Myths and customs of ancient rusichej

Myths and customs of ancient rusichejIn front of you, dear readers, the last literary work Andrei Ugryumova, wonderful teacher, writer and local historian of Tarnoga. Death nastigshaya his eighties, was premature. So much more could, I had to do this amazing ascetic and educator.

His name became widely known several decades ago when the houses Vologda there was a small booklet in a blue cover "Russian names." Then read it with interest and eagerly, as the name given to a person not by accident, something important underlining, highlighting his identity and destiny.

As the years passed, the article and the book A Ugryumova, to continue his dialogue with us about living and time for us. He was always sincere and nenatuzhnym, probably, so do not feel that in all our circumstances with us was a wise and farsighted TEACHER.

Has not yet come to understand the true meaning of this man for the culture of our region. Now, not yet having experienced the bitterness after his departure, it seems — it is a unique, almost relic type really Russian man. Calm, intelligent, thoughtful, patient, and not to avoid work hazards, lived with the idea of Russia and deeds to prove his devotion to her. In all things, in all wars.

In Andrei Andreyevich, very harmonious person, a true Russian intellectual, was a rare quality in these times — a wonderful sense of self-worth. He lived with him, trying to realize itself for the benefit of others, for all.

There is a special, almost symbolic in the fact that, starting with the book "Russian names", he ended his earthly fellowship with us the manuscript of "Myths and Legends of Ancient rusichej." It returns us to that part of our pre-Christian history, which we have lost. And that impoverish our lives. He believed that the history and culture of the homeland — are a powerful source of strength and power that can pull people out of the worst of the crisis. Offering manuscript Andrei Ugryumova your attention, we are sure you will get a desktop reading, interesting to everyone in your home, from young to mature.

Animism (from the Latin word "anima" — the soul) — is the germ of all religion, its beginning. Scientists believe that it was created thirty thousand years ago. Ancient people thought that everything around them, trees, animals, birds, rocks, water, fire, wind, — endowed with the ability to think, to speak like humans, suffer and rejoice, wish each good or evil. The good spirits of the ancient people were grateful tried to appease evil. One and the other, they made sacrifices, that is something that could be eaten (in the old saying: eat). Sacrificial burnt food on large flat stones — Alatyr. This ancient stone there Tarnogsky area, Shebenge.

The initial idea of the soul emerged, probably from observing fast sleeper. He is still, calm, think, and not breathing. Waking the same, says that he was somewhere, something seen and done. Primitive people have decided that the man is his twin, invisible, able to fly out of it, act and go back, — the breath, the spirit, the soul.

Deceased lying more quietly (deceased) — a man whose soul has departed far and long. As birds that fly south in the autumn, in the ever-warmer climes, and come back in the spring. Warm southern countries of the ancient rusichej were called vyry, Iriy. Later it was replaced by the word "paradise", borrowed from the ancient Iranian language who had to "happiness", "wealth".

Vyry in ancient times Rusich, was on the ground, not the sky. Tale of a heavenly paradise brought to Russia Christian preachers. In Russian myths vyrii said that there except birds and the human soul, in the fall and snakes crawl herds fleeing rabbits and squirrels. These small and harmless animals are saved from the evil devil, who lost their other unclean spirit. This explains why in some years in the forests of many a game, and in the other it disappears.

Gone are tens of thousands of years to the time when our ancestors began to believe in the inspiration of the whole of nature. Primitive animism into a modern poetic device-impersonation. It is found in folk songs, such as:

Cloud with thunder conspire:
Come on, thunder, walk,
I am the rain, and you with Moloney.
You gryanesh and I polyu field.

CULT rozhanits and hair

Having led his birth two generations of women — a mother and daughter, our ancestors believed tiger woods mistresses or moose and their young female. They called their rozhanits and considered progenitors of all the forest animals and even humans. Bears similarities with the people of their native oshkurennoy carcass with a female body. The cult of the elk was less common among Rusich, existed not so long and turned into a period of patriarchy in the cult moose and calf.

The oldest of our ancestors portrayed rozhanits as stone sculptures and placed the statues at the crossroads. Here and there, in the Ukraine, they survived to the present day. Rozhanits devoted and earthenware vessels with two or four female breasts on the walls. Rusichi, Slovenia created the sanctuary in honor rozhanits near Novgorod the Great. It was discovered during the excavations of archaeologists our forty years ago.

In honor rozhanits spend the holiday in winter, the days solnovorota when bears appear young, and fall, when growing up in the woods all kinds of game, and the water expanse — bird flocks, and begins in the fall hunt. During these festivities sacrifices were followed by "dancing bear", songs were sung, rozhanits loudly demanding to be patrons clan or tribe. These were the ancient prayers.

Cult rozhanits in flawed form remained in Russia until the 19th century in the patterns on the towels in the form of food, which is attributed to the bath peasant during the Christian holiday of Christmas of the Virgin.

The bear, a male between matriarchy occupied a secondary place. He initially served as the spirit of a successful hunt and was called hair, which meant "hairy", "shaggy". In preparation for the hunt, conducted rusichi peculiar ritual dances, during which simulated stalking beast race for him and kill him. The older hunters for such dances put on themselves bear skins and masks depicting a bear or moose head. But hunting for bears is considered particularly dangerous thing, because the hair may feel insulted and revenge. Only a multi-day winter famine forced to do it, and even then try not to kill the bear-rozhanits, the mistress of the forest.

Later rusichi-breeders began to consider Volos patron pets, "cattle god" and god of wealth and commerce. After all, at that time the main wealth was cattle, and the word "cattle" also meant money, and the word "cowgirl" — treasury box with money. Notes of Arab travelers end of the 1st millennium AD. e. and Russian chronicles say that the stone and oak idols depicting Volos had in Kiev, Rostov, Velikiy Novgorod and Bulgar on the Volga. Merchants who came there, they laid at the foot of the idols of their family gods and sacrificed sheep fat.

Rusichi, becoming farmers, the keeper made the hair in seed grain and harvest. In the Russian north in the 19th and even the early 20th century, when the grain harvest from the fields cleaned manually, sickles, was common practice to leave uncompressed first sheaf on the strip "of hair on his beard." After harvest these stems szhinali, bundle carried home, set in a house in the red corner, later threshed. This sheaf of grain was considered particularly fruitful, and straw healing, and fed to cattle during the winter solnovorota.

During the year, several Volosova days. In winter, the days solnovorota — Volosova prayers with "dancing bear." They are an echo of the New naryazhenki that usually go in our time, masked and vyvorochennyh fur coats out. With the advent of spring grass and grazing in the pasture, with the departure of young people riding at night celebrated whether hair day, or the day of the tour, is replaced here and there hair and Los. These days the Russian peasant woman baked "Kazulka" — ritual cookies as horses, cows, sheep, rolls, horns. Part of their family ate at the same time, some kept up to another holiday. One week after the holiday was celebrated, "profit-Day" — celebration of Volos, the patron of trade.

