Page:Elizabethan People.djvu/180

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participate of all the four elements, equally, and in due proportion, then is he perfect, and most commonly be one of the colours following," among which he mentions roan as the most desirable.

Another detail in the selection of a horse is of interest because it affords an explanation of several passages in contemporary dramatic literature that have been occasionally misunderstood. It was considered not only an ill omen for a horse to have no white upon its body, but "it is an excellent good mark also for a horse to have a white star in his forehead. The horse that hath no white at all upon him is furious, dogged, full of mischief and misfortune." (Markham.) The usual expression used to describe a horse that had no white spot in his forehead was "a horse with a cloud in his face." Hence, in reply to the observation "He has a cloud in's face," Enobarbus remarks, "He were the worse for that were he a horse."

Of the horses exposed for sale in Smithfield Market, the place of first importance should be given to the "great horse" or "horse of service." He was useful in the wars and in the tourney at a time when it required an animal of great strength to bear the weight of his own and his master's armour. Armour was going out of fashion in the time of Elizabeth, but this kind of horse was