1 JANUARY 1927, Page 17

Doubtless the various breeds of horses differ a good deal

; and so far as my experience goes I should say that the Shire is as much cleverer than the race-horse—though the perfect patient mentioned above is thoroughbred—as the retriever or the St. Bernard than the greyhound. You cannot breed for one quality only and expect to keep other qualities intact. The roses—such as Frau Karl Druschki—most perfect in shape, lose the scent" of the flat cabbage or loose China rose. So with animals. They can be too highly bred for intelligence. But the Sliire, though at least as true to its pure type as any breed, has an astounding gift of quiet perception. He seems to understand and listen to gentle speech in much the same spirit as a spaniel dog (which has the biggest brain-pan among dog species) ; and the brain masters that excessive nerviness which may reduce even a clever horse to temporary stupidity. Most horse-lovers would probably select the hunter as the cleverest ; and eugenically it has the advantage of the mingling of two pure strains. But with horses, as with other animals, intelligence seems to increase with the degree of domestication and to depend less on natural gifts than the extent of the intercourse with man. Horses especially gain intelligence throughout their life, thanks to their undoubted gift of memory. Does any animal, except the elephant, remember better than a horse ?

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