Hair Rusichi also considered a god of fun, festive meals, songs and dances. Russian singer-improviser Bojan in the "Lay" is named Veles (read: Volosov) grandson. Name Hair replaced here by the author of the poem, apparently under the influence of the Lithuanian myth. But then, in Lithuania (twelfth century) was considered a god Veles ancestors, spirits of the dead god, Lithuanian, the word "Velis" means "dead". Late Russian custom to leave the strip uncompressed stalks of rye or wheat, "the hair of the beard," says that the Russian peasants remembered well the hair and did not know of Veles.

In Kievan Rus Hair Rusichi worshiped the pagan god is very important. After the conclusion of the Kievan prince Oleg in 907 agreement with the Greeks his companions swore Volos to the terms of this agreement. In ancient time, the custom arose rusichej have tribes ministers Volos, which is responsible for the organization Volosova prayers and dancing. They were called the wise men. The word "Magi", in my opinion, is the same root with the word hair, as the wise men, too, were "hairy" and volhvuya, get up in bear skins and masks.

Many Russian fairy tales have as the hero bear, often with a wooden leg instead of paws. Bear paw in the 20 th century in Russia was considered a talisman, and the Russian peasant woman hung her in the crib for cattle was not sick.

Spirits of the Discworld

In ancient times, the first stage of human understanding of the world, they are only interested in what they saw around them on the ground. They did not raise his gaze to the sky and not interested in what is in the ground. The world for them was a flat, one-dimensional, and spiritualized people was only that it was in this flat world. The word "God" then the language of our ancestors was not there, it came to them much later.

Of course, was spiritualized fire: hearth, burning in a cave or hut, where people live, the fire in the forest hunting or fishing on the river or lake. That was a good fire. He was warming, "cooked" food and had the ability to clear the house of debris and various rots. There was a custom of ritual burnings all unnecessary and harmful, and jumping over the fire in order to purify himself, accompanied by shouts, prayers, requests to the spirit of fire. Was animated and water. She, like fire, can also clear the people in the habit on certain days of the year to carry out the washing, bathing. People will swim, bathe and most necessary of domesticated animals — horses. Rivers, lakes, springs were seen as living things. Large rivers give good names: Mother Volga, Dnieper father. To them the request. Princess Yaroslavna (again referring to the "Lay") tearfully asks priest to return from the steppes of the Dnieper her husband Prince Igor:

"On the Dnieper Slavutich! You broke through the rocky mountains Polovtsian land. You entertained on the ships themselves to a regiment of Prince Svyatoslav Kobyakov. Vzleley, sir, my husband to me, that I was not despatched him with tears to the sea early. "

Then the water is inhabited by spirits and rulers. The names of these spirits have reached our time: water, he is conductor, omutnik, vodopol — the spirit of spring floods or summer floods, fisherman, fishermen help or hinder. "Real" masters of the rivers and large lakes in ancient Russia was long lizards and crocodiles … (Yascha and Korkodel).

In a storm of major river or lake to drown its waves fishermen. And people's imagination created the image of the good spirits — Bereguinias who allegedly helped the fishermen safely to shore (think about it and the Russian word). Bereguinyas presents beautiful maidens, wandering along the beach and watched the fishermen and the weather.

Lords of the forest and the ancestors of humans and animals were considered among various tribes bear or elk with their daughters — Volosyni and hairy males — Hair, Elk with calf, later tour. Forest animals: wolf, fox, hare, lynx, and trees have been endowed with a variety of human characters, which are well known to us for fairy tales and fables about them. Ancient symbolism of trees is less well known: a birch was considered a symbol of light, virginity, purity, oak, its leaves — signs of power, strength and dignity; fir — tree longevity, loyalty and courage, fir-cone carried in itself, according to the ancients, the fire of life, fertility , aspen — home of evil spirits, juniper (Veres) — fighter against decay, bearing the beginning of eternal life. In the forest, according to rusichej also lived Bereguinyas. Often they felt forty warned that his croaking of hunters stalked predators. In the era of the one-dimensional world, many items were considered charms, to protect people and their homes against "evil forces."

Ancient rusichi hurt, as we are. Lord of all disease is the spirit Famously, that had on one of the legends of twelve, on the other — thirty daughters lihomanok. They are set at people different ailments: karkusha (avkarkusha) set at human cough zyabuha — shivering fire — heat in his body, yellowing — jaundice (hepatitis); tryaseya — malaria (a disease I try to call in a modern way) epilepsy — epilepsy ; vetreya — chicken pox (varicella), Lome — aching bones; puhleya — tumors, edema sorts; gledeya — eye disease; gluheya — deafness drehleya — early retirement.

In the era of the one-dimensional world that the idea of reincarnation of dead people to animals or fish, trees and birds. Reincarnation implied secondary person's birth, his resurrection from the dead at the beginning of this process. To help revive the dead, he was not buried in the ground, and left in a cave or forest suzeme in the fetal position, that is, in the position of the unborn are human.

But in ancient times, this idea was considered "unclean." People who are able to transform, believed werewolves. The ancient Greek historian Herodotus wrote about the tribe Nevres: "These people, apparently, werewolves. Once a year, each of them becomes a wolf for a few days and then returns to its previous state. " In neuritis, of course, had no such ability. This is their pagan magicians wolves dressed for public hand-crafting, and then again, throwing off his clothes off the wolves, "becoming human." Carriers of this idea is to this day. They took it from the read their magazines and newspapers …

Later, the dead were sent to vyry in boats on the rivers flowing to the south, or to burn the soul, like birds, can fly there. Artist of the 19th century GI Siemiradzki painted a picture on the subject — "The Funeral of the ancient Virus." Her noble dead sitting in a huge boat, with him lying dead servants, horses and stands ready for the death of his beloved young wife. The ashes of the ritual fire poured into special clay pots and kept in their homes.

Three-dimensional MIR.BOGI SKY

When ancient people paid attention to the heavenly bodies and interested in what exists below the surface of the earth, the world is for them to become three-dimensional. The sky was the upper world, the earth — the average, anything below the surface, — the bottom. Three-dimensional world has found a kind of reflection in Russian fairy tales of three kingdoms: copper, silver and gold. In one of these stories in the three kingdoms gets Ivashka Zapechnik.

The sun was seen as ancient Rusichi heavenly fire. It is the source of heat and light that give and sustain life of all things on Earth. This happened in the period of matriarchy, and the sun was seen by our ancestors as a woman and mother. Then it was of a girl's name Kolyada, her husband was the month. In Russia until the 19th century, a legend that in the winter Kalyada solnovorota her sister Usen dresses in bright festive dress and kokoshnik, puts a painted sleigh rides Kolyada and the warm countries. In honor of Christmas Carols sung songs, carols, and still prevailing today.

Another legend tells of the spring meeting of the sun for a month. They had a long talk with each other about their winter life and times. Sometimes this meeting ends quarrel, which causes the average world earthquake. Blame is usually proud and arrogant Month.

In the period of patriarchy in Sun rusichej became man's name was the night luminary received feminine form — the Moon. Then in Russian appeared the word "god." It was brought to us from the ancient Scythians Iran, and in Iran it came from ancient India. There's the word "Bhaga" means happiness, good luck, "bhagas" in Russian means "the donee", "vesting." From the word "God" have the word "wealth", "rich", "poor" and others with this root.

