eques·​tri·​an | \i-ˈkwe-strē-ən \

Definition of equestrian 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : of, relating to, or featuring horseback riding equestrian Olympic events

b archaic : riding on horseback : mounted

c : representing a person on horseback

2 : of, relating to, or composed of knights



Definition of equestrian (Entry 2 of 2)

: one who rides on horseback

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Did You Know?

Equestrian comes from equus, Latin for "horse". Old statues of military heroes, like the famous one of General Sherman on New York's Fifth Avenue, are frequently equestrian. In these sculptures the man always sits nobly upright on a horse, but the horse's stance varies; depending on whether the rider was killed in battle or survived, was victorious or defeated, the horse traditionally stands with four, three, or two hooves on the ground. Equestrian statues have been popular through the centuries, because until the 20th century almost every officer in Europe and America was trained in equestrian skills and combat.

Examples of equestrian in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The property comes with access to the amenities of the Grand River Ranch community, which include an equestrian center and a sporting clays course The seller is Charlie Gallagher, a private-equity executive. Katherine Clarke, WSJ, "Giant Colorado Ranch With Private Saloon Seeks $36 Million," 6 Aug. 2018 That’s not strictly true, as heels’ origins as 10th-century equestrian wear prove. Chloe Malle, WSJ, "Why Smart, Chic Women Are Abandoning High Heels (Forever)," 8 Nov. 2018 Casiraghi is an award-winning equestrian, and is even Gucci's official equestrian ambassador. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Another Royal Baby Is Here and It's Grace Kelly's Great-Grandchild," 24 Oct. 2018 Teen Vogue asked Brittany about her inspiration when designing her modern-equestrian-chic dorm. Katelyn Chef, Teen Vogue, "University of Kentucky Dorm Decor," 30 Aug. 2018 Her wedding was even equestrian themed, taking place at a San Diego stable — in part because her new husband, 27, is a professional equestrian. Kate Hogan, PEOPLE.com, "Kaley Cuoco Received Tons of Gifts at Her Wedding — But They Weren't for Her," 4 July 2018 Other park activities include backpacking, equestrian trails (guided horseback riding can be set up via commercial guide service providers), fishing, hiking, mountain biking and swimming. Jerry Garcia, San Antonio Express-News, "State parks abound in the San Antonio area," 11 June 2018 The equestrian center was supposed to negotiate a sublease extension with Schad and draft a request for proposal to be submitted to the Los Angeles Department of Recreations and Parks. Anthony Clark Carpio, latimes.com, "Back in the saddle: Longtime horse stable relocates to new home," 20 June 2018 For the last five years, the Global Champions Tour has been the center piece of the oldest equestrian show in Spain. Aly Vance, CNN, "Van der Vleuten: The father-son duo teaming up in Madrid," 3 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Zara, who is a professional equestrian, competed in the Gatcombe Horse Trials at Gatcombe Park over the weekend with her adorable family in tow. Maggie Maloney, Town & Country, "Zara Tindall Brought Her New Daughter Lena to the Gatcombe Horse Trials This Weekend," 10 Sep. 2018 Her wedding was even equestrian themed, taking place at a San Diego stable — in part because her new husband, 27, is a professional equestrian. Kate Hogan, PEOPLE.com, "Kaley Cuoco Received Tons of Gifts at Her Wedding — But They Weren't for Her," 4 July 2018 And in February, an avid equestrian took her horse through a Pennsylvania Wendy’s drive-thru for a chocolate Frosty. Kaitlyn Schallhorn, Fox News, "Maryland Chick-fil-A restaurant serves customer on riding lawn mower in drive-thru," 21 Sep. 2018 Both Princess Anne and Zara Tindall are avid equestrians, as is Queen Elizabeth II. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Princess Charlotte Takes After Great-Grandmother Queen Elizabeth by Learning to Horse Ride," 26 Aug. 2018 Kaley is now happily married to 27-year-old equestrian Karl Cook. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "How Kaley Cuoco Became One of the Highest-Paid Women on TV," 23 Aug. 2018 Max Mumby/Indigo—Getty Images Anne, a keen and talented equestrian, is the second child of the Queen and Prince Philip, sitting next to her brothers, Princes Charles, Andrew and Edward on the royal family tree. Kate Samuelson, Time, "Your Complete Guide to the British Royal Family Tree and Line of Succession," 23 Apr. 2018 Held at the purpose-build equestrian showground, The Derby-Park Klein Flottbeck, on the outskirts of the city, the Global Champions event takes place alongside the historic German Jumping and Dressage Derbies that have been held for decades. Aly Vance, CNN, "Hamburg 2018: Harrie Smolders on top of the world," 10 May 2018 Eighteen of the top equestrians in the world will be in Paris starting Wednesday and through the weekend at the F.E.I. World Cup for the dressage final, an event that showcases the freestyle to music. Lisa Cowan, New York Times, "The Fancy Footwork of Dressage Freestyle," 9 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'equestrian.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of equestrian


circa 1681, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1774, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for equestrian


Latin equestr-, equester of a horseman, from eques horseman, from equus horse — more at equine

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Last Updated

5 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for equestrian

The first known use of equestrian was circa 1681

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More Definitions for equestrian



English Language Learners Definition of equestrian

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: of or relating to the riding of horses



English Language Learners Definition of equestrian (Entry 2 of 2)

: a person who rides horses


eques·​tri·​an | \i-ˈkwe-strē-ən \

Kids Definition of equestrian

: relating to the act of riding horses equestrian sports

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More from Merriam-Webster on equestrian

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with equestrian

Spanish Central: Translation of equestrian

Nglish: Translation of equestrian for Spanish Speakers

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