Teeuwynn rode horses for decades, including her beloved Appaloosa, Aspen, and qualified at state and national levels in horse shows.
Horses have a majesty and godliness that no other creature on earth possesses. They deserve names that reflect this majestic origin. One place to look for names is the ancient and beautiful language and mythology of Chinese culture. When you give your horse a name with meaning, and one that can be secret to you and your horse if you want, in a lot of cases with a Chinese name, you tighten the connection between yourself and your horse or pony.
So, take a look at these magical names and see if any of the names might work for a new mare or gelding you are thinking of getting or for a new foal who is entering your life.
Giving Your Horse a Chinese Name
Chang’e (or sometimes called Chang-o) is a Chinese goddess of the moon. She is married to a famous archer named Houyi. The current Chinese Lunar Exploration program is named after her. Chang’e is a bold goddess who rules the night sky. Even in the modern world, her name is legend. This name would work well for any mare or female foal with a bold or determined personality.
Also known as Chan Master Daoji, this Chan Buddhist monk was thought to have superhuman powers that helped him stand up to evil and protect the poor and downtrodden. But Daoji was no traditional monk. He was known for his cavorting, eating meat, and other non-monkly activities. Daoji is a folk hero and even sometimes considered a minor god. Daoji could be a name for any gelding, stallion, or male foal who likes to get into trouble when he thinks it’s time something needs attention, but really has a good heart.
This giant deity from Chinese religion’s major claim to fame arrived late to a gathering called by Yu the Great after the end of the Great Flood. After his late arrival, Fengfeng was executed. At about 33 feet tall, Fengfeng was too tall to execute in the normal manner. Therefore, the executioner had to build a giant dyke to make a way to complete the act.
Most modern tales say Fengfeng was delayed because he was diverting a flooded river and saving people, so he is the hero of the tale. Fengfeng’s appearance varies, but some people describe him as one-eyed, dragon-headed, and ox-eared. It seems like this name would work nicely for a male horse who is very large, shaggy looking, or even just likes to help people.
A Chinese Horse Named Fengfeng
Fusang is the mythological tree of life. It supposedly grew in the far east of China. Another report cites Fusang as a city of its own east of China. Whatever this place is, it is mysterious, a place people almost never see. This name might be good for a shy horse who only trusts those closest to him or her.
This is a Chinese water monster or god who is usually shown as having red hair and a dragon’s tail. Gonggong is a very destructive creature who is blamed for a lot of mishaps in Chinese mythology. This name could be good for a large or mischievous chestnut horse who likes to cause some problems around the barn or test his or her rider a bit.
Magu means the “hemp maiden.” She is a protector of women and girls and is connected to the elixir of life. In Chinese literature, Magu appears as a beautiful young woman with elongated, birdlike fingernails. This name could work well for any dainty mare or foal, particularly a thoroughbred or other breed with long, elegant legs or flashy stockings and other markings.
A Foal Standing Up to Take the Chinese Name Magu
Mazu is the Chinese goddess of the sea. Mazu was the deified form of a former shamaness. She went through the oceans protecting believers and saving people miraculously from the seas. Currently, she is thought to be the Queen of Heaven by her followers. This name would be wonderful for any regal mare. It would work even better for one who enjoys swimming as well.
This is the mother goddess of the Chinese religion. She is the sister and wife of Fuxi. According to mythology, Nüwa repaired the pillar of Heaven and created mankind. This name would be a really interesting name for a breeding mare or for a calm, motherly mare who likes to take care of others.
Pangu is a creature that first created all living beings. In some versions of Chinese mythology, Pangu is the creator of everything in the world. In traditional Chinese, his name is Pinyin. In the creation story, the world was chaos and an egg formed that was both yin and yang. When the mystic egg opened, Pangu emerged to create the universe. This name could be good for a shaggy pony or horse or a gelding or stallion with a powerful, slightly wild appearance.
Pangu, Named for the Chinese Mythological Creature
This Bodhisattva, or person who has reached Buddhahood, has a name that can be translated as “Earth Treasury,” “Earth Store,” or “Earth Womb.” Often known for his responsibility for children and his great desire to achieve Buddhahood, Pinyin carries a staff that opens the gates of Hell themselves and has a wish-fulfilling gem to light up the dark. This name would work well for horses or ponies who are bay or brown in color or for those who love children.
This deity is the one who decides fine details of human fate. Sometimes called the Arbiter of Fate or the Director of Controlled Life Spans, Siming has shamanic roots and is related to the Kitchen God. Siming’s particular specialty is balancing the aspects of Yin and Yang. This name is a good one for a horse with a steady temperament who you can trust to make the right decisions in times of stress.
This is one of the most ancient terms for the Chinese realm of heaven. Tian is balanced with Di, which is the earth. Together they hold up the three planes of reality along with the third, humanity. This name could work well for a horse or foal with an uplifting personality or one who is particularly beautiful. Perhaps a handsome grey horse, or a beautiful bay with flashing stockings and a blaze.
A Horse Named Tian after the Chinese Mythological Creator
This solar goddess is one of the two wives of Di Jun. Xihe was the mother to ten suns that took the form of three-legged crows. Every day, one of the crows would go in a chariot with Xihe and travel the world. Word was if all ten crows traveled at once, the world would be destroyed. One day that happened and the famous archer, Houyi, saved the world by shooting all but one of the birds. This name could work for a headstrong, black or palomino horse or another horse that reminds you of the sun or crows.
Yinglong means “responsive dragon.” This dragon was a winged creature who was a rain deity in Chinese mythology. Yinglong is a kind dragon who helps people. The name would be good for any kind pony or horse who loves to hang out with people and get special attention.
Also known as Chongli, Zhurong is a god of fire and the south. He is very important to Chinese mythology. He was the son of the sky god. This name could work for any chestnut gelding or stallion or male foal. It could also work for a palomino, appaloosa, roan, or any horse with red in its coloration.
© 2018 Teeuwynn Woodruff
Alexander James Guckenberger from Maryland, United States of America on October 12, 2018:
I like Fusang. :D