Tag Archives: bestiary

Centaurs Like Us

the Centaur … is a man combined with a horse. Some say that they were horsemen of Thessaly, but because, as they rushed into battle, the horses and men seemed to have one body, they maintained the fiction of the Centaurs. In his Etymologies (Book 11, … Continue reading

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

Horse and Human Interface in the Middle Ages

Were medieval horses loved by their riders? Or were their regarded as pieces of functional machinery, discarded when they run out of order without a second thought? So many sources, both modern and medieval, refer to them as if they had been mere machines, complex but replacable. The matter-of-fact testimony of restauratio equorum, analyzed for Edwardian England by Andrew Ayton, certainly suggests as much. Likewise, knights in romances rarely stop to grieve their fallen mounts, as long as they have replacements at hand. Even Dom Duarte I in his famous The Book of Horsemanship has little to say about the personality of a medieval horses, except that it must be a ‘good horse’.
But what was a ‘good horse’ in the Middle Ages?
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Posted in Arthurian Literature, equestrian history, History, Medieval horses, Medieval Literature | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sir Percival on a Desert Island: A Foucauldian Perspective on the ‘Queste del Saint Graal’

My absolute favourite among the Grail quest romances, old and new, the thirteenth-century ‘Queste del Saint Graal’, contains a curious and slightly kinky episode. Sir Percival, moored on a desert island, fights dragons, despair and all sorts of dangers and … Continue reading

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