Daughter of the Wind switches to Arabic

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on November 4th, 2016 in General

When I started this blog, more than eight years ago, it was out of a need to connect American breeders and lovers of desert Arabian horses with facts, stories, and like-minded people from the rest of the world. I believe this task has now largely been fulfilled, not necessarily by this blog, but mostly by the advent of social media tools that connect people across the globe.

With the endless loss of life, heritage, culture and horses engulfing the Middle East — Syria, Iraq, Yemen, others maybe soon — I have been feeling the increasing need to switch gears and reach out to those who live in the cradle of the Arabian horses, especially the youth.

Amidst these tragedies, those who are normally the reference and the source of the knowledge, expertise, tradition about desert horses, and the original source of the horses themselves, are at risk of losing faith in what they have and in who they are.

So pervasive is the influence of Western lifestyles, media, ideas, so overwhelming is the destruction of ancient centers of knowledge, tradition and culture — including about Arabian horses like Aleppo, Homs, Mossul, Sanaa, so large is the flow of refugees who lost everything, that the time has come to take stock of what is left, and try to protect it.

It is time to be part of this effort, and Daughters of the Wind will be switching to Arabic, my native language, to reconnect the people of the cradle countries of the Arabian horse with what is left of their heritage.

I will still post English entries from time to time, on topics of special interest, especially pertaining to research, but the bulk of the information will be in Arabic, and with more connection to social media.



Roaning in Arabic as applied to horses: ablaq

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 25th, 2016 in General

Coat colors in old Arabic treatises on horses pose a big challenge not just because of their sheer number — close to a hundred — but also because they do not follow quite the same pattern as color coat definitions of Arabians in the west: grey, chestnut, bay, and black. I having been trying to look for an internal logic to color classification by the ancient Arabs and Bedouins for some years now.

I am now certain of a few color correspondences. One of them is ablaq (feminine balqaa), and its roan. It’s defined in the old Arabic dictionaries as the appearance of white hair in any other coat color which does not fade as the animal ages (ie, grays). It’s also further qualified by the base color: so you have “ashqar ablaq” which is the equivalent of a chestnut roan, or a “kumayt ablaq”, which is a bay roan. Then you have different types of “ablaq”, depending on which part of the body the roaning occurs.

Beteyen ibn Mirshid

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 18th, 2016 in General

I had never seen this photo of Beteyen Ibn Mirshid of the Sbaa Bedouins before. It is apparently featured in Von Oppenheim’s book. Can anyone confirm? He was the owner of Queen of Sheba, of the Blunts.



“Yellow” as a color in Arabian horses

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 10th, 2016 in General

This is with respect to the discussion on the color “yellow” in Arabian horses in the preceding entry. This mare (Pirouette CF) would qualify as “yellow” in Bedouin parlance. This is confirmed in old Arabic dictionaries (“Lesan al-Arab” which dates back to the 14th century AD), and also by  Tweedie and Raswan.

Pedigree of ‘Usaymah a Kuhaylah al-Harqah of Abbas Pasha, in the Raswan Index Arabic Plates

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 7th, 2016 in Egypt

The Arabic documents reproduced in Volume 2 of the Raswan Index contain a treasure trove of information about the horses of Abbas Pasha, including several ancestors of modern Arabian horse. Ever since I bought my own copy of the Raswan Index last August, I continue to marvel at how much knowledge was at our fingertips over the past sixty years.

These documents allow us to trace back Abbas Pasha foundation stock of Egyptian breeding to their desert ancestors. Until now, the pedigrees of many of these horses stopped at: “from Abbas Pasha” and did not go back to the desert.

The documents numbered C3 and C4– rather the bottom two thirds of “page C3” and the bottom quarter of “page C4” — are extremely interesting. They consist of the family tree of a desert bred mare from the strain of Kuhaylan Harqan. Here is my translation:


Al-Harqa mother of the horses her sire Kuhaylan al-Jallabi 


her progeny

1 a yellow mare, her sire Kuhaylan Ajuz son of Krushan, the horse of Dalham al-Qahtani

she died


progeny of the yellow [mare] daughter of Kuhaylan Ajuz son of Krushan

1 a yellow horse his sire Duhayman Shahwan the horse of al-Tabeen [?] son of Kuhaylan Ajuz of the horses of [stops here]

