...or it was a place that was remembered through folk-memory as somewhere a fine herd of horses had been encountered thousands of years earlier. But we can't ever know those things, because the evidence has gone.
wilderness /0wld ns/ noun. OE.
[ORIGIN Old English wild(d)ornes, from wil(d)dor wild deer + -ness.]
1 Land which is wild, uncultivated, and inhabited only by wild animals; a wild, uncultivated, or uninhabited region.