Thoroughbred horse breed description
It is known that England is the birthplace of a thoroughbred horse breed of horses. It was bred in the XVII-XVIII centuries. based on local and imported horse breeds. At different times, England had frisky and hardy horses. Reliable information about the good qualities of the English horse before entering the eastern horses, we find the writer Markgan. In 1614, he noted: “If it comes to performance and endurance, then there is no horse that could compare with the English. The latter is not only well-built, but also bold, strong and hardy. ”
The Norfolk breed is already mentioned in the XII century. With a noble type head, similar to the Arabian one, with a short and strong back, a long and wide croup, average height up to 160 cm, horses of this breed were considered “suitable for armed riders.” Under Henry VII (XV century), this breed was valued so highly that its export was prohibited. Norfolk horses replenished the English cavalry. The most appreciated dark red color.
In addition, in the XVII century. in England, heavy trucks and peasant horses that could carry a weight of 200 to 400 kg were common. War horses close to this type were described by the Duke of Nyokastelsky, noting strong limbs, a heavy front, silky coat, long tail and mane. During the ceremonial trips of Queen Anne (1702-1713), these horses have always been used, which have been called the Shire horses since the time of Henry VIII. They were black, bay or red. As for their growth, it was sufficient, since in the XVI century. it was forbidden, under the threat of severe punishment, to use stallions below average height to obtain offspring. It is believed that the Shire breed, the most common in England, came from a heavy knightly medieval horse.
The Suffol breed of draft horses existed at that time, exclusively of a red suit of various shades.
To improve local breeds, Arabian and Turkish horses were imported from the East, and Neapolitan and Spanish from Europe. These breeds have influenced the local British horse. And by the end of the XVI century. in England a small, okay, broad-faced, broad-chested, steep rib and short-legged horse horse was created. She carried the features of an Arab breed.
The interest in the frisky horse among the British was supported by their love of horse racing and fox hunting. Already in the reign of King James I (XVI century), races were held in which strong and frisky horses participated. “The modern breeder of England believes in one prize pillar,” admitted one of them, Burgsdorf. And further: “English racing is the most gambling game in the world … speed alone is a desirable quality.” As for the growth of the English riding horse in the XVII century., Apparently, it was not sufficient (no more than 150 cm). Meanwhile, the army needed tall horses. It is enough to cite the words of Oliver Cromwell, who attached great importance to the cavalry: “That soldier who does not have a good weapon, a good horse and a good horse dress is not capable of anything.”
The creation of a thoroughbred horse (English) breed of horses began under King Charles II and is associated with large changes in the entire horse breeding. He was a passionate racer. It was during the reign of Charles II that horse racing began to be regularly held in the vast meadow of Newmarket, not far from the royal stud farm. From then until now, Newmarket has remained the center of purebred horse breeding in England.
Competitions were held at a distance of 4 to 6 miles. Horses from six years of age and older took part in them with the required weight of a jockey with a saddle of 76 kg. Prizes were awarded in two rounds, which required great endurance from the horse. Large prizes were called the Royal Chalices. These were expensive silver goblets of great value.
Under Charles II, eastern stallions began to be imported in order to raise the growth of horses. Unlike Europe, where massive horses filled numerous cavalry regiments and squadrons, in England they understood that cavalry and speed were inseparable. And the speed could give a light horse, without excess weight, consisting only of muscles and tendons. An Arabian horse met these requirements: thin legs, a small head, broken-off tendons, blood vessels secreted under the skin, and not a gram of excess fat. However, of the 180 eastern stallions imported into England, only three had a significant impact on the formation of a thoroughbred horse breed – Burley Turk, Darley Arabian and Godolfin Arabian.
Burley Turk was taken as a trophy during the siege by the Turks of Vienna and received his name by the name of its owner, Captain Burley. It was a tall, dry and thoroughbred stallion of dark bay color.
In 1704 a four-year-old, exclusively pedigree, harmonious build, with a small head bay bay stallion Darley Arabian, was bought in Syria. Later, France acquired Godolfin Arabian, a Karak stallion with an irregular exterior (from the portraits of that time), which had previously belonged to the Tunisian Bey and then donated to the French king.