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Stayer lines of Thoroughbreds
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Kuhaylan Heify
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 Posted: Sat Apr 13th, 2019 06:58 am
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ran across an article about how researchers are worried that stayer lines of Thoroughbreds are getting increasingly rare due to the ,'speed gene,' being discovered. I recall during the anatomy class you mentioned that the substantially built Thoroughbreds are getting hard to find.. So how do you find out which are the stayer lines? Would looking over the steeple chasers and winners of the San Jaun Capistrano and other distance races of say more than a mile and a half be the way to go..
One of our local vets breeds Thoroughbreds and has a frozen semen business and he says its all economic that breeders need to hurry up and get a pay back for their costs, & consequently have to run babys over short distances to stay financially viable..
best
Bruce Peek

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 Posted: Sat Apr 13th, 2019 07:36 am
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Bruce, you're a little mixed up as to what I have said -- you're squashing two concerns into one. Yes, I am concerned about inbreeding and the loss of stayer bloodlines in Thoroughbreds. I am also concerned about the loss of substantially built horses in the American Saddlebred breed -- Thoroughbreds aren't having too much of an issue around people breeding 'beauty extremes'. If they have a problem with substance it's related mostly to the weak ankles which plague the Phalaris bloodline.

Well, who the heck was Phalaris after all -- so to find that out, you need a back-issues subscription to EQUUS Magazine. Cheap at the price, right? And it will answer your question fully, and also your vet with the semen business is completely correct in telling you that 99.9% of TB breeders today are after a quick return on their investment. So, as to the subscription Bruce, you're a little behind the curve here because for the past four years I have been doing almost nothing else in the pages of EQUUS but documenting what happened to the stayer lines of Thoroughbreds.

Of course four years' worth means quite a few different articles, each approaching that topic from a different angle. The series is in actuality the history of American horse breeding, although they put it under the section in the magazine called 'conformation insights.' There are also two special articles where I express grave concerns about the loss of genetic diversity in the Thoroughbred (in this I am echoing many other researchers).

The breed-history series begins with the zoogeography of domestication as springboard for explaining about the world's most important breed of horse, the Hobby. The Hobby, developed by the kings of ancient Ireland, is the source of sprint-speed and also, to a great extent, the source of gaitedness in quite a number of more modern breeds that descend from it. The Hobby is now extinct in pure form (unless you want to count Kerry Bog horses as their only nearly purebred descendants, or Icelandic horses as their descendants at least in some measure). Hobby blood lives on despite the extinction of the breed as such, because Hobby mares are the distaff ancestors of the Thoroughbred, and also, through the Thoroughbred but also directly from Hobby before it became extinct, they are the mare-side ancestors of every Anglo-American breed of horse, i.e. Narragansett Pacer, Morgan, American Saddlebred, American Standardbred, and American Quarter Horse.

So Bruce, on this business you have some catching up to do. I believe you can get designated back issues by going to http://www.equusmagazine.com. The issues you'll want to obtain are:

439, 446, 448, 449, 451, 452, 453, 467, 469, 471, 473, 475, 477, 488, 489, 490, 492, 493, 494, 495, and 496. I just read blueline for Issue no. 497 today, so in a month or so you can order that one too.

Of the above list, I know that you will be most especially interested in nos. 475 and 477, which survey the officers' and enlisted mens' mounts during the Civil War.

Further, and more directly related to your question about how much we've lost in terms of stayer bloodlines (i.e. Matchem and Herod), you will also want to order nos. 458 and 494, the first a review of American Pharaoh's inbreeding and the second a somewhat harder-hitting and very extensively researched article concerning Justify's pedigree and inbreeding. I submitted so much data for the Justify article that we couldn't even run it all in the printed version of EQUUS Magazine; you have to go online at their website to see some of the charts and data.

