Breeds of Horses - A to Z
A handsome bay horse with a large convex head, with large, well set, kind
eyes and large fine ears; a longish neck, good deep sloping muscular
shoulders, deep girth and strong though longish back, muscular loins and
strong quarters support a well set tail. Short legs (without feather) good
bone and sound feet, muscular forearms, thighs and second thigh, large knees
and hocks and strong sloping pasterns. Standing at about 16 to 16.2 h.h. it
may be ridden, driven or used for light draught work. It has true straight
and free action (high action is not characteristic of the breed), moves
freely from the shoulder and covers the ground well. It is a natural jumper
and when crossed with thoroughbred it will produce a top class hunter, show
jumper or a carriage horse.
Notable characteristics are its intelligence, sensible temperament,
strength, stamina and longevity.
This is one of the oldest English breeds and dates back to mediaeval times.
It was used as a pack horse in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries when
it was known as the Chapman Horse. The name Cleveland Bay was taken from its
origins in the Cleveland area of northeast Yorkshire. Apart from the
introduction of thoroughbred blood in the late eighteenth century the breed
has been relatively free from outside influence.