The sun began to rusichi call by different names depending on the functions attributed to him. Sun as the lord of the sky called Svarog (from the Sanskrit "Svarga" — the sky) or purely in Russian Velimir. Svarog was considered as the god-smith, bound for rusichej first iron plow, and for the soldiers of the steel sword and spear with an iron tip. Rusichi also considered themselves "Svarog grandchildren." The sun as a source of light and heat — "the very white light" — bore the names of Horse and Kolo. Both of these names mean "round". In honor of the Horsa in "sun" holidays led circle dances — dances. On behalf of Colo in Russian were words about, the village, number, chain, ring, bun, track, wheelchair, wheel. Symbolic sign of the sun-Colo was a circle with four or six rays inside. Beams in the circle means sky, light, thunder and rain. These four beams were cross — a symbol of a very ancient. His image archaeologists found in Egypt, Babylon, India, Mexico, on the subject of three or four thousand years ago. In ancient times the cross was the "mark of the beast", which later became a symbol of the Christian, replacing fish and bread.

Such solar signs to the present day to carve at the ends of short tesin and decorate their Russian homes, beat those wooden "towels" under the roof. Now these ancient symbols carved probably just "for the sake of beauty." In the old days, such as "towels" were considered charms, not to let evil spirits in the house. At festivals devoted to God Kolo ancient rusichi daubed with tar or pitch wheel, wrapped it with a dry rye straw, burned it, and lowered it to the slide. Rolling circle of fire symbolized the movement of the sun across the sky. These days the peasant baked pancakes on round pans. Round pancake round was considered a copy of the Sun.

Grandson of the god is called Kolo ancient legend of King Koloksaya. When the god-smith Svarog dropped from heaven bound them plow, two brothers Koloksaya, Arpoksai Lipoksai and could not even touch him, and he was given Koloksayu. And even though he was the youngest of the brothers, they recognized him as their king. Svarog weapons Koloksay defeated formidable dragon and giant sorokapudovym plow plowed prairie, poured on the border of the country huge "dragons shafts." He ruled the tribe Scoloti-Rusich.

After several centuries of ancient Russians renamed Horsa and Kolo in Svetoboga who had sisters Dawn, morning and evening. In the folk song is about one of them:

Dawn eh my Zorenka,
Dawn, Solntseva systritsa …

Morning Star got up from sleep before the sun woke him, washed with morning dew and brushed his golden curls rays. Open the gates of heaven monastery, and set Svetoboga a golden chariot, sent it to the day's journey across the sky. Sunset greeted the tired one day light and led him away for the night at the palace.

In Svetoboga except sisters Dawn, had two sons and Belobog Chernobog. They are often called in another way: Belobog — Dobrebog — benevolent; Chernobog — Zlobog — Lyutobog. In "The Song of Igor's Campaign" winds called "Stribog grandchildren." Stribog — the Sun — the lord of the air space, disposing of winds, storms, whirlwinds, blizzards. All these forms of air movement regarded themselves as all-powerful spirits. Yaroslavna reproachfully refers to the wind, as a living being, respectful, calling him lord:

"On the wind, the wind! Why, sir, veesh defiance? Why rushing hanovskie arrows on the wings of his lungs to the soldiers of my frets (husband)? Unless you were a little breeze in the sky, nurturing ships on the blue sea! Why, sir, my fun by hobbling dispelled? "
Several Russian beliefs Stribog called walking in.

The sun was regarded as the lord of the clouds, the god of thunder, and in a in this case the name of Perun. He was represented as a giant with a club or a branch, bow and quiver of arrows in his hands. Willow Spring, which drove the cattle to pasture, called Perunova branch. In late July, noted Perunova week. In the days of her was made fun after work, sacrifice, to bathe, wash with "silver", as silver and gold were considered emblems of rain. Perun summer periodically traveled to heaven in a fiery chariot. Her golden wheels clattered on the clouds, creating thunder. Perun metal fire arrows, lightning scum vodivshuyusya on Earth, scare away her and then watered the earth with rain.

Perun watched the mowers and reapers, and if they worked in the afternoon, despite the sun, exposing themselves to sun stroke, he became Palikopom. This name tells people that was angry at them, Perun can burn collected stacks of hay and harvest.

In Kievan Rus Perun was the patron of princes and princely retinues, the god of war. Grand Prince Vladimir the Red Sun, creating in Kiev pagan pantheon, announced the chief god Perun. But the main function of the Sun God was still not military, and fertility. The sun is the father of all life on Earth, human beings, animals, plants, the god-giver of good. In this role, he was called Rod, Yarily, Dazhbog.

Rod — God of the Universe, the Almighty, Managing clouds and breathe life into every living thing. Rod prayers were held in the high mountains, "closer to the sky." In the era of agriculture Rod becomes a god of fertility, the mother consort of damp earth. He offered up prayers of thanksgiving day harvest in early September. Cult center was the ancient clans Roden, located at the mouth of the river Ros. With roots "kind" in the Russian language has many words: family, homeland, parents, convulsions, spring, freak, geek, and dozens of others.

Name Yarylo says that the spring sun makes all the men and animals-males 'ardent', that is, the ability to fertilize women, female animals and the Earth-mother. Seed of Yarily, fertilizing the earth-mother, were considered the rain and dew. Rusichi very celebrated the spring and summer, "Yarilin days." It is no accident spring planting crops still call yaryu, spring crops. Russian names and Jaroslav Yaroslavna, and the name of the city of Yaroslavl have a common root with the name of an ancient god Yarily.

Name Dazhbog say that the sun gives people the necessities of life. Rozhanitsy volosyni-in three-dimensional world had been raised to the sky. One of the constellations named rusichi Volosynyami (Pleiades), the two constellations are Big and Little Dipper. In some places they were called elk and calf. There are also two new goddess — Lada and her daughter Lola (Lala). Clearly, this is also a former earth Rozhanitsy. Lada was considered the mistress of crops, the goddess of love, marriage and family protector. The bride and groom gave her a rich victim. Lada establishes harmony in the family between husband and wife, between all family members. Harmony — the great goddess of spring and summer fertility. In honor of her in the months songs were sung, such as:

We millet sowing, sowing,
Oh, BITs Lada, sow, sow …

A brief word "BITs" means "great". It is borrowed Rusichi of the Lithuanian language, distantly related to Russian. A thousand years ago, his wife called their husbands word "modal", and the husbands of wives — "Harmony". We often speak of "getting along", "OK", "get along." It traces the Lada. Lola (Lala) was considered the patron and guardian of the children and harvest. It represented the flowering of spring and the renewal of nature. Her name survives in our word "cherish", "skein", "cradle". Ukrainians bird stork Leleko name. These birds are there special attention. To arrange them near the huts on high poles or trees with opilennoy top base for the nest, attaching the wheel there. These nests are protected by the owners house. In all of this seems an echo of the ancient myths. Numerous stars were regarded as solar and patrons flock sheep herds in the world. In Voronezh province in the last century on the night of the last day of February, the owners of sheep with a shepherd herds sheep exceeded the outskirts and put on three bows to all four sides. Postelennuyu shepherd stood on the snow sheepskin and spoke conspiracy: "light, star bright, the heavens for sunbathing unquenchable fire. Did you have a look, a star on the court servant (name). Enlighten you, the star, the fire unquenchable beloyarovyh sheep. As for the stars of the heavens no, so would the servant (name) freak sheep more. "
Similar rites existed in other parts of Russia. By the number of stars in the sky some winter nights was determined to be a lot of summer berries in the woods.


