Hanoverian - Horse breeds, horse breeding and types of horse.   
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This page has been sourced from REC.EQUESTRIAN, the body of the text has been unaltered as far as possible. The information is for use at own risk. Date: Tue, 10 Aug 1993 15:05:57 CET From: Dr. Lutz Massonne Newsgroups


The Hanoverian ranks under the well-known German warmblood breeds and result from the interest of the Kings of England and Hanover in the horses of the region. King George I had a lot of English Thoroughbred stallions crossed with various local Hanoverian mares, some of them descendants of the heavy horses of the medieval times. George II from England founded the state stud ("Landgestuet") at Celle in 1735, keeping Holstein and Thoroughbred stallions. For many years the breeding of all-purpose horses for riding, driving and agriculture (plowing...) was the aim of the stud. After world war II the breed changed over to create elegant riding and sport horses with the help of Trakehner and Thoroughbred blood.

Today the Hanoverian is a very successful top-dressage and showjumping breed. The average height is 160 to 170 cm, its characteristics are power, willingness to work, calmness and good manners. It has the spirit of the English Thoroughbred, but not its speed. The outer appearance is good, but sometimes simple. All clear colours exist, but mostly bay, red-bay and black. Not without reason the state of Niedersachsen ("Lower Saxony") has a jumping horse on its state ensign. Horses played and still play an important role in this state of the Federal Republic of Germany. In 1888 the Hanover breed registry was founded, in 1922 its functions were taken over by the "Provincial society of Hanoverian horse breeders" which is today the "Society of breeders of the Hanoverian warmblood horse". Nearly all stallions are kept by the state, the about 150 to 160 stallions based in the city of Celle have to take a test of several months before they are allowed to breed. Apart from the obvious physical features the test also concentrates on the character.

The Hanoverian shall not only be an excellent sport horse, but also a pleasant partner for the pleasure rider. As the Hanoverian breed shall not be too large, the part of Thoroughbreds in the breed has increased lately. However, mainly Trakehner stallions ("Abglanz", "Semper Idem") have proved their worth in the Hanover breed. The warmblood horse of the Hanover breed has a large number of breeding regions in Germany. In Bavaria warmbloods are bred based on Hanoverian bloodlines.

The Westphalian horse is from its origin also a Hanover breed, but with a registry of its own and an own state stud at Warendorf. Also the Mecklenburg and Brandenburg breeds in the (former) German Democratic Republic are based on Hanoverian bloodlines. Exterior: The head sometimes is a bit heavy, although of noble outline, with well set long neck

The different ground conditions in the breeding regions create a rather large bandwidth in the type. There are heavy types with great jumping ability as well as noble, light Hanoverians, well suited for dressage or pleasure riding. Colours: Mostly bay and chestnut, but also black and grey horses Size: 165 to 175 cm

Usage: All-purpose horse. In Europe the Hanoverian horses dominate show-jumping by quantity as well as quality

Hanoverian, warmblood breed, local in Lower Saxony. Breeding goal: Riding horse for sport and pleasure riding. Planful breeding started in 1735 with the founding of the Celle state stud by Elector George II of Hanover, who acquired 13 Holstein stallions with Neapolitan/Andalusian bloodlines for use with the rural broodmare stock. The number of state stallions increased to 100 until the end of the 18th century, including Frederiksborg, Trakehner and Andalusian stallions. During Napoleon's times the breed was heavily damaged, only 30 of stallions, evacuated to Mecklenburg, returned to Celle. The rebuilding of the stud based on stallions from Mecklenburg and from England. In the middle of the 19th century one third of the stallions were Thoroughbred, who threatened to over-refine the strong warmblood type for agricultural and military purposes. Just in time the number of Thoroughbred stallions was reduced then.

The zenith of state breeding was reached in the first half of this century. In the 1920's 500 and in the 1940's 560 state stallions were breeding with the over 35,000 broodmares. A number of high-quality Trakehner stallions, who had been evacuated from East Prussia to Lower Saxony just in time, refined the Hanoverian breed after the war. At the low tide of breeding around 1960 only 4200 broodmares and 180 state stallions were left, but at the end of the 60's the sport and pleasure riding took a unforeseen rise. According to the demand, the Hanoverian changed to today's light and elegant riding horse. Lower Saxony is the largest closed warmblood breeding region in Germany today with about 15000 broodmares, 100 private and 210 state stallions.

The Hanoverian is an internationally respected type of the modern riding horse with international success in dressage and showjumping. It it used in many breeding regions, even outside of Germany. For refinement purposes the state stud now has 20 Thoroughbred and 2 Trakehner stallions. The size of the Hanoverian lies between 165 and 175 cm, the most common colours are chestnut, bay and black. The yearly auctions at Verden/Aller are renown.

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