Happy reading -- Dr. Deb



Kuhaylan Heify
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 Posted: Sat Apr 13th, 2019 03:04 pm
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Deb: Many thanks.. I'll get the subscriptions started asap..
Also I read a piece about stayer lines here in the U.S.
in which the author stated that there used to be a colonial running horse ( ancestral to the quarter horse that was mostly English and Irish Hobby) that used to be run in quarter mile dash races and 4 mile heats. He says that this was at a time when the 4 mile heats were diminishing in number in England and were being replaced by the classic races, Derby , St. Leger, Oaks etc. And that here in the U.S. The American Running horse continued the 4 mile heat racing until after the Civil War. He says the American Running Horse wasn't all Thoroughbred , being a blend of Hobby and Thoroughbred, and that later on the General Stud had a rule that allowed for registration as a Thoroughbred if there were 5 sequential crosses to horses in the stud book. Before the 5 cross rule, the British in 1912 passed the Jersey act which ruled out registration of the American imports which initially wiped the floor with their British competitors. Registration of the U.S. horses in the GSB wasn't allowed until the French successfully lobbied the Acts' removal on the grounds that the American horses were proving to be faster in a time comparison sense.
This is fascinating stuff Deb One of my co workers bred warm blood T. bred crosses before her divorce and used a Seattle Slew line stud with exceptionally big bone- 8 and 1/2 inch cannons. These guys, she says, are getting difficult to find.
Thanks for the info on the back articles. I had your issue with the first civil war article but loaned it out and didn't get it back.
Yay research!
best
Bruce Peek

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 Posted: Sat Apr 13th, 2019 07:55 pm
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I wonder, Bruce, if the author you are quoting is not in fact quoting me. Or if the author you quote IS me. The only other author I know of who has emphasized this stuff and fully understands it is Alexander Mackay-Smith in his definitive and highly authoritative "Colonial Quarter Running-Horse." You should know, Bruce, that there is a good deal of plagiarism on the Internet and even in print, and I've been ripped off numerous times, i.e. by Susan Harris and others who should also have known better.

It is also true that certain horse magazines buy content from the better magazines such as EQUUS, and then they paraphrase or summarize what I said in EQUUS, often without acknowledgement or else the acknowledgement is in very small type at the bottom of their article.

So in any case, be careful to read the author's name whenever you read anything.

And as to the content of your query, as I said before, this is exactly what my series has covered. So go get the back issues and read up. Cheers -- Dr. Deb

Kuhaylan Heify
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 Posted: Sun Apr 14th, 2019 07:53 am
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I'll go look it up and get the guys name.. He did mention Mr. Smith and his research several times..But you're right
he didn't mention you so it does look like your material has been used without attribution again. He did state that the Darley Arabian was really a Turkoman horse( shades of Raswan)
best
Bruce Peek

Kuhaylan Heify
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 Posted: Sun Apr 14th, 2019 08:02 am
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If I have it right her name is Kathleen Kirsan.. She also has a lot to say about Tesio and briefly describes his methods, which look remarkably like the way Judy Forbis inbred her New Egyptians. Who knew Forbis was a Tesio fan?
best
Bruce Peek

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 Posted: Sun Apr 14th, 2019 12:12 pm
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Bruce: I don't know the author you cite. The likelihood is that she is a staff writer for one of the 'compilation'-type magazines, but perhaps not; it could be that she is really a historian. Anyone who cites Mackay-Smith's book has gone to some trouble, because it was privately printed, is expensive, and is difficult to obtain. One may find a copy of it in the Library of Congress, and several in the National Sporting Library out East; and one could also get it on interlibrary loan, if you're willing to wait half a lifetime.

Your query raises another concern of mine which, as a teacher, I consider important: and that is, to teach students of horsemanship how to use the literature. This includes how to find information, how to cite sources, and most importantly, how to discriminate between reliable and well-researched information and that which is less so or not at all reliable. This is akin to making people realize why it is a bad idea to watch Fox "news". There are many people to day who, unfortunately, cannot distinguish propaganda and rumor from verifiable facts. There are many also who don't understand how a newspaper works, so that they think what appears on the Op-Ed page is the same as what appears on the front page and other pages. Hence we have those who deny climate change, "birthers", and people who think it's harmless and amusing to give the Nazi salute at political rallies.

So, Bruce, we have a larger issue here. In this case, you're telling me the author of something that you read, but you are not telling me:

(1) Where you read it. Was it printed material or on the Internet?
(2) The name of the publication (if printed), or the link (if on the Internet)

If I had the above two pieces of information, you see, I could go check up on it -- and of course so could you -- to find out whether the information appeared in a peer-reviewed or 'juried' professional journal (the highest standard of fact-checking), in a book published by a reputable house that employs knowledgeable editors (the next level down), in a book which compiles or summarizes information contained in articles from juried journals and published books (these are called 'secondary sources').