Earthly gods, "large" and "small", in the three-dimensional world was much greater than heaven. Much to the dark gods should be attributed primarily ancient hair and great goddess Ma. Grand Ma — the mother of all that is on earth, wife Rhoda. Do not be surprised brevity of her name. Ma came out of this word "mother." It is commonplace, and now Ma, "Ma, on which potatoes, then fry ',' Ma, I went with the boys to play football."

Grand Ma had two main guises: Mother Earth and cheese Makos. Mother Earth Cheese — a spring tillage, seed and fertilized earth dew and rain — the seed of the heavenly sun god Rod (aka Yarilo). Mother Earth cheese symbolically depicted in embroidery as rectangles or diamonds, lined by cells with a point (seed) in each of them.

Makos — a spring Earth that gave already sprouting and awaiting new rains and summer heat. Her embroidered as a female figure with upturned hands, asking the heavenly gods of rain and heat of the sun.

Makos — this old earth has given birth to his numerous children, grass meadows, crops in the fields and orchards, berries and mushrooms in the woods. Embroidery on it is lowered to the arms, indicating a rich eared field. Towels with those and other embroideries have in our provincial and several regional museums.

Historians also known sculpture of the so-called Mokos Zbruch idol (9th century BC. Oe.). There she holds in one hand a cornucopia. Oak Mokos idol was erected in Kiev, in the pantheon of pagan gods, which will be discussed later. Makos considered ancient Rusichi patroness of women, their guardian, the goddess of women's happiness and destiny. She was a counselor in many economic matters, especially flax and weaving. We have a common belief in the North: sheep shed — it is their Makos cuts. Rusichi twelve times a year to arrange holidays and honor from them every time on Friday and continuing for five or six days.

Her name consists of two parts: Ma — mother kosh — wealth. In different historical periods wealth believed that cattle, the crop, the money. So rooted in Russian kosh many words: fold — corral koshevka — old cart to take back from the field to the threshing floor, or bundles of winter sled for goods, purse, wallet, fork — words related to money.

A number of Russian principalities (later — the provinces, regions) were identified with the Great Ma Kostroma or baths. Kostroma Rusichi seen a young woman wrapped in white sheets, with an oak branch in his hand, going ahead maiden dance. Kostroma name means "mother of flax", "mother of the harvest." Appearance Kupala folk memory has not kept, and her name was given to the Christian saint John the Baptist. Her feast day began to wear the name of Ivan Kupala.

In ancient times, during the summer holiday spent solnovorota Kupala: plant fires (earth fire), jump over them, singing and playing. Bathed at night in the river or lake. Tore healing ladders, searched in the forest blooming fern sulivshy valuable treasure. Whole village to buy the bull, grilled meat on fire and eat it. It was a sacrifice to the goddess of fertility. At the end of Kupala (Kostroma) night did a straw man, dressed him in women's clothes and weeping burned or torn and drowned in the water. This meant that the Mother Earth cheese this year did the job and died. Next spring, she will come to life again, resurrected. As flawed as these ancient customs are prevalent in some places now.

Small earth gods of the ancient rusichej were many. Their gods, and you did not call, they were "masters", "kings", "spirits", and more and more of these words had not. They were simply called by name. A number of these small gods were we already mentioned in the chapter on the myths of the flat world: Bereguinyas, water, lihomanki.

Moisture ruled rosenik and mermaids, beautiful maidens with a tail instead of legs, living in the water. According to legend, in the summer they were leaving the river, swinging on a tree branch, even reach the fields and lured young men into their underwater mansion. In the well kolodeznik lived, lived in the sea king of the sea and the goldfish (either the princess, or queen). Servant of the Sea King was the devil — the owner of the marshes. Several rivers lived queen white salmon, river and lake swimming princess gray and white duck. In the roadside puddles hiding princess frog. Most of these "gods" later became the heroes of Russian fairy tales.

Planted fields and flowering meadows guarded by winged dog Semargl. Grow corn bread helped obiluha, follows yield fields and yadrey in charge of quality (effing) grains. When what to do, and reminded zapryagalnik raspryagalnik, lnosevka and grechkoseyka, rzhanitsa and Zhitnik, fescue and king peas. In the forests lived bloodthirsty old Baba Yaga and her son hairy and scary old beech forest spirit that scare children and in our days.

In the village threshing floor settled down for a long time and ogumennik ovinnik (aka Svarozhich) — a fire in the hearth kiln, freeze-sheaves before threshing. Gods of feelings and sentiments were hurry (Success) Oslad (delight) Srecha — share and Nesrecha — Nedolya, Sudbinushka, sadness, depression and laziness that before man is born, Arrogance, Sandman and settle down, which cause people to sleep, Injustice and the Truth .

Symbols and Charms

The concepts of symbols and amulets are very ancient. They emerged at a time when the world seemed more ancient Rusichi flat. Each new era add to the list of one or the other. When a number of ancient Russians domesticated animals, the ones they have become good mates. In first place was a horse, the main draft power and vehicle. Desktop wooden salt shaker as a horse (and this interpretation is appropriate) symbolized the day of the Sun across the sky. Castor as ducks his nighttime traffic. As for the figure of a horse on the end ohlupnya on the roof — ridge guarded the house against the penetration of evil forces in through the roof. Under the porch, trying to put horse's head, to the threshold or to the keyhole horseshoe nailed to Sinister did not penetrate into the house through the door.

Chicken has become a symbol of fertility. The chicken was invented by their patron, a kind of chicken and chicken Curco god of death. Twice a year, there were chicken holidays. Chickens often sacrificed to the great gods. Eggs symbolize fertility and the good life their glory broth of onion peel, ate during spring pagan festivals and plowed into the field on the first page. Rooster was a symbol of the rising sun, his messenger. Loud Rooster "ku-ka-re-ku" drives away evil spirits, especially at night. The figure of a rooster, carved in wood and placed on the roof, and later the rooster weather vane and cocks tin nailed on top of a chest of clothes, were considered charms. Perception in today Budimir male name in ancient times was one of the names of the rooster.

The laying of a new home under angles: put in a piece of wool as a talisman, a handful of grain, wax, sometimes horse's head. Inside the house, the main talisman was a Russian stove. The stove to swear in the stove hidden dairy baby teeth. The second holiest place in the house was Matica. She cut out the "wheel of kind" in a circle with six rays, and on either side — ideograms plowed field. Red Corner veiled ritual towels with embroidered figures Mokos, Lada and Lely. Since the introduction of Christianity in Russia in the red corner was arranged shrine with an icon and the lamps underneath.

