August is about horses and what better icon for the horse is there than the shoes they wear. Everyone is familiar with the look of the horseshoe. An upturned horseshoe adorns many a door across the nation for luck.
Did you know that horseshoes weren’t always that u-shape and nails weren’t always used to secure the shoe to the horse’s hoof? True!
Way back around 100 BC, Roman soldiers reportedly used hipposandals on their horses’ hooves, which were made of leather and a bronze metal plate on the bottom much like today’s hoof boots (but with a hard rubber sole rather than a metal plate). Horses used in battle and wearing these boots were used to batter down doors with their front feet. Rearing up, the soldier would direct the horse to punch through doors and break through barriers clearing the way for foot soldiers.
It wasn’t until the fifth century AD that there was evidence of a horseshoe complete with nails found in the tomb of Frankish King Childeric I at Tournai, Belgium.
Today, horseshoes come in a number of shapes and sizes and for a multitude of purposes. Did you know race horses wear aluminum shoes called race plates? And there are therapeutic shoes for correcting hoof growth anomalies and lameness. Mounted police horses wear special, non-slip, concussion-minimizing shoes to protect them from losing traction on paved surfaces and preventing damage to joints.
The horseshoe has long been a symbol of good luck in our nation and for good reason. We’re lucky to have such a majestic animal among us — whether wild or domesticated.
It was Ronald Regan who said, “There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.” Isn’t that the truth!
August is about horses, and today, the shoes they wear. If you’re ready to horse around, check out thehorseshoe decor we have donning this symbol of luck and the horses we celebrate.