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karabakh horse

Karabakh has close links to Akhal-Teke, bred in Turkmenistan, Central Asia and the Turkoman horse bred in Iran. Some historians believe that in ancient times these horses were of the same strain and had significant influence in developing of the Arabian breed. Some historical sources mention that during Arab invasion of Azerbaijan in VIII-IX cc. tens of thousands of horses with golden-chestnut coloring, which is characteristic colors for Karabakhs, were taken by the conquerors. The breed got its ultimate shapes and characteristics in 18th-19th centuries during Karabakh khanate. There is some evidence that Karabakh ruler Ibrahim-Khalil khan (1763-1806) possessed a horse herd numbering 3,000-4,000, mostly of Karabakh breed. From 19th century this horse breed became increasingly popular in Europe. Thus, in one of the first massive sales in 1823, an English company purchased 60 pure Karabakh mares from Mehdi-Kulu khan, the last ruler of the Karabakh khanate. Karabakh numbers were initially hurt in 1826 during Russo-Iranian war, but the breed remained intact. After Mehdi-Kulu khan, his daughter Khurshidbanu Natavan took care of the breed. In a series of successes her Karabakh stallions received highest awards in various exhibitions in XIX c. Thus, in an international show in Paris in 1867 the Karabakh horse named Khan received silver medal. In second All-Russian exhibition in 1869 the Karabakh horse named Meymun won a silver medal, another stallion Tokmak won bronze medal and while the third Alyetmez (pictured) received a certificate and was made a producer stallion in Russian Imperial stud. Karabakh has played an important role in formation of the Russian Don horses. In 1836 Russian general Madatov's heir sold all his horses, including 200 Karabakh mares, to a horse-breeder in Don. Karabakhs were used for improving Russian Dons' characteristics up to the 20th century. In the early 20th century the Karabakhs sharply decreased in numbers once again, mostly because of civil and ethnic wars in the Caucasus in general and in Karabakh in particular. The horse breeding enterprise established by Karabakh khans and developed by their heirs was destroyed in 1905. Many pureblood Karabakhs mixed with other non-pure horses, and this resulted in loss of some characteristics, namely the Karabakhs reduced in size. In 1949 the breed was revived in Agdam stud in Azerbaijan, which assembled most characteristic Karabakhs. In 1956 Karabakh stallion named Zaman, along with an Akhal-Teke Mele-Kush was presented by the Soviet government to the British Queen Elizabeth II. Karabakh horse breed suffered another setback during Nagorno-Karabakh war. In days before the capture of Agdam by the Armenian forces in 1993 most of the Karabakh horses were moved from the Agdam stud. These horses are currently bred in winter pastures in lowland Karabakh plains between Barda and Agjabadi provinces.

Karabakh horse, also known as Karabakh, is a mountain-steppe racing and riding horse. It is named after the Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, part of which is under Armenian control. The horse was originally developed in this region. These horses are noted for their good tempers and speed. In 2004 a Karabakh horse named Kishmish from Agdam stud in Azerbaijan made a record in speed by running 1000 meters in 1 minute, 9 seconds and 1600 meters in 1 minute, 52 seconds.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Karabakh Horse".