Of Gargantua’s wooden horses.
Afterwards, that he might be all his lifetime a good rider, they made to him a fair great horse of wood, which he did make leap, curvet, jerk out behind, and skip forward, all at a time: to pace, trot, rack, gallop, amble, to play the hobby, the hackney-gelding: go the gait of the camel, and of the wild ass. He made him also change his colour of hair, as the monks of Coultibo (according to the variety of their holidays) use to do their clothes, from bay brown, to sorrel, dapple-grey, mouse-dun, deer-colour, roan, cow-colour, gingioline, skewed colour, piebald, and the colour of the savage elk.
Himself of a huge big post made a hunting nag, and another for daily service of the beam of a vinepress: and of a great oak made up a mule, with a footcloth, for his chamber. Besides this, he had ten or twelve spare horses, and seven horses for post; and all these were lodged in his own chamber, close by his bedside. One day the Lord of Breadinbag (Painensac.) came to visit his father in great bravery, and with a gallant train: and, at the same time, to see him came likewise the Duke of Freemeal (Francrepas.) and the Earl of Wetgullet (Mouillevent.). The house truly for so many guests at once was somewhat narrow, but especially the stables; whereupon the steward and harbinger of the said Lord Breadinbag, to know if there were any other empty stable in the house, came to Gargantua, a little young lad, and secretly asked him where the stables of the great horses were, thinking that children would be ready to tell all. Then he led them up along the stairs of the castle, passing by the second hall unto a broad great gallery, by which they entered into a large tower, and as they were going up at another pair of stairs, said the harbinger to the steward, This child deceives