04 October, 2013

Bedouin Beauty: Mitbah


"Mitbah: Arabic term for the throatlatch or attachment of head and neck. The word means 'the place where the throat is cut' since it is the same for camels, sheep, and goats, and they are the ones for whom it is taken literally. A fine and long mitbah is much desired in an Arabian horse."-from the Arabian Horse Dictionary at arabianhorses.org
Pictured above is the straight Egyptian Arabian stallion, NK Qaswarah. He is sired by NK Hafid Jamil and his dam is the Salaa el Dine daughter, NK Nariman (out of the *Jamil daughter, Amarilla). He is owned by Usamah Alkazemi of Ezzain Arabians in Kuwait and was photographed by the talented equine photographer, Jenni Ogden from Australia. There are many details to notice in the above picture, all of which underscore the extraordinary elegance and refinement of this horse.
"The neck is a model of strength and forms a perfect arch that matches the arch of the tail."-Homer Davenport, from his book, My Quest for the Arabian Horse
His neck is gracefully arched, rising gently to meet the head, at an angle which forms a most beautiful mitbah.

The classic Egyptian Arabian Horse is very harmonious and visually, is comprised of gently curving lines, which flow smoothly from one circular line into another. The angle at which the head and neck meets, forms the mitbah. Look at the underside of the neck on NK Qaswarah, just before it goes into the throat to meet the back of the jowl. Do you see the curve? It's like an upside down "u". Starting here, place your finger on this upside down "u" and slowly, trace your finger along this line. Get acquainted with it. Feel this area with your finger, so that you understand the mitbah better. Remember the length of this area. That's important. You want this area to be long, as opposed to horses who are thick in the throat, as if the head was pushed down onto the neck, with no area of connection between the head and the neck. NK Qaswarah, as refined as he is, gives us reason to marvel over the mitbah. He is beautiful. Use him as a model in order to visually understand the mitbah. A neck with a fine mitbah is very pleasing to the eye, as we see in this stallion; however, functionally, a fine mitbah, allows the horse's head to be flexible, which is important for someone who wants to ride a horse who seeks and accepts contact willingly with the rider.

May the horse continue to inspire you,
Ralph

2 comments:

Arabian Lover!! said...

that stallion is soo pretty!!!!

Anonymous said...

it's Mithbah not mitbah.

Nasser