Kurent and the great flood

Ancient Slovenes believed, that in the beginning reigned a golden age, when bread grew on trees and the wheat ears were half a fathom long. In this happy beginning people were good. Yet advancing time brought with it corruption and evil, so the gods decided to make an end of the world.

It started to rain heavily and the water rose high covering the earth. All the people drowned, except four. Folklore is silent concerning how three of those survivors managed to survive, but how the fourth was saved a tale is told.

He was stood on a high hill, and upon it was a vine which reached even further into the sky. As the rain poured and the water rose even to the peak of his high hill, the man grasped the vine and began to climb.

Kurent, a god, highly revered by the ancient Slavs, saw him and was most pleased, that the man sought help through one of the plants which was sacred unto Kurent. Thus he took pity and saved the poor fellow.

As the water began to recede and the earth became drier, the rescued man promised Kurent that he and his descendants would always value the two plants, sacred to him, these being the vine and the buckwheat, and that they would be forever pleased to eat their produce.

The rescued man took in one hand the vine, in the other the buckwheat stalk and went on his way in a bid to find a place to settle.

On the banks of the Adriatic Sea he stopped. From the vine that he carried, he cut a switch and planted it into the ground. And to this day they have very good wine in Prosek.

He also sowed the buckwheat. His sons spread throughout Kranjska and to this day Kranjci for the greater part live on buckwheat and value wine, and with gratitutude remember Kurent, their old benefactor.

Adapted from: www.thezaurus.com



Kresnik appears to be the fire god, the son of the sun god, or in a later tradition a powerful hero with magic powers. The word Kresnik derives from kres/bonfire, connecting with the still living Slovenian tradition of bonfires (kresovanje) on the night of midsummer solstice. The name Kresnik therefore means the shining, the sparkling one. There are many tales of Kresnik in Slovenian oral tradition, and undoubtedly this mythical figure originates in ancient pagan beliefs. During a more recent cycle of Kresnik myth he appears also as the mythical Slovenian prince, who fights dragons, serpents and wizards to protect his people and merges with the tradition of the good ruler, represented by the myth of Kralj Matjaž.

The Tale of Kresnik and Princess Vesina

Once, when Kresnik was far away in strange lands, there came from somewhere a terrible serpent. When it entered Drava, in order to cross the water, the river banked up and flooded the fields; so huge was the monster. Then the snake crawled towards the castle and clasped it with its body, drawing tail into the mouth. In the castle lived imprisoned the beautiful princess Vesina. Six months the dragon lay in wait for Vesina beneath the castle walls. On St.George’s Day came the handsome count Kresnik with bright sword and stood on the snake. But the snake had wings and took to the air. Kresnik also had magic – he grew wings, and Kresnik and Ses did fierce battle in the air. When the serpent saw, that he was the weaker, he spoke to the hero: “No use to you, to take the maiden from me, she is your sister! No use to you!“
The hero answered: “What is fated, will happen; it will avail nothing to resist“, and swings with his arm the last, forceful blow against the snake. The snake fell heavily to the ground; the hero later threw it into the castle brook and chained it with heavy rope to the cliff, where it still lies today. When Kresnik defeated Ses, golden wheat fell to earth. Kresnik took Vesina for a wife and lived happily with her.

Source; www.thezaurus.com

A Mountain Dwarf in Rož

In the mine shafts of Rož, where they dig for ore, lives the mountain dwarf, (škrat) by the name Skubrl. He has a long beard, pointy nose and wears a red beret and red trousers. When the miners leave he starts work and you can hear the sound of his digging all over the mine. Where Skubrl works, there is ore for certain.
He likes miners, but also likes to steal their food. Miners are forbidden to whistle underground. If they whistled the dwarf would make them lose their way and take their ore. Once the miners left some brandy for Skubrl. He drank till he could no longer walk straight. Skubrl was so annoyed, when miners laughed, that the sound of his digging was never heard again and he never again showed them where to dig for ore. That is why they had to close the Plajberk mine in Rož.
A miner once took a quarter litre of brandy to work and hid it in a hollow, so that he could drink it during the break. The miner broke the rule that forbids miners to come drunk to work or bring wine or brandy with them.
When he came to his hiding place during the break, he found the bottle empty. The next day the same thing happened. He was very angry. So he bought a litre of the strongest brandy and put it into the hollow. “Get properly drunk, so that I will know who you are!” he thought to himself.
When he came back after the break, he found a little man, so inebriated, that he could not move. The miner ordered the dwarf to show him where to dig for ore. The little man took him by the hand and together they walked all over Peca. He showed the miner lead, iron, silver, gold and diamonds. When they had been everywhere, the dwarf left the miner at the entrance and laughed: “ You were stupid, that you did not take my belt, while I was befuddled by the devil oil. I would have had to show you the way to my treasures. As it is you only looked, and will remain as poor a man, as you had ever been.”
The dwarf disappeared, and the miner went home. However, he did not find his people or his home. He had been underground for three hundred years.

Source: www.thezaurus.com

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