The “Troika”

The “Troika” - German-Russian Social, Cultural & Heritage History
The "Troika" was a team of 3 horses hitched up to a sleigh, cutter or wagon. Troika is a Russian word, meaning "three", hence the name. This was a means of transport in the early part of German-Russian history. The movement of the team was usually swift and graceful. The center horse was the guide horse which was considered to take the lead; while the outside horses carried the weight of the load. The center horse had the yolk above it with bells on it and they jingled and jangled, apparently for style. But there was another reason much more practical. The sound of the bells warned the people walking on the roadway of an approaching team of horses and gave them time to move off to the side of the roadway and not get run over. Another very practical reason for the jingling bells, was to keep the wolves at bay as the sound would frighten them off.
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