Mlolesh Samra and offspring in Bahrain

By Matthias Oster

Posted on February 26th, 2017 in General

Mlolesh Samra 1020, bay mare, born 1996, by Kuheilaan Umm Zorayr al Dheelem 407 out of Mlolesh Alyatima Radhwah 412 with her filly Mlolesh 1780, black by Jellaby Balsam

Mlolshaan Wesam 1371, bay stallion, born 2004, by Kuheilaan aafas Rakaan 886 out of Mlolesh Samra 1020

Mlolshaan Al Ward 1471, bay stallion, born 2012, by Obeyaan Barakat 1093 out of Mlolesh Samra 1020

Daughters and Granddaughter of Tuwaisah Newaadir, Bahrain

By Matthias Oster

Posted on February 25th, 2017 in Bahrain

Tuwaisah Zeinat Al Bahrain 1094, bay mare, born 1998, by Kuheilaan Umm Zorayr Al Dheleem 407 out of Tuwaisah Newaadir 859

Tuwaisah Ishtahar 1411, bay mare, born 2005, by Obeyaan al Muheeb 957 out of Tuwaisah Zeinat Al Bahrain 1094


Tuwaisah Yasmin 1522, bay mare, born 2008, by Dahmaan Hoobeishi 1085 out of Tuwaisah Newaadir 859

More photos of the Bahraini horses

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on February 24th, 2017 in General

on the website of Gudrun Waiditschka here.

Tuwaisaan al Jamur

By Matthias Oster

Posted on February 24th, 2017 in Bahrain

Tuwaisaan al Jamur 1613, bay stallion, born 2010, by Obeyaan Barakat 1093 out of Tuwaisah Newaadir 859


And his dam: Tuwaisah Newaadir 859, bay mare, born 1991, by Hamdaany Shaamikh 81 out of Tuwaisah Ttaraayif 758


Obeyyan Shamet at Royal Stables, Bahrain

By Matthias Oster

Posted on February 23rd, 2017 in Bahrain

Obeyaan Shamet 1335, grey stallion by Kuheilan Aafas Falaah 916 out of Obeyah Karaeb, born 2006


His dam Obeyah Karaeb 1042, bay mare, born 1997 by Jellaby Nejib 404 out of Obeyah Danaanir 808


Musannah mare at Royal Stables, Bahrain

By Matthias Oster

Posted on February 22nd, 2017 in Bahrain

Musannah Bint Al Bahrain 1192, grey mare born 2003, by Obeyaan al Muheeb 957 out of Musannah Galaayid 855

Photos of WAHO conference tour to Bahrain

By Matthias Oster

Posted on February 22nd, 2017 in Bahrain

Kuheilah Umm Zorayr Mafkhara 1387, grey mare born 2005 by Hamdany Wadhah 901 out of Kuheilah Umm Zorayr Corrat Al-Ein 798, at the Royal Stables , 12. February 2017

The little known strain of Kuhaylah Umm Surayr

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on February 21st, 2017 in General

I came back from Bahrain with my head swirling with images of desert-bred Arabians, which still look like the way Arabians ought to look like (read: not like China dolls or sea horses or “living art”). One of the strains that survive over there — and nowhere else — is that of Kuhaylah Umm Zorayr, with a precious few mares left at the Royal Stud (below, a yearling from that strain in 1998, second photo credit Kina Murray).

In her “pearls of great price” article series, Judi Forbis mentions the strain in passing among the many strains Bahrain had preserved by the early 1970s, but without elaborating further. There is a bit more information on the website of the Royal Stud, which relates the wonderful story of an old black mare of that strain that was first believed to be way past breeding age, but when put back in training in 1969, produced a daughter that carried the line forward. I thought this was all there was.

Then, while flipping through the Abbas Pasha Manuscript — that bottomless treasure — I came across “the History of Kuhayla om Sareer”, and Her Name is Dahma”, on pages 580 and 581, and it occurred to me that this was the same strain, despite the slightly different spelling. From the testimony of Haizam ibn Hathleen, the leader of the ‘Ajman Bedouins, in the Manuscript:

And the reason for her being called this is that her milk stopped flowing and her foal could not suckle. And they called her Kuhayla om Sareer, because her teats dried up. But otherwise she is Kuhayla ‘Ajuz of the horses of Beni Khaled.”

