Andalusian breed of horses
Andalusian horses - the most famous Spanish breed of horses, which was at the peak of fame in the 16-18 centuries. Andalusians adorned the stables of many nobles and monarchs of Europe, these horses were considered the best both for war and for the parade. For this they were called "royal horses." In those days, Andalusian horses meant as much for horse breeding as a thoroughbred riding breed now means.
The history of the Andalusian horse breed
Andalusian horses were bred in the Spanish province of Andalusia, these are descendants of the Spanish and Portuguese Iberian horses. Now the Portuguese horses are known as Lusitano.
It is believed that Andalusian horses in their present form have been formed over many centuries, and the blood of Arabian horses, as well as horses of Germanic and Celtic peoples, "poured" into them.
But since the 15th century, Andalusian horses have been used to improve other breeds of horses. And only when the main military power began to belong to knights in heavy armor, the value of Andalusian horses in the war sharply decreased. But with the invention and widespread use of firearms, the Andalusians returned to the cavalry again.
A significant role in the creation of the breed belongs to the Carthusian monks - it was at the monasteries in the 15th century that horse factories were created. The monks have established themselves as good breeders. And thanks to their efforts, Andalusian horses became secretly called “royal horses” and adorned almost every royal court in Europe.
In France, Italy, Germany and Austria they created riding academies, where Spanish horses were very popular due to their momentum, excellent movements and amazing grace.
In the early 19th century, Napoleon occupied Spain, and the Andalusian horses were in danger of extinction. However, due to the fact that one of the herds was successfully hidden, the breed was preserved.
Andalusian horses "participated" in the improvement of the following breeds: Lippician (these horses act in the world famous Vienna Riding School), English Cleveland bay, German warm-blooded, quarterhorse, frieze. But in the 19th century, the thoroughbred horse became the main improvement breed, displacing the Andalusians. And only in the 2nd half of the 19th century did interest in Spanish horses again awaken.
Modern Andalusian horses are still distinguished by magnificent temperament, strength and athleticism.
In Spain, the breed is officially called Pura Raza Espanola (P.R.E.) And the Spaniards consider it P.R.E. purebred horses, while Andalusian there are called any horses from Andalusia. But outside of Spain, the name "Andalusian" has taken root.
Gray andalusian horse
Description of the Andalusian horse
Andalusian horses are one of the most beautiful in the world.
They are not too large (height at the withers - 155 - 160 centimeters), have round shapes and compact physique.
The head is medium in size, slightly hunchbacked. The eyes are almond-shaped, large.
The neck is curved, set very high, the crest is developed.This gives a special majesty to the entire appearance of the horse.
The chest of the Andalusian horse is wide, the ribs are rounded.
Straight back with rounded croup.
The legs are not very long, but thin and bony. The hind legs look somewhat framed.
The tail is rather low set.
A distinctive feature of Andalusian horses is the long and lush mane and tail.
The color of Andalusian horses is most often gray; black and bay horses are also found.
Andalusian horses have an extremely high natural course, so they give the impression of dancing horses. The center of gravity of the Andalusian horses is slightly shifted to the rear, and the front is raised, so the Andalusians are very maneuverable and have picture movements. These traits are highly regarded in the Spanish Riding School.
By nature, the Andalusian horses are friendly, hardworking and obedient. They are great at learning and are eager to learn new things.
The use of Andalusian horses
Andalusian horses are ideal for high school riding, so it is not surprising that they specialize in this area. Initially, dressage was needed for military purposes, where the horse’s responsiveness to the rider’s commands and her dexterity could save the life of both of them. But at present, the higher school of riding serves only the goals of the correct formation and upbringing of the horse and has become something akin to art.
Due to the natural grace of Andalusian horses, the complaisant nature and excellent learning ability, they are also often used in the circus.
In Western Europe, Andalusian horses have become one of the most popular breeds for private amateur owners.
Andalusian horses can compete in dressage even for leaders in this field - German half-blood horses.
Famous Andalusian horses
Andalusian horses along with the Arab captures Wojtek Kwiatkowski in his photographs.
Andalusian horse in the photo of Wojtek Kwiatkowski
Andalusian horses are good actors. Thanks to this, they participated in the filming of The Lord of the Rings, Gladiator, Zorro, Interview with the Vampire, Braveheart, and Lara Croft, Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, Sleepy Hollow.
Andalusian horse in the movie "Gladiator"