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"What did Renaissance-era military horses look like?" Topic

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Supercilius Maximus13 Oct 2017 2:36 p.m. PST

I'm particularly interested in English horses both heavy (demi-lancers) and light (border horse/petronels etc) for the periods 1500-1520, and 1580-1600, but also the ECW/TYW.

a) Which breeds tended to be used for military service?
b) Do these breeds still exist today, or if not, which are the nearest approximations?
3) What would have been the dominant colours/markings?

Any information gratefully received from our resident "horse whisperers".

Shagnasty Supporting Member of TMP14 Oct 2017 9:14 a.m. PST

I met a reenactor at Warwick Castle in 1984 who said he bred his own. It was 1/4 Clydesdale and 3/4 English hunter. The horse was black, 17 hands tall with sturdy legs but no hoof tufts. The knight said to be careful about rustling cellophane
near him.

Codsticker14 Oct 2017 7:49 p.m. PST

There really wasn't "breeds" as we know them today; more likely types. A 17H horse probably would have been uncommon but not unknown. Most horses would have been, bay (brown with black points), sorrel/chestnut and brown. IIRC it wasn't until the 18thC that we started breeding for a more consistent mount- specifically dark, large horses for heavy cavalry.

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