Some Arabic etymology is in order here. According to the Lesan al-Arab, the reference Arabic dictionary from the XIVth century, the Arabic verb “sarra” as applied to a she-camel, a mare, a goat, etc, means “to fasten its udder”; and a “sirar” is the string used to fasten the udder so that foals, calves, kids, etc, do not suckle. In the same dictionary, XIIth century Arab historian and linguist Ibn al-Athir is quoted as writing that [translation mine] “one Arab custom is to tie up the udder of milk-producing animals [with a string] when sending them to graze, and to undo the string and milk them upon their return in the evening“.

The word “surayyir”, a diminutive, is a small “sirar”, a small string to faster an udder. I believe its use for the strain name of Kuhaylah Umm Surayyir is metaphorical; the mare’s teats had dried up, the milk had stopped flowing, and the foal could not suckle, as if the mare’s udder had been fastened with a small “sirar”, a “surayyir”; hence the strain name, as it should be written and pronounced: Kuhaylah Umm Surayyir, or “Kuhaylah of the small string that ties the udder”.

Accordingly, the spelling “om Sareer” in the English translation of the Abbas Pasha Manuscript is incorrect. The editors seem to have vocalized the word as if it was not a diminutive, “sareer” and its diminutive “surayyir” being written in the same way in the absence of vocalization. The spelling “Umm Zorayr”, as adopted in Bahrain, is closer to the original “surayyir”, and seems to be a local variant, unless it was so transcribed by Dana al-Khalifah, the source of much of the English language materials about Bahraini horses.

Another reason other than etymology for the equivalence of the two strains of “om sareer” and “umm zorayr” has to do with color. The Kuhaylah “om sareer” in the Abbas Pasha Manuscript “was called al Dahma […] because she is sawdah [black]“, and all the horses from the strain were also known as Dahm, according to the Manuscript [Note: not the same as the Dahman strain]. The old matriarch of the Bahraini offshoot of the strain and subject of the story cited above, Kuhaylat Umm Zorayr 186, was also black, as so was her handsome grandson Kuhaylan Umm Zorayr Al-Dheleem 407 (photo below, photo credit Kina Murray in 1998), in a breeding program where black horses are rare.

By the way, and as an aside, the male version of the strain name poses something of a conundrum. One should not write “Umm” (mother) after the male noun Kuhaylan, but rather “Abu”, as in Kuhaylan Abu ‘Arqub, Abu Janub, or Ubayyan Abu Jreyss, etc, but in this specific case, the problem is that male horses obviously don’t have udders to fasten. The right reference to the strain name should therefore be: “Kuhaylan Ibn Umm Surayyir/Zorayr”, or “Kuhaylan son of the mare with the fastened udder”, rather than “Kuhaylan with the fastened udder”. Footnote: There is a similar case with another strain, no doubt for the same reason: [Kuhaylan] Ibn Umm Soura, also in the Abbas Pasha Manuscript. We don’t say Kuhaylan Abu Soura.

A third reason is the mention on the Bahrain Royal Studs website that “the stallions of this strain were much used for stud in the Najd in the mid 19th century”. Indeed, the Abbas Pasha Manuscript section on the Kuhaylah Om Sareer mentions at least two specific instances of using stallions of that strain as breeding stallions, one of these instances by Faysal Ibn Turki for his stud in Najd. Oh, the fascinating stories behind these desert Arabians.

A dedication to the Arabian deity Wadd

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on February 15th, 2017 in General

This camel statuette is in the British Museum, and came from the Hadramaut area around 1907. It has a short dedication in Sabean to the god Wadd-Ab, “Wadd is the father”. From the 2nd or 1st century BC.

