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Word of the Week (158): CROUPADE (probability 8564), by David Sutton

A CROUPADE is a leap in which a horse draws its hind legs up towards its belly; it is one of those manoeuvres that feature in the esoteric discipline of dressage, or the art of getting horses to mince about in an arena doing things no self-respecting horse would be seen dead doing left to its own devices.

Another such manoeuvre is the PIAFFER, a movement on the spot in which the horse's feet are lifted in the same succession as a trot, but more slowly. This has an associated verb, to PIAFFE.

Other fancy things you can get horses to do include the FALCADE, the motion of a horse when it throws itself on its haunches in a very quick leap or curvet; the CAPRIOLE, an upward leap without advancing, in which the horse has all four feet off the ground and kicks its back legs at the height of the jump (this can also be a verb); and the PESADE, in which a horse rears up on its hindlegs without forward movement.

Then there is the CARACOL or CARACOLE, a half-turn or wheel; again these can be verbs, yielding respectively CARACOLS, CARACOLLED, CARACOLLING and CARACOLES, CARACOLED, CARACOLING.

Finally we have the GAMBADO, a bound or spring, with plural GAMBADOS or GAMBADOES; this too can be a verb: GAMBADOES, GAMBADOED, GAMBADOING.


   













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