belonged to rather primitive nomadic tribes. The domestic horse, however, did not become common in Babylonia until after 2000 B.C. It was introduced into Africa probably by the Hyksos, or Shepherd kings of the Middle East, who conquered Lower Egypt in the seventeenth century B.C. Subsequently, tame horses were bred throughout Africa and across southern Asia to Celebes.
   The first horses to be domesticated were trained to carry loads on their backs and to draw vehicles. They were not used as riding animals until a much later time; this practice probably originated with nomadic herdsmen in central Asia. Babylonians first tamed horses to draw war; chariots the horse did not serve as a mount until a thousand years later, in the twelfth century B.C. The Egyptians, too, harnessed chariots to their horses but rarely rode the animals and never had them pull plows or wagons.

 The horse has aided man in war and peace

   Wherever the horse has been pressed into man's service, it has altered his way life. Cavalry units and war chariots drawn by horses changed the whole complexion of warfare. The horse-drawn plow simplified and broadened agricultural activities. Great amounts of cargo could be hauled long distances by draft horses; transportation by means of coach, carriage and wagon was made possible. Even today in the most modern countries, the horse has not lost its versatility on the farm and livestock ranch and as a sporting animal.