Zweibrücken State Stud

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Zweibrücken State Stud
legal form Company with limited liability
founding January 1, 2008
Seat Zweibrücken
management Maren Müller, Bernd Eisenmenger
Branch Horse breeding

Main building of the Zweibrücken State Stud during the "Zweibrücker Horse Days" 2007

The Zweibrücken state stud was the state stud of the state of Rhineland-Palatinate from 1960 . Since 2008 the stud has been a company in the form of a GmbH .

It provides stallions for breeding and operates an insemination station. In addition, the stud is the competent authority for the performance testing of horses in accordance with the Animal Breeding Act and is involved in training and further education in the field of horse breeding and keeping.


The establishment of the stud goes back to the reign of Christian IV (1740–1775). The Duke, himself a good and enthusiastic rider and hunter, had got to know horse breeding there, especially the English thoroughbreds, on a trip to England. The knowledge gained should be used to set up our own horse breeding program. So in the years 1752–1755 in Birkhausen in the nearby Hornbachtal, on the Eichelscheiderhof near Waldmohr, near Kirkel and on the Holzhauserhof near Nohfelden an der Nahe facilities of the ducal stud were established. The year 1755 is considered the year of foundation . In that year, Duke Christian IV issued an ordinance in which he regulated the placement of ducal stallions at external stud stations in the Duchy of Zweibrücken. From his brother, the imperial field marshal Friedrich Michael, Christian IV. B. received the Arabian stallion Vezir as a gift. Christian IV is proven to be the founder of the two horse breeds " Anglo-Arabs " and " Zweibrückers ". The medium-sized, hard horses, which had to prove themselves in par force hunts , were well suited for courier services and cavalry.

The importance of this small horse-breeding region in those years and the desire the "Zweibrücker" aroused is shown by the purchase of 150 stallions by King Friedrich II of Prussia , the "old Fritz", in 1783 to expand his famous Trakehnen stud . In the main sire book Trakehnen for the years 1732–1945, the Zweibrücker stallions Empereur and Culblanc are listed, which Landstallmeister von Burgsdorff counts among the stallions who used the entire Trakehner stud from 1768 to 1808 the most.

Duke Karl II. August (1775–1795), Christian's nephew and successor, continued breeding in the spirit of his predecessor and coined the guiding principle in the preamble of his new stud rules: “To provide our loyal subjects with more income and food, too To keep the money in the country, according to our most gracious sentiments, so many beautiful, useful and good horses should be drawn in our entire ducal lands. "

In 1793 the French revolutionary troops occupied the country. The French period should last about 20 years. The stallion population as well as the mares and foals were brought to Rosières-aux-Salines near Nancy. It was not until 1802 that six stallions returned to Zweibrücken. In the meantime Napoleon had risen to become Emperor of the French. During his campaigns he was so impressed by the regiments equipped with horses from the Zweibrücker Breeding, which was still operated in Rosières, that on July 4, 1806 , he ordered the re-establishment of the Zweibrücker Stud on the current grounds of the former castle of the Countess von Forbach . The former stud property, which was the only one not sold but nationalized, was reassigned to the stud. Stallions came to Zweibrücken from Rosières, from different parts of Germany, from Spain and Hungary. The stock ultimately amounted to 260 stallions and 112 mares. Only 50–60 stallions stayed in Zweibrücken at all times. The others came to the depots in the departments of the Ardennes, Dyle, Lys, Meurthe (Rosières) and Bas-Rhin (Strasbourg), which were subordinate to the Zweibrücker Hauptgestüt.

A special sign of imperial appreciation was that Napoleon I gave his Arab stallion Fayoum , whom he rode in the battles of Wagram and Eylau and in Austerlitz, to the Zweibrücken State Stud in 1811 as a gift.

In 1814, as a result of the Wars of Liberation, Stud Director Strubberg fled towards Fontainebleau with 78 stallions, 29 mares and 24 colts. On the way, the horses from the stud farm near Auxerre were raised by Austrian troops, the most beautiful, 64 in number, were taken out and brought to Vienna. Among these horses was the Anglo-Norman stallion Nonius, the progenitor of the famous Nonius breed in Hungary.

From the Palatinate district stud to the royal Bavarian state and parent stud, the next step led when the Palatinate came to the Kingdom of Bavaria in 1816 . It was possible to buy 13 stallions and two mares from the old Zweibrücken breed. There were also Bavarian, Persian, Arab and English stallions. In 1828 5 Arabian stallions were bought in Damascus, which arrived in Zweibrücken on March 9, 1828 after a three-month march across the Alps. The main buyers of the partly heavily Arabized horses were the military administrations; Mounted units were stationed in Zweibrücken since 1816, namely the Cheveauxlegers . The "Zweibrücker Race" also proved its Anglo-Arab ancestry, its passion and its perseverance in the horse races, which were first held in 1821 and have become a permanent feature since 1872.

The First World War brought another cut in the further development of breeding. The discontinuation of remont sales led to a goal of rebreeding that only took into account the concerns of agriculture.

In the Second World War Two bridges was located in the so-called red zone, cleared. The stud was evacuated to Bavaria (Schwaiganger and Achselschwang) twice (1939/40 and 1944/45). Along with the town of Zweibrücken, the stud farms were also destroyed in the last days of the war.

In order to speed up the breeding of strong draft horses, several true-to-type breeding horses were imported from France as early as 1949. In 1951, sixteen stud stallions were available to the Palatinate draft horse breed, 13 of which belonged to the Palatinate-Ardennes loft.

The re-breeding to the modern riding horse was the result of the decline of horses in agriculture and haulage caused by increasing mechanization and motorization. As a result of decreasing coverings, the stud was redesigned in 1960. Zweibrücken was the stallion depot (state stud), the Eichelscheid parent stud was dissolved or sold and the main stud (foal station) Birkhausen was dissolved and leased to the Trakehner Association. The last Zweibrücker stallion to carry the Zweibrücker Gestütsbrand, the stallion Feuerwerk , went in 1969.

Under the umbrella term "German Riding Horse", the Zweibrücker was initially increasingly influenced by stallions of Trakehner origin and in recent years more and more influenced by the Hanoverian .

The stallion population in the 1960s of 20 to 25 stallions was halved to 10 to 12. Under the motto “The horse must stay”, the horse could be rediscovered as a partner for recreational activities and sports. A noble, large-lined and correct, healthy and fertile horse with sweeping, expansive, elastic movements is bred today, which is suitable for riding and driving purposes of all kinds due to its temperament, character and rideability.

On January 1, 2008, the operation of the Zweibrücken state stud was transferred to a GmbH. The new concept is based on a foundation established by the city of Zweibrücken and an operating company. The tasks of the foundation include the promotion of equestrian sport, horse breeding and the implementation of events as well as the maintenance of the historical facility. The horse breeding association, the city of Zweibrücken and the riding and driving association Zweibrücken are involved in the operating company.


  • Hans-Dieter Nebe: The Zweibrücker and his stud. 250 years of the Zweibrücken State Stud . Conrad + Bothner, Zweibrücken 2005. ISBN 3-924171-51-3 .

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Coordinates: 49 ° 15 ′ 6 ″  N , 7 ° 21 ′ 54 ″  E