Fairy-Tale: The Golden Mountain

Esteemed Readers, today I would like to share with you a fairy-tale which fits to our capitalistic time pretty well. In fact, the problem of gold, wealth & avidity has always been a serious reasons for many nasty crimes. As we have already discussed, the Russian folklore is hostile to huge possessions & denies even “la vie bourgeoise” as a probable alternative of a good life.

The story tells about a merchant’s son, whose name remains unknown, & his light-mindedness that led him to an extreme poverty. However the follow  wasn’t taken aback. He began seeking for a job & this search involved him into some bloody adventures. The story ends well…he remains alive, but what a moral price he pays in the end!

Again we have a thriller which action takes place in far oversea lands. Again there is cruelty & a beautiful wise maiden saving the hero. The plot highlights a double nature of shady dealings, raises a problem of a labour slavery, so it seems urgent even for our days.”How much gold is enough?” “If the wealth is worth of the human sacrifice?” “When is it time to stop?” are the main messages of the story. Although, it seems to me, that there is no definite moralité in this tale as each of us will comprehend it in accordance to his/her own perception of “wealth”.

Enjoy reading!

Here is the full text: Russian Folk Tale 13

Maria KethuProfumo

Source: Verra Xenophontovna Kalamatiano de Blumenthal, Folk Tales From the Russian, 1903

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Russian Folk Tales: Unexpected Journeys

Esteemed Readers, it has suddenly occured to me that the Russian folklore is a great hidden promoter of travelling & the fairy tale reality.

We might be convinced in it if we pay attention to the fact that a plenty of our tales happen in far lands, always in more prosperous & richer. Let’s add to this image the impact of foreign princess I have already told you about & voilà! This is the Perfect world!

Strangely enough a rare Ivan Tsarevich is ready to fight in/for/ outside of his own village. All of them prefer to make weary unexpected journeys to complete their quests. This phenomenon makes ponder a lot. Why to travel so far? Might the life have been so dull that there was nothing to do in their native lands?

Without saying ancient Russian lands meant wild forests full of perils, but why is our folklore so much connected with unknown countries? Might it be  a mysterious transcendental consciousness? I have no answer. The only opinion of mine is a great substitution of our folklore. As for me I can hardly believe that a Slavic nation like ours will ever prefer foreign adventures to pretty homeland gangland-style between Ivans & Koscheis. We might suppose that our ancestors were afraid of the Iron Wall…however this absurdity has no sense as since the time immemorial Russia has been surrounded with thick woods protected & isolated from the other world.

Maria KethuProfumo

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Mercure Galant: Ladies of That Time

 

Esteemed Readers, I have discovered a rather curious note regarding the qualities of a real lady, There were prepared by Madame de Prigny & published in Mercure Galant in 1693 under the name “Characters of Women of Our Century”. She has divided female characters & virtues.

The most common characters include Coquette, Hypocrite, Spiritual, Thrifty, Jealous, Licentious. The most necessary virtues are: Modesty, Compassion, Wisdom, Principles, Activity, Calmness.

May this SMS of the Past be a good one to ponder upon in our uneasy times. Our globalized epoch possesses so many trifles & misses so many important things!

Vive le Roy! 🙂

Maria KethuProfumo

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La Gazette: Historical News Today-1631

Esteemed Readers, the Thirty Years’ War has returned & here are some tidings of 1631 I present to your dearest attention. Let’s revive this…not always glorious time:

Bruxelles, June 12,1631: ” Marquises de Sainct Croix & d’Ayetone have come here to begin inventing some cooper canons able to carry two livre/pound balls. They will be stronger than the ordinary ones. Besides these Messires are ordered to cut thousand pieds/foot of the longest & the thickest trees for a project yet unknown & to design a channel from Anvers to Hernetail. On behalf of the King of Great Britain Sieur Gerbier Jadis, Secretary of Duke of Bouquingan, has arrived to that Court where he will certainly wait for Cardinal Infante, whose train has already set off, as letters from Spain tell us.”