On the eve of settlement of a newly built house in her red cock brought to hut not burned. The next day the house let in, before it will drop the hosts, the white cat, fasting (cockroach) and Mizgir (spider). They had to bring prosperity and wealth. White cat was not hurt, spiders and cockroaches forbidden crush. This could bring misfortune. Black cats were promised failed marching on business man, if they ran across his path, because they "know with the devil."

On spinning wheels (spinners) and trepalah cut solar symbols, and Val, were used to rinse the laundry in the river, had a handle in the form of a Mokos. The blade is cut Valkov solar circles, squares or diamonds, representing the sown field.

Clothing and accessories were the closest to the body, charms, especially in women. Headgear worn by the "bird" names: kokoshnik (Kokosh — one of the ancient names rooster) Kichko (duck). Neck jewelry: hryvnia — the signs of nobility and wealth, beads, necklaces should be stored on the gate of the naked neck, pendants in the shape of a circle with rays (Sun sign) and the crescent horns of the crescent down were symbols of marriage.

Rings, bracelets as braid (water) or diamond (Field) — signs of marriage and charms hand. Amulets — charms breast: a bird — a sign of the family; jaw predator — protects from beast spoon — a sign of satiety, the — the keeper of the property. Bone comb talked about neatness of its owner. Was folded saying, "The king Kostentin driving a herd through a fence." Comb in the hair of women rescued from Baba Yaga in the woods. Embroidery at the hem, collar and sleeves at the ends of guarding the people from evil forces of penetration under clothing.

Gods of the underworld — CHROME

Likely to increase the number of residents of East Slavic tribes and their development of treeless steppe Zadneprovskaia is harder to burn all the dead at the stake. The dead were buried in the ground, not originally in a coffin in a stretched position. Near the corpse was placed weapons and tools, utensils and other household stuff. Since they did not remove the jewelry. The underground world rusichej was called chrome and was a fantastic copy of terrestrial world. The idea that it is a field that will cultivate the dead, and the house in which they can live. But there was no light, and there was black as pitch. Combine these concepts can, of course, only in myths.

Chrome was not like the terrible hell with boilers filled boiling tar, which suffer though dead sinners. The concept of hell fire originated in the minds of the tribes who lived near the fire-breathing mountains — volcanoes. The ancient ancient Russians, who lived far away from volcanoes, it was brought together with the Christian faith.

Over his illustrious dead squad Barrow, a less noble cousin did low mound. Thus a copy of the three-dimensional world: above the sky, or mound burial mound — a land, under them — the underworld, Chrome.

Near the mound held funeral feast — funeral contest survivors, designed to show the viability and drives them death. The main thing in the place funeral feast held horse races and "ristanie (fight) on the field." The idea of a funeral feast excessive wine drinking wrong, wine drinking was a matter of secondary importance. Around humble burial mounds arranged fairly modest funeral, during which relatives wept loudly lamented, thinking that this requires Karna, the goddess of mourning and Zhelya, the goddess of grief. Prichet these were the main part of the first wake. If among the relatives of the dead woman was not capable of "Vote" as follows hired wailers-professional. Goddess of death was considered the younger sister of Morena Sun, her closest aides were Frost Karachun, Koschei the Deathless and Baba Yaga. According to some scholars, Morena — is the most ancient Slavic goddess, a myth that arose during the glacial period. Morena — is death itself, its second name. This is evidenced by its root name "sea", formed from it, words such as "sea", "starve", "dead", "dead", "death." Eternally gloomy, but not angry, she sang sad and at the same time gentle and courageous songs at the head of the deceased. Her appearance does not keep the Russian legend. In the days to winter and welcome spring people were made of straw doll, called moraines, then crying, drowning it in water or burned, and Gorely straw scattered over the fields.

Frost — an old man, bearded, dressed in a fur coat, was considered the first assistant Moraine. He has already made all of nature in autumn freeze, snow covers the ground, held down the river and lake ice (snow and ice — is "dead" water) and could freeze to death man. This image appeared in Russian mythology, probably also in the Ice Age. Then Frost was the host of an ice palace in the kingdom of the polar night, then passed into the domain of Koschei the Deathless. He later became a fairy Morozka that with a club in the hands of the "bypass their possessions", a club that has the frozen trees, which they crack. At night stands out housewives, causing them to heat the oven too early. Frost is good to hardworking girls and cruel to the lazy. Since the early 18th century, Frost became good, he, along with the Snow Maiden gives children Christmas gifts.

Karachun — the god of death of livestock, but in some cases it takes the life and person. This is indicated by the expression, and the common perception in our day: "There came to him Karachun." Christian Christmas coincided with the day Karachun, so pre-Christmas post for a long time in Russia called Karachunovskim post, though a pagan ritual time positions were not.

Koschei Immortal — it is the king of the underworld. He did not betray the people's death, but only reigned over the dead. On the surface — it's scary skeleton, but alive, and hungry for young girls he kidnapped on their wedding night, and took to the air in his rich palace tridevyatom kingdom fairy state. His dream — to become immortal, and the word has become a permanent epithet name. However, in Russian fairy tales brave and resourceful Prince Ivan kills him and frees him from the palace his bride beauty darling. Way into the underworld, as in vyry indicates cuckoo, admits there dead Baba Yaga. According to legend, in the underworld have Baba Yaga his field. One day her neighbor's horse-dead ease off on the field crops, and Baba Yaga, enraged, gouged out his eyes. The majority of Russian fairy tales Baba Yaga said bloodthirsty old witch who lives in the woods in a hut on chicken legs, riding on her way in a stone mortar, propping up a broom.

The idea of a log cabin there was a time when the graves of ancient Russians began to build up a small house with no doors or windows, or just a gable roof on two tables. Around these gravestones of dead relatives were celebrating a wake for their parents and grandparents. The days of commemoration called SATURDAY, rodunits (now say Radunitsa though in such a joyful little rituals). In Belarus these days name days Dzyady (grandparents).

During the memorial on zhalnike (cemetery) light a fire "to Schoor and ancestor (grandfather and great-grandfather) warmed up in their graves." At the cemetery, walked with cakes, pancakes, boiled meat, colored eggs. Women there loud "screaming" (wailing). Cleaned fresh graves turf, they put beer, mead and tasty dishes. Hailed the afterlife "guests" by name, begging food and drink brought. Over time, dead-dead into a brownie, who lived in the house under the stove. If you spoke well of him and do not forget to occasionally entertain, to keep the house from Sinister, commanded the yard, and swab ogumennikom. Brownie was considered an important creature. Walking into the newly built house, house-owner shills: "Father and mother house-house, come to us in a new home to live with us." Brownie from the old house symbolically transferred to a new shovel for bread in a pot with hot coals.

The dead in ancient times divided into "clean" and "unclean." To clean attributed those who have died of old age, from disease, died in the battle with the enemies of the tribe. Navem called unclean and ghouls. They were the ones who killed in a gang fight, drowned, committed suicide, died of a binge, killed by lightning, killed a wolf. Ghouls afraid, believing, as if at night they come out of their graves and flying on the "evil wind". Their cry means someone's death. Flown in, vampires sucking the blood of sleeping children and pregnant women.

