冰岛马 THE ICELANDIC HORSE
THE ICELANDIC HORSE
冰岛马
A true companion through rough times
艰苦岁月的忠实伙伴
When Iceland was settled before the year 1000 AD, settlers not only brought sheep and household items on their small sailing vessels. Horses joined the dangerous trip across the northern seas. First findings of saddles and bridles date back to 10th century when Iceland still was pagan and people believed in the god Odin who rode Sleipnir, an eight-legged shamanic horse with magic powers.
冰岛在公元1000年前开始有人定居,定居者在狭小的航船里,既带着羊,也带着家居用品。马匹也一起进入跨越北海的凶险旅程。马鞍和嚼环最早被发现可以追溯到公元10世纪,当时还属于异教时期,人们信仰大神奥丁,他骑着斯雷皮涅,一个八条腿的有魔力的马。
Icelandic saga literature is filled with stories about horses, not only as a means of transport in daily life, but as a sign of wealth and object of desire. The most famous example was the horse Freyfaxi in Hrafnkel’s saga. Nobody was allowed to ride Freyfaxi, and a fatal feud started when Hrafnkel’s shepherd, Einar, ignored the ban and was subsequently killed by his master.
冰岛萨迦文学有很多跟马有关的故事,马匹不仅是日常生活中的运输工具,也是财富的象征和欲望的对象。最有名的例子,是哈弗克萨迦中的马匹弗瑞法斯。任何人都不允许骑弗瑞法斯,一个要命的仇怨始于哈弗克的牧羊人尹纳,不顾禁令骑马,结果被主人杀死。
Brave partners
勇敢的伙伴
The Icelandic horse is a small, sturdy breed from Scandinavia that came with the settlers. It must have been a brave one, too, with strong nerves, considering the long boat-trip to Iceland. In post-settlement centuries, merchants added horses from the continent, and the Icelandic breed developed into what we have today: a small riding horse with a height of around 138cm (54in or 13.6 hands) to the highest point of the withers; sure-footed, with a nice and willing temperament; tough and resilient in its physical strength, a friendly and independent, gregarious animal.
冰岛马体形矮小,身体强壮,这个物种随着定居者从斯堪的纳维亚来到冰岛。冰岛马绝对是勇敢的马种,神经强健,能禁得住到冰岛的长途航行。定居后的数百年间,商人从大陆带来马匹,冰岛马品种演化成为我们今天看到的样子:矮小供骑行的马种,到马背隆起最高点高达138厘米(54英寸或者13.6手长);步履稳健,性情随和;体力上能吃苦耐劳,是温顺,有个性并合群的物种。
Icelandic horses have survived harsh winters, famine, and volcanic eruptions and assisted man as partners in ploughing, harvesting and carrying heavy loads like fish, timber, hay or stones.
冰岛马能在恶劣的冬天,饥荒和火山喷发条件下存活,象伙伴一样帮助人们犁地,收割并驮运象鱼,原木,干草和石头等重物。
Cars only came to Iceland after World War II. Until then, a group of horses would carry people long distances, through deserts of lava, ice and sand, crossing glacial rivers on small boats or by swimming. Machines have taken over labour and traffic now. However, for one job, the Icelandic horse still is practically irreplaceable: gathering the free-ranging sheep from the Highlands in early autumn. Here the secret bonds between man and horse are still tangible.
汽车只是二战后才在冰岛出现。在此之前,马队驮着人们长途跋涉,穿越熔岩沙漠,冰川和荒滩,乘着小船穿过冰河或者泅渡。在机车已经取代畜力,成为交通工具的今天,还是有一项工作,冰岛马事实上无可替代:秋初还是要靠骑马,把高原放养的羊聚集起来。这方面人和马之间的秘密纽带还是确凿无误的。
Famous poems have praised the horse through the ages. In olden times, horses were often buried next to their late owners to demonstrate the strong relationship. This, of course, is no longer allowed, but as late as 1920, a farmer in South-Iceland decided to share a grave with his horse, on the slope of a mountain they both loved to explore.
多年以来著名的诗歌里颂扬着马匹。在古代,马经常陪葬在已故主人的旁边,说明他们之间的紧密联系。这种方式当然现在不再被允许,但在1920年的时候,冰岛南部还有一个农民决定和自己的马葬在同一个墓穴,墓地就在他们一起喜欢漫游的山坡上。
Tölt – the long-distance gait
托特—长距离马步
Unlike other breeds, Icelandic horses have two additional gaits: tölt and pace. Tölt is a four-beat lateral gait with only one foot carrying the weight at a time, providing a smooth and comfortable ride on long distances. The pace is a fast, two-beat lateral gait used for racing over short distances.
和其他马种不同,冰岛有两种额外的马步:托特和踱步。托特是四落点横步,一次只有一只脚负担重量,在长距离骑行中显得平缓舒适。踱步是快速,两落点横步,用于短距离速度跑。
In the Middle Ages in Europe, the special tölt gait almost disappeared in breeding, as it was not suitable for carriages. In the inhospitable Icelandic landscape, carriages have never been used, and the tölt survived.
欧洲中世纪,在品种繁育过程中,特殊的托特步几乎消失,因为它不适合拉车。在荒凉的冰岛土地上,拉车从来派不上用场,所以托特步保留了下来。
In the 16th century, Icelandic horses were sougth after by Danish shepherds because of their tölt. Tölt is still enjoyed today, riding for pleasure through Iceland’s beautiful landscape. Just as in the old days, people join highland and cross country riding trips with 2-4 horses, changing their riding horse about once an hour to keep them fresh and willing. Visitors can also enjoy the qualities of the horses in numerous shows and competitions during the summer.
16世纪为了享受冰岛美丽风景。只是在过去时代里,人们过高原,带着2到4匹马骑行穿越整个国家,一个小时换匹马,这样马匹可以充满活力,也听话。旅行者也能尽享在众多表现中的马匹品质,和夏季的竞赛乐趣。
Today’s athletes
现在赛马
In order to protect the stock’s health, Iceland banned the import of horses in 1909. Since the 1950s the export of Icelandic horses to the continent has increased, in the post-war years as working horses, and later as athletic riding companions. With a total population of 300,000 Icelandic horses worldwide, they can be found in almost any European country, the US and New Zealand. Every second year, a world championship takes place to present the best horses of the breed. Due to their hardiness, they are also popular in endurance competition. One of the most successful endurance horses in Europe is an Icelandic horse. In the US, a 25 year old Icelandic endurance champion, Remington, just completed his 209th sports.
为了保护物种健康,冰岛1909年开始禁止进口马匹。从20世纪50年代冰岛马出口到欧洲大陆开始慢慢增加,战后是作为畜力 ,后来则是比赛用马。全世界大概有30万匹冰岛马,在每个欧洲国家,美国,新西兰都能看到冰岛马。每两年一次,举办世界大赛来展示该马种的佼佼者。由于能吃苦,在欧洲耐力最佳的马匹中,有一种就是冰岛马。在美国,瑞明顿,有25岁的冰岛耐力冠军,刚好完成他的第209场比赛。
Horses form a strong part of Icelandic culture. Colourful herds, graze calmly on endless meadows, braving the elements. There is nothing so peaceful as being with them on a sunny day and no freedom like riding them through lava fields and across rivers, as men did hundreds of years ago
马匹是冰岛文化的强有力组成部分。色彩多样的马群,在绵延的草场安静地吃草,无所畏惧。再没有比阳光明媚的日子里和马在一起更平和的事情,没有比骑马穿越熔岩地区和河流更自由的行为,几百年来人们如出一辙。
.-DT

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