2 a yellow mare her sire Rabdan the horse of al-Daham son of Hadban al-Nazah the horse of Lami

3 a yellow horse his sire Radban the horse of al-Daham son of Kuhaylan al-Muradi; he went to ‘Aayidh ibn Mir’i the ruler of ‘Assir

a yellow mare her sire Hadban of the horses of Ibn Qarmalah of Qahtan


progeny of the yellow [mare] daughter of Radban

2 a yellow mare her sire Harqan the brother of her dam the son of the horse of al-Daham the son of Hadban, her name ‘Usaymah [or ‘Aseemah]

a yellow horse his sire is the brother of his dam, the son of of the horse of al-Daham; he went to al-Sharif ibn ‘Awn. 


progeny of the yellow [mare] ‘Usaymah daughter of Harqan

1 yellow mare her sire Rabdan the horse of al-Daham son of Jazian; she went to Talal Ibn Rashid and from him she reached the Stud [of Abbas Pasha]

yellow mare her sire Kuhaylan named “Dahman” from the horses of Ibn Hakin [?], still with [Ibn] Qarmalah


Now compare this translation with the entry on the Harqan strain in the Abbas Pasha Manuscript translation as published by Judith Forbis and Gulsun Sherif [from page XXX to page XXX].  You will see how closely the two texts match each other, word for word, so much so that one must have been a transcription of the other. Either the documents marked C3 and C4 in the Raswan Index served as drafts inputs for that part of the Abbas Pasha Manuscript, or they were later transcriptions of this part of the Abbas Pasha Manuscript after it was issued.

What matters is that this translation serves as a detailed pedigree for two mares of the Kuhaylan Harqan strain imported by Abbas Pasha from the Arabian desert. We find these two mares in the sales list of Abbas Pasha horses, which is also among the Arabic documents in the Raswan Index: ‘Usaymah a.k.a “the mare of Ibn Qarmalah” and ‘Usaymah’s daughter a.k.a “the mare of Talal” [i.e., Talal Ibn Rashid].

Indeed, the list named “Upper Page #4 of Sheet #2” in the Raswan Index has the following entry:

1 yellow mare al-Harqa of Muhammad Ibn Qarmalah the Shaykh of Qahtan her sire [is] from her strain, her name [is] ‘Usaymah  

And the list named “Upper Page #2 of Sheet #1” has the following entry:

1 yellow mare al-Harqa that of Talal ibn Rashid, her sire [is] the Rabdan that of al-Daham

Finally, the list named “Upper Page #1 of Sheet #2 contains the following entry, about a daughter of the previous mare, hence a granddaughter of ‘Usaymah:

1 yellow [mare] al-Harqa daughter of that of Talal, her sire Sarhan  

Below is my rendition of the pedigree of ‘Usaymah [I would rather read her name as ‘Aseemah, but I am sticking to ‘Usaymah to be consistent with the Forbis and Sherif translation in the  Abbas Pasha Manuscript]



New findings from the “Ali Pasha Sharif” studbook in the Raswan Index

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 1st, 2016 in General

This past August, I bought a copy of the two volume edition of the Raswan Index at the auction of the Al Khamsa Convention in Colorado.

It has several plates of photos of Arabic language lists of Arabian horses with price, name, sex, strain, sire, dam, color, markings, and a person’s name at the end, either the horse’s buyer or his seller. According to Raswan, these are photos of the Ali Pasha Sharif herd book. In that case, it would be the list of horses he purchased at the Abbas Pasha sale and from various other people. But there are too many different people names of people, most Egyptian notables but also some foreigners, and to me these lists could as well be sales list of Abbas Pasha horses.

Whether they are sales lists or purchase lists, they figure many, many easily recognizable, often well-known Abbas Pasha horses of the first generation (i.e., desert breds from Arabia), second generation (direct offspring of desert breds), and even third generation. Most immediately noticeable is how often the stallion Ghadir, or “the Saqlawi stallion of Ghadir” figures on these lists as a sire and grand sire of many of these horses, alongside horses like Sueyd. Ghadir appears to have been the senior stallion of the Abbas Pasha studs, something confirmed by Von Hugel.