Bahraini stallions in the flesh

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on February 14th, 2017 in Bahrain, General

I finally saw the Arabian horses of Bahrain, those “Pearls of Great Price”, after a 30 year wait. Thanks to Jenny Lees who arranged the private visit to the Stud of the late Sheikh Mohammad Bin Salman Aal Khalifah, we, my father and I, had the privilege of seeing these horses two days before their presentation. In an unforgivable episode of forgetfulness, I only brought my camera phone, the battery of which died after snapping photos of the third stallion. The others are in my head, just like hundred of other horses seen but not photographed.

Most impressive among the horses of the late Sh. Mohammed was a grey Hamdani (no photos). An older Rabdan, a chestnut Sa’eedan, a grey Tuwaisan, a grey Shawafan, and a dark chestnut Radban, many of these sons of the older Radban. The three below were among my favorites: from top to bottom: a very showy ‘yellow Ubayyan; a very balanced and powerful Jellabi; and a more refined, drier speckled Mlolshaan.

One of the first photos of me on a horse

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on January 21st, 2017 in General


This was taken in 1980 or 1981, near the town of Rayak, in the Biqa’ valley of Lebanon.

Rayak, more specifically the village of Hawsh Haala, outside Rayak, was where we put our horses. We had a partnership with the Hindi family over the horses, since the time of my grandfather, Edward Al-Dahdah, in the late 1920s.

The young man holding me is Shafiq Hindi, a longtime family friend, who had taken over the partnership after the passing of his uncle Subhi Hindi. The mare, the mare, was my father’s all-time favorite, Zanoubia (III). A mare of great style, refinement and beauty in her heyday, gazelle-like, from an noble, prestigious and storied origin, and a notoriously difficult producer.

She was born in 1976, by Ash-hal, a Kbayshan, out of Bint Wazzal, by Wazzal, a Ubayyan, out of Su’ad, by al-Jazzar, a Kuhaylan Nawwaq, out of Umm Mash’al, by Ghazwane, a Kuhaylan al-Kharas out of a ‘Ubayyah, by a Saqlawi al-Aama (the blind), out a ‘Ubayyah by a Kuhaylan Nawwaq out of a ‘Ubayyah Sharrakiyah of the Sarraf family of Ba’albek in the Biqa’ valley, who had obtained the strain from Ibn Thamdan of the Sba’ah ‘Anazah.

Another photo of the same mare, ten year after the first photo (ground not level), with another of our mares in the background, a Kuhaylah Nawwaqiyah.

Hijab, Saqlawiyah Jadraniyah ibn Amud

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on December 30th, 2016 in General

This Syrian mare bred by Basil Jadaan in 1994 was exported to France at a young age. Photo from owner Chantal Chekroun. Hijab met an untimely death, but leaves behind a son, Manjad Maram Al Baida, by Mokhtar, and a daughter Quokriya Al Shatane, both by Mokhtar, another of Basil’s horses imported to France. Mokhtar if still alive would be 30 today.

She was a Saqlawiyah Jadraniyah by strain, from the breeding of Ibn Amud of the Shammar. The pedigree of the maternal grand-dam, here, is incorrect. Marwa’s father was a Saqlawi Jadran and her sire’s dam a Ubayyan Suhayli (branch of Ubayyan Sharrak, originally from the horses of the Sharif of Mecca.

Below, her daughter Quokriya Al Shatane, by Mokhtar. Photo courtesy of breeder Chantal Chekroun.

Probable Origin of the Hadban strain of the Jarba — Shammar

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on December 6th, 2016 in USA

From the Abbas Pasha Manuscript — that bottomless treasure — page 546:

“and we mated her a second time to the Hadban horse of Saffuq al Jarba, and he is of the horses of al Jaless of al Kawakibah”

Elsewhere in the Manuscript it is recorded that the stud/marbat of Hadban Enzahi of the al-Kawakibah section of the Ruwalah belonged to Nahi al-Mushayteeb of al-Kawakibah, and that it was an old stud. Al-Mushayteeb obtained them from al-Nazahi of the ancient Bedouin tribe of al-Fudul.

