- By Baron Jean Christophe von Pfetten & Baronness Monique de Rothschild Translated by Clare Poole
Edward II, the Duke of York wrote in his book “The Master of the Game”, when he was in jail following the defeat of Agincourt:
“The hound is a creature of reasoning and the best of all divine creatures.”
In 1937, Sir John Buchanan-Jardine published the book “Hounds of the World” which still constitutes the best study of the French origins of the Foxhound.
Before hunting the fox, England used to hunt hare and stag in the traditional French style, but with two different types of hound:
The first type was the Southern Hound which was mainly black and white with blue mottle and four eyes (meaning prominently marked round eyebrows above its eyes), and the origin comes back effectively to the gift of Gascon hounds from Henry IV of France to James I of England at the beginning of the 17th Century. Gascon hounds were slow of pace, with an excellent nose and had a passion for hunting hare. The descendants of this breed can still be found in kennels such as the Duke of Beaufort’s at Badminton in Gloucestershire.