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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Tue 03 Apr, 2007 1:18 am    Post subject: Islamic cavalry         Reply with quote

Since the level of scolarship is sometimes awesome here I am hoping you can help me.

I am looking for sources to acquire or read books on islamic horsemanship. I am nót looking for a historic volume abóut their cavalry but per example a manual fór that cavalry or the islamic equivalent of Dom Duartes Bem Cabalgar. The MUST have been a lot written and as we even have the work of Kikkuli (14th c. BC) at our disposal, why not the islamic works?

Thank you,

Peter
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John Cooksey




Location: NW Ark
Joined: 15 Nov 2003

Posts: 291

PostPosted: Tue 03 Apr, 2007 9:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Do a google search for the term "furusiyya".
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem like there are a lot of these manuals extant.
The google search should lead to some university publication bibliographies and and some links to swordforum.com discussions that mention a few known titles.

I didn't surrender, but they took my horse and made him surrender.
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Brian Ellis Cassity




Location: Queen Creek, Arizona
Joined: 08 Nov 2006

Posts: 26

PostPosted: Tue 03 Apr, 2007 12:30 pm    Post subject: Re: Islamic cavalry         Reply with quote

Hopefully this will be helpful in an indirect way, but check out these two books on horses and warfare by Ann Hyland:

The Medieval Warhorse from Byzantium to the Crusades

and

The Warhorse, 1250-1600

The author makes comparisons from time to time between European horsemanship and Middle Eastern/Near Eastern horsemanship, so these might be worth looking at to mine the bibliographies.

Brian
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Felix Wang




Location: Fresno, CA
Joined: 23 Aug 2003
Reading list: 17 books

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PostPosted: Tue 03 Apr, 2007 2:32 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, they have been discussed on Swordforum, but only a couple have actually been translated. I do not know why they have been so neglected.
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Dariusz Dario T. W




Location: obamaland
Joined: 17 Feb 2007

Posts: 33

PostPosted: Tue 03 Apr, 2007 10:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello
this is my first post in this circle of aficionados aka myArmoury. I ride from time to time and mostly research on pre-napoleonic horsemanship, and sculpt, paint and draw horses (illustrated Radek Sikora book Lubieszow 1577)

I am actually in possession of a translation of a 14th century Mameluk manual Manyatul'ghuzat given to me by a Polish scholar who researches the Parthian/Sassanian cavalry and their armour and weapons, and tactics.
Send me a private message and I could help out via scan etc.
I, myself, am also looking for more information on the Islamic horsemanship as a gateway to more ancient traditions - especially those manuals pertaining to Persian pre-islamic horsemanship which according to Encyclopedia Iranica has been written in a book titled Alkoayl and published in Pakistan or India but I found no trace of it. Al those Persian books on horsemanship go under a term - faras-nauma - so good luck Happy

Interestingly enough the Arabs rode mares, Turks geldings and Persians stallions - I think they all required a very different schooling etc.
My ancestors (one was at Vienna '1683 as pancerni officer) - Polish cavalry of the 16-18th centuries - also rode stallions or geldings to war, never mares - there is a 1930s research paper written by a cavalry officer studying the horse training of the winged hussars - there are also 3 ( three) 16-17th century Polish manuals dealing with war charger preparations etc 2 of them accessible via internet libraries in Poland.

Have you read any books by Ed Connell on the old California horsemanship - seems they may be up your alley,so to speak. Although the finished horse seemed to have been possible only with a curb bit. Anyway , some American writers/horse people ( Deb Bennett ) suggest that Nummidians already rode with hakama aka hackamore/
Have you had a chance to read the 16th century Spanish texts on horsemanship eg Aguilar.

Dario

ps
I think Ms Hyland's book is a good introduction but leaves one unsatisfied .
In happier days one could have gone to Afganistan to train and learn, well, that is not an option unless with the NATO forces Sad

"veni, vidi, Deus vincit"
Jan Sobieski, Rex Poloniae et Dux Lithuaniae

http://dariocaballeros.blogspot.com/
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Wed 04 Apr, 2007 12:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Buenas, Thank you all, that is a leap ahead.

The numidian cavalry indeed has been a source of inspiration Wink



Peter
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

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PostPosted: Wed 04 Apr, 2007 6:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ann Hyland knows more about modern breeds than just about anyone else alive. She also knows a fair amount about Middle Eastern horses. She knows nothing about medieval horses and even less about medieval warfare. She is also very heavily biased to the point that every sentence she writes has the subtext "aren't oriental horses wonderful compared to those nassty European ones."

A far better book about medieval horses would be Andrew Ayton's "Knights and Warhorses: Military Service and the English Aristocracy under Edward III"
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Gordon Frye




Location: Kingston, Washington
Joined: 20 Apr 2004
Reading list: 15 books

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PostPosted: Thu 05 Apr, 2007 9:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan Howard wrote:
Ann Hyland knows more about modern breeds than just about anyone else alive. She also knows a fair amount about Middle Eastern horses. She knows nothing about medieval horses and even less about medieval warfare. She is also very heavily biased to the point that every sentence she writes has the subtext "aren't oriental horses wonderful compared to those nassty European ones."


Dan;

I have to agree with you completely. She, like many other modern horse people, has absolutely no concept of what one can do with masses of cavalry, and how horses actually will behave when properly trained and accustomed to being with that many other horses. I've read many a remark on such by various modern "Sport Horse" enthusiasts, who comment about "How such and such horses reacted poorly in groups at the last Derby" or whatever, without considering that horses that are used to crowds of other horses just take it all in and deal with it. Sure there are always problem horses, but they get "special training" as it were. Animals, just like people, can be trained to become used to just about anything.