Amsterdam, July 14, 1631: “They say here that fortifications of Rivestain Gemp & other places we have left due to the Imperial troops, – who only differ with the Spaniards by name,- are about to re-start. The Imperialists are going to stay in provinces Cleves Juliers & la Marke belonging to the Dukes de Brandenbourg & de Nieubourg. Our army is always in Brabant. We have equipped our fleet & have armed 10 best persons from our some land camps for it to outrun Cardinal Infante. If we are fortunate enough to meet him, our canons will be used not only to give him a welcome shot.”

Douver, July 26, 1631: “Six hundred of the Scottish left England in Milord Hamilton’s service. He is going to the King of Sweden. They are ready to start any moment. Sieur Bourlamachi often comes to France with extra ordinary visits on behalf of the King of the Great Britain.”

Oh, these Spaniards!

Vive le Roy! 🙂

Maria KethuProfumo 

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Louis XIV Asks Riddles IX

Esteemed Readers, here is a new curious riddle for you, inspired with the air of the autumn Solstice. I like its form & sense: it consists of opposites, so those who write something might use this idea in their own epic manuscripts & poems. Good luck!

” I teach both Good & Evil staying mute. And I know all without, in fact, knowing it. I can narrate about ancestors as well as what the Earth tells about the whole human race. And my successful adventures depend fully on their hand. I’m beautiful & able to become black. I’m a guardian of glory. Without me the fame would have perished right after having been born. I reconstruct the eternal beauty. Both living & dead recognize my right. I enchant the Time & cut His wings.”

REPLY to the Riddle posted on August 22, 2019: ALMANAC

Dear Rosaliene & John, my congratulations! We both were very close to the main idea!

Vive le Roy! 🙂

Maria KethuProfumo

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Fairy-Tale: Snow Maiden

 

As the autumn is rather cold this year I have decided to go on the topic of winter represented in the Russian folk tales. This time it is about a Snow Maiden or Sneg’urochka as we call it. The plot is so popular that has become the ground for numerous movies, cartoons &, certainly, for a famous opera by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.

This sad tale reminds us of the price we all pay for our carelessness & unwish to comprehend or to notice alarm signs far before something sad has taken place: an old childless couple makes a snow-maiden who turns alive & they accept her as their daughter. She grows very fast & soon becomes a true beautiful maiden. The whole village is delighted with her. However winter passes, the sun becomes brighter, but nobody pays attention that the maiden herself becomes ill. She even doesn’t realise what’s happening, while her own parents consider her to be alike human & don’t ponder upon the fact that their snow daughter might be destroyed by heat or fire.

This story puts various questions besides the eternal problems of relationship between parents & children. For example: essence of our desires & dreams, coexistence of the magic & human worlds, importance of trust & responsibility for our own actions. So, let’s be careful with our desires, Esteemed Readers, not to set this world on fire!

Enjoy reading!

Here is the full text: Russian Folk Tale 12

Maria KethuProfumo

Source: Edith M. S. Hodgetts, Tales and Legends from the Land of the Tzar: Collection of Russian Stories, 2nd edition (London: Griffith Farran and Company, 1891)

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Fairy-Tale: Father Frost

Esteemed Readers, here is another wild short fairy-tale dedicated to wicked relationship in the family. No matter its size, it contains several plots: a traditional conflict between a step-mother & step-children; daily problems of a henpecked husband; award for patience & an ability to pass quests of life.

Father Frost is an allegory of Saturn, of course, reflected here in his most severe way: he is about to take the life of a young unhappy maiden to test her moral & physical strength. This is another proof of duality of our mythology, of a complex attitude between the nature, spirits & men. The nature & spirits are always winners, they rule the human destiny, while all what men can do is to adapt to circumstances without complaining. And they should never be envy or desire to obtain something they didn’t deserve for the prize might be their own life.

Regarding wicked parents as well as any sort of what we call “toxic” relationship we could add only one thing: “he that mischief hatches, mischief catches.”

Enjoy reading!

Here is the full text: Russian Folk Tale 11

Maria KethuProfumo

Source: Folk Tales From the Russian, by Verra Xenophontovna Kalamatiano de Blumenthal (1903)

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