05 August, 2010

A Noble Prince

"Tell me how to fill the space you left behind,
And how to laugh instead of cry,
And how to say goodbye..."-from the song, Tell Me How to Say Goodbye, by Michael W. Smith
Last night, I received very sad news from Anthony Pontrello. The stallion, Nigmh, sired by Ansata Halim Shah and out of the German-bred Egyptian mare, Nasbah, died on Tuesday, August 3rd. He was only eighteen years old and was one of the last foals that Ansata Halim Shah  (his full brother, PWA Nagib Shah is two years younger and stands at Caledonia Egyptian Arabians) sired in America, before he was sold to Qatar.

Nigmh's dam, Nasbah, was the daughter of a stallion named Muqatamm, who was a son of Mahomed (Hadban Enzahi x Malikah) out of Ghazalah (Ghazal x Afifa). Werner Ernst took this picture of Muqatamm at the performance test for the German stallion licensing. He was ridden at the time by Jörg Rönnefarth. Muqatamm was owned by Mr. Carl Heinz-Dömken, until his death in 2008. The stallion Ghazal, a "fairy-tale" Arabian Horse, was a son of Bukra and unfortunately, was not bred to many straight Egyptian mares while he was alive. It is a tragedy for us, that we don't have many branches of his blood available today. The few sources of his blood are so prepotent for producing incredible horses, that we wish for more! For this reason, Nigmh was extremely valuable as a breeding stallion, as he had two lines to Bukra, the additional line through Ansata Rosetta, the dam of Ansata Halim Shah, who was a daughter of *Ansata Bint Bukra.

Nasbah was out of a mare named Nadia, a daughter of the stallion Emam (Balance x Komeira) who is pictured to the right and the mare, Foze, a daughter of Nazeer and Fathia. What really gets me excited about this part of Nigmh's pedigree is Farida. Balance the sire of Emam, is a Farida son. He has two additional lines to Farida, through *Ansata Ibn Halima and through Malikah. Nigmh was shown extensively and was a class A halter winner, named Champion, Reserve Champion, a Regional Top 5 and a Most Classic Head Winner. Most people will never forget his appearance at the 2002 Egyptian Event. I personally feel that his smoothness of body, his strong topline and his very classic good looks, influenced by the lines of Farida contributed to his success in the halter ring.
"How noble in reason! How infinite in faculties! In form and moving, how express and admirable! In action how like an angel! In apprehension, how like a god! The beauty of the world! The paragon of animals!"-from the Shakespeare play, Hamlet
The other reason for which Nigmh's pedigree excites me, are the lines to Bint Samiha, the dam of Nazeer. I counted twelve lines to Bint Samiha in Nigmh's pedigree, including his tail female line, which traces to her too. I found it interesting that in this horse, we have a concentrated source of Nazeer's tail female line, together with the tail female line of *Ansata Ibn Halima. This bloodline blend resulted in *Ansata Ibn Halima (Nazeer x Halima) who redefined the meaning of classic Arabian Horse type and became the standard, for which we still continue to compare and contrast Egyptian Arabian Horses.

Nigmh was bred to the Ruminaja Ali daughter, Gameelah three times to sire the mares: Ansata Rumin, Nimeelah and Sabbaha. His daughter, Nimeelah has been an incredible producer of extraordinary horses. She produced the 2010 Silver Senior Mare Champion at the Egyptian National Championships in April and the 2007 Egyptian Event Europe Junior Champion filly, Imeila (pictured, at left), by the Imperial Imdal son, Imtaarif. This mare is now owned by Tarek and Ahmed Soliman of El Farida Stud in Cairo, Egypt. Nigmh was also bred to MB Daleena, an Imperial Madheen daughter out of an Ansata Nile Moon daughter, to sire the mare Naleena. He also sired the sons PWA Asyahnar (out of the Mahomed daughter, Assiadeh), Shah Jamil (out of the Ansata El Shahraf daughter, Shalimar), Enighma (out of the Nabiel daughter, BSA Nazarra), Nigimh (out of the Ibn El Mareekh daughter, Marneya) and Moon Tajmahall (out of the Imperial Imperor daughter, GA Moon Tajhalima). Nigmh is one of the horses who offered so much to Egyptian Arabian Horse breeders in phenotype and genotype while he was alive and I lament his passing, as I don't feel that he was used at stud as much as he ought to have been. Now, we realize this sad fact but it is too late to do anything, as Nigmh is gone.

In 2004, I visited Omni Arabians. I had gone to see another horse and unexpectedly, Nigmh was at the farm and I was able to see him. I was surprised, as he was more beautiful, more elegant, more refined than he looked in the photographs that I had seen of him. Looking back, one of the qualities that I appreciated in him, was his neck, which was a bit longer, a bit more slender, set higher on his chest, so that when you looked at his neck, as it came out of his shoulders, there was no dip in front of the wither. The neck formed one long, very graceful arch, all the way where it met the head, to create a very nice mitbah. Up until this time, most of the horses that I had seen, including my mare, had shorter, thicker necks with little or no room in the throat for a fine mitbah. However, if I had to tell you what left a lasting impression upon me, was how he walked up to me, when I called him. He didn't know me, never saw me and yet, authentic to the people-loving disposition that was bred into his breed, over thousands of years, he came right up to me, to see who I was and to get to know me better. For this reason, I love the Arabian Horse and why I could not forget Nigmh, as I drove away from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. What an incredible individual was Nigmh.

Nigmh accomplished many milestones in his life, as a champion show horse and as an excellent sire, however, the greatest accomplishment that Nigmh accomplished in his life was for all  the people that through him, were introduced to the Arabian Horse breed, as well as to our community of Egyptian Arabian Horses. He will leave a big hole in the hearts of many, including mine.
"Tell me where the road ahead is gonna bend
And how to harness up the wind
And how to say goodbye."-from the song, Tell Me How to Say Goodbye, by Michael W. Smith
Goodbye my friend...you lived a good life,

PS I must give credit for the picture of Imeila, taken by Melanie Groger of Zoom Performance.

1 comment:

Arlene Magid said...

Nigmh's loss is indeed a sad one, but there is a third Ansata Halim Shah son in the USA who is also double Bukra, Ansata El Shahraf. His parents are 7/8 siblings and both sire and dam trace to *Ansata Bint Bukra. I found his pedigree fascinating when I researched it.