Ancient species of wild melons have been found throughout West Africa, Iran, Egypt, and Southern Russia. The seed did not reach Italy, Spain, or France until well into the 14th century. Oddly enough, small varieties of melons then became the required pocket accessory for the ladies of Europe. Prior to the advent of daily bathing, well-ripened melons proved quite adept at masking other, shall we say, less amiable odours. It took another four hundred years before the European melon seed finally made it to the shores of North America c.1800. Prior to that time, there is the vague recorded suggestion of melons cultivated by Native peoples as early as c.1600, however, variety and type are difficult to decipher.