(A). Between a pony and a horse in size, from thirteen to nearly fifteen hands high. The word means big, stout. The original meaning is a tuft or head, hence eminent, large, powerful. The “cob of the county” is the great boss thereof. A rich cob is a plutocrat Hence also a male, as a cob-swan.
Riding horses run between fifteen and sixteen hands in height, and carriage horses, between sixteen and seventeen hands.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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