Also that heavier Northern breeds are plenty serviceable for Cavalry. Maybe not always as Light Cavalry (though Austrailian Walers did just fine in WWI), but then, Heavy and Light Horse have very different functions that don't necessarily overlap.

BTW, interesting note that the Spaniards of the early 16th Century still retained some of the North African affection for using Mares for war, as the animal killed by the Tlaxcalans early in Cortez's expedition to Mexico was a highly trained War Mare.

Cheers!

Gordon

"After God, we owe our victory to our Horses"
Gonsalo Jimenez de Quesada
http://www.renaissancesoldier.com/
http://historypundit.blogspot.com/
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Fri 06 Apr, 2007 7:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

First of all I am very happy with the manual Dario copied to me. The contents is in almost all technical aspects parallel to Duartes writing which is from the same period roughly.
The two hugely differing areas are the ethics and battle-priorities.

@hyland
I am affraid my opinion has no positive note at all. In my eyes it is unforgiveble that a scientifically schooled person can allow herself to be so utterly and completely biassed as to loose all obejectivity and use only partial 'evidence'. Her personal 'arabian'-fixation is making her writing worse than useless as the reader cannot destiguish her coloured version of halftruths from straight fiction.
Even on modern breeds she is far removed from what mytochidrial DNS reseach has told us.
Anyway, she is a modern western source and thus not what I am looking for.

Peter
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Sat 07 Apr, 2007 11:23 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dariusz Dario T. W wrote:
Anyway , some American writers/horse people ( Deb Bennett ) suggest that Nummidians already rode with hakama aka hackamore


The light numidian 'cavalry' rode unbridled. The western(north african) 'mauri' and related tribes were most likely the primairy source for this style of riding. They used only a handfull of javelin and Julius Ceasar writes they gave him 'wonderful trouble'.

Their role in the Punic wars was quite marked and documented as was their incorporation in the Roman army until the fall of the western empire.

The Chimtou museum has archeological proof both in the form of a gravestone and a grave of a headman. http://www.chimtou.com/Raum1.html

They, the unbridled riding numidians also feature in two illustrations on trajanus' Pillar.

I have not found a single mention of them after the 5th century AD.
They quite definitely left no written information as their language, tamazight, did not exist in written form until a century ago.
Their way of riding was probably made extinct by the arabisation of north africa from the 8th century onwards. At least no trace of it ever crossed over northwards to andalucía so it certainly had disappeared from the main stream of horsemanship.

Mr. Sadko G. Solinski claimed a source originating from the High Atlas in the 1950ties. I spent several weeks as house guest and student with Mr.Solinski and he gave me the details of his source. Although I researched within the european based part of the imazighen-community no trace of the source nor other indications of other sources in the High Atlas or other regions could be found.
until other evidence turns up I have to assume Mr.Solinskis source was anecdotical.

However, they are not the subject of thís search Wink

Peter
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Gordon Frye




Location: Kingston, Washington
Joined: 20 Apr 2004
Reading list: 15 books

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PostPosted: Sat 07 Apr, 2007 10:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Peter;

Wonderful information on the Numidians, and thank you for it. This is a subject of which I am woefully ignorant, and I appreciate the education!

Cheers!

Gordon

"After God, we owe our victory to our Horses"
Gonsalo Jimenez de Quesada
http://www.renaissancesoldier.com/
http://historypundit.blogspot.com/
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Sun 08 Apr, 2007 1:11 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Buenas Gordon. The source Dario sent is VERY informative.
The writer distinguishes p.e. four ways to manage a lance and the classical jousting position is only one.

A tantalising detail is mentioned when he describes the procedure of sheathing the sword when riding. He mentions that the scabbard mouth is a-symetrical so that the rider can tab the point to one side of the opening and push downwards without needing to look and fiddle.

The manual is also surprisingly góód on the 'dressage' side as the author clearly realises the importance of both a well excersized but straight horse and a coöperative riding approach.

The hów to do things is clearly described. It is so clear that I can make coherent scetches following the wording and the text has kept me awake into the small hours of three night running now. A true jem this is!

Peter
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Sun 08 Apr, 2007 1:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Oh, btw, this manual is offering a clear insight in the battle ethics too. It is VERY clear that there is nos uch thing as 'cheating' in war and valour only good if not stupid. Meaning that running from adverse conditions to fight on another more favourable moment is to be applauded.
Highly enjoyable reading Eek!

Peter
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Sat 21 Apr, 2007 1:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It does not stop to fascinate me how utterly different our (retrospective) western view on the crusades to the near-east is fron the near-easter one at that time.

Saladin was a warrior from a Kurdish Mamluk clan that thoroughly routed the crusaders. Even though that took serious fighting in theír perception their main enemy was and had been for centuries the hun-mongol.
Véry good reading to put our western perception of the world in perspective. I lóve that Laughing Out Loud

Peter
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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
Joined: 22 May 2006

Posts: 598

PostPosted: Mon 23 Apr, 2007 12:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Found the book.

'The Crusades through Arab Eyes' - Amin Maalouf.

Even more interesting now than in 1983 when it was first published. Especially becáuse it was written in 1983 Idea thus before the present confusion.

Peter
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