Lippizzaner Horse

Lippizzaner Horse

Lipizzaner horse lives long and is much more active than many other breeds. The Lipizzaner horse is the mount of the famous Spanish Riding School of Vienna, founded in 1758 ‘for the education of the nobility in the art of horsemanship. Only stallions are used in the School and years of patient training lay behind the performances of the advanced high school Airs for which the White Horses of Vienna are renowned throughout the world.

History of Lipizzaner Horse

The Lipizzaner horse symbolizes royalty. The Hapsburg monarchy has the credit for developing this horse breed to be used during times of war and peace. The Lipizzaner horse is one of the oldest horse breeds in Europe. It took four centuries to make Lipizzaner what it is today. The charisma of this horse is added up by its historical and cultural development. This rococo mount owes its survival to the involvement of American General George S. Patton at the time of World War II. This horse breed was brought into existence to perform haute ecole dressage at the Spanish Riding School.

When the art of classical riding saw a revival in Europe; light and fast horses were required for riding school and military purposes. At this time, Spain and Austria were controlled by the Hapsburg family. The outstanding strength, exquisiteness, and intelligence of the Spanish horse made it the most suitable mount. In 1580, a private imperial stud farm was established with Spanish stock. It was done by Archduke Charles at Lippiza (these days: Lipizza-Italian or Lipica-Slovenian) close to the Adriatic Sea. The type of horse which was bred in Lippiza was called the Lipizzaner. Now the breed is called Lipizzaner in Europe and Lipizzan in America.

Physique of Lipizzaner Horse

Lipizzaner looks like an Andalusian but is slightly smaller than it. Its face is often straight. Lipizzaner horses have a long heads, with a straight or slightly convex profile. They have deep jaws and small ears. Their eyes are large and communicative and their nostrils are flared. They have sturdy neck yet it is arched. Their withers are low, well-developed, and broad. These horses are Baroque-type. They have a wide and deep chest, wide croup, and powerfully built shoulders. Their tail is carried high and well set. The legs are well-muscled and strapping with wide joints and well-defined tendons. The feet seem small but are hard-hitting.

Height of Lipizzaner Horse

The Lipizzaner horse stands to a height of 15-16 hands high.

Body Color of Lipizzaner Horse

The color of Lipizzaner’s horse’s body is predominantly gray. Sometimes it is found to be bay, chestnut, or roan.

The Temperament of Lipizzaner Horse

Lipizzaner horse possesses an excellent temperament. This is an intelligent, willing, obedient, and sweet-natured horse.

Uses of Lipizzaner Horse

Historically, the Lipizzaner is a carriage horse and a good horse breed for dressage. It is especially famous for the ‘Airs above the Ground’ as performed at the Spanish Riding School in Vienna. In many countries, it is also used for trial driving, show jumping, endurance (long distance) riding and some are in circuses.

The Lipizzaner horse has been bred in Austria since the 16th century, the foundation stud being at Lipizzaner from which the horse takes its name. The original Lipizzaner stock was pure Andalusian. At Piber, another famous Austrian stud, Andalusians were mixed with Kladrubers, Neapolitans (an important Italian breed of Andalusian mixed with a little Barb and Arab, now extinct), and probably a dash of Fredriksborg and Arab. Bloodlines belonging to Lipizza, Piber, and Kladruby were frequently blended. The result, both in the Lipizzaner horse and the Kladruber, is a horse of predominantly Andalusian origin and has a great similarity in appearance. This horse breed lives from 30 to 35 years.

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