Home Page

Stefan's Florilegium


This document is also available in: text or RTF formats.

horses-lnks – 8/25/04


A set of web links to information on medieval and SCA horses by Dame Aoife Finn of Ynos Mon.


NOTE: See also the files: horses-msg, horses-bib, Horse-n-t-MA-art, horse-racing-msg, saddles-msg, horse-recipes-msg, travel-msg, On-the-Road-art.





This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I  have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.


This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org


I  have done  a limited amount  of  editing. Messages having to do  with separate topics  were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the  message IDs  were removed to save space and remove clutter.


The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make  no claims  as  to the accuracy  of  the information  given by the individual authors.


Please  respect the time  and  efforts of  those who have written  these messages. The  copyright status  of these messages  is  unclear at this time. If  information  is  published  from  these  messages, please give credit to the originator(s).


Thank you,

    Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                          Stefan at florilegium.org



From: liontamr at ptd.net

Subject: Links: Medieval Equines

Date: April 8, 2004 11:51:18 AM CDT

To: StefanliRous at austin.rr.com,


Greetings everyone. This week's Links List is all about Horses in history

and in the Modern Middle Ages. Such a  noble past-time brings a great deal

to the "flavor of the Middle Ages and Renaissance". I greatly enjoy watching

contests involving horses at SCA events.


Below are many links for Kingdom equestrian groups. These in turn have

terrific links lists, and I encourage you to use them. In addition, there is

some information about carriages/carts, barding, how to begin SCA

Horsemanship, Horse History, Sidesaddles, and more. Please feel free to pass

this Links List along to those who will find it

interesting and use these links to update your own webpages.






Getting Started in S.C.A. Horsemanship

by Ld. Manfred von dem Schwarzwald


(Site Excerpt) Riding the Quintain - This game involves the use of a device

once used to train mounted knights in proper techniques of the lance. You

will ride at the quintain with a lance "couched" or leveled, in an attempt

to strike the target. The quintain itself is a wooden shield (the target)

mounted on the end of a revolving T-bar. A score is given based on the

number of times the quintain spins around after being struck by the lance.


The International Historyof the Horse: 600 - 1630 THE MIDDLE AGES EMERGENCE



(Site Excerpt) The horse became largely a vehicle for battle or the hunt

since the Roman roads, which had previously united Europe, fell in

disrepair. Travel from one area to another was dangerous due to the hostile

relations between kingdoms. For the most part, chariots fell from use and

the wagon remained a farm vehicle. Despite a decline in the quality of

technological innovation in many spheres of life, the Middle Ages saw the

horse adapted to new roles in such diverse areas as warfare and agriculture.


Illuminated Image: Medieval Horses and Cart



The Medieval Horse


(Site Excerpt--note: scroll down 1/3 of page to get to the Medieval

Information) It is commonly believed that the great war-horses, also called

destriers, were developed during the Middle Ages to support the great weight

of the armored knight. Actually, a good suit of armor was not over 70 pounds

in weight; and therefore, the horse would only be expected to carry some 250

to 300 pounds. The real reason large horses were useful was because their

weight gave greater force to the impact of the knight's lance, both in

warfare and in the tournament. A destrier weighed twice as much as a

conventional riding horse; and when the knight struck a conventionally

mounted opponent, the impact could be devastating.


Brough's Books--Books on Horse-drawn Carriages and Carts



Kingdom of Acre Medieval Jousting Exhibitions,

Associations, and Training Links Page



The Medieval Horse Store

Medieval Horses and Links



A Medieval Sidesaddle

by Ilaria Veltri degli Ansari


(Site Excerpt) I found an 11th c. painting of Mary and Joseph fleeing into

Egypt. In this plate Mary rides aside and both her feet are in stirrups. I

am of the opinion that this is unsafe. I also found a written reference in

Hispanic Costume, that spoke of women using one or two stirrups on their

saddles. (Note: Photos, illustrations, and bibliography provided)


