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23 February 2019   
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  Shagya Arabian

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Hungarian Breeds of Horse

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Shagya Arabian

Taking its name from a Syrian Horse, Shagya, (foaled in 1830) who was imported into Hungary to the Babolna Stud with several other Arabs in 1836, this horse is not a pure bred Arab. The foundation mares were quality horses of mixed blood, though they were of 'Oriental' type. Many of the mares had Hungarian, Thoroughbred, Spanish or Arabian blood and by inbreeding, the Shagya Arabian was developed. It is slightly bigger boned than a pure bred Arab, Shagya himself was big for the breed standing at over 15.2 h.h. The Emperor Joseph 11 who was largely responsible for revitalising horse breeding in Hungary founded the Babolna Stud where it is bred, in 1789. He also founded the veterinary College in Budapest and the famous Mezohegyes Stud in 1785.

The breed is often grey in colour though all other Arab colours are permitted. It stands between 14 and 15 h.h. and has a refined Arab head with a dished profile, a small tapered muzzle with large nostrils and large wide-set eyes; an elegant curved neck; a good sloping shoulder; a short strong, slightly concave back; a level croup and high-set tail; hard clean limbs with dense fine bone; hard well shaped feet; a fine silky mane and tail. It possesses all the Arabian qualities of speed, endurance and gentle temperament, matched with grace and elegance. It makes an ideal general purpose riding horse and is also used in harness. It has been exported to several other countries.

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