Below those we have self-published books, where fact-checking is likely to have been performed only by the author herself and not by any outside person who has no vested interest; "information" published by breed clubs or breeders or their employees, who obviously do have a vested interest; and at the very bottom, whatever goes down in one or another Internet blogs.

Stuff you find on Wikipedia has improved over time, as more knowledgeable and committed people have jumped in to make improvements and corrections -- that's the whole philosophy of how a 'wiki' site is supposed to work. Wikipedia information is quick and handy, BUT one must still not take it completely at its own word. A professional historian would ALWAYS check information found ANYWHERE on the Internet.

So, bottom line, I need the two points of information above requested. And I would add, that you found similar information to what we've been doing at EQUUS Magazine on the history of the Thoroughbred and of American breeds since 2013 does not necessarily mean I have been ripped off. Obviously it would be possible for someone else with research skills to cite Alex Mackay-Smith or any number of other primary or secondary sources -- they would then simply be agreeing (or disagreeing) with me rather than stealing from me. -- Dr. Deb

Kuhaylan Heify
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 Posted: Sun Apr 14th, 2019 03:03 pm
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Dr. Deb. Ok I got it from the site sporthorse breeder. Kirsan has written three books- Standard bred Sport horses, North American Sport horse breeder and Legacy of Lexington.I haven't read any of them to check on them. She is located in Wheatland California, but doesn't list a street address that I've been able to find. Her writing style strikes me as that of someone who ,' is on a mission,' so to speak. She says that the European claim that their warm blood registry claims of having studbooks 700 years old is nonsense. I am inclined to agree with this, as if true that would mean the ," studbooks," and breeding system predated the printing press by 175 years.
Something that is hooey on the face of it.
best
Bruce Peek

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 Posted: Mon Apr 15th, 2019 02:18 am
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Bruce, we're not conducting a stake-out here, so the author's home address is not something we need. What we DO need is her publisher's address.

I have visited Kirsan's website which you cited, plus did a little more Google searching and found her brief, self-written "bio". She does not say that she has any University degree in any subject, although has a great interest in sporthorse breeding and horse breeding generally.

All of that is fine, including the fact that she has managed to talk two small publishers into putting books under her authorship into print. These publishers are certainly not capable of redacting content; all they want to know from the author is two things -- one, will it sell? and two, is 100% of the content original? By "original" we mean -- EITHER researched and written de novo by the particular author, OR ELSE researched and written by someone else and then properly and fully cited by the particular author.

The other major function of the publisher, large or small, is to provide what amounts to a loan to the particular author. The publisher acts as the bank would -- they put out the money which pays for the book layout, photo preparation, preparation of illustrations, interior and cover design, and then the actual printing cost which is mostly for the paper. Sometimes the small publisher will also expend some resources to assist in marketing the book, i.e. getting rid of the inventory, which is to say, recouping their investment first and then paying the author in an amount generally less than 15% of total income.

Now all this is also fine; anyone can have a hobby interest, and anyone -- these days -- who can write an expository paragraph even reasonably well, has a chance of selling themselves and their book to whatever publisher.

However. Notice what the costs above go for besides the actual paper pulp on which the book is printed -- they go for things like taking photos, making illustrations and then preparing them so that they can be published. These things are HIGHLY TEMPTING for an author to steal from an already-published source, because most people can't draw, can't take good photographs, haven't traveled the world taking said photographs, and wouldn't know how to prep either a photo or an illustration to go in any publication. Publishers employ professional photographers, layout people, and illustrators to handle these tasks for most authors; or else, they save themselves the trouble and expense and just steal them.

And of course, the other HIGHLY TEMPTING thing to steal is large chunks of the written content. Existing international copyright law provides for quotations from one author to another. In other words, it is legitimate for a later author to wish to quote from an earlier one. The legal limit is three sentences per quotation AND the quotation marks have to be correctly placed (so that the actual string of words that is being quoted is absolutely clear and absolutely delimited), AND -- most important of all -- the prior author's name must be cited every time he or she is quoted.

