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clarke.andrew.happyAndrew Clarke on his neice's pony, Happy, the latter being the only foxhunter in the photo“As a foxhunter husband, I've never heard why it's called a Hunt Breakfast when it's usually the afternoon when the hunt breakfast is served,” writes a mystified Andrew Clarke from Ontario.

Surely there are many practicing foxhunters equally mystified by this question. For the answer we turned to our resident etymologist, author-editor Steven Price.

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Comments   

+1 # Denya Massey 2012-01-17 17:02
Andrew Clarke looks like a movie star and is clearly a natural in the saddle. Why doesn't he foxhunt?
Reply
# Cheryl Microutsicos 2012-01-17 17:12
Agreed, Denya!
Reply
# Denya Dee Leake 2012-01-17 20:37
I had no idea that this was Uncle Andrew and Happy!! Such a great photo! What a movie star :)
Reply
# Judy Jones 2012-01-30 10:08
But who is going to cook for us all, chef Andrew!
Reply
# Marilyn Mackay-Smith 2012-01-19 17:46
General E, Lee on his white stallion Traveler "Where are all my damn rebels?" (foxhunting might have been a better line} of work!)
Reply
# John Anderson 2012-01-20 11:05
Article VI of "The Fox-Hunter's Faith," written by a North-Country Hunting Parson, states: "If it is possible, let every true believer abstain from all meat and drink, save only as is necessary to sustain life. Let the whole day be kept as a special fasting and strengthening of the mind for 'the chase.' In the evening he shall partake of suitable meat and drink, and on the evening after a good day he shall have a special allowance."
Reply
# Laura Hunt 2012-01-23 01:53
I think the term Hunt Breakfast for after the hunt is a very American assignment. In pre motorized vehicle days most foxhunters spent the night before the meet at the hosts' home and did have a large breakfast before the meet. Neighbors who did not spend the night and arrived on their horses were offered drink & food, the Stirrup Cup. Presently in England, or at least in Northern England, a breakfast or coffee before the meet is ussually a fundraising event and sometimes hosts may invite the returning field in to Tea after the hunt. A large meal/party after the hunt is rare. Or atleast that has been my experience.
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# Norman Fine 2012-01-23 17:02
We've been speaking to a cold line, but Laura Hunt has put us all straight. (See her comment above.)

It seems that the term Hunt Breakfast is mostly a popular American usage. Martin Scott, MFH, an English member of our Panel of Experts, says that in England a hunt breakfast would take place before the meet, but they are rarely offered. More common would be an informal invitation for a drink or for tea after the meet, but this would not be called a hunt breakfast.

So we can't blame the Brits for this oddity. Now, Andrew Clarke's question becomes even more interesting. How indeed did the after-hunt meal come to be called a hunt breakfast here? We shall have to do some more research!
Reply
# Laura Hunt 2012-01-26 02:27
I think you were barking up the right tree when you thought climate had something to do with having "breakfast" after the hunt. In the warmer, dryer American climate many hunts are scheduled earlier in the day so you might not partake of a meal before you went out hunting but then did "break fast" after the hunt.
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Panel of Experts

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Sherman Haight, ex-MFH

MFHA President 1978-1981
Historian, Author

Hugh Robards, ex-MFH

Huntsman, Author

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Arthur Liese

President, The Sporting Gallery and Bookshop, Inc. Sporting Art Dealer

Dr. Matthew Mackay-Smith

Co-Founder, Former Medical Editor, Equus Magazine, Veterinarian, Writer, Historian

Dr. Roger Scullin, MFH

Veterinarian, Foxhound Breeder

Jerry Miller, MFH

Huntsman, Foxhound Breeder

Paul Striberry

Foxhunter, Horseman, Trainer
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Nigel Peel, MFH (UK)

Hunstman, Breeder, Judge

C. Martin Wood III, MFH

MFHA President 1990-1993
Huntsman, Breeder, Judge

Steve Price

Author/Editor of 25 books, including The Whole Horse Catalog and 1001 Best Things Ever Said About Horses

C. Martin Scott, ex-MFH (UK)

Foxhound Breeder, Judge, Writer

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Marion Thorne, MFH

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