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Archive Language Point 122

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Horse vocabulary

Alice in the stable with the pony

Horse colours

Some of the most common colours for horses are:

the body ranges from light reddish-brown to very dark brown. It has a black mane, tail and lower legs

the body is reddish and its mane and tail are not black but are the same shade or lighter than the body

the body is black with white or mixed dark and white hairs

When we're talking about horses we say "a chestnut" or "a bay", rather than "a bay horse" or "a chestnut horse".

Horse movements

These verbs describe how a horse moves, in order of speed, from slow to fast

when a horse moves at about 6 kph, generally with only one foot off the ground at any one time

when a horse moves at about 12 kph. Each diagonal pair of hooves (a front foot and the back foot on the opposite side) hit the ground at the same moment

when a horse moves at about 16 kph in a three-beat way, followed by a rest, followed by three beats again

when a horse moves at about 100 kph The gallop is very like the canter, except that it is much faster and the three beats change to four. All four feet come off the ground together as the horse moves forward

People who work with horses

a groom:
a person who takes care of and cleans horses

a trainer:
a person who trains and rides a horse and prepares it for races or other competitions

a rider:
a person who rides a horse

a jockey:
a person who rides horses in races. The races can either be on flat race tracks or with hurdles and hedges to jump over

a show jumper:
a person who rides horses in competitions where horses have to jump over fences in an arena

a farrier:
a person who makes horseshoes (metal plates) for horses' feet


hair, wool or fur covering an animal

groom (verb)
clean a horse (usually by brushing its coat)


told me off
spoke angrily to me because I had done something wrong

mucking out (specialised animal vocabulary)
cleaning out the horse stables


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