What is totally not kosher is what Susan Harris did: in her book on gaits, she took large chunks, verbatim, from my Principles of Conformation Analysis (published 1986), and she took the content without attribution. In case you doubt this, I can provide you with the offending page numbers from her book.

EQUUS Magazine's lawyers and editors and I had a wee discussion at the time Harris' book was published over whether to sue her butt and Trafalgar Square's butt (her publisher) for this, which we would have had a perfect right to do and we would also have won the case, of course. However, it was decided that there was not enough blood in the onion. In other words, anytime you bring a lawsuit against someone else, a prospectus needs to be drawn up, very much like a business plan, which assesses the likelihood of making back your legal costs. And your costs are mostly going to be -- and most of any money you win in damages -- is going to go to your lawyers. There has to be enough money to pay them, and the determination was that Harris is such small potatoes that there would not be.

This is also why there are not more plagiarism lawsuits around content that appears on the Internet which has been stolen from primary content providers, in other words real researchers like myself, and it gets dubbed out of my website and appears on ten or a hundred other sites. When we discover this, we write them threatening letters demanding that they take it down, and I particularly follow up on these because their copping content from my website makes it "appear" that they know me or that we are somehow associated, which of course, we are not. Not only are we not, but once they do that to me even one time, we never will be associated if I can help it.

But back to Susan Harris. I said in a previous post that she should have known better. And very possibly, this is what is going on with Kirsan; she may be a plagiarist, but we don't know that until I order a copy of one of her books, which I am about doing today. And if I open that book when it arrives, and I find that she has taken my charts, graphs, illustrations, restorations of historical photos, or text content, then we will do the same for her as I am here doing for Susan Harris, which is, telling the truth about it, which is a form of public shaming.

You see, Bruce, when we who paid our way through years of graduate school were in training, it was absolutely drubbed and pounded into us that A PROFESSIONAL CITES ALL PREVIOUS SOURCES. A professional biologist or historian or journalist is responsible for knowing of the existence of every single professionally juried paper or book ever published at any earlier time on whatever subject of interest; and also all relevant historical material which appeared in any form. That means, for example, I am supposed to know of the existence of, and where to look up a copy of, every paper ever written about the evolution of the horse -- my special subject when I was in school.

But since I am a degreed person and I am therefore obligated to follow the rule of courtesy and respect which is subsumed in YOU MUST CITE ALL PREVIOUS SOURCES, that also applies whether I am writing about some biological aspect of horses or whether I am writing about the history of horse breeding or horsemanship. The same rules apply. If you read my work in EQUUS Magazine, you will never see me taking somebody else's stuff without attribution. If I quote a research study, the authors' names are cited in text and (whenever I can get my editor to give me the extra space), the actual paper is cited in full at the end of the article. If there's no room for that, such full citations can always be obtained by writing to the editor who will then pass the request on to me.

So, again, what did I mean when I said "Harris and others like her ought to have known better"? I take it that their High School and undergraduate college education was deficient: because the rule YOU MUST CITE ALL PREVIOUS SOURCES is in fact taught in any decent High School biology class where students are required to write a research paper, and citation of sources is most certainly required in college-level courses of the same kind.

But I really believe that the High School and college education of anybody who plagiarizes is, in fact, deficient: so that they OUGHT to have known better, but in fact they don't. And people who did not go to college or graduate school, and who were not either biology or history or journalism majors -- fields of study where "YOU MUST CITE ALL PREVIOUS SOURCES" is emphasized -- those folks absolutely do not know any better.

What that results in is this: they read my article in EQUUS Magazine, or one of my books, and they "assume" that I myself am repeating something that has "always" been known, that is not original, copyrighted content. And they assume this because that is the highest level they can imagine, given the inadequacy of their High School and/or college training. They think I am a third-rate "repeater" or "summarizer" because they themselves would be that, if they were to try to be authors. In short -- because most members of the general public, and most people who own horses and read EQUUS Magazine, are not in fact familiar with the vast pre-existing literature on horse biology or horse history, they have no basis for comparison. And because they have no basis for comparison, they are incapable of recognizing original research when they are reading it in my articles.

What I am telling you point-blank here is that much of the content of any article I write for EQUUS is brand-new material, a brand-new idea, a completely fresh "take" on whatever subject. Where have you ever seen the "planes of assessment" method in any book on horse conformation but mine? This is my own original research which corrects an error in the literature which has persisted for 125 years, ever since the publication of Gobaux and Barrier's "The Exterior of the Horse."