Another observation that jumps at you if the number of horses from Abbas Pasha’s favorite, most treasured strains, as listed at the beginning of the Abbas Pasha Manuscript: Dahman (both Shahwan and Najib); Saqlawi (both Jadran and Ubayri/Marighi); Kuhaylan al-Mimrah;  Kuhaylan al-Tamri; Kuhaylan al-Nawwaq and Kuhaylan Jallabi; and to a lesser extent, Kuhaylan Harqan; Kuhaylan Aafes; Kuhaylan Abu Maarif; Jazian; Ubayyan; and Hamdani Simri.

Recently I have been mining these lists, trying to read through the faint Arabic calligraphy, and I believe I have stumbled upon some remarkable findings, which I believe will help extend the pedigrees of several Abbas Pasha and Ali Pasha Sharif horses and their modern descendants back to their original desert bred antecedents.

Now here’s the first find, and it concerns Selma (AP), the dam of Sobha (APS), and grand-dam of Seyal (and hence, Berk, Ribal, Ghadaf, etc) and Selma II (hence Sotamm, Bint Serra, Kazmeyn, Bint Samiha, Nazeer, etc.). One entry in the list reads:

“1 blue [zarqa] mare hamdaniyah simri from the strain of mughir ibn buraykan, that of munwikh of al-kawakibah, her sire the chestnut shuwayman al-sabbah, her name salmah, [buyer] shaker effendi of the daira of ismail pasha”

This entry is very consistent with entry 9018 in the Raswan Index on a mare named “Salimah”. However, Raswan did not make the link between this “Salimah” and the “Selma” of Abbas Pasha, dam of Sobha. He thought they were two different mares. I believe “Salimah” of Raswan Index entry 9018, Selma of Abbas Pasha dam of Sobha, and “Salmah” in the list entry above are one and the same mare.

Accordingly, I believe we now have a sire strain and color for Selma (AP), dam of Sobha, etc: a chestnut Shuwayman Sabbah.

Pomp Charbonneau, 2008 Hamdani Davenport stallion

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on September 11th, 2016 in General


Kirby Drennan owns this beautiful in Virginia, IL. He is by Pageant CF out of Anthesis, and a half brother of Lexington CF, below.

PS: Everything out of Anthesis CF is outstanding, including Fragrance CF at Michael Bowling’s, Chancery CF with Debbie Jessen and Firebolt CF, also with Kirby.

Update on *Nufoud tail female

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on September 11th, 2016 in General

There are only four mares and filly from the *Nufoud tail female accounted and all are in PA. Linda Uhrich owns AB Dafinah (HHA Manabi x LD Rubic), and Monica Respet owns her daughter, Niina Nufoud. Then there is “Belle” and her daughter Barakah, with me.

Jadah Necessity, 1997 gm, is unaccounted for, last with Randal and Mary-Sue Harris in IL. MSF Rubie, 1993 cm (EA Salute x LD Rubic) is I think still with Pam Baker in SC, but she has never had a foal, and is now 23.

Another superb filly from Kim Davis’s breeding program

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on September 2nd, 2016 in General

Kim Davis bred his superb Kuhaylat al-Krush yearling filly of Davenport bloodlines. She is by by HH Tantalus Krush (Quantum LD x Kashmir Krush LD) out of HH Nadira Krush (RC Janub Krush x Naufali Al Krush). She has 14 crosses to the original desert import Kuhaylat al-Krush *Werdi, and 10 out of 16 ancestors at the fourth generation. If she looks that great at this growthy stage, I wonder how she will look like when she matures fully. I had already written about her when she was born.

krush filly


Old photos of Saudi mare *Sindidah

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 17th, 2016 in General

From the same Billy Sheets photo collection as the ones in the entry below. I don’t think these had ever been published before.





Old photos of Saudi stallion *Furtha Dhellal

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 17th, 2016 in General

These are from the photo collection Billy Sheets gave me. For more on this 1960 stallion, click here. Maybe someone can find more about Khalid Hamid al-Dawsari who was living and working in al-Khobar in the 1960s.

furtha dellal





Barakah growing by leaps by bounds

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 16th, 2016 in General




Beautiful SS Shadows Aana

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 16th, 2016 in General

I am very proud of this 16 year old mare, which I acquired about a year ago. She is having some trouble conceiving but we will be working on that over the coming year.


