Sharkasi…

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on April 27th, 2010 in Arabia, Egypt

I normally don’t use this blog to relay unsubstantiated rumors, but this one is so funny I could not resist sharing it with you: a well-known horsebreeder from Egypt is claiming that the poorly documented (a euphemism) Egyptian stallion Sharkasi is actually from the ‘Ajman Bedouin tribe of Central Arabia. The ‘Ajman, no less…  Of course, this breeder has Sharkasi bloodlines.

Now I understand that there is an ongoing push from various parts of the community of Arabian breeders in Egypt to ‘sponsor’ further research on the few Egyptian bloodlines outside of the mainstream Egyptian breeding (e.g., the three Tahawi mares, El Gadaa, Ibn Ghalabawi, Sharkasi, etc), and that is always welcome, but I never thought someone would make so brazen a claim as to link an unknown stallion from Upper Egypt to one of the most respected horse-breeding tribes of Arabia. I mean, even WAHO stopped short of making up such a prestigious ascendency when it accepted Sharkasi. You can read the WAHO report on Sharkasi here; it essentially says that “Sharkasi was bred by a man in Upper Egypt. His sire was one of the Alzabra Stud distributed to villages to cover the mares of farmers. His dam was also by an Alzabra stallion and out of a Bedouin mare.”  Strains? Marabet? Bedouin Tribes? Clans? Breeders? Who needs these? Lets accept him anyway!!!

PS: I was rereading the WAHO statement about Sharkasi quoted above, and can’t help thinking that it actually makes the opposite of the point it wants to make. If his sire was indeed one of several stallions ‘distributed to villages to cover the mares of farmers’, how do we know that his dam or grand-dam was not one of these ‘mares of farmers’? Also, how do we know, in the absence of strain, marbat, name of tribe, clan, etc, that what is referred to as “a Bedouin mare” (in Upper Egypt, a region so removed from Arabia) and “mares of farmers” (which in the Middle East we call ‘Kadish’) are not one of the same thing?

8 Responses to “Sharkasi…”

  1. “3. In the book entitled The Arabian Horse Breeders in America, written by Dr. Ameen Baher,”

    Wow, they even got that wrong in the report. It was Dr. Zaher.

    What was Alzabra? Are they trying to say “El Zahraa”?

  2. Just to make it clear, my proposal to Al Khamsa regarding the 3 Tahawi mares used in Egypt, is NOT on behalf of the Egyptian community. I am doing this independently in the same philosophy that I previously proposed the Bahrain stallion Mlolshaan Hager Solomon, based on my review of any desert sources available in North America which deserve Al Khamsa consideration regardless of their originating element or nationality.

  3. Joe

    I guess I ought to clarify too.. By “Egyptian community”, I certainly did not mean the global community of Straight Egpytian horsebreeders, but rather the community of breeders from Egypt (Egyptian men and women breeders) who breed some of these non-mainstream lines.. Let me correct that in the main text..

  4. Jeanne,

    Al Zabra is one of the old local farms in rural Egypt, like Kafr Ibrash and others. Very little is known about these farms outside Egypt today…

  5. SHARKASI was a grey Original Arab racehorse, said to have come from upper Egypt. He was acquired by T.G.B Trouncer and in 1955, on the death of Trouncer he was purchased by EAO.
    No strain is given for SHARKASI and nothing is known of him background or date of death but at EAO, he was the sire of 43 sons, his first progeny was the stallion IBN KOMEIRA born on March 15, 1957 by the mare KOMEIRA and the last was the mare WEHDA born on February 16, 1968 by the mare GHARBAWIA.
    About the stallion EL GADAA born on 1950, he was a chestnut racehorse that at Hamdan Stables was the sire of the Mare’s SAMARAH II (1961) Bint Nafa’a (1962) and the Stallion IBN EL GADAA (1964).
    EL GADAA was bred by Sheikh Midjhem Ibn Meheyd of the Fedaan Anazeh, his sire was EL SABAA, a Koheilan racehorse and his dam was a Managhiyah Sbelya.

    Best regards,

  6. Edouard, I have a question about Sharkasi’s name. Does it mean Tcherkess/Circassian? I suppose we don’t know who gave it to him. Would it be a typical name for an Arabian horse of his time and place?

  7. Yes it does. But it can also mean “strong’ or ‘poweful’ like a Circassian soldier. We in Lebanon used to say ‘Senegalese’ to say that any man is a strong man, out of memory of the Senegalese soldiers at the time of the French occupation…

  8. Thanks – that’s interesting to know.

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