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Hadban Enzahi

From the strain of Hadban Enzahi some of the most important breeding horses of all times come: first and outstanding the stallion of the 20th century worldwide: Nazeer 1934.

Among the five mares of the prophet many traditions give one named Hadbah. The Shammar tribe claims to be the origin of the Hadban Enzahi strain. The Abbas Pasha Manuscript gives the clan of the Fudul of the Shammar of Nejd as their first breeders. The name Hadbah is derived from the story of a mare belonging to Mani´ibn Suwayt from al Dafeer at the time of the Beni Lam, whose profusely long mane covered her forehead completely (hadbah salifa). "And she passed to Nazhi of Al Fudul the day they forced them at the hillside of Massel." So the marbat of Hadbah Al Nazhi came into being, later called Hadban Enzahi. Another legend attributes Hadbah with a mountain called Hadabah there a mare gave birth to her foal. According to Aldahdah the sheikh family of Dham al-Hadi in Iraq were breeders of Hadban Enzahi.

Burkhardt, the Swiss traveling through Arabia around 1815, tells us that the Hadaba and Dahmah breeds were in high esteem in Nejd and that the "El Nezahhy" was a breed of the Hadaba. Lady Anne Blunt reports that the Hadbans were uncommon among the Anaza and that the best having formerly been possessed by the Rwala. The Abbas Pasha Manuscript gives the following information from Faisal al Sha´laan: “Al Hadban came to us when we were in Nejd.” The Rwala bred Hadban al Mushaytib (from the marbat of Karakiba of al Jalees) and Hadban al Mahdi of al Jaless. From the Rwala they went to the Harb, then to the Mutair and later to Jawlan of al Sba´a (Sab´a) and became the Hadban Jawlan and also the marbaret of Hadban al Zaydi and Hadban al Fard. The Shammar of al Jazirah had the Hadban al Bardawil. 

Nazeer (Mansour/Bint Samiha) is called the sire of the 20th century, head sire at El Zahraa from the family of Venus, originating with the Shammar Bedouin, and his son Hadban Enzahi (Kamle) out of Kamla at Marbach State Stud, Germany, both photos Ekkehard Frielinghaus.

The mare Kamla (Sheikh El Arab/Samha) at El Zahraa, photo Ekkehard Frielinghaus.

Hadban horses in modern pedigrees

Hadban 1878 was one of the foundation horses for Crabbet Park. He only sired two daughters with descendants but they became the most important mares for Crabbet Park in their times! Hadban was sold to Australia before these two mares could show their breeding potential: Nefisa and Rose of Sharon. Hadban had been purchased in Bombay in December 1883 from Ali Ibn Amr of Bussora where he had raced. He had bought him from Jafin Ibn Aghil (´Aqil), Sheikh of the Daajini tribe of the Oteybeh. The house of ´Aqil belongs to the Sheiks of the Da´ajin section of the ´Uteybeh/Oteybeh/Atayban.


Nabras was a race horse in Egypt, a grey Hadban Enzahi owned by Mahmoud El Itribi. According to Sheikh Abdul Aziz El Sabek, horse trainer, he was from the Al Agidad/El Ogedat tribe near Deyr Es Zor, his birth-date was about 1920. Nabras is the sire of Komeira 1937, a mare of the Dahman Shahwan line with some influence in Egyptian breeding.

The desert bred stallions Hadban and Nabras of the Hadban Enzahi strain, and Ibn Rabdan (Rabdan El Azrak/Bint Gamila), the most important sire in Egypt in the 1920s and 1930s,.

The most important line of Hadbah Enzahiah is that of the mare Venus. She was imported to Egypt in 1893 by Hassan Abu Amin Agha and sold to Abbas Pasha Hilmi II. Venus or Yunis was bred by the Yunis clan of the Zauba section of the Shammar tribe, most probably from the part that had moved to northern Syria after the war with the Wahhabies. She was chestnut and a good race horse. Her daughter Hadba 1894 by Saklawi I gave Bint Hadbah El Saghira, foundation mare of the R.A.S.. Bint Hadbah El Saghira was a double granddaughter of the stallion Saklawi I imported from the Rwalla. From her two branches developed through her two daughters Samiha by Samhan and Bint Rustem that still thrive until today. Another granddaughter of Venus was Gamila by El Sennari, also bred by Abbas Pasha Hilmi II. Her daughter Bint Gamila 1911 by Ibn Nadra is renowned for one great son: Ibn Rabdan 1917. No female line could be established by Bint Gamila.

NK Nabhan (NK Nadeer/NK Nerham) and his father NK Nadeer (NK Hafid Jamil/NK Nadirah) are modern Straight Egyptian examples of the Hadban Enzahi strain. 

Apart from Egyptian lines only very few Arabian horses of this strain exist: In Poland the Hadbah mare Elsissa was imported from Syria in 1870, as well as a mare, Hadbah Inzihi in 1933 together with the famous imports of Zientarski and Raswan (Kuhailan Haifi, Kuhailan Zaid). Also one mare came to the U.S. in 1890 from Syria. In the beginning 21st century only three mares were left in the Syrian studbook and two in the Iraqi studbook, and none in the studbook of Saudi Arabia. Also some mares had been imported to France from Syria. And not to forget the Davenport mare Hadba 1899, a Hadbah Inzihiyah of Ibn Hazin of the Sinjara Shammar. Among the Anaza the marbat Hadbah Mushaytib exists.


The Fawa´irah (Fewa´era) Bedouins of the Golan, a tribe that came off the Fadl Bedouins in the beginning of the 19th century, breed the marbat of Hadbah al-Fawa´irah. Mani´s poem on the mare al-Hadba will be cited in the following:

She loos´d the reins of the mare so she could get faster,

But the numbers of Turks were still pursuing,

And the mares who are ridden by women

Are not afraid when they see a raid coming upon them.

And this shows the courage of the women who are riding.

And when the Arabs knew they were going to be attacked,

They would beat the drums as a warning.

And the eyes of the mares sparkled, because they were excited about the coming battle.

O Abu Ali, our eyes are upon you,

And we see you are hesitant to lead us.

The tribes dislikes you as they would a corpse

Because of your cowardice.

O brothers, look up to me because I am brave

And get the grave diggers to bury him,

Because he is not fit to live.

I wish that they had not sent Beni Lahm

Because he is hesitant,

But that they had sent me instead on my Hadba,

For during the battle she is seized with fervor

Which pushes her on to the fray.

I wish, too, that the arrow (Abu Ali) had not fought the arrow (enemy), Because his aim is not true and he trembled with fear.

You must be like the Hadba.

And the saddle and ornaments on her back are to her

As the wings of a wild desert dove,

And they make her fly.

She is as a wild dove among other doves,

And she is not aware that they had scattered and left her

For her mind is solely on the battles.

The dove in its swiftness barely stops to drink

Before she races back to the battles.

She misses not her companions who have deserted her.

You and the mare must be equal to a battalion of soldiers,

And you must not weaken,

But keep up with the mare in strength and courage.

And Shahbaan Aytah, he is a very powerful man

Who fights in very dangerous battles,

And death holds no fear for him.


(from Judith Forbis/ Gulsun Sherif, The Abbas Pasha Manuscript)

Al Ayad (Moheeb/Al Mamunah) is from the sire line of Hadban Enzahi and at the same time of the Hadban Enzahi strain. Through his son Al Ayal AA he has gained worldwide influence.

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