Wadd for sale

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 12th, 2016 in General

I am putting Wadd, my 5 year old Davenport stallion, up for sale. He is the youngest offspring of the grand Triermain CF, out of Wisteria CF, one of the prettiest Triermain daughters and a favorite of Charles Craver.

He is a Kuhaylan Haifi by strain, bred within the strain for four generations. His sire was the main Kuhaylan Haifi stallion at Craver Farms in the last period of its activity, as was the sire of his sire before him.

He would be best used to perpetuate his breed, preferably within the asil group of horses, including the Davenports, Saud, straight Syrians, North African, Bahraini, Sharps, and other Arabian horses lines that came directly from the Arabian and Syrian deserts. He sired one offspring with me, a filly now two months old, and is an easy breeder. He has a curious and playful disposition. He leads easily but is not broken to ride.

For the members of this page who come from the Arab world where these things matter, almost every one of his ancestors came from the desert with a certificate of authenticity (hujjah) from their Bedouin breeders and owners. He is from the best blood of the Northern Arabian desert.

He is bred very tightly, within a closed group for the past 110 years, tracing exclusively to famous horses directly imported from the Arabian desert in 1906. For instance, he has 243 crosses to *Urfah, the war mare of al-Awaji, a senior sheykh of the ‘Anazah Bedouins; 140 crosses to *Wadduda, the war mare of Ibn Mhayd, one of the leaders of the Anazah Bedouins; and 59 crosses to *Abeyah, the war mare of Mit’ab al-Hadb, the Shammar military commander at the time.

If you would like more information, please contact me privately.



wadd edouard


Farhan al-Olayyan

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 27th, 2016 in General

I have been trying to get a photo of him. He was Miqhim Ibn Mhayd’s slave and one of his most trusted men. Following the relocation (exile?) of Miqhim from Syria to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the late 1950s, he acted as Miqhim’s agent to acquire several hundreds of desert bred horses, mostly mares, and mostly from the ‘Anazah but also from other Bedouin tribes, as gifts to Saudi royals and other senior officials.

As distressed ‘Anazah Bedouins from Syria gradually moved south to Saudi Arabia, they sought public sector and military jobs, registration and immigration documents, and various social and resettlement benefits in their new home country. They were eager to obtain the support and good will of Saudi officials and members of the royal family, and through Miqhim and his sons, presented them with their best mares. This explains the influx of hundreds of Bedouin mares in the Saudi royal studs in the 1960s. Several dozens of these mares found their way to the Saudi Arabian Studbook, where they were registered as “desert bred”.

Back in Syria, Farhan al-Olayyan gained increasing influence with the ‘Anazah who had not left yet, to the point of speaking in the name of Miqhim and his sons. While he always acknowledged his status as a slave, he settled in Miqhim’s former dwelling, sitting at the central Majliss spot where Miqhim once sat. Many Bedouins gave him mares so he could intercede with Miqhim on their behalf.

Farhan al-Olayyan literally emptied the Northern desert of its Bedouin mares over three decades from the 1960s to the mid 1980s. He knew where the best mares from the best strains were. He took the horses by will or by force. When the late Qatari consul to Syria, Yusuf al-Rumayhi started collecting desert-bred mares from the remaining Syrian tribes in the mid 1980s, and aged Farhan al-Olayyan regretfully told him he could not be of help, as the most had already left to Saudi Arabia, and all what remained were a handful of elderly mares.

This photo from 1958 purports to show him, labeled as N.1. Thamer son of Nuri son of Miqhim al-Mhayd labeled as N.8.

Beautiful Fragrance CF

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 26th, 2016 in General

One of my favorite Davenport mares, based on photos I have seen, and on liking her two brothers: Pomp Charbonneau and Firebolt CF. Photo Christine Emmert.



Chatham DE, asil Saqlawi Jadran, 100% old Crabbet lines

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 25th, 2016 in General

The handsome 2005 stallion Chatham DE (Huntington Doyle x Gulida Tara DE by Maloof Najid), photo from DeWayne Brown.



