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A saddle was a seat attached to a creature, either for riding or carrying objects.[9][10]

Those who think saddles uncomfortable have never ridden a horse bareback.
— Advertisement for saddles in Aurora's Whole Realms Catalogue[5]

Description[]

Types[]

A man's greatest pleasure is the feel of hooves pounding beneath his saddle, to watch the deer fleeing before his horse, and to see his arrows down his prey.
— Hubadai[11]

A saddle attached to a camel.

Saddles were mainly split into two groups: riding saddles and pack saddles. Riding saddles were used by those who rode creatures, whilst pack saddles were frames used to carry equipment.[10] Military saddles were also available, and were used by commanders and generals in battle. Exotic saddles were used to mount specific types of creatures, such as aquatic and aerial mounts.[7]

These seats were sold all over Faerûn,[12][13][14] Maztica,[15] Kara-Tur,[16] and Zakhara.[17] Saddles specifically made for camels had different names in Zakhara and were known as kharj,[4] rahla,[6] and terke.[6] The rahla was small, comfortable and lightweight, whilst the terke was cage-like and enabled the rider to control the camel much more easily.[6] Saddles were sold by Aurora's Whole Realms Catalogue, and each of them were made from black Ordulan leather.[5] As well as animals, mechanical machines such as the Leaping Lizard of Raven's Bluff, were seated with saddles. Citizens of the city could mount the ride for 2 cp each.[18]

Saddle frames were often made of wood or sheepskin.[19]

Mounts[]

Nothing makes me feel better than soaring over the landscape, keeping an eye out for Zhent dangers. Except maybe for knocking a Zhentarim skymage out of his saddle, of course

Such seats came in a multitude of varieties, each different depending on the rider's needs or the type of mount used. Types of mounts that used saddles were horses,[21] mules,[22] wolves,[23] griffons,[24] hippogriffs,[25][26] steeders,[27] pegasi,[12] dragons,[14] giant striders,[28] and camels.[29] Even dolphins could have saddles fitted to them,[30] as well as owlbears,[31] axebeaks,[32] hippocampi,[32] gelatinous cubes,[33] purple worms,[34] giant fireflies,[35] giant lizards,[36] veserabs,[37] pteranadons,[38] giant ravens,[39] wyverns,[40] stone flyers,[41] nightmares,[42] and carrion crawlers.[43]

Usage[]

The following day we finished the ride to Corwell, none too soon for my tastes. I would almost have preferred to travel by coracle, for the saddle sores stung for another week.

Travelling on saddles (particularly poor ones) for long periods could cause bad sores.[13][15][44]

Instead of making saddles from scratch, arcane methods could be used. The mount spell could summon creatures with saddles already attached to them, or even howdahs, should the caster be powerful enough.[45] Even the phantom steed spell summoned a ghostly mount with a saddle and bit and bridle to boot.[46]

History[]

Saddles first became available in Netheril in 890 NY (−2969 DR).[47]

1345 DR was known as the Year of the Saddle.[48] The High Herald of Yartar was known as the Gold Saddle.[49] In addition, the settlement of Lheshayl had an inn known as the Saddle of the Plains,[50] Hill's Edge featured an inn called the Stone Saddle,[51] and a body of water in Longsaddle was known as the Saddle Pond.[52]

Notable Saddles[]

A giant strider wearing a saddle.

There were many notable saddles of the Realms, including those that could fit exotic beasts of all shapes and sizes.[53] Some notable saddles were:

  • A saddle of the cavalier, a wondrous item favored by riders.[55]

Notable Owners[]

Notable Producers of Saddles[]

  • Keltar was well known for its production of saddles. Their saddles had such a good reputation that they were desired by every Calishite horseman. One of the great crafters of Keltar claimed he could custom-make saddles for dragons.[14]
  • Mosstone was a notable producer and exporter of saddles.[59]

Appendix[]

See Also[]

Appearances[]

Adventures
The Mines of BloodstoneSwords of the DaimyoOchimo: The Spirit WarriorMad Monkey vs the Dragon ClawRonin ChallengeTest of the SamuraiSecrets of the LampReunionCity of GoldStorm RidersBlack CourserBlood ChargeShadowdaleTantrasWaterdeepMarco Volo: JourneyShadowdale: The Scouring of the LandSons of GruumshThe Rise of TiamatPrinces of the ApocalypseOut of the AbyssStorm King's ThunderWaterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad MageIcewind Dale: Rime of the Frostmaiden
Referenced only
Baldur's Gate: Descent into Avernus
Novels
Thornhold
Video Games
HillsfarEye of the Beholder III: Assault on Myth Drannor
Gamebooks
Knight of the Living Dead

Gallery[]

References[]

