Frederiksborg Horse and Bavarian Warmbloods

...and on the eighth day God created the horse in perfect image, to romp, graze, gallop, play and make manure wherever it darn well pleases, in divine grace.

The Frederiksborg Royal Stud was formed in 1562 and was named after King Frederik II of Denmark. Frederik, (1534-1588) was king of Denmark and Norway, and was named the Duke of Schleswig. In his younger days, he was considered to be a hot-head, he liked to hunt, and also enjoyed wine and women. He was military-minded and fought a long war with the country of Sweden.

It was rumored that he may have drunk himself to death. (1)

The Frederiksborg horse is one of the oldest breeds in Denmark. Native Danish breeds were crossed with imported Italian and Spanish horses. The animal was designated to be a horse of multiple tasks, such as pulling coaches in harness for royalty or riding with the cavalry. (2)

During the early 1700's, close attention was paid to the results of selective breeding, and the lines started to become more refined.

A very famous stallion was the result of this selective breeding. “Pluto,” foaled in 1765, became the foundation sire for one of the lines of Lipizzaner horses, over in Slovenia. (3)

Because the Frederiksborg horse became so popular, the Danes began a lucrative exporting business with them. So many horses were exported that much of the expensive, correctly-formed stock was gone and the breed nearly went extinct.

Efforts were started in the late 1930's to save the breed and reestablish it, but numbers of the Fredriksborg horse remain low. The bloodlines are used to develop and improve other breeds of horses, including the Danish Warmblood and the Danish Jutland Heavy Draft. (4)

The Frederiksborg horse originates in the country of Denmark and is considered a Warmblood, coming in at 15.3 HH to 16HH. They do best in cooler climates.

This is one sharp-looking animal; if you like the Thoroughbred look with a long, straight back, you might like the Frederiksborg. The head is well-proportioned, situated on a long and muscular, upright neck. The shoulder is fairly upright going down to a broad chest. The back is long and the hind quarters are well rounded, with a tail that is set high on the croup.

Colors only come in chestnut, with a variety of mane and tail colors, including flaxen. Some have white socks and half-stockings. Temperament is intelligent and lively, and the animal goes well in harness or under saddle. (5)

The Bavarian Warmblood was originally called the “Rottaler,” and was renowned as an outstanding war horse. Sporting a deep chestnut color, it can trace its bloodlines back to the 11th century Crusades. (6)

Even though Bavaria is one of the oldest horse breeding regions in Germany, the Bavarian Warmblood is not very well known.

During the 18th century, the Rottaler horse was bred with Andalusians, Cleveland Bays and Holstein(ers), among others. The Oldenburg horse was added to the mix in the 19th century, and later on, Thoroughbred stock. The goal was to attain a lighter style of horse, suitable for competition and riding, and move away from the heavier war horse features of the Rottaler. (7)

In 1963, a Bavarian Warmblood studbook was formed, and the breeders strive to produce an all-around, versatile horse, with a good temperament. Performance stock is also selected, and while not fast-running, Bavarians make excellent jumping or dressage horses.

The modern Bavarian Warmblood has retained the lovely, deep chestnut color of the original Rottaler horse.

Bavarian Warmbloods originate in Germany and are, as stated, a Warmblood, coming in at no less than 16HH. They like cooler climates and are used under saddle and in harness.

This calm and good-natured horse is very stately-looking, not drafty, and is upheaded with an elegant, straight face. The neck is high and well-muscled, the chest is wide and deep. The shoulders are long and sloping, leading up to stocky withers and a long back. The hind quarters are powerful and well-proportioned, with a nice tail set. The legs are strong and sturdy.

Colors are chestnut and sometimes bay. (8)

Some really sharp looking animals from out of Europe.

More next time. Signing off with the immortal words of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, “Happy Trails to You.”

1: Internet/Wikipedia

2-8: “A Pocket Guide to Horses & Ponies,” by Corinne Clark