It is uncertain when the Gelderland first emerged, although during the 19th century various other bloodlines were added to refine and establish the breed.
Originally thought to have been influenced by native mares being bred to stallions of Norman, Andalusian, Neapolitan, Norfolk Roadster and Holstein ancestry in the Gelderland province of the Netherlands, horses such as the Oldenburg and Hackney later had their input in its development.
Initially popular as a fashionable carriage horse, today the Gelderland is commonly seen in show jumping, combined driving and other competition capacities. The Gelderland is credited with influencing the development of the Dutch Warmblood, a horse that is globally successful in sporting disciplines.
Characterised by an athletic, well conformed structure, the Gelderland is full of gusto and strength and is a great all-round horse for amateur and experienced riders. Typically chestnut in colour, the Gelderland is a handsome horse with visible refinement.
The Gelderland is known for its sound health and longevity. One horse, named Vosmaer, was still happily competing in Grand Prix dressage at the age of 20.