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A garron or garran is a type of horse or pony. The term occurs in Scotland and in Ireland, and generally refers to an undersized beast.

In Scotland a garron is one of the types of Highland pony.[1] It is the larger, heavier type bred on the mainland. The isles' type of Highland pony is generally smaller and slightly finer, but still within the breed standard. There is less difference today than there once was between these two types.

The word garron was also used to describe a highland cross of a Clydesdale horse used in farming, especially in the highlands and isles where a full size Clydesdale would not have been as economical. These horses were valued for their hardiness and ability to work on slopes.[2]

Also, see garrano, an ancient Portuguese breed of pony.

Mentions in literature[edit]

The word garron is also mentioned a number of times in George R.R. Martin's novels in A Song of Ice and Fire, the fantasy series that began with A Game of Thrones. There the context implied that it was a small, hardy breed of pony suitable for use in cold, mountainous areas, generally to the North near The Wall.[3]


  1. ^ Ewart, J Cossar (1904). "The Multiple Origin of Horses and Ponies". Transactions of the Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland XVI (1799): 266–267. Bibcode:1904Natur..69..590. doi:10.1038/069590a0. 
  2. ^ Topham, John. A Highland Garron horse ploughing at Coubal, Shetland (accessed 2014-10-15)
  3. ^ Martin, George R R (2000). A Storm of Swords. Bantam Spectra. p. 202. ISBN 0-553-57342-X.