The transition from hunting and gathering to agriculture had revolutionary consequences for the development of human societies. Crops such as wheat, barley, lentil, pea and chickpea played a crucial role in the establishment of complex civilizations in south west Asia. Wild emmer wheat (Triticum dicoccoides) was one of the first cereals to be domesticated in the Fertile Crescent between c. 12,000 and c. 10,000 years ago. This step provided the key for subsequent bread wheat evolution. Wild emmer is found today in the western Fertile Crescent in Jordan, Syria and Israel, the central part of southeastern Turkey and mountain areas in eastern Iraq and western Iran. In this review, we summarize issues concerning geography and domestication of wild emmer wheat based on published molecular and archaeobotanical data and on our recent findings. We suggest that modern domestic tetraploid wheats derived from wild emmer lines from southeast Turkey. However, our understanding of emmer domestication is not complete. The "dispersed-specific" domestication model proposed for einkorn might well be appropriate also for emmer.