Works of art portraying the medieval war horse


(Site Excerpt) Caroligian, about 860-870 AD, Equestrian statuette of a

Caroligian Emperor (traditionally identified as Charlemagne). The portrait

type corresponds to manuscript and ivory images of Charles the Bold, not his

grandfather Charlemagne. Medieval artists were usually not particular about

which legs of the horse advanced together, but here the horse and rider's

proud bearing, and the high foreleg especially, are significant reflections

of imperial Roman forms. Walter Liedtke (1989), The Royal Horse and Rider:

Painting, Sculpture, and Horsemanship 1500-1800, Black and White Plate 13,

page 151.


Medieval Horse Guild

Medieval Horse Breeds


(Site Excerpt) Medieval horses were defined by their confirmation and the

role they were intended to be used for. There were highly refined and

trained Destriers, smooth gaited Palfreys, long winded and strong Coursers,

and general purpose Rouncies. In addition, ponies, mules and donkeys also

played a vital role in society of the period. Since the scope of this

article is to inform briefly about medieval horses, I'll limit myself to

broad generalizations about a few types of horses. The reader wanting more

detailed information should choose and read some of the books listed in the

bibliography which is in another part of this web site. A number of those

books deal specifically with the breeding and use of medieval horses.


Horses and History or

The Dog May Be Man's Best Friend,

but It Was the Horse that Built Civilization!

by Melinda Maidens


(Site Excerpt) "History was written on the back of the horse," according to

an inscription at The Horse Park in Kentucky. Horse lovers do not need to be

reminded how much human beings owe to equus caballus, but to the general

population, civilization's debt is perhaps not immediately apparent. A

comparison of civilizations that had horses with civilizations that did not

soon makes it clear that human history, at least in Eurasia, would have been

profoundly different were it not for the horse.


Belgian Draft Horse


(Site Excerpt) History shows that Belgians are direct lineal descendants of

the "Great

Horse" of medieval times. The Belgian, as the name implies, is native to the

country of Belgium. This little country is blessed with fertile soil and

abundant rainfall, providing the thrifty farmers of Belgium with the

excellent pastures and the hay and grain necessary to develop a heavy,

powerful breed of horse.


Kingdom of Aethelmearc Equestrian Webpage


(Site Excerpt) Garb: It should allow you to mount and dismount easily.

Avoid flapping garments such as cloaks or long veils which may get tangled,

and might frighten the horse you're riding, (After all, he might be new to

the SCA).  Wear trousers under skirts and kilts.  Ladies; assume that you'll

be riding astride, since sidesaddles are uncommon.


Stefan's Florilegium Horse Article


The Horse in the Medieval Age

by Malachy of Adamastor


East Kingdom Equestrian College



Equestrian Activities within the Kingdom of An Tir

by - THL Catelin Spenser, EM - An Tir



Rules of the Ealdormerian Equestrian



Middle Kingdom Equestrian College



Northshield Cavalry FAQ




Master Johannes the Black of the Athanor


(Site Excerpt, site has illustrations) The SADDLE COVER may be seen in

Illus. 4 & 5. These are very much like the 'mochila' saddle covers which the

conquistadors used. If you construct one, it is important that it's

constructed of or lined with a coarse material, so that they will not slide

on the saddle. It will be necessary to either fit them, or make them out of

industrial felt, so that they may be put on wet and ridden, thus conforming

to the saddle's shape. The stirrups are pulled around them, as the

illustration show, though a horizontal slit could be made to allow them to

be pulled through.


Mediaeval saddles and stirrup irons


Photos taken at Warwick Castle--scroll down page to find a set of

"horse links"


SCA-Wide Equestrian Handbook


Complete sca-wide rules---Acrobat Reader required. Please note that there is

provision for minors and horses!!!! Hurrah!


Horse Armor Information Page (many dealers)



<the end>


Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org