Before we bury the "unclean" dead, they were driving behind the ears of a tooth harrows, and if the epidemic began in the village or in the nature of drought, their bodies were dug out of the ground, punched aspen stake and again buried face down or drowned in the swamp. Belief in vampires as old, kick and submission of the virgins-Beregin. Ghouls and Bereguinyas — obvious contradictions. These days, the word "vampires" is not used, There is now a belief in vampires really unsubstantiated. Zhalnik (cemetery) guarded Blazn, son of Svarog Lord of Heaven, God of visions, hallucinations. In the quiet summer night in the cemetery are sometimes seen phosphorescent sparks or flames fireflies. They are something and thought "Blazna lights." The name of this ancient god in our modern speech the term "temptation", "seduce", "blaznit" (dreaming).

Ending a brief listing of the ancient pagan gods, I want to recall that Alexander Pushkin, who knew perfectly Russian myths, three dozen surprisingly poetic lines figuratively told them. Quote will be relatively long, but I will give it all the same, just a little cut:

A green oak,
A golden chain na oak tree,
Day and night the cat scientist
All walks the chain around.
Goes to the right — the song starts,
Left — tells the tale.
There miracles there goblin wanders
Mermaid sitting on the branches.
There on unknown tracks
Traces of unseen beasts;
A hut on chicken legs there
It should be no windows, no doors.
In prison there tuzhit princess,
A brown wolf it is true;
There mortar with baboyu Yaga
Goes wandering by itself;
There the king Koschey over with gold languishes;
There, the Russian spirit, there Rus smell.

Bayans the magicians, sorcerers

Even in this enlightened age of science a lot of religions. There is a doctrine with hundreds of millions of believers. These scores. There is a tribal religion, gods whose worship only thousands or even hundreds of people. But each of them is ordinary fans — flock and scholars of religious legends and customs — priests, clergy. They were among the ancient Rusich, but were called differently, and in different ways depending on what was said and what they did.

True historical novels and short stories on everyday topics in the old tales were called (from the verb "bayat" — to speak). Stories about gods, full of fantastic, fantastic episode, myths were called koschunami. Storytellers fables were considered Bayan (dupe), storytellers koschun — scorner.

Bayans according to his talents could not just bayat, talk, and sing the text of the story, as later sang our northern epic storytellers. An image of the singer-improviser classically painted in "The Song of Igor's Campaign". That Bojan had a bold poetic thought, which in the process of story-singing "to spread on the tree", "wolf roamed the Earth", "falcon flew to the heavens." In this age of Boyanov gone, there is only musical instruments, wearing a vintage name. And the genre of modern fables like a little old quite realistic narrative.

With the adoption in Russia in the 10th century Christian stories about ancient Russian pagan gods — koschuny were strictly forbidden. Scorner mercilessly persecuted, and the verb "curse" was given a new, negative — to blaspheme.

Any religion not only knows the stories of the gods, but also many rituals. Connoisseurs of legends and ancient rites Rusichi were called quacks, Herbalist (from the verb "to know") or witch, witch, witches (from the verb "to be in charge"). Nothing negative of these words does not invest. Nymphs, witches were, to be honest, intelligent people who know a lot and know how. They were the organizers of pagan holidays — days Perun Yarily, Kupala Mokos and others. Ancient astronomers were astrologers, they were able to read the inscriptions on ritual vessels made "features and cuts," that is to be good literate of his time. During holidays, plant fires. Speaking to the same tribe, beat drums, homemade Kudesy, for what were called magicians. Perform complex dances with unusual body movements, Coben, and so were called kobnikami. Tribesmen led to the stone-alatyr and offered sacrifices to their gods there, that is acted as priests. The word "victim" in ancient times meant above all praise, addressed to a particular god, spirit, and the fact that you can eat, "eat." The priests, as a rule, had assistants who cut chickens, sheep, oxen, or drowned in the river horse, that the tribe, the village was sacrificed. These assistants were called potvornikami.

Belief in the magical power of water, the ancient medicine men conjured charms, filled it, they were sorcerers, magicians. Above charms often spoke softly whispered something mysterious. In such cases, their names nauznikami, whisperer. His mysterious actions speak louder than words, unusual body movements fascinated crowd, becoming obavnikami (that is charming, irresistible, kind hypnotists).

But more often they were called Magi. The Magi were considered masters of the clouds and could overtake them in a drought at the sky and the rain to water the fields. Could, if needed, to disperse the clouds make the sun warmed the ground as it should. They were considered oblakogonitelyami. They were also oracles to a future. There was a rumor about them as people, to cause an eclipse of the sun or moon.

Created the image of the ancient magician Pushkin in "Song of Oleg the Wise":

With his retinue, in Constantinople armor
Duke goes on the field on the right horse.
From the dark woods to meet him
Is inspired wizard,
Perun obedient old one,
Covenants coming Gazette
In the pleadings and predictions all his life.
And the wise old man drove Oleg.

Oleg asked the magician say without fear of it, how long would it, Oleg, to live, and he replied:

The wise men are not afraid of the mighty rulers,
A princely gift of no use to them,
Truth and freedom their prophetic language
And with the will of heaven friendly.
The coming years are hidden in the mist,
But I see a lot on a light brow …

Last century. Most words denoting the servants of the ancient Russian pagan worship, forgotten or changed its value. Thus, the word "witch doctor", "sorceress" now represent the elderly or old ladies who can help a sick person, giving him or recommending herbs. The word "witch" instead of the "many Veda (knowing)" has now entirely negative sense: it is "a woman, cast its lot with the evil spirit." The word "charms" has no connection with Chara filled with water.

Much has changed over the centuries, but to know that it was in ancient times, still useful.


Any calendar year involves dividing large periods of time, caused by the movement of the sun — spring, summer, autumn, winter, and smaller — months, weeks, days. The ancient rusichej calendars could appear simultaneously with the emergence of the cult of the Sun. This cult has appeared in the era of matriarchy. Then there was the legend of the four solar sisters, born of the Great Mother of the universe — the goddess Ma in the time of day. First, in the morning Usen born goddess, which became the morning dawn, the day came Kolyada — round bright day the sun is shining, in the evening — sunset Vechorka at night — always gloomy Morena, the goddess of darkness, of night and death. They all lived in a palace erected on the ring sea island, the owner of which somehow became the last of the sisters.

