Page:Horse shoes and horse shoeing.djvu/424

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396
HORSE-SHOES AND HORSE-SHOEING.

though with respect to the maladies of the lower animals, he borrows largely from the Latin Scriptores Rei Rusticæ, and Jordanus Ruffus, yet he appears to have been an enlightened observer, and much less superstitious than the majority of medical men at that time. He describes several disorders the foot of the horse is liable to, and points out the difference between the hoofs of horses reared and employed in mountainous districts, and those bred in low-lying plains. When giving directions as to the management of the horse, he recommends that the shoes be round, light, and narrow, so that they might adhere firmly to the circumference of the feet. Thin shoes, he adds, render the horse agile, and to pare and lighten the hoofs makes them large and strong. When, however, new shoes are applied, and fastened on with either new or old nails, it is necessary the horse should rest, lest harm ensue.[1]

Perhaps among the most noted of the 14th-century hippiatrists, stands Laurentius Rusius (Ruzzius, Russo,

  1. The first and second sentences of this recommendation are from the edition I have mentioned: ' Ferrari debet equus ferris sibi convenientibus rotundis admodum ungulæ lenibus, et ungulis in circuitu strictis, et bene adherentibus, nam levitas ferri reddit equum agilem ad levandum pedes, et ipsius strictura ungulas majores et fortiores facit.'— Lib. ix. cap. 5.
    Aldrovandus, who may have had access to a more complete edition, quotes this somewhat differently, and adds to the last sentence given above—' Crescentiensis monet ut soleæ sint leves, rotundæ, et strictæ, ita ut ungulis in circuitu bene adhæreant. Nam levitas (inquit) ferri reddit equum agilem ad levandum pedes et strictura ejus ungulas majores et fortiores facit. Cum autem novæ soleæ inducuntur, aut veteris novis clavis firmatæ aliquanti per equum quiescere patiemur, ne post recentem molestiam alia noxei objiciatur.'—Op. cit., p. 50.