Equestrian statues: you can find them in almost each country
Strangely enough no one has attempted, so far I am aware, to create an inventory of world’s equestrian statues. An exemption must however be made for the attempt by S.H. Kauffmann. The New York Times of April 10, 1899 published an article on this attempt: “As a result of years of inquiry and search in person Mr. Kauffmann has collected data that lead him to set down the number of equestrian statues in the world as about two hundred and eighty-five”. Further “the book that will describe the equestrian statues of the world has yet to be written”. As far as I know, 117 years later, this is still the case.
So I wrote the book that recently has been published. See under The Book for the details and the way to order it.
A book is nice, but a website has its own attractiveness. This medium is much more flexible. The information can be updated on a daily basis and is available to all who are interested in art and history. This website aims to give an inventory of all the equestrian statues in the world.
I have listed 1.154 originals (and 197 copies) under the heading ‘Statues’. The most comprehensive list I know. Is the list complete? No. Apart from the fact that new equestrian statues are still erected from time to time, it still happens to me that I trace new equestrian statues. My best estimate of the total number of equestrian statues in the world is: around 1,250.
As a matter of fact the number depends also on the definition of an equestrian statue. The criteria I applied are: the statue has to represent an identifiable-and real-rider on a horse, has to be monumental (at least life-size), free standing and made from a durable material. Under ‘The Book’ in the chapter ‘Statue or sculpture?’ you will find some observations with respect to the criteria chosen.
Sculptures of the combination man and horse, not meeting these requirements, are classified as equestrian sculptures. Quite a number of these sculptures are noteworthy works of art, reason enough to pay specific attention to a number of them. I have listed the most noteworthy under the heading ‘Sculptures’.
Over the years I have seen and photographed about two thirds of the statues known to me. These pictures as well as a description of the statue or sculpture can be found on this website by clicking the appropriate item in the lists. All pictures are made by undersigned. At a later stage I will add photographs by others of statues that I have not yet seen in person.
As said before the ambition of the website is to give an as complete picture as possible of all equestrian statues and remarkable equestrian sculptures in this world, acknowledging at the same time that the lists on this site are not yet complete. It is also therefore that I would appreciate it to receive comments, additional information etc. You can give your comments under ‘Contact’.
In conclusion I wish to remark that you can feel free to use the pictures of this site. Just mention that you found them on www.equestrianstatue.org. If you want to have the pictures with a better quality (i.e. a higher density), just let me know.
Kees van Tilburg