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War Horse

War Horse

by Michael Morpurgo

Language and Communication Quotes Page 1

How we cite our quotes:

Quote #1

Zoey and I stood [...] lulled by the six bells ringing out over the dusky fields from the church. [...] It is the noblest music, for everyone can share it -- they only have to listen. (2.5)

Music is a language that can be understood by all ears, human and animal. But the bells are also a language of peacetime, so you won't be hearing them again for a long time. This is War Horse, not Church Bell Horse.

Quote #2

With Albert riding me, there was no hanging on the reins, no jerking on the bit in my mouth; a gentle squeeze with the knees and a touch with his heels was enough to tell me what he wanted of me. I think he could have ridden even without that, so well did we come to understand each other. (3.1)

Albert and Joey develop a complex method of non-verbal communication. Joey seems to think they have an almost telepathic connection. And as Joey learns, not all riders can do this. He and Albert have a special kind of bromance.

Quote #3

When [Albert's father] came back into the stable afterward and began to sweet-talk me and held out a bucket of sweet-smelling oats, I was immediately suspicious. But the oats and my own inquisitiveness overcame my better judgment. (3.11)

It seems like one of the most effective methods of communication for a horse is bribery. Even though Joey doesn't trust Albert's perpetually inebriated father, all it takes is one mouthful of yummy oats and they're total BFFs.