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Tack/History buffs?

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  • Tack/History buffs?

    Went to the Reading Museum today, and was fascinated with some medieval tack on display. I honestly don't know much about medieval tack, and I don't know which forum to post this in! But can anyone give me some insight on this highly aggressive looking bit? I can't tell if the curb was also some kind of tie-down, or what! I have Googled pics where the curb appears to be connected to tack attached to the horse's chest, and others where it is attached to the reins. Can anyone school me on this? :-)

    http://pets.webshots.com/photo/23059...02510679FrpBSN

    A small model pic where the curb appears to be connected to the chest somehow?
    http://pets.webshots.com/photo/29571...02510679aVyutE

    Another example here:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/bittermuppet/2779422682/

    This too:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/appaloosa/1951059510/

    And:http://www.metmuseum.org/special/Arm...Europe/1.L.htm

    But then there's this:
    http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=...:429,r:4,s:114

    So, what's the scoop here? Just curious!
    www.sauconycreeksporthorses.com
    Dedicated to breeding Friesian Sporthorses
    with world class pedigrees and sport suitability

  • #2
    I'm no authority on war horses, but the Syrians did something similar with the horses of their archers. In a charge, the horse only went in a straight line. The reins were tied to the saddle so both hands were free to use the bow, and what guiding was done was done with weight and leg. If you're using a lance as your primary weapon two things would be important. A straight line of travel to the target and a horse that kept it's head straight in front, no neck bending. It looks like the curb was in effect side reins, with the snaffle used for guidance. This fits with the modern concept of the double - snaffle for lateral effect and curb for a reminder of straightness and collection.

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    • #3
      to me the bit looks fat and friendly with a few rings for tongue play. there are VERY long shanks, but judging by the other photos that's probably because the curb rein is armor plated and probably a bit tough to lift. I would imagine the curb rein is armored so that someone can't "cut your brakes" while in battle.
      www.destinationconsensusequus.com
      chaque pas est fait ensemble

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      • Original Poster

        #4
        Thanks! Both of those answers make perfect sense! I'm sure you're both correct. Learn something new everyday....
        www.sauconycreeksporthorses.com
        Dedicated to breeding Friesian Sporthorses
        with world class pedigrees and sport suitability

        Comment


        • #5
          In the first picture
          http://pets.webshots.com/photo/29571...02510679aVyutE

          The whole thing appears cheaply put together with no attention to accuracy. The curb is not attached to the horse at all.

          The medieval warhorse had to be instantly controllable in the heat of battle and the resulting bits can be quite cruel.
          http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

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