And this one - my favorite.
Isn't this interesting! Female rider, half pass? JPG would be proud of her ear over ankle position!
If you do a search for Tang Dynasty horse you'll find lots more, and Tang Dynasty polo will bring up images from the tomb murals.
The saddles look very similar to Iberian don't you think? This area was the cultural melting pot of the world for thousands of years, so anything is possible I guess!
Tang dynasty was between 618 and 907. Genghis Khan was born, not far away across the border in Mongolia, a couple of hundred years later. And it was HIS warriors who were renowned as being matchless horsemen, not these polo players in Gansu.
They rode mares in battle, with foals at foot. They lived on their horses. Everything they needed, cooking utensils, food, provisions, were carried on the horse.They had no base. Each man had a string of four horses that he kept with him at all times. He would swap horses throughout the day so his mount was always fresh, while the others ran along behind. Genghis Kahn insisted on horse welfare first. He said, "No horse, no man". Every soldier was expected to do the same. The men carried long reeds, so that when riding, they were able to drink without dismounting, and their horses were renowned for being able to eat on the move, and thrive on the forage that they picked up along the trail. The men supplemented their diet with mare's milk and blood that they occasionally tapped from a horses vein, just like we would give blood.
I can't believe that horsemen such as these could tolerate a horse who couldn't be mounted or handled from the right hand side, and I think they probably would have slaughtered these modern day horsemen who ride their horses hard then tie them up without food.
Some things have definitely changed, even if we don't know for sure that the Mongol warriors rode differently to todays Mongolians. I believe though, after seeing the back pains, saddle sores and girth galls that abound now, that they couldn't have created the same problems in their horses, because they just wouldn't have been capable of the incredible feats that they performed.
Karen, you've wound me up on one of my pet subjects now!
stop sue stop!!
I have not sought the horse of bits, bridles, saddles and shackles,
But the horse of the wind, the horse of freedom, the horse of the dream. [Robert Vavra]