"In search of the great horse" 14.2hh max for medieval warhorses

Keith_Beef

Well-Known Member
Joined
8 December 2017
Messages
8,409
Location
Seine et Oise, France


The thing I find puzzling is the images for the Celestial horses all seem to have quite high set on necks.. whereas all the horses / ponies I've seen from central asia seem to have quite different conformation .. also the tail appears to be much higher set on
Representations of lions and dragons in old Chinese art very often do not look much like their real-life counterparts,
 

scruffyponies

Well-Known Member
Joined
1 March 2011
Messages
1,455
Location
NW Hampshire
The Sarmation civilisation was well before the stirrup., Iron Age.
The Scythians had stirrups, and were closely related to the Samaritans. They were a nomadic martial civilisation, using mounted archery (men and women) in battle. They are thought to have spread from Siberia to Scandinavia, so I would suggest that was where the Vikings got their stirrups from.
 

Cortez

Well-Known Member
Joined
17 January 2009
Messages
12,378
Location
Ireland
The Scythians had stirrups, and were closely related to the Samaritans. They were a nomadic martial civilisation, using mounted archery (men and women) in battle. They are thought to have spread from Siberia to Scandinavia, so I would suggest that was where the Vikings got their stirrups from.
Current thinking is the Vikings took up stirrups through trade with the east, which could have been....well, anywhere/anyone in that direction, really.
 

Cortez

Well-Known Member
Joined
17 January 2009
Messages
12,378
Location
Ireland
If you're interested in horses in medieval times you might enjoy this book.
View attachment 85694
Ah Tim, he was our neighbour in West Cork in the 70's - 80's and I remember him setting off on that trip. The horse didn't last long, and he ended up on an arab, I think? There are better, more scholarly books if you're really interested, but Tim always writes a good adventure.
 

J&S

Well-Known Member
Joined
17 June 2012
Messages
1,933
Another good "adventure" - I enjoyed The Byerly Turk by Jeremy James. Possible wanderings into the realms of fantasy but none the less fascinating reading about the archery and battle training, and of course, as it says in the intro, this horse lives on in his progeny.
 

AandK

Well-Known Member
Joined
24 July 2007
Messages
3,561
Location
West Sussex
Fascinating thread, thanks to those who have contributed and shared the info! I read a lot of fiction based in ancient times, Vikings, knights of old etc, which have a lot of horses in. I had no idea that they were so much smaller back then! I particularly enjoyed reading the article on Celestial Horses.
 

Cortez

Well-Known Member
Joined
17 January 2009
Messages
12,378
Location
Ireland
Another good "adventure" - I enjoyed The Byerly Turk by Jeremy James. Possible wanderings into the realms of fantasy but none the less fascinating reading about the archery and battle training, and of course, as it says in the intro, this horse lives on in his progeny.
I'm so glad you liked this book, I know the author (indeed, my OH and I are included in the dedication) and had many a long talk with him about the history and his adventures in Turkey.
 

linka

Well-Known Member
Joined
23 June 2021
Messages
72
An additional treat for the history nerds, especially the hybrid-breeding history nerds: 4-and-a-half-thousand-year data on how handy a donkey-wild ass cross (kunga) might be in front of a chariot - https://www.sciencenews.org/article/kunga-donkey-wild-ass-hybrid-biology
The skeletons came from northern Syria. Horses got easier/more accessible to breed a few hundred years later, at the end of the third millennium (BC!).
 

Attachments

Top