The Lipizzan horse is considered to be the oldest extant cultural breed in Europe. The breed dates back to the 16th century when it was created with the support of the Habsburg monarchy. Lipizzan horses were bred to perform the purest form of classical riding, the High School dressage. The finest representatives of Lipizzaner stallions begin training when they are four years old. The horses are born dark and gradually grow lighter until they are completely white.