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The Shire Horse, one of the tallest horses in the world!
The Shire Horse. Let’s start with a little history to get to know him better: the Horse Shire is selected for medium-heavy shooting because it does not fear effort and fatigue and seems to derive from the Great Horse, a medieval horse used in tournaments, and derived from draft horses of Northern Europe with probable supply of oriental blood.
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In medieval tournaments he was able to bring knights who, with their armor, could weigh almost 200 kg. and it was the best breed to tow wagons and cars without suspension along the impractical English roads.
Throughout history, the Shire Horse has been called in various ways: war horse, old English black horse, horse chariot horse, great horse for its massive size: although the standard is around 175 cm at the withers, this horse can easily reach two meters at the withers but, despite its size, the Shire Horse is an extremely docile and sweet horse, generous and brave.
Now some Curiosities.
At the 1924 Wembley trade fair, Vesuvius and Umber, a pair of Shire Horse, towed a load of 18.5 tons on a slippery granite surface.
The Shire Sampson, according to a document held by the Canadian Shire Horse Association, seems to have been the highest horse of all time: 2.2 meters at the withers, and it is estimated that it weighs about 1.4 tons. He was born in Toddington Mills in Bedfordshire in 1846 by breeder Thomas Cleaver and for his size he was nicknamed Mammoth.
In spite of everything, the tallest Shire Horse has come to measure only 2.07 m at the withers, 13 centimeters less than the great Sampson, called Mammoth.
Purebred Shire are the horses used to tow the carriage of the Queen of England.
Robust and indefatigable, the Shire Horse has characteristic long hairs that cover the limbs and today is used in shows and carriage races.
It lends itself well also as a simple sport but, of course, not for more complex disciplines such as jumping or dressage.
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