The Medieval Military Horses Riding

1 - The Choice of War Horses



Iago, the first War Horse of Võ-Trận Đại-Việt Academy.



       The choice of War Horses is always an essential thing for Cavalry.

A - Selection and Choice of Horses according to Morphological Criteria :

       The thoroughbred War Horses the most prized by Far East Generalissimos in the bygone days were often horses called « Thiên-Lý-Mã » (Horses covering thousand of miles), as those of « Horses sweating blood » (the Akhal-Téké), or those of Arabian Horses, called «Heavenly Horses - Thiên-Mã», as the Iranian Jaf and the Arabian Purebred,  imported from far countries (Ferghana, Turkménistan, Kurdistan, Persian-Sogdian, Afghanistan) by the Silk Road. While War Horses prized by Army were chosen among those resulting from crossbreding with Horses of Northern Steppes.

       The precious horse purebred from Midle-East - that the Far-East call by Heavenly Horse (Thiên-Mã) - is choose according to 12 following qualities : Three Long Things, Three Short Things, Three Large Things and Three Pure Things.

       - Three Long Things are : 1.Long Neck ; 2.Long Ears ; 3.Long Upper Limbs.

       - Three Short Things are : 1.Short Back ; 2.Short Tail Bones ; 3.Short Lower Limbs.

       - Three Large Things are : 1.Large Forehead ; 2.Large Chest ; 3.Large Croup.

       - Three Pure Things are : 1.Pure Skin ; 2.Pure Eyes ; 3.Pure Hooves.

       Apart from 12 qualities previously quoted, this precious horse must have High Withers and Flanks devoid of flesh.

« Sweating Blood Horse Akhal-Téké » from Turkmenistan.

« Purebred Heavenly-Horse Jaf » from Kurdistan.


B - Selection and Choice of Horses according to the Horse Sûtra (Mã-Kinh 馬 經) :

       In addition, the selection of Horses in order to train them for becoming War Horses depend on numerous difficult conditions quoted in the Horse Sûtra (Mã-Kinh).

       In the first intance, the category of « Chestnut Cherry Bay Horse having the Penis patched in White - Ngựa Tía Lang Lô » and the one of « Black Horse having the White Patch (White Star) on the forehead - Ngựa Ô Bướm Trán » are neglected.

       Then, the category of Horses whom the Coast presents « Harmful Vortex - Xoáy Xấu » as :
       1. The « O » Pectoral Vortex- Xoáy O ;
       2. The Vortex of Affictions at Eyelids level - Xoáy Sầu-Bi ;
       3. The Vortex at Ears level - Xoáy Tai ;
       4. The Uneven Vortex « Dạng » - Xoáy Dạng Đôi ;
       5. The Belly Vortex Ventral of Colonic - Xoáy Đau Bụng ;
       6. The Belly Vortex located forwards the Acorn of the Penis - Xoáy Đầu Âm ;
       7. The Vortex located at the level of the thigh - Xoáy Đùi (called Posterior Vortex of the Sword - Hậu Xoáy Kiếm) ;
       8. The « Hoang-Tông » Vortex (the Horse having this Vortex is compared to a Roof without Beams).

       After this, the Horses owning all of the « Four Pillars Vortex - Tứ Trụ (Four Pillars) » at Four Feet level and the « Nine Excellent Vortex - Chín Xoáy Tốt » are selected :
       - One Facial Vortex - Xoáy Mặt ;
       - Two « Gióng » Vortex - Xoáy Gióng ;
       - Two Vortex of the Light Palate- Cặp Xoáy Minh-Đường ;
       - Two « Dạng » Double Vortex - Hai Cặp Xoáy Dạng ;
       - Two « Dang » Vortex - Cặp Xoáy Dang.

       Finally, the Horses owning « Rare et Precious Vortex - Xoáy Hiếm-Quí » are scanned :
       1. Anterior Vortex of the Sword - Tiền Xoáy Kiếm ;
       2. Twin Vortex of the Pass - Xoáy Song-Quan ;
       3. Twin Vortex of Stirrups - Cặp Xoáy Bá-Đinh ;
       4. Twin Facial Vortex - Cặp Xoáy Mặt.

       Below, there are Six beautiful Horses which are already used to train Martial-Students of Võ-Trận Đại-Việt.

War horse « Agabek » - Dun Coated horse
horse Akhal-Téké).


War horse « Erindhawa » - Dark Chestnut Coated horse (Arabian-Purebred Horse, from Spanish lineage).


 War horse « Iago » - Bright Chestnut Coated horse
(Arabian Purebred Horse, from Spanish lineage).


War horse «Hắc-Long » (Black Dragon) - Black coated horse
(resulting from crossbreeding of Kabardin
with Horses of Northern Steppes)

War horse « Sueño » - Crimson-Chestnut coated horse
(Arabian-Purebred Horse, from Spanish lineage)


War horse « Thần-Phong » (Divine Wind) -
Bay coated horse, with a Black Stripe on the Back
(resulting from crossbreeding of Kabardin
with Horses of Northern Steppes).



Committee of
Martial Arts Masters
Bình-Định Sa-Long-Cương

TRỊNH Quang Thắng.







      1 – The Choice of War Horses

      2 – The Harnessing

     3 – The Horses Riding Exercises

     4 – The Training for Horseback Medieval Weapons Wielding




Bibliography :


       « Les Chevaux du Sahara - The Horses of Sahara » from General DUMAS and Emir ABD-EL-KADER, OLA Publishers, Ed. 1998.

       « L'Âge d'Or de la Cavalerie - The Golden Age of Cavalry » from Z.GRBAZIC & V. VUKSIC, La Bibliothèque des Arts, Paris-Lausanne.

       « Le Cheval et l'Homme - The Horse and the Man » from LUIGI GIANOLI, Denöel Publishers,.
printed in Suisse by Conzett & Hubert, Zurich.

       « Les Chevaux - The Horses » from E. H. EDWARDS, Prestige SOLAR Publishers, printed in HongKong,1992.




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