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The Charentais and Vendéen are extinct breeds of horse from western France. They were bred principally in the area around Poitou-Charentes and Vendée, France. They were used as a mount for light cavalry.[1]

Charentais horse.jpg
Photograph from "Guide pratique pour la connaissance et l'élevage du cheval", 1911
Conservation statusextinct
Country of originWestern France


The Vendéen breed was originally imported by the Dutch in the 17th century from Friesland. It was originally to be used for draining swamps, but was later crossed with Thoroughbred stallions to make it fit for service as a mount for light cavalry.<ref>

These breeds were combined with other lines to become the Selle Français.