Or, to take another example from the history series -- did you know that I myself identified Shelt Alsup in a Civil War photo -- it is always extremely gratifying to be able to nail down the identity of someone in a historical photo which had not previously been identified. That photo is of extreme interest because the Alsups were the leading Missouri breeders of the proto-Quarter Horse strain called "Rondo" and Shelt, in that photo, is mounted on one of their homebreds. This therefore is one of only two photos ever positively identified as Rondos from such an early era, and the overall conformation and muscularity of the horse are a real eye-opener as to how far some of the characteristic Quarter Horse features had been fixed already in the 1860's.

So here you go, Bruce -- and anyone else reading this who wants to know the proper way to make a citation. Here is the proper citation for my red book:

Bennett, Deb. 1998. Conquerors: The Roots of New World Horsemanship. Amigo Publications, Solvang, CA, 422 pp.

If I had worked with a larger publisher, an ISBN number would have been issued (we did not consider it worth the $350 it costs to purchase one). If there is an ISBN number, it can be listed as such after the pages.

The author's name would usually be on the cover as well as on the flyleaf. The date of publication is the copyright date, and that will also be either on the front or the back of the flyleaf; in some older books, particularly those printed in Europe or South America, this information may be on the rear flyleaf or on the last index page. The publisher's name usually appears at the bottom of the front flyleaf and the publisher's name and address (usually the complete mailing address is given, although that doesn't have to be included in a bibliographic citation such as above) will be found at the bottom of the back of the front flyleaf. To get the number of pages, you either own the book in which case you flop it open and look, or else if you don't own the book so you go look it up at the Library of Congress website.

Here is the proper way to cite a paper which appears in a juried journal or in a magazine, i.e. EQUUS:

Bennett, Deb and Robert M. Timm. 2018. The dogs of Roman Vindolanda, part III: Quantifying juvenilization and pleiotropic effects of miniaturization. Archaeofauna 27(2018): 57-82.

or --

Bennett, Deb. 2015. Eclipse on top: how the time-honored trend of breeding "winners to winners" is a double-edged sword. EQUUS Magazine 451(April, 2015):63-78.

Note that in a journal or magazine citation, it is the title of the publication that is italicized. Also, the only capitalized letters within the article title are the first word and any proper names which appear in the title. The journal number is followed by the year, or both month and year of publication in parentheses. Then there is a colon which sets off the page numbers on which the article appears.

There are other forms of citation, such as when I might have contributed a chapter to a book written or edited by another author -- but we don't need to go into that here. What I'm primarily doing here is teaching you how to find the relevant information on the cover and flyleaf, i.e. author's name, date of publication/copyright, etc.

Oh, and also -- yes, I am publicly shaming anybody and everybody who plagiarizes. You who do this are ignorant as well as self-serving. When we catch you doing it, if we can't afford to sue your butt off (which is what you deserve), we we will "erase" you from public mention -- how often I do advocate for people who play by the rules, helping to sell THEIR books. But I obviously don't want anyone to buy Susan Harris' book on gaits, and the way I handle this in public presentations is simply not mention her when the audience asks for good books on the subject; or if they mention her specifically, I say, "well, here's another book by author XYZ which I think would help you a lot more." This is the same as how we make referrals in human and veterinary medicine: we cooperate with other professionals who act like professionals -- to everybody's benefit but those who cheat and steal.

I also am of the belief that not only will the books of plagiarists be forgotten, their very souls will also be forgotten. For as Jesus said, "To them who have, more shall be given; but from them who have not, everything they think they have shall be taken away."

Food for thought, I hope. -- Dr. Deb








Kuhaylan Heify
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 Posted: Mon Apr 15th, 2019 06:51 am
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Dear Dr. Deb. Extensive and clear. What got me interested in this was your reference a few years back to Charles of the Stuarts, basically starting Thoroughbred racing as a performance test. If I recall correctly that was in your Inner Horseman disc about Thoroughbred founders Hobby Mares and the Stuarts.. Most people don't refer to racing as a performance test anymore, its' more commonly thought of as a business. The similarity is striking. So I wonder where that other author got it from hmm
best
Bruce Peek

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 Posted: Mon Apr 15th, 2019 08:36 am
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Well, she might very well have researched the original sources in the same way that I did. And she would have heard the tale if she read Alex Mackay-Smith's "Colonial Quarter Running-Horse." So let's give her the benefit of the doubt until we know otherwise. I have ordered one of her books, so we will see. Cheers -- Dr. Deb

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 Posted: Tue Apr 16th, 2019 02:45 pm
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Ok. So, looking at the blood horse on line, they mentioned that indeed the stayer lines in the u.s. through Harrod and Matchem are getting rare. Is it becoming the consensus that stayer ability is carried through the Y chromosome?
Or is it linked to other chromosomes. I have run across other references to a speed gene, a middle distance gene, and a distance gene.
best
Bruce Peek

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 Posted: Tue Apr 16th, 2019 08:05 pm
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No such beasts, genetically. Much too simple; 'popular' explanations. Speed is mediated by thousands of genes.

Bruce, I wish you'd get the back issues suggested, then you could quit with these types of questions, which are literally ALL answered in the articles I previously suggested. It would be SO nice if my students could read the materials that I provide FIRST, and then ask questions. -- Dr. Deb

Kuhaylan Heify
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 Posted: Thu Apr 18th, 2019 02:26 pm
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Dear Dr. Deb.. Got the subscription started ok.. But the back issues guy said they don't have them listed by number
only by month and year.. A conundrum for sure. Is there a corresponding list available?
best
Bruce Peek

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 Posted: Thu Apr 18th, 2019 04:08 pm
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OK, Bruce, here's the list:

November, 2013 (No. 434)

April, 2014 (No. 439)

November, 2014 (No. 446)

January, 2015 (No. 448)

February, 2015 (No. 449)

April, 2015 (No. 451)

May, 2015 (No. 452)

June, 2015 (No. 453)

November, 2015 (No. 458)

September, 2016 (No. 467)

October, 2016 (No. 469)

February, 2017 (No. 473)

April, 2017 (No. 475)

June, 2017 (No. 477)

May, 2018 (No. 488)

November, 2018 (No. 494)

Also, I want to add that I have by now received the book "Legacy of Lexington" by Kathleen Kirsan and she turns out to be entirely legitimate. She is not a plagiarist; rather, this is an good example of "author parallelism" -- in other words, she and I have both studied the primary literature (historical documents, old pedigrees, original studbooks) and thus we report much the same facts.

I know for sure that I have been unaware of Ms. Kirsan, and I do believe she has also been quite unaware of me, as I am not cited in her bibliography. Or, perhaps she has known about the EQUUS series but not cited it because she felt that it was written on a more general level than her interest. Her book is quite a thick tome which goes into considerable detail concerning pedigree analysis and the relationships between individual horses and particular bloodlines. Her interest and focus is on breeding better sporthorses; mine is in teaching equestrian history. So although we have read the same background material, we make different use of it.

I know what Ms. Kirsan read as background material because the first two things I look at when I find a non-fiction book written by anybody is whether the book is indexed and whether it contains a bibliography or "references cited". Kirsan's book is indexed, and it does have a bibliography. However, the citations in the bibliography are incomplete; she gives just enough information (author, title, date) so that you know she is aware of that particular pre-existing book. This is the form usually used by non-degreed persons when they get published, because they don't realize how much work this puts the critical reader to -- in order to check up on her facts, given the incomplete citations, I'll have to complete them myself by going to the Library of Congress online catalog and hope to be able to get the complete citations there. Only with a complete citation (which includes publisher's name and city, ISBN number if there is one or other identifying number, and number of pages) can the scholarly reader obtain the book which seems to need checking.

Now, I do not expect that every reader is going to want to read or would have the time or resources to obtain, all the primary or background literature. That's what EQUUS Magazine was founded many years ago in order to do -- to present interesting biological and historical material relating to horses and horsemanship in an authoritative way with accurate facts, but with excellent photographs and graphics so that the articles are attractive to look at, and with excellent writing so that they make engaging reading that any horse owner can understand.

Cheers -- Dr. Deb
Also, before I forget Bruce -- in your reply would you please give the telephone number you've been speaking to the guy at EQUUS who handles back issues. I'd like everyone to know it for their convenience. Thanks -- DB



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