Saturday, March 30, 2019

Straight Egyptian Arabian

To answer Lytha’s question:

The Straight Egyptian Arabian began as long ago as our recorded history of domesticated horses. They were integral in the spread of Islam, as Bedouin warriors mounted on the finest of Arabian steeds proved to be invincible. At it’s heart, the Straight Egyptian is the product of blending strains of pure, undisputed, desert heritage. They were significant in the battle between the armies of the West under Richard the Lionheart and the conquering King Saladin from the East. King Solomon of Israel housed 40,000 of them in his royal stables and Sir Walter Scott hailed them in his work “The Talisman”. 

More recently, the Turkish ruler, Mohammad the Great, brough together the finest Arabian horses he could find and demanded Arabia’s most priceless desert horses as terms for his peace treaty. His collection brough to Egypt 1100 of the most beautiful and valuable Arabian horses in the world. When he died, his herd was passed to Abbas Pasha, who kept incredibly detailed written records of the breeding and history of all of his horses. He combined Mohammad’s herd with the horses he had gathered from the Bedouin’s, the cream of the desert horse. When he died, his herd was dispersed.

Some of the herd was purchased by Lady Anne Blunt, who divided the horses she purchased between her Crabbet Stud in England and her Sheykh Obeyd Stud in Egypt. Egypt itself formed the Royal Agracultural Society and gathered up the best of Abbas Pasha’s herd for the overall good of the country. All the Straight Egytian horses in the Arabian world are decended from the Abbas Pasha stables, either through horses that Blunt purchased, or from horses that were later purchased front he government of Egypt. Some of these horses were imported to America. 

In 1952, the Blue Catalog was created. It is a proven list of horses that trace their lineage to the desert on every line. This Blue Catalog was started by one woman, but taken over by Al Khamsa (Letha - Al Khamsa is basically the breed registry for the SE Arabian). All of these horses trace in every line to the Bedouin desert horses or horse purchased by Lady Anne or from the herds of Abbas Pasha. The Asil is a German organization with the same goals. Asil means purebred. Egyptian related means the sire is SE Arabian, but that not all the lines are pure. 

The Crabbett stud is not Straight Egyptian, since Lady Blunt’s daughter did not keep the breeding lines clean. They do have a high percentage of Egyptian blood. The same applies to the Russian, Polish and Spanish Arabian. The foundation sires were straight Egyptian, but the breeding lines did not stay with SE Arabian breeding. 

The SE Arabian holds less than 2% of the Arabian breed registered in America, but holds 30% of the National Titles. 

The Pyramid Society was established to preserve the SE breed, and hosts the Egyptian Event annually. 

The purity of the Straight Egyptian breed has endured since the beginning of history due to the passionate devotion of its caretakers. They are known for their beauty, stamina, courage, intelligence and strength. I can attest to how special they are. And Ashke has not forgotten that his ancestors slept in the tents of their owners, carried their chosen riders into battle, and carried Kings in parades. In his veins in the unbroken heritage of thousand of years.

Arabians LTD, where Ashke was bred, is closing down their operations. The woman who shaped the breeding program for that stud is retiring and selling her blood stock. I’m sad, because I had hoped to someday visit and see where Ashke was born.


  1. I think there's still time to go to Arabians LTD, they are supposedly honoring breeding contracts.

    You mentioned Asil means purebred, and literally that is true, but in Germany my horse is not considered purebred, he's not Asil. The definition is what you quoted, "A horse who has every ancestor dating back to the desert." AFAIK my horse's ancestors have been in Europe too long for him to qualify.

    My question is what did Lady Anne Blunt to to "corrupt" the SE Arabs? What did she bred her SEs with to no longer warrant the title Asil? I'm confused cuz the most controversial Arab of all time - Skorownek - traces back to "desert bred."

    It was wonderful to see the Egyptian Event Europe my first time last year, and see the horse related to Mag win: ) He was a tiny, but powerful horse. He looked like he could climb mountains all day.

    1. I think that Mags was outbred to Arabians that did not meet the requirement of being part of the Abbas Pasha Stud (which includes the horses that Lady Blunt purchased and exported to the US). Only those horses, with the detailed breeding records that Abbas Pasha kept, are considered purebred for purposes of the Straight Egyptian Registry (Asil, Al Khamsa). I think the controversy of Lady Anne stemmed from her first purchasing the Arabians and then using them to improve her own stock before making the decision to breed exclusively SE Arabs to other SE Arabs. This was frowned upon by other SE breeders.

      There are two books you can purchase on Kindle: The Egyptian Alternative: V1 and The Egyptian Alternative: In Search of the Identity of the Egyptian Arabian by Philippe Paraskevas The first one is a call to change the breeding industry and the second delves into the bloodlines, family groups, strains and sirelines of the Arabian horse. I have them but haven't had the time to read them (on my list). You might find them interesting.

  2. There's some interesting research about the "myth" of the Arabian... you may find this of interest:


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