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Akhalteke horses of Turkmenistan - descendants of the legendary Nisei horses

Akhalteke horses of Turkmenistan - descendants of the legendary Nisei horses

Publicist and columnist Serdar Akiniyazov said in his article about the origin of the Akhalteke horses of Turkmenistan.

Akhalteke horses are one of the wonders of Turkmenistan, descendants of the legendary Nisei horses. Bred by Turkmens-Tekeen, they became the ancestors of many modern breeds. The name "Akhalteke" comes from the Akhal oasis located in the central part of the country. It is here, that for millennia, ancestors of present-day Turkmenistanis bred the world-famous breed of "heavenly" horses.

As far back as antiquity, horses bred at the Parthian stud at Nyssa were considered not just the best, they were elevated to the rank of sacred. Historians spoke with admiration of these horses, describing in their works their grace, beauty, majestic gait and unquestioning obedience to the rider. Therefore, it is not surprising that horses from Nisei, the best at that time, became the ancestors of the Akhalteke breed. The fact that Bucephalus, favorite horse of great military leader Alexander the Great, belonged to this very breed, proves what excellent results the ancestors of Turkmens achieved in breeding Akhalteke horses.

The "heavenly" horses also became heroes of folk art. For instance, in the heroic epos "Gorogly", one of the central characters is the horse Herat, a faithful companion of the main character of the legendary tale. Akhalteke horses are also found in many folk sayings and proverbs existing in Turkmenistan, where respect for horses is almost equal to respect for parents.

The Akhalteke horses were admired by travelers visiting the territory of modern Turkmenistan at different times. In their works, they noted the beauty and other important characteristics of the representatives of this breed, calling them the best of racers. Thus, according to Arminius Vambery, a 19th century Hungarian traveler and ethnographer, these amazing horses were really worth all the effort.

Turkmen leader Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov is also known for his reverent attitude to Akhalteke horses. He not only dedicated a number of poems and prose works to Turkmen horses but also did a lot to popularize the breed in the country and all over the world. Thus, the head of state signed a decree according to which a festive celebration of the legendary property of the Turkmen nation is held in Turkmenistan every year.

Akhalteke horses can be surely called one of the greatest gifts of Turkmenistan to all mankind. The Turkmen people have much to be proud of, and Akhal-Teke horses are just one of such causes for pride.



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