The gloomy goddess Morena envied Kolyada and autumn of each year hid it in a dark dungeon of the palace, trying to destroy it. But the older sister Usen saved Kalyada in the days when the Earth passed from Morena Autumn Winter. We now call these days winter solnovorotom (20th of December). Carol come out of prison rejuvenated. Usen her dressed in bright clothes to sadila decorated sleigh drawn by a triple red horses, and sent to the warm countries to the complete victory of the Day of the night, spring over winter. Angered Morena forced enhance cold winter. Rusichi is expressed in the proverb: "The sun — for the summer, winter — the cold." In the era of patriarchy sun was masculine luminary — god Colo. Created new myths, but people's memory for thousands of years to store names and Carols Useni. With this fight came to Rus Orthodox Church and the Russian tsars. So, Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich Romanov in 1648, issued a decree in which he said: "In Moscow … on the eve of Christmas, many people have clicked" Khaled "and" Usen "… We have indicated strong … order to continue now no people in the streets and the alleys, and dvoreh … "Khaled", "plow" and "Usen" not clicked and did not sing songs of devils. "

In our time, the myth of Kolyada and Useni forgotten. Usen word in various parts of Russia have to say wryly: Avsenev, Ovsen, Bausen, Tausenev — and these words denote only the beginning of the new year, singing "carols" and "obsevat 'homes in order to get a good harvest.

Happy New Year from the ancient times, many people (the Hebrews, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans) was considered on March 1. In rusichej he held on this date to the 14th century BC. e. In 1342, with the Russian Orthodox Metropolitan Cathedral Feognost decided to start both ecclesiastical and civil new year from 1 September. In ancient times, this day is celebrated as the day of White god, and he is in the 14th century was nicknamed Letoprovodets (the word "summer" meant then, not only the warm season, but the whole year). Ancient Ceramic calendars rusichej celebrated usually only large "sun" holidays:

from December 25 until January 6, old style — rescuing from prison Carols Night and old "dancing bear" (bear-rozhanits these days the bear gave birth and turned from one side to the other, so the sun was turning the summer), from March 25 to 23 April old style — Spring meeting, honoring the plow, the god and goddesses Yarily Lada and Lelia, from 23 June to 7 July — in the spring and Yarily God, honoring the goddess Mokos (Kupala), Summer meeting, July 20 st. Art. — The day of Perun, preparing for the harvest and sowing of winter, praying to stop rain, with 1 to August 16 st. Art. — Days Mokos, which brought the harvest (and later in the Christian era — three of the Savior: August 1 — Honey Spas (zazhinki), August 6 — Apple (oseniny), 16 August — nut (Dozhinki 'hair on his beard "). Additionally, ancient ancient Russians celebrated over ten days 'small' gods. Months in antiquity had their Russian names: spring — berezozol (March), flowering (April), Traven (May), summer — Cherven (June), senozornik (July), serpen ( August), autumn — Veresen (September), leaf fall (October), Gruden (November) Winter — jelly (December), prosinets (January), snezhen (February). With the introduction of Christianity in the Roman came to us the names of months (they given in parentheses).

Each month was divided into four week of seven days each: the first day had a name on Monday, the second — on Tuesday, the third — Wednesday, then Thursday, Friday, Saturday (the word comes to us from the Hebrew language), the seventh day — the week (now Sunday day of rest, when you can do nothing.) Thursdays are considered days of summer thunder Perun, these days waiting for thunderstorms. Twelve Fridays in the year dedicated to the great mother nature Mokos. Chief among them were considered as the 9th and 10th on Friday (first half of October st. Cent.). They celebrated for ten days at a time. They are devoted to the end of heavy women with trusts of flax and hemp and the beginning of cheerful youth gatherings, which the girls spinning, singing, led to the guys "small towns" (dance), and the seed of the woman sat at home for handlooms, Krosno.

The ancient pagan calendar days have pointed prayers for rain. On the famous clay romashkovskom calendar Dnieper Slavic Antes (IV century BC. E.) Been four prayers for rain (May-June) and one of their termination. In ancient times there were many predictions about the weather. In the calendar, they are not mentioned, but the wise men followed the weather for twelve days in a row in the second half of December: weather on December 13 st. art., but their opinion, had to meet the future January 14, January — February, 15 — March, etc.

In 1699, Peter the Great issued a decree that ordered the 1700 as the beginning of the year on January 1. The decree, he wrote: "Forasmuch in Russia believe the New Year in different ways, from now to stop fooling people and head count throughout the New Year on the first of January,. And as a sign of good beginnings and joy greet each other a Happy New Year, wishing prosperity and in the affairs of the family welfare. In honor of New Year decorations commit firs children amuse, sleigh ride in the mountains. And adults drinking and not commit massacre — on that and other days missing. "

Many of the pagan customs and superstitions are prevalent and are now in Russian villages, but tell all is not enough space in our newspaper.

HEROES OF RUSSIAN fairy tales and legends

Among the hundreds of Russian fairy tales, there are several dozen so-called fantastic. In them, then save the image of the heroes of ancient myths. A simple enumeration of fairytale characters puts it: sun, moon, moon, Solntseva sister, Frost, Baba Yaga, famously one-eyed, and Koschei Immortal Death itself — it's old "great" gods. Of course, time has made a lot of new things in their appearance and character. Sun, for example, in a number of stories called parables: Gilt-gold bristles, Duck and gold feathers, Zolotorogy deer Zolotogrivy horse, Beauty, Beloved, etc.

"Small" in the tales of the gods even more: it's vampires and demons, the devil and the devil, and the king of the sea witch, the water and the queen snake. And the animals, birds, fish, which in ancient times worshiped the ancient Russians in fairy tales are all the bear, wolf, fox, rabbit, goat, rooster, duck, chicken, crow, heron, crane, eagle, falcon, pike, ruffe, cancer and others. The idea of the three-dimensional world is given indirectly in the tales of the three kingdoms. Enemies Scoloti ploughmen Cimmerians as terrible snake with three or more heads.

Time has created a new genre of Russian folklore — tales and new heroes — heroes. The Knights have not gods, though the word is in its root has a "god." They are simple people, but have extraordinary physical strength, agility, courage, commit fantastic feats in the glory of their country. Distinguish between "senior" and "junior" heroes. These senior are Volh (Volga) Vseslavevich, Svyatogor, Mikula Selyaninovich, Ilya Muromets Nikitich and Alyosha Popovich. Volh Vseslavevich — the son of a snake, he has the ability to transform. Mikula Selyaninovich — double the "divine plowman" — King Koloksaya, learn to work the land. Svyatogor — hero who does not know yet where to put his excessive force. Ilya Muromets — the main hero of the Kiev cycle. He chieftain thirty warriors facing the outpost guarding the border of Kievan Rus. In the epic "Ilya Muromets and falconer," recorded in the village of Ust-Arkhangelsk Tzilma, they are called almost everything. I will quote only a small part of the epic:

Thirty-it was the heroes of hero.
Ataman something old Cossack Ilya Muromets
Podatamanem something Samson Kolybanovich yes,
Dobrynya something Mikitich lived in clerk
Alyosha Popovich, then lived in the cooks,
Bear Toropanishka lived in his grooms …

Additionally Kiev heroes, Russian epic heroes know Novgorod: Vaska Buslaevich and Sadko-rich guest, and Vladimir Nightingale Budimirovicha, Churila Plenkovic, Ivan Gordenovicha Skopin Mikhailovich and others.

