"King of the Wind" father of thorou

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Posted by Sadie from D007072.N1.Vanderbilt.Edu ( on Tuesday, August 26, 2003 at 7:54PM :

I read that book "King of the Wind" in grade school, & remember a bit about Sham, the Godolphin Arabian, one of the famous founders of the thoroughbred line of horses.... Sham's the ancestor of Man O' War, who was one of the greatest race horses of all time & grandfather of Seabiscuit. Anyway, here's an article about the amazing Godolphin Arabian.
The Godolphin Arabian
1724 - 1753
Arabian stallion bred by the Jilfan tribe in Yemen.

Through Syria and Tunisia, he is exported to France. Ludvig XIV, His Royal Majesty, receives him as a gift from the Bey of Tunis in 1730.

The Vicomte de Manty writes about him: "Shami, a bay brown with reddish mottle and very little white on his hind feet. He was of beautiful conformation, exquisitely proportioned with large hocks, well let down, with legs of iron, with unequalled lightness of forehand - a horse of incomparable beauty… An essentially strong stallion type, his quarters broad… tail carried in true Arabian style."

The King of France sells Sham to Edward Coke. He uses his services at his stud at Longford Hall in Derbyshire, England.

After Mr. Coke's death in 1733, Roger Williams sells Sham to the second Earl of Godolphin. Sham now becomes The Godolphin Arabian and his residence is hereafter at
Gog Magog, Babraham outside Cambridge.

Here he improved his new owner's blood stock as long as he lived. A plaque marks his burial place in the archway beneath the Cupola. The inscription read: "The Godolphin Arabian died 1753 aged 29".

Nimrod, the best known Turf historian of the period calls him "the Knight of the Wonderful Crest" and describes the muscles of his loins as "inserted into his quarters with greater strength and power than any horse yet seen of his dimensions."

The Godolphin Arabian had a small head on a well arched and cresed neck, was short-backed, with great bone and action, height 1,47 m (14.2 hands).

He sires about 90 foals.

Berry, B. J. 1979. The Standardbreds.
London: Thomas Yoseloff Ltd.

Clark, B. 1997. Wandlebury.
Cambridge: Cambridge Preservation Society.

Milner, M. 1990. The Godolphin Arabian: The Story of the Matchem line.
London: J. A. Allen & Co Ltd

Peters, A, Godolphin Arabian,
<http://www.tbheritage.com/Portraits/GodolphinArabian.html> 2000-11-13

-- Sadie
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