Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Christmas Tradition:

In Russia, for Christmas there is no Santa Claus, but instead a fictional character named Ded Moroz, which translates directly to Grandfather of Frost. Ded Moroz is thinned than Santa Claus, has a round cap with fur, long extravagantly embroidered robe, valenki (common Russian leather boots), a magical staff, 3 horses to pull his troika, delivers presents on New Years Eve (since Christmas is typically celebrated on January 5th due to the equinox), has an estate in Veliky Ustyug where children can write letters and visit, and has an accomplice- Snegurachka (which translates directly to Snow Maiden). Snegurachka is Ded Moroz's granddaughter and she helps deliver the gifts (which is not done secretively, but in person, unlike Santa Claus) and wears a similar outfit to Ded Moroz only it is silver and blue.

The Tale of the Snow Maiden is:

This Snegurochka is the daughter of Spring and Winter who appears to a childless couple as a winter blessing. Unable or forbidden to love, Snegurochka remains indoors with her human parents until the pull of the outdoors and the urge to be with her peers becomes unbearable. When she falls in love with a human boy, she melts.

The Tale of Father Frost is:

A woman had a stepdaughter and a daughter of her own, and she hated her stepdaughter. One day, she ordered her husband to take her out into the winter fields and leave her there, and he obeyed. Father Frost found her there, and she was polite and kind to him, and he gave her a chest full of beautiful things and fine garments. When her stepmother sent her father to bring back her body to be buried, he went, and the dog said that she was coming back beautiful and happy, and despite the bribe of a pancake, went on saying it.

When the stepmother saw what her stepdaughter had brought back, she ordered her husband to bring her own daughter out to the fields. The girl was rude to Father Frost, and he froze her to death. When her husband went out to bring her back, the dog said that she would be buried, and despite the bribe of a pancake, repeated it. When he brought back the body, the old woman wept.

1 comment:

Scott said...

I loved your input on the Ded Moroz character...I don't know much about him and I hope I represented him well here: