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Glossary Of Horse Terms

( Originally Published Early 1900's )



Arm—The upper part of the fore-leg, from just below the withers (q.v.) down to just above the elbow. Gene-rally called shoulder.

Bars of the Foot—Portions of the wall ore rust of the foot, which turn inwards and upwards at the base of the foot near the heel, and then run nearly parallel to the sides of the frog (q.v.).

Bars of the Mouth—The intervals in a hors :'s jaws between the tushes or canine teeth and the grinders. Upon this smooth interval, which occurs just at the angle of the lips, the bit is placed.

Bay—A reddish nut-brown colour. Usually the term is applied to dark horses, but when a light bay is spoken of, a horse of yellow sunlight colour is intended. Bay is apparently the original colour of the Arab hors(, probably with black points.

Bishoping—The practice of artificially modifying the appearance of horses in order to improve their price, usually by making them appear younger. The ( special point worked upon is the teeth.

Blaze—A stripe of white down a horse's face. Blue Roan—[See ROAN].

Brisket—The lower part of a horse's chest, just be-hind the fore-legs.

Buck Knee—A knee joint which recedes from the front, instead of presenting a straight line from forearm to fetlock.

Calf Knee—A knee that bends sideways tow trds its fellow ; similar to knock-knees in man.

Calking or Back—A spur projecting downward from a horse's shoe in order to prevent it from falling in slippery weather.

Cannon Bone or Canon Hock—The bone uniting knee joint and fetlock in the fore-leg, hock and fetlock in the hind. Also called shank.

Castors—Horny excrescences growing on the inside of each leg, just above the knees and below the hocks. Also called chesnuts and sometimes ergots.

Chanting—Originally, singing unjustified praises of a horse for sale, hence any form of swindling with unsound horses.

Chesnut—(1) See CASTOR ; (2) A reddish colours, similar to bay, but usually lighter.

Chin Bone—The depression behind the horse's lower jaw in which the curb-chain fits. clicking defect in a horse's paces, which causes him to knock his feet against one another wheo he is trotting or galloping. Also called forging.

Cob—Any compact, short-legged horse.

Coffin Bone—The bone in the centre of the hoof. Commissure—The natural clefts of a horse'; foot. They are three in number, one down the centre of the frog, the others between the bars and the crust. Coper—Any dealer in horses whose integrity is uncertain.

Coronet or Coronary Process—The bony fringe, partly consisting of an enlargen bent of the lower end of the small pastern, which surrounds the top of theto of.

Cow-hock—A hock that approaches sideways to its fellow, thereby bringing the shanks of the hind-leg unduly close.

Croup—The upper part of the body forward from the insertion of the tail to the lumbar vertebrae, which constitute the loins.

Crust of the Feet—The horny outer portion of th; hoof. Dappled—Epithet of a coat more or less pier tifully sprinkled with rings or spots of a darker colour. Dishing—A peculiarity in a horse's action which causes him to throw out his feet sideways as he brings them up in a trot. (This action is admired in Spanish horses.)

Dock—(1) The stump from which the hairs of a horse's tail depend ; (2) Verb : to cut this stump to a shorter length with the idea of improving the horse's appearance.

Dun—A dull dark brown. Horses of this hue have generally black extremities, and a black line down the back. Another authority says that " dun " means yellowish-sandy. This is probably the original colour of the wild horse of Northern Asia.

Elbow—The backward bony projection from a horse's fore-leg just below the junction of leg and body.

Ergot—The horny excrescence just at the fetlock joint, from which the fetlock itself depends. Some-times applied to the castors or chesnuts higher up the leg.

Ewe Neck—A thin, hollow neck.

Fetlock—A lock of hair, usually short, depending from the back of the fetlock joint, which is itself the junction of the pastern and the shank or cannon bone.

Flank—That part of the horse's side which is free from bone, i.e., between the ribs and the hip.

Fleabitten—A white coat plentifully marked with small red or dark spots. A favourite Arab colour, but indicative generally of age, as the spots seldom appear before the eighth year, often much later.

Forearm—That part of the fore-leg which lies between the knee and the junction of the leg with the body.

Forehand—The shoulders, arm, and forearm of a horse.

Frog—The triangular protuberance which forms in the centre of the bottom of a horse's foot.

Gaskin—That part of a horse's hind-leg between the hock and the junction of the leg with the body. Also specifically called the leg, and sometimes the thigh, or the false thigh.

Goose-rumped—A horse with buttocks that fall away sharply from the croup ; tail set low. Common in Barbs or Spaniards.

Bey—The colour of coats that are composed of a mixture of black and white hairs, varying in proportion as the horse is dark or light grey, the coat growing lighter with age.

Haunches—The fleshy part of a horse's back at the junction of body and hips.

Hip—The top joint of the hind-leg, at the junction with the pelvis.

Hock—The backward-bending joint on the hind-legs, formed by the junction of the shank, or cannon bone, and the bone of the upper leg, or tibia.

Hoof—The horny box which encloses the extremities of fore- and hind-legs.

Infundibulum—[See MARK.]

Knee—The forward-bending joint of the fore-legs, formed by the junction of the shank, or cannon bone, and the bone of the forearm, or radius.

Loins—That part of a horse's body between the ribs and the pelvis and hips.

Mark —The hollow upon the top of a young horse's teeth which wears down with years, and is, therefore, valuable as an indication of age. Also called infundibulune.

Over at the Knee—Descriptive of a horse whose knees, either from congenital defects or from overwork, project forward.

Pastern—The bone joining hoof and fetlock joint. Piebald—Strictly, the colour of a coat which consists of patches of white and black, but often used for a horse of any two colours. [See also SKEWBALD.] Points—Those qualities of shape, action, and constitution, which determine a horse's value or worthlessness. Ragged Hips—Hips that stand well away from the backbone.

Rat-tailed—Descriptive of a horse that has lost all, or nearly' all, his tail hairs.

Red Roan—[See ROAN.]

Roach Back—A back which slopes downward from shoulder to croup, owing to undue convexity. Usually accompanied by flat sides and a narrow chest.

Roan—The colour of a coat chiefly of a red or blue character, but closely flecked with grey hairs. According to the ground colour it will be blue roan, red roan, or strawberry roan.

Roughing—The turning up of catkins (q.v.) on a horse's shoe when cold has made roads slippery. Shank—[See CANNON BoNE].

Shoe—A loop of iron nailed on to horses' feet to preserve them from the rough wear of the roads.

Shoulder—The upper part of the fore-leg, from its junction with the body to the shoulder joint. Also called the Arm.

Sickle Hocks—Hocks that bend unduly backward.

Skewbald—The colour of a coat which consists of patches of any two colours except white and black. Such horses are properly called Pdbald. Supposed to be an original wild colour in Eastern Asia. It is the favourite colour among the Gauchos of South America.

Snip—A small patch of white upon a horse's nose. Sorrel—The colour of a coat which consists of yellowish- or reddish-brown hairs.

Splint Bones—Small bones running from hock or knee to fetlock parallel with shank bone.

Star—A square patch of white upon a horse's forehead. Stifle—The joint at the junction of the hind-leg and the body, between the gaskin and the thigh proper. Thigh—The upper part of the hind-leg, bounded beneath by the stifle, and above by the croup.

Wall of the Foot—[See CRUST].

Well ribbed up—Descriptive of a horse in which the lower ribs curve well back towards the hind-quarters, and do not leave too much flank exposed.

White Stocking—Descriptive of a horse otherwise dark or brightly coloured, which has the lower portion of one or more legs white. Three white stockings, the off fore-leg being dark, is the favourite arrangement of colour among the Bedouins of Arabia.

Withers—The highest point of a horse's back, just behind the neck.



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