Category Archives: Medieval animals

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

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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

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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

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Some thoughts on medieval urban equines

in the late Middle Ages, the horse became more widely popular as a means of transportation than ever before in history… (Fabienne Meiers, “Equestrian Cities: The Use of Riding Horses and Characteristics of Horse Husbandry in Late Medieval Urban Agglomerations,” … Continue reading

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Accomplishing the Mission: a prehistory to The Horse in Premodern European Culture

In July 2015, two medievalists met at one of the social spaces of the International Medieval Congress at Leeds. It must have been a reception, with wine flowing as usual, as the two medievalists who did not know each got … Continue reading

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Top 7 Latvian Horsy Superstitions

Two most superstitious groups of people are probably sportsmen and those who are involved in agricultural work. It follows that equestrians are bound to have twice as many superstitions as ordinary folk. With this in mind, I asked Edgar, who, … Continue reading

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Of the Livonians’ Cults, religion(S) and (Im)morality – Again

Dyonisius Fabricius, writing his Livonicae historiae in the first half of the seventeenth century, more than half a century after Balthasar Russow, makes the history of Livonian mores – and immoralities – so much more exciting to read, as well … Continue reading

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I dreamt a dream… Or horsemanship for Arthurian enthusiasts

I have to pinch myself to make sure I’m not dreaming… A book about horses in Arthurian romance… My own book… It is a laconic book, with many pictures reproducing miniatures in famous French and English romances, with lots of … Continue reading

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Practical Horsemanship in Medieval Arthurian Romance

BOOK DESCRIPTION The figure of a knight on horseback is the emblem of medieval chivalry. Much has been written on the ideology and practicalities of knighthood as portrayed in medieval romance, especially Arthurian romance, and it is surprising that so … Continue reading

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Livonia’s Horses and Immorality in Russow’s Chronicle

In 1577, Balthasar Russow, a pastor from Revel, completed The Chronicle of Livonia. In the chronicle, he provides a full history of Livonia from its beginnings in 1158, when merchants from Bremen entered the land, to his own days. Relying … Continue reading

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