13/04/2024

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Slavic Folklore: Lesnik – Leshy

Slavic Folklore: Lesnik – Leshy

Lesnik (Leshy) is a Slavic forest spirit very similar to Greek satyrs. He is loud, friendly towards shepherds, and depicted as either a humanoid with horns and hoofs or as an outdated gentleman.

Slavic peoples of the pre-Christian period were being deeply linked with the mother nature. The belief that the mother nature is inhabited by spirits and demons was so potent that traces of those beliefs are however existing currently. All researchers working with Slavic mythology agree that the forest had an important role in Slavic folklore (as elsewhere).

In the same way to Germanic beliefs, groves had been incredibly important in Slavic folklore, as they had been thought to be inhabited by spirits, demons, and ancestral souls. Numerous Slavic peoples still observe planting a tree following to a grave. This habit has roots in the perception that ancestral souls dwell in just the tree.

One of the finest recognised Slavic forest spirits is Lesnik (South Slavs) or Leshy (East and West Slavs). The expression stems from the aged Slavic word les (forest).

Southern Slavic Koleda processions integrated masked persons termed Lesnici (plural form of Lesnik). There had been typically two of them, and they would have on sheep skins with fleece experiencing outwards. They wore masks depicting a horned animal. These people’s purpose in the procession was to make noise. They were being also to make sexual insinuations toward Snashka (Snashka is a male dressed as a female during the Koleda procession).

Japanese Slavic Leshy likes loud laughter, singing, and yelling. He has a humanoid condition, with a pointed head, but no beard or mustache. He can take the form of a bare previous guy or a horned and hoofed animal. He is the master of all forest animals and welcoming in the direction of shepherds. His wife is termed Lehachika, Lesoviha, or Leshiha.

Certainly, Lesnik – Leshy is comparable to Greek satyr and has virtually similar characteristics. Lesnik is observed in nearly all Slavic folklores, is frequently believed to inhabit forests, and is normally depicted with goat hooves and horns. In Western Slavic custom, Lesnik is depicted as an animal dressed in white fur, who often will take women of all ages to his cottage coated in fur. He normally forces them to dance kolo all over him.

Somewhere else, Leshy is depicted as a peasant putting on sheep pores and skin. Although humanoid, he has goat horns, ears, and legs. His pores and skin is coated with thick fleece, and he yells upon approaching. He is fond of kidnapping females. Leshy loves shepherds and will take treatment of the livestock. At times, he can consider human variety, but he isn’t going to have eyebrows and eyelashes. Once in a while, he is depicted as a single-eyed.