In Kiev heroes many similarities. As a child, they grew "by leaps and bounds." Early, but clumsily showed their extraordinary strength, wringing her hands and feet for children to play with. Growing up with a parent's permission to put yourself Mail armor, helmets heroic, took the cudgel of forty pounds, taut bows and swords eyes open. Each fed his horse wheat beloyarovoy, saddling Cherkassky seat and went into the open field. Handsome knight sitting on horse GREYHOUND: oblique broad-shouldered, curly yellow hair under the helmet! In the open field, young and old heroes "console BOGATYRSKY pleasures": they threw their heavy clubs, peeled and saber kopetso up high and caught them, falling, a single left hand.

If the hero riding on the instructions of Prince, his horse galloping up the tree standing, the walking below the cloud. The mountains and valleys between the legs blew, swift rivers jumped. In the battle with the enemies of the Russian land, they were lucky: where will wave warrior club, there in the enemy's army formed street peremahnet — alley. The horse hooves heroic many enemies beatable.

Boy hero usually started alone and fought for three days and three nights without rest and only then called his friends for help. His military exploits heroes made not for personal gain, but out of a sense of love for the motherland. They rejected the prince's awards and, with humility, took the "lower position" on princely banquets. However offended if their scaly Chara greener wine or talking about them disrespectfully. In such cases, they refused to comply with the request and the prince left Kiev.

Novgorod and Vladimir heroes differ in some ways from the "senior", Kiev. It is natural. And the enemies they have other Tatars, Lithuanians. Russian artist Viktor Vasnetsov created a beautiful painting "make the Warriors", which drew three heroes Kiev: Ilya Muromets Nikitich and Alyosha Popovich. Custodians and their epic stories storyteller were usually residents of the Russian North. Now, at the end of the 20th century, and is virtually forgotten tales, though they are with their BOGATYRSKY heroes have great educational value for our young people.

PANTHEON Prince Vladimir and his fate

In 980, Prince of Kiev was Vladimir the Red Sun. By that time, the alliance between several East Slavic tribes. Life required its conversion into a single feudal state, and Vladimir decided to do it by putting the main tribal gods Rusich at one temple and declaring one of them the main god. High on a hill in Kiev were built oak idols Horsa, Dazhbog, Stribog, Semargl and Mokos. At the heart of the "divine" circle was made the highest god Perun. The body of the god was made of wood, and the head full of silver, mustaches were made of pure gold. God of thunder and war was declared the chief prince of God Rusich. Such pagan pantheon was to strengthen the authority and power of the prince of Kiev.

Within Kievan Rus is to some extent the case, but the Christian West and the Jewish-Muslim East still regarded as barbarians Russian Gentile. This is not only morally humiliated prince and his entourage, but also prevent the establishment of equal economic and cultural relations of Russia with its neighbors. Prince Vladimir, this was due to meet with the religions of the neighboring states: Islam, Judaism, Catholicism and chose Orthodoxy — Byzantine version of Christianity. He decided to accept the faith itself and to baptize their population of the country.

To the adoption of Christianity has turned Russia into a vassal of Byzantium, helped Vladimir in 987 the Byzantine emperor Basil Second retain his throne and delivered an ultimatum that he himself will become a Christian and baptized Rus, but the Emperor should give him marry his sister Anna. It was to become the fourth wife of the prince. However, the arrival of the Greeks in Kiev Anna detained, and in 988, Vladimir and his army besieged stronghold of Byzantium on the Black Sea — the town of Korsun (modern Kherson in the Crimea). Korsun capitulated. Vladimir began to threaten take the war to the territory of the Byzantine Empire, and the Emperor Basil II, mourned the passing of his sister, Anna sent to Kiev. Along with the future princess go to Kiev Orthodox priests who know Slavic. Vladimir was baptized and married to Anna. After becoming a Christian, Vladimir sent away three previous wives, and never remarried. So the story goes.

After that, he ordered the destruction of the pagan pantheon. The idols of the gods were overturned, chopped up and burned. Decapitated Perun tied to the tail of a horse and dragged into the Dnieper. In this twelve warriors stabbed him with spears, hit clubs, and Kiev, seeing all this, mourning their gods. Throwing into the Dnieper, vigilantes accompanied statue up to the thresholds, preventing it hit the beach. When Perun was the rapids, the wind drifted it to the bank. Since then, this place was called Perunova melyu. Since the construction of the Dnieper, it is under water. Only god idol hair standing in the market square of Kiev, was unharmed. In Kiev, Rostov the Great and other cities of his idols were demolished only two hundred years.

Destroying the pagan pantheon, the people of Kiev Prince Vladimir ordered that all unbaptized go on a certain day to the Dnieper, wandered in and were baptized by visiting priests. For failure to appear, he promised to execute disobedient and their houses burnt. Most of the inhabitants of Kiev baptized irreconcilable same old pagan faith adherents fled to the forests and grasslands, along with the wise men. Baptized Kiev Prince Vladimir sent his uncle and Dobrynya tysyatskogo Putyatov a large detachment of Novgorod the Great, to baptize him in the same population. Novgorod had their armed resistance, but "Dobrynya fire and sword Putyata" Novgorod yet baptized.

With great difficulty Christianity took root in other Russian cities, and in the depths of Russia to change religion lasted for several centuries. The falls in the North have been baptized in the XV century, the peoples of the Volga region — in the XVI, Kalmyks, peoples of Siberia and Kamchatka — in XVII-XIX centuries.

The adoption of Christianity in Kievan Rus' has introduced a number of major European feudal powers. This was especially noticeable when Vladimirova son Yaroslav, who, with the consent of the Byzantine emperor held the title of Caesar, Russian and was married to the daughter of the King of Sweden. His sister became Queen of Poland, three daughters — Queen of Hungary, Norway and France. Yaroslav's son married the sister of the King of Poland, a grandson — the daughter of the king of England, granddaughter became the wife of the emperor of the "Holy Roman Empire" of Henry IV.

After the baptism in Russia, a period of dual faith. After all, once the true Christians are few. The mass of the people for many centuries lived myths and customs of heathenism. Orthodox priests had to wage a real struggle for their eradication. They were supported by kings.

In Cyril-Belozersky monastery found "The word of a hristolyubtsa," written in the XI century. It says: "… does not become farmers play demonic games, hedgehog is plyasane, humming, singing worldly idols and sacrifice … and forks, and Mokos, and Shem, and Regla, Perun and old, and women in labor." There are only a suggestion not to make a pagan festivals, but in the XVI century "Stoglav" Ivan the Terrible, expressly prohibits "any strumming and pozorstvovaniya, vzhigaemaya Ohnište … front of the house, which is shed skakati … and women of the people plyasanya, suschi folly."

At the same time, the pagan festival of the sun was born Christmas, pagan "Bear Dance" obsevanie, carols are prevalent to this day. Celebration of the goddess of the ripening grain and fruit-Mokos Kupala given to John the Baptist, and named the day of Ivan Kupala. Day was a day of thunder Perun Elijah, and the story of the behavior of Elijah in the sky almost exactly the same as the myth of Perun. And so it happened to most of the pagan holidays. Over time, Russia has developed a kind of folk-Christian pagan calendar. In summary, it appears in my book "The Russian names. Folk Calendar, "published Northwestern Publishing House (Archangel) in 1993.
A selection of articles from the newspaper "Red North" for 1995

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