Regency Horse Terms H-Z

HACKNEY was a term used to refer to a hired horse that pulled a carriage.
Any horse that was not a thoroughbred was known as a HALF-BRED.
A HANDGALLOP refers to a slow easy gallop.
The part of the bridle that covered the head was known as the HEADSTALL.
A horse was said to be HIDEBOUND when its skin stuck so hard to its ribs and back you could not pull it up or loosen it.
A person who tamed horses to the saddle was known as a HORSEBREAKER.
 HOURSECOURSER was the person who kept the horses for the race or dealt in horses.
A leach that bit a horse was called a HORSELEACH.
HORSEPOND was a pond used to water horses.
HORSESHOE was is normally made of metal and designed to protect a horse’s hoof from wear.
HOSTLER or OSTLER was a groom or the person who took care of horses at an inn.

Horse’s right fore and left hind foot with horseshoes, Author’s collection.

The person that rode the horse in a race was called a JOCKEY, but the word also meant to jostle another rider or ride unfairly in a race.

A dry scab on the pastern of horses was called MALANDERS.
Female horses were, and still are, known as MARES.

A small horse was referred to as a NAG.
NARROW HEELS was a disease or natural defect in a horse that resulted in chronic lameness.

A horse was said to OVERREACH when he brought his hinder feet too far forward, so as to strike his forefeet.

PAD referred to an easy horse pace or a low soft saddle.
PESADE was a movement performed when a horse raised on its hind legs and bent its forefeet towards his body.

Pesade, Public Domain

Pesade. Public domain.

A PIEBALD described a horse of various colors.
To be PIED referred to a variegated or parti-colored horse.
PIROUETTE (now known as dressage) was a French word used to describe whirling about, similar to a ballerina’s pirouette.
POLLEVIL was a large swelling or inflammation in the horse’s poll or at the nape of its neck.
A horse station for the use of a courier was known as a POSTHORSE.

QUITTER was a foot disease in a horse.

RAKING consisted of introducing the hand into a horses rectum and withdrawing any hardened dung.
A hackney or a horse kept on the road was called a ROADSTER.
A bay or sorrel with grey or white interspersed spots was known as a ROAN.
ROARING was an inflammation in the tracheal tube of a horse.
A ROUGHRIDER was the person that broke or tamed a horse.

A violent check by a rider to his horse was called a SACCADE and was achieved by drawing both the reins back suddenly.
SADDLEGALL was an injury to the horse’s back caused from an ill-fitting saddle.
A SADDLEBACKED horse was a horse with a low back but raised head and neck.
The person who made a living from creating saddles was called a SADDLER.
SANDCRACK was disease in the horse’s hoof.
A diminutive horse that was peculiar to the Shetland Isles was called a SHETLAND pony.
SNAFFLE was a bridle that crossed the nose or a kind of bit for a bridle. It also meant to bridle or manage the horse.
When a horse’s foot was turned inward it was referred to as SPLAYFOOTED.
SPRINGHALT was a lameness where a horse twitched its legs.
The SPUR HAND is a horseman’s right hand.
A horse with apoplexy or madness was said to suffer from STAGGERS.
STALKINGHORSE was a horse, either real or fictitious, by which a fowler sheltered him from the sight of game.
An uncastrated male horse was called a STALLION or a STONEHORSE.
STEEPLECHASE was a race across the countryside by hunters.
When applied to a horse, STICKLEBACK meant heavy and lazy but not flippant.
A tumor under the jaw of a young horse was known as STRANGLES.
STRINGHALT was a sudden twitching and pulling up of the hind leg.
SURCINGLE was a girth with which the saddle was secured.
To be SUREFOOTED meant to tread firmly and not stumble.
SURFEIT was a disease of large pimples or lumps that suddenly appeared on a horse’s skin.

TITS was a contemptible term used to describe a small horse.
An instrument used to restrain horses when they were shod was known as a TREVIS.
A TROT was defined as moving at a high jolting pace.

Trot, Courtesy of Wikipedia

Trotting horse. Courtesy of Wikipedia.

TURF referred to a racecourse or to be engaged in horse racing.

VIVES was a disease where the horse’s parotid glands were swollen beneath the ears.

The point where the bottom of the shoulder-bones joined the neck and mane was called the WITHERS.
WITHERWRUNG was an injury caused from a horse bite or from an ill-fitting saddle.

If you are interested in Regency Horse Terms A-G, click here.


  • Astley, Philip, Astley’s System of Equestrian Education, 1802
  • Maxwell, William Hamilton, The Field Book, 1833
  • Taplin, William, The Gentleman’s Stable Directory, 1793
  • Wallis, Thomas, The Farrier’s Horseman’s Complete Dictionary, 1766

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