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comprehensive term for the gear of a draft animal, excluding the yoke, by which it is attached to the load that it pulls. Although harnesses are used on dogs (for drawing travois and dogsleds), on goats, and sometimes on oxen, the typical harness is for horses. There are two main kinds—the collar harness and the breast harness. In the collar harness a padded leather collar fits over the horse's shoulders; to it are fastened the hames, linked metal parts with two curved projections to which are attached the traces, leather straps that pass down the sides of the horse and by which the load is drawn. In the breast harness the traces are attached to a breastband that crosses the shoulders below the neck. The horse is controlled by reins or lines attached to the bit, a metal mouthpiece held in place by the bridle, i.e., the various straps and buckles that make up the headgear of the horse, including the blinders. A long, narrow saddle pad is held in place on the horse's back by a bellyband (or girth), a backband, and a crupper, a loop under the tail. The reins pass through rings on the hames and on the saddle pad; looped straps on the pad hold the shafts of a vehicle. The breeching, a strap that passes around the hindquarters below the tail and is held in place by hip straps, bears the stress when the horse is backed up or is going downhill. There are many individual parts of the various harnesses, each of them having a specific name; the different kinds of bits alone are innumerable. Harness making is an ancient craft, dating from the domestication of the horse; the saddlesaddle,
seat or pad to support the rider on an animal, chiefly a horse. The saddles mentioned in the Bible are generally considered to have been saddlecloths. The ancient Greeks sometimes used saddlecloths, but they had no saddles and often rode bareback.
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 was a later invention.



(in Russian, upriazh’, sbruia), the gear used to guide horses, as well as oxen, camels, reindeer, and dogs, when drawing vehicles and agricultural equipment and carrying loads. Horse harnesses, depending on the intended use, can be subdivided into single and double and full-collar and breastplate harnesses. A single full-collar harness includes a collar with tugs and hames strap, saddle, girth, breeching strap, lugs, breeching, bridle with bit, checkrein, and reins. A single breastplate harness includes the collar with hames, to which the traces are attached; in place of tugs there are thongs, which fasten the collar to the shafts. A double harness for pulling vehicles consists of collars, breast straps, traces, breechings, bridles with bits, and double reins. In some harnesses the collar is replaced by a breast harness.

The Russian word upriazh’ has a wider meaning than the English term “harness.” For example, it includes saddles, the main piece of gear of saddle horses. In reference to oxen, it includes the double wooden yoke, which is fitted on the animal’s neck and attached to a whiffletree.

A camel harness has a bridle, reins, and breast strap. Reindeer and sled-dog harnesses consist of a breast strap with one trace. Reindeer are directed with a pole or a single rein; dog harnesses have no reins. An improperly made or poorly fitted harness will rub and injure an animal’s skin, thus reducing the animal’s capacity for work.


What does it mean when you dream about a harness?

A harness is an obvious symbol of restraint and control. Also, could indicate a need to “harness our potential.”


(aerospace engineering)
Straps arranged to hold an occupant of a spacecraft or aircraft in the seat.
Straps worn by a parachutist or used to suspend a load from a parachute.
Wire and cables so arranged and tied together that they may be inserted and connected, or may be removed after disconnection, as a unit.
One of two or more frames on a loom which are raised to separate the warp from the filler yarns to allow the shuttle to pass between them.


i. An assembly of straps for holding occupants of aircraft to their seats. A harness also connects the pilot's parachute to the pilot.
ii. An assembly of straps worn by a parachutist or employed to suspend a load from a parachute.
iii. A system of straps for securing loads and pellets to the aircraft floor. These are not restraining nets, which are put on top of the load and secured by the aircraft's structure.
iv. A bundle of wires routed through the aircraft's structure, connecting electrical components to one another and to the power bus. An ignition harness contains an insulated wire for each cylinder that the magneto serves in the engine. One end of each wire is connected to the distributor block and the other end is connected to the spark plug. See ignition harness.


1. an arrangement of leather straps buckled or looped together, fitted to a draught animal in order that the animal can be attached to and pull a cart
2. Mountaineering an arrangement of webbing straps that enables a climber to attach himself to the rope so that the impact of a fall is minimized
3. the total system of electrical leads for a vehicle or aircraft
References in periodicals archive ?
No-pull harnesses provide, in my experience, the least harmful way to give many owners the window of opportunity to reinforce--and thereby train --polite leash walking.
Whether your choose the original SOP, SOP FastBack or SOP FastBack Deluxe, all harnesses offer tangle-free, fully adjustable straps, and include a lineman-style climbing rope and prussic knot, enabling continuous contact with the tree when ascending and descending.
Careful study of the photograph reveals that all three of the men wearing harnesses, (second, third and fifth from the left), also wear cloth shirts underneath.
By the time the Iditarod rolled around in March of 1987, several mushers had switched to Taiga harnesses and Franzen's business got worldwide exposure.
At the end of the day, six of the seven harnesses included in the tests failed to meet the CPS-001-014.
8220;Our new DEUS X Class harnesses are a true game changer,” said Shain Rae, chief executive officer, DEUS Rescue.
OSIO provides complex braided and shielded harnesses with multi-terminations,over-molding, strain reliefs, and Mil-Spec connectors.
Harnesses for our canine companions come in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and sizes.
The new full body harnesses and safety lanyards that are currently being distributed to several submarines for evaluation were introduced at the working group.
All BBK harnesses and ladders come with a one-year warranty, and even $5,000/ $10,000 worth of health/life insurance coverage, at no extra charge (renewable yearly for only $2).
Workers will no longer need to adjust their harnesses throughout the work day; the straps won't budge, even with movement and the weight of tool belts that have traditionally caused adjustments to loosen.