  1. Gary Gygax (1978). Players Handbook 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), p. 36. ISBN 0-9356-9601-6.
  2. Gary Gygax, David Cook, and François Marcela-Froideval (1985). Oriental Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 40. ISBN 0-8803-8099-3.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 David "Zeb" Cook (April 1995). Player's Handbook 2nd edition (revised). (TSR, Inc.), p. 91. ISBN 0-7869-0329-5.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 Jeff Grubb and Andria Hayday (April 1992). Arabian Adventures. (TSR, Inc), pp. 87, 88. ISBN 978-1560763581.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Jeff Grubb, Julia Martin, Steven E. Schend et al (1992). Aurora's Whole Realms Catalogue. (TSR, Inc), p. 140. ISBN 0-5607-6327-2.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Rick Swan (1994). Al-Qadim: Caravans: Campaign Guide. (TSR, Inc), p. 23. ISBN 1-56076-903-3.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, Skip Williams (July 2003). Player's Handbook v.3.5. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 129. ISBN 0-7869-2886-7.
  8. Mike Mearls, Jeremy Crawford (2014). Player's Handbook 5th edition. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 127. ISBN 978-0-7869-6560-1.
  9. slade et al (June 1995). Encyclopedia Magica Volume III. (TSR, Inc.), p. 1049. ISBN 0-7869-0187-X.
  10. 10.0 10.1 David "Zeb" Cook (April 1995). Player's Handbook 2nd edition (revised). (TSR, Inc.), p. 92. ISBN 0-7869-0329-5.
  11. Troy Denning (August 1990). Black Courser. (TSR, Inc.), p. 6. ISBN 0880388587.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Ed Greenwood (1987). Waterdeep and the North. (TSR, Inc), p. 44. ISBN 0-88038-490-5.
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Douglas Niles (November 1987). Moonshae. Edited by Mike Breault. (TSR, Inc.), p. 37. ISBN 0-88038-494-8.
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 Scott Haring (1988). Empires of the Sands. (TSR, Inc), p. 56. ISBN 0-8803-8539-1.
  15. 15.0 15.1 John Nephew and Jonathan Tweet (April 1992). City of Gold. (TSR, Inc), p. 54. ISBN 978-1560763222.
  16. Jeff Grubb (1987). Ochimo: The Spirit Warrior. (TSR, Inc), p. 23. ISBN 0-88038-393-3.
  17. Wolfgang Baur, Steve Kurtz (1992). Monstrous Compendium Al-Qadim Appendix. (TSR, Inc). ISBN l-56076-370-1.
  18. Jean Rabe and Skip Williams (1990). Inside Ravens Bluff, the Living City. (TSR, Inc), p. 17.
  19. Jeff Grubb and Andria Hayday (April 1992). Arabian Adventures. (TSR, Inc), p. 156. ISBN 978-1560763581.
  20. Thomas M. Reid, Sean K. Reynolds (Nov. 2005). Champions of Valor. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 117. ISBN 0-7869-3697-5.
  21. Christopher Perkins (September 6, 2016). Storm King's Thunder. Edited by Kim Mohan, Michele Carter. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 61. ISBN 978-0786966004.
  22. Gary Gygax (1979). Dungeon Masters Guide 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), p. 153. ISBN 0-9356-9602-4.
  23. Mike Mearls, et al. (November 2016). Volo's Guide to Monsters. Edited by Jeremy Crawford, et al. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 42. ISBN 978-0786966011.
  24. Gary Gygax (1979). Dungeon Masters Guide 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), p. 50. ISBN 0-9356-9602-4.
  25. Gary Gygax (1979). Dungeon Masters Guide 1st edition. (TSR, Inc.), p. 53. ISBN 0-9356-9602-4.
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  37. Greg A. Vaughan, Skip Williams, Thomas M. Reid (November 2007). Anauroch: The Empire of Shade. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 157. ISBN 0-7869-4362-9.
  38. Ed Greenwood, Eric L. Boyd, Darrin Drader (July 2004). Serpent Kingdoms. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 66. ISBN 0-7869-3277-5.
  39. Ed Greenwood and Jason Carl (July 2002). Silver Marches. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 121. ISBN 0-7869-2835-2.
  40. Christopher Perkins (September 2005). Sons of Gruumsh. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 13. ISBN 0-7869-3698-3.
  41. Bruce R. Cordell, Gwendolyn F.M. Kestrel, Jeff Quick (October 2003). Underdark. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 99. ISBN 0-7869-3053-5.
  42. Adam Lee, Christopher Perkins (September 17, 2019). Baldur's Gate: Descent into Avernus. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 224. ISBN 0786966769.
  43. Christopher Perkins, Adam Lee, Richard Whitters (September 1, 2015). Out of the Abyss. Edited by Jeremy Crawford. (Wizards of the Coast), p. 28. ISBN 978-0-7869-6581-6.
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  46. David "Zeb" Cook (April 1995). Player's Handbook 2nd edition (revised). (TSR, Inc.), p. 195. ISBN 0-7869-0329-5.
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