Author Archives: thegrailquest

About thegrailquest

Anastasija Ropa holds a doctoral degree from Bangor University (North Wales), for a study in medieval and modern Arthurian literature. She has published a number of articles on medieval and modern Arthurian literature, focusing on its historical and artistic aspects. She is currently employed as guest lecturer at the Latvian Academy of Sport Education. Anastasija’s most recent research explores medieval equestrianism in English and French literary art and literature, and she is also engaged as part-time volunteer horse-trainer. In a nutshell: Lecturer at the Latvian Academy of Sport Education Graduate of the School of English, University of Wales, Bangor. Graduate of the University of Latvia Passionate about history, particularly the Middle Ages A horse-lover and horse-owner

Summary of Horse History Meeting, 7 July 2020, held during vIMC 2020

For the last five years, equestrian history sessions have had their presence during the International Medieval Congress in Leeds. Over the course of these years, fascinating projects were discussed and initiated. The recently published volume The Horse in Premodern European … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Horses in Medieval India: Imports and local breeding

In his travels, Marco Polo notes one peculiarity of India, and this is related to horse breeding in the country: another strange thing to be told is that there is no possibility of breeding horses in this country, as hath … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

CFP: Historical Practices in Horsemanship and Equestrian Sports

Online conference. 28-29 August 2020 This conference is devoted to discussing historical practices of horsemanship and equestrian sports, their emergence and evolution over centuries and into the present day. The conference is open to papers from all historical periods, and … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Where to find a two-headed horse?

Where would you find a two-headed horse, in case you need one for gentle riding? If you are thinking about some kind of monster, perhaps the Apocalyptic kind of creature poulating the margins of an Apocalypse manuscript, think again… You … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

What to do if attacked by a knight. An opportunist Saracen’s advice

Obviously, medieval knights have developed a very particular ethos as regards proper and improper chivalric behaviour. But what was one to do if actually confronted by someone wielding a heavy spear, once your own spear is lost, broken, or nowhere … Continue reading

Posted in History, Medieval animals, Medieval horses | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

in working with the cavesson, and in beginning to work young horses, a pupil will learn more secrets than well-trained horses will show him, because the latter are experienced. But the young ones, who cannot forget their liberty all at … Continue reading

Image | Posted on | Leave a comment

Open Access Resources for Horse History

Unexpectedly, I find that Covid-19 has been good for scholarship. Although many people complain that libraries, archives and museums are closed, and conferences cancelled, still others have noted a rise in their productivity. Being locked up in their residence, without … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, Medieval animals, Medieval horses, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A star-fronted mare

While most noble riders in medieval Europe would despise anyone reduced to riding a mare, mares were ridden in the nomadic societies throughout the Middle Ages and beyond. The poem of “Jostled by Horses” legendary sixth-century warrior and poet of … Continue reading

Posted in equestrian history, Medieval horses, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The Best Breed of the North

Speculating on the origins of the Galloway horse is a process that is fraught with the issues besetting any contemporary breed enthusiast, since the whole concept of a “breed” is a very modern one and it probably did not cause … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, Arthurian Literature, equestrian history, Medieval animals, Medieval horses, Medieval Literature, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Cutting the Stallion’s Tail: A Very Strange Crime that Might Have Occurred in Medieval Wales

Inspired by Edgar Rops, “The Horse in Welsh and Anglo-Saxon Law,” from The Horse in Premodern European Culture, ed. by Anastasija Ropa and Timothy Dawson Owain was neither thief nor coward, and he certainly did not want to appear like one. … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, creative writing, equestrian history, Medieval horses, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment