This is one of several short articles about horsey folklore that I sold to The Chronicle of the Horse in the early 1990s. I’m going to re-publish them in a free ebook later this year; watch for it at my Freebies page.
Black Horse, White Horse
One white foot, keep him not a day,
Two white feet, send him far away.
Three white feet, sell him to a friend,
Four white feet, keep him to the end.
One white foot, buy him,
Two white feet, try him,
Three white feet, deny him.
Four white feet and white on his nose,
Whack him in the head and feed him to the crows.
Horsey folks have voiced opinions about how the colors effect horses’ dispositions since humankind domesticated the horse.
Superstition? Mostly. Yet D. Phillip Sponenberg, whose works, Equine Color Genetics and Horse Color, are the best in their field, says, “A small amount of European research is beginning to point out that horses of certain colors do tend to react somewhat predictably to certain situations, and that reactions vary from color to color”.