Goodbye Aana

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 23rd, 2016 in General

The sweet Juans Aana (El Reata Juan x Suuds Juli Aana), a Ma’naqiyah Sbayliyah from the line of Haidee, 26 years old this year, left to what seems to be a good retirement home yesterday. I kept her 16 year old daughter which I still hope to breed this year. If it’s a colt, I will keep him as a stallion. There is nothing better than a Ma’naqi stallion for breeding. I say this, but Hakim ibn Mhayd also said it and wrote it to Davenport, and he knew what he was talking about.





Jamr again

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 23rd, 2016 in General

Here you really see the Crabbet influence from his dam blending with the blood of his paternal grandsire Regency CF.



Barakah 2016 Kuhaylat al-Ajuz filly

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 23rd, 2016 in General

Pedigree here. She is six generations removed from the original desert import *Nufoud from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.




DaughterofthePharaohs, a.k.a “Pippa”, 2015 Ma’naqiyah Sbayliyah

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 22nd, 2016 in General

I am in absolute awe of DeWayne Brown’s young Ma’naqiyah filly, DaughterofthePharaohs, a.k.a. “Pippa” (Chatham DE x SS Lady Guenevere by SS Dark Prince), photo below by DeWayne. She is a throwback to the old Crabbet type of a hundred years ago. She has crosses to three of the four Gulastra descendents in Al Khamsa, namely Julep, Gulida, and Nusi.


Three different types

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 22nd, 2016 in General

Belle (top) looks the most deserty of all my horses by far, and has the longest ears, Jamr (middle) has the crested neck of his Crabbet ancestors, and Wadha has the most “classic” head and largest eyes of the three. And there is only so much a smartphone camera can do.




Farhan al-Olayyan up to the 1980s

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 22nd, 2016 in General

This serves mostly as a note to myself: I found an intriguing reference to Farhan al-‘Olayyan in a Syrian hujjah of a horse born in the mid 1980s. I had long thought that Farhan al-‘Olayyan, a former black slave who had acted as an agent of the Saudi royal family for the purchase of hundreds of desert horses from Syria, was active in the 1960s and the 1970s, but this reference extends his activity up until the 1980s. It is from the hand of ‘Aissa al-Sallal, a stallion owner (in Arabic “hassan”, in french “etalonnier”), and in it he mentions that his main stallion, a Kuhaylan al-Khdili bred by Omar al-Huwaydi al-Mishlib, of the ‘Afadilah tribal Shaykhs, was bought by Farhan al-‘Olayyan for expert to Saudi Arabia, but had already sired a Ma’naqi Sbayli stallion in 1984.

This is really interesting, and potentially establishes a connection with the horses registered in the Saudi Studbook and know to be coming from “the north”. Worth digging further.

How Ma’naqi mares are special

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 22nd, 2016 in General

My Syrian friend Radwan — one of the persons from whom I keep learning — told me that desert mares from the Ma’naqi strain were characterizeda, among other features by long ears, large and long mouths that ran deeper into the muzzle than horses from other strains, and horizontally placed eyes, more so than horses from other strains whose eyes were parallel to the axis of the head.

This was in connection with a discussion of the precious desert Ma’naqi Sbayli strain known as “Ma’aaniq al-Tanf” (after their location at the Tanf desert border crossing between Syria and Iraq) or “Ma’aaniq Abu Jarn” and its tracing to the Black Marzaqani (al-Marzaqani al-Adham), the famous Saqlawi stallion of the Maraziq of Shammar later owned by Alaa al-Din al-Jabri in the 1960s. These are the horses of ‘Affaat al-Dbeissi of the Fad’aan, a precious marbat which Jean-Claude Rajot and other French and German purists visited in the 1990s in the Syrian Desert (Jens Sennek has stories about that visit to them in his awesome book), but the Syrian Studbook does not show that the line actually traces to the Black Marzaqani. The old chestnut Ma’naqiyah mare which Ibrahim Khamis of Hama owned in the early 1990s was the daughter of the Black Marzaqani. I think I remember her, or maybe it was her daughter which the Hama people bought from Affata’ after the dam had died without female progeny.

Bahraini horses outside the royal family

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on July 22nd, 2016 in General

Ahmad Saffar from Bahrain told me the other day that wealthier Bahrainis from the ahali — the population, so not royals — kept marabet of Shawafan and Wadhnan until the 1970s, when they turned to Thoroughbreds and part bred Arabs for racing. They had obtained these strains from Southern Iraq — presumably the area around Basra and al-Zubayr.