That Hadban stallion in the testimony was the great-grandfather of a horse that was three years old in the early 1850s.  This means that in the 1830s or early 1840s at the very least, there was already a branch of the Hadban strain of the Kawakibah with the Jarba leaders of the Shammar, and that one of the horses of this Shammar branch of that Hadban strain was used as a stallion. Saffuq al-Jarba, nicknamed “al-muhazzam”, meaning “Saffuq of the belt” because he was so warlike that he reportedly never left his military gear, died in 1843.

This is very consistent with the testimony of the Jarba leaders of the Shammar in the mid 1980s about their prized Hadban strain having been with them for more than one hundred years according to one testimony (that of Hameedi al-Daham al-Hadi al-Jarba), and for some two hundred years, according to another (that of his brother Ahmad). It does not constitute rock-solid proof that the Hadban Enzahi of the Jarba came from the Mushayteeb stud of the Ruwalah, but the likelihood is high.

Whatever the case, I am very proud to own a representative of the Hadban Enzahi strain of the Jarba Shammar: RL Zahra Assahra (Portent x Antezzah by Grand Pass), a 1995 Hadba Enzahi tracing to *Hadba, the mare of ‘Ajil ibn Zaydan al-Jarba of the Shammar, and purchased by Homer Davenport in 1906.



Daughter of the Wind switches to Arabic

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on November 4th, 2016 in General

When I started this blog, more than eight years ago, it was out of a need to connect American breeders and lovers of desert Arabian horses with facts, stories, and like-minded people from the rest of the world. I believe this task has now largely been fulfilled, not necessarily by this blog, but mostly by the advent of social media tools that connect people across the globe.

With the endless loss of life, heritage, culture and horses engulfing the Middle East — Syria, Iraq, Yemen, others maybe soon — I have been feeling the increasing need to switch gears and reach out to those who live in the cradle of the Arabian horses, especially the youth.

Amidst these tragedies, those who are normally the reference and the source of the knowledge, expertise, tradition about desert horses, and the original source of the horses themselves, are at risk of losing faith in what they have and in who they are.

So pervasive is the influence of Western lifestyles, media, ideas, so overwhelming is the destruction of ancient centers of knowledge, tradition and culture — including about Arabian horses like Aleppo, Homs, Mossul, Sanaa, so large is the flow of refugees who lost everything, that the time has come to take stock of what is left, and try to protect it.

It is time to be part of this effort, and Daughters of the Wind will be switching to Arabic, my native language, to reconnect the people of the cradle countries of the Arabian horse with what is left of their heritage.

I will still post English entries from time to time, on topics of special interest, especially pertaining to research, but the bulk of the information will be in Arabic, and with more connection to social media.



Roaning in Arabic as applied to horses: ablaq

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 25th, 2016 in General

Coat colors in old Arabic treatises on horses pose a big challenge not just because of their sheer number — close to a hundred — but also because they do not follow quite the same pattern as color coat definitions of Arabians in the west: grey, chestnut, bay, and black. I having been trying to look for an internal logic to color classification by the ancient Arabs and Bedouins for some years now.

I am now certain of a few color correspondences. One of them is ablaq (feminine balqaa), and its roan. It’s defined in the old Arabic dictionaries as the appearance of white hair in any other coat color which does not fade as the animal ages (ie, grays). It’s also further qualified by the base color: so you have “ashqar ablaq” which is the equivalent of a chestnut roan, or a “kumayt ablaq”, which is a bay roan. Then you have different types of “ablaq”, depending on which part of the body the roaning occurs.

Beteyen ibn Mirshid

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 18th, 2016 in General

I had never seen this photo of Beteyen Ibn Mirshid of the Sbaa Bedouins before. It is apparently featured in Von Oppenheim’s book. Can anyone confirm? He was the owner of Queen of Sheba, of the Blunts.



“Yellow” as a color in Arabian horses

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on October 10th, 2016 in General

This is with respect to the discussion on the color “yellow” in Arabian horses in the preceding entry. This mare (Pirouette CF) would qualify as “yellow” in Bedouin parlance. This is confirmed in old Arabic dictionaries (“Lesan al-Arab” which dates back to the 14th century AD), and also by  Tweedie and Raswan.

