Three early seventeenth-century texts written by German horsemen differ significantly in their attitudes towards horses from the highly influential Italian treatise on horsemanship, Gli ordini di cavalcare, by Federico Grisone (Naples, 1550). All three Germans were active as horse-trainers at Protestant courts. This article argues that their unusual attitudes, founded upon values such as love, empathy, piety, patience and knowledge, may well have been influenced by specific aspects of Martin Luther’s thought as expressed in the reformer’s Commentary on Genesis and other writings. In making this argument, the article explores the imbrication of the Protestant Reformation and early modern horsemanship.
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