Hamada, Shuwaymat Sabbah, bred by Robert Mauvy, France

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 15th, 2011 in France

When I was a kid, there were not many horse books I could read. I had no access to the hardcovers in my father’s library, like Lady Wentworth’s “Authentic Arabian Horse” or W.R. Brown’s “Horse of the Desert”. I was too afraid to tear a page anyway, and they were not easy to handle. I could read the softcovers though. One of these, and my favorite, was Robert Mauvy’s small book “Le Cheval Arabe”. I knew it by heart, almost line by line. In it was a chapter called “Hamada”, where the author describes how the dam of his new filly (a 1975 chestnut daughter of Irmak which he named Hamada, out of Shawania, who was by Amri) refused to let her nurse, and how she had to be bottled-fed, and how she later turned out. I somehow became attached to this filly without knowing her, and her story stuck in my head.

In 1994, my father and I went to France for a benign medical treatment, and we looked up Mauvy’s surviving horses in the Studbook. Some of them were owned by Louis Bauduin, who lives a couple hours south of Paris, so we went to pay him a visit. He treated us to lunch in Nemours, presented us to his family and friends, several of which are now regular readers of this blog, and showed us his horses.

Among these was the glorious Hamada, then in her twenties. There she was, standing right beside me. I will never forget how the teenager I was felt when taking this photo of her, below, with Louis holding her. It felt like meeting your favorite action hero right there, in the middle of street, like jumping in the middle of a fiction book and become one of its characters.

2 Responses to “Hamada, Shuwaymat Sabbah, bred by Robert Mauvy, France”

  1. That is an amazing story Eduoard. I wish I could have been so lucky to have both read about and then actually see such a horse. Such a beautiful mare and in her 20s no less. Thank you for sharing.

  2. great story, and this is one of the first post where the horse is not the main character! more more please

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