Pomp Charbonneau, 2008 Hamdani Davenport stallion

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on September 11th, 2016 in General


Kirby Drennan owns this beautiful in Virginia, IL. He is by Pageant CF out of Anthesis, and a half brother of Lexington CF, below.

PS: Everything out of Anthesis CF is outstanding, including Fragrance CF at Michael Bowling’s, Chancery CF with Debbie Jessen and Firebolt CF, also with Kirby.

Update on *Nufoud tail female

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on September 11th, 2016 in General

There are only four mares and filly from the *Nufoud tail female accounted and all are in PA. Linda Uhrich owns AB Dafinah (HHA Manabi x LD Rubic), and Monica Respet owns her daughter, Niina Nufoud. Then there is “Belle” and her daughter Barakah, with me.

Jadah Necessity, 1997 gm, is unaccounted for, last with Randal and Mary-Sue Harris in IL. MSF Rubie, 1993 cm (EA Salute x LD Rubic) is I think still with Pam Baker in SC, but she has never had a foal, and is now 23.

Another superb filly from Kim Davis’s breeding program

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on September 2nd, 2016 in General

Kim Davis bred his superb Kuhaylat al-Krush yearling filly of Davenport bloodlines. She is by by HH Tantalus Krush (Quantum LD x Kashmir Krush LD) out of HH Nadira Krush (RC Janub Krush x Naufali Al Krush). She has 14 crosses to the original desert import Kuhaylat al-Krush *Werdi, and 10 out of 16 ancestors at the fourth generation. If she looks that great at this growthy stage, I wonder how she will look like when she matures fully. I had already written about her when she was born.

krush filly


Old photos of Saudi mare *Sindidah

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 17th, 2016 in General

From the same Billy Sheets photo collection as the ones in the entry below. I don’t think these had ever been published before.





Old photos of Saudi stallion *Furtha Dhellal

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 17th, 2016 in General

These are from the photo collection Billy Sheets gave me. For more on this 1960 stallion, click here. Maybe someone can find more about Khalid Hamid al-Dawsari who was living and working in al-Khobar in the 1960s.

furtha dellal





Barakah growing by leaps by bounds

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 16th, 2016 in General




Beautiful SS Shadows Aana

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 16th, 2016 in General

I am very proud of this 16 year old mare, which I acquired about a year ago. She is having some trouble conceiving but we will be working on that over the coming year.


Wadd for sale

By Edouard Aldahdah

Posted on August 12th, 2016 in General

I am putting Wadd, my 5 year old Davenport stallion, up for sale. He is the youngest offspring of the grand Triermain CF, out of Wisteria CF, one of the prettiest Triermain daughters and a favorite of Charles Craver.

He is a Kuhaylan Haifi by strain, bred within the strain for four generations. His sire was the main Kuhaylan Haifi stallion at Craver Farms in the last period of its activity, as was the sire of his sire before him.

He would be best used to perpetuate his breed, preferably within the asil group of horses, including the Davenports, Saud, straight Syrians, North African, Bahraini, Sharps, and other Arabian horses lines that came directly from the Arabian and Syrian deserts. He sired one offspring with me, a filly now two months old, and is an easy breeder. He has a curious and playful disposition. He leads easily but is not broken to ride.

For the members of this page who come from the Arab world where these things matter, almost every one of his ancestors came from the desert with a certificate of authenticity (hujjah) from their Bedouin breeders and owners. He is from the best blood of the Northern Arabian desert.

He is bred very tightly, within a closed group for the past 110 years, tracing exclusively to famous horses directly imported from the Arabian desert in 1906. For instance, he has 243 crosses to *Urfah, the war mare of al-Awaji, a senior sheykh of the ‘Anazah Bedouins; 140 crosses to *Wadduda, the war mare of Ibn Mhayd, one of the leaders of the Anazah Bedouins; and 59 crosses to *Abeyah, the war mare of Mit’ab al-Hadb, the Shammar military commander at the time.

If you would like more information, please contact me privately.



wadd edouard