Marzanna met in the forest ...
Mar¾anna, Mara, Mar¾ena, Morana, Moréna, Mora, Marmora or Morena is a Slavic goddess associated with death, winter and nightmares. Some sources equate her with the Latvian goddess Māra, who takes a person's body after their death. Some medieval Christian sources such as the Mater Verborum also compare her to the Greek goddess Hecate, associating her with sorcery. The Polish chronicler Jan D³ugosz (15th cent.) likened her to Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture.
Modern Marzanna effigy, Poland
The tradition of burning or drowning an effigy of Marzanna to celebrate the end of winter is a folk custom that survives in Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Typically taking place on the day of the vernal equinox, the rite involves setting fire to a female straw effigy, drowning it in a river, or both. In Poland, this is often performed during a field trip by children in kindergartens and primary schools. The effigy can range in size from a puppet to a life-size dummy. This ritual represents the end of the dark days of winter, the victory over death, and the welcoming of the spring rebirth.
It concerns the "drowning of Marzanna," a large figure of a woman made from various rags and bits of clothing which is thrown into a river on the first day of the spring calendar. Along the way, she is dipped into every puddle and pond ... Very often she is burned along with herbs before being drowned and a twin custom is to decorate a pine tree with flowers and colored baubles to be carried through the village by the girls. There are of course many superstitions associated with the ceremony: you can't touch Marzanna once she's in the water, you can't look back at her, and if you fall on your way home you're in big trouble. One, or a combination of any of these can bring the usual dose of sickness and plague.
Critiques | Translate
snunney (94993) 2014-03-22 7:09
A most unusual subject this and one I have never heard of before; perfect to present on TE! A fine capture with pleasing light and warm agreeable tones. Excellent clarity. Have a good weekend.
Romano46 (18472) 2014-03-22 7:15
una foto molto originale e caratterizzata da colori brillanti, notevole nitidezza e composizione e ambientazione molto piacevole.
Ciao e buon fine settimana
Silvio1953 (136829) 2014-03-22 8:17
Ciao Krzysztof, fun composition with puppet in a beautiful forest, wonderful colors, splendid light and excellent clarity, very well done my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio
jurek1951 (42196) 2014-03-22 8:24
to teraz przyjdzie napewno lato bo wiosne juz mielismy,u mnie juz zaczlo padac ma byc pare dni zimno,ladna ta marzanna,pozdrawiam
Noel_Byrne (29259) 2014-03-22 8:52
For a goddess of death and nightmares, she has a very happy smiley face! I have never heard of this figure before, and its a pleasure to learn of it here through your excellent woodland capture.
Thanks as always
photographer_sg (4412) 2014-03-22 11:46
Your photograph is pure fun provided by the goddess of death and nightmares :-). Lovely composition with great details and vivid colours. Most interesting note. The tradition of burning effigies of mythological demons also exist in India. Thanks for sharing and have a great weekend.
COSTANTINO (62727) 2014-03-22 12:11
this shot is a great presentation of a Slavic
goddess associated with death winter and nightmares
your notes are really useful to me like a real
book with relative information
traditions can be found everywhere in
have nice Sunday
tedesse (25135) 2014-03-22 12:13
Chyba nie zostala utopiona:( dzis pogoda kiepska.
Jutro wolne i marna perspektywa:(
Pozdrawiam, milej nocy.
Subhogen (4067) 2014-03-22 18:27
This is a fine photo of a colourful puppet in a forest.
Reading your note I wonder how cultures are similar despite the geographical distance. In India too we have a similar goddess of poverty, misery and famine who is given the ugliest of shape and form and is thrown out of the house on one auspicious day when the new harvest is brought home. Thanks for presenting this and letting us know of an interesting custom in your country.
shreya2000 (2149) 2014-03-23 1:44
Nicely demonstrated effigy of Marzanna. You have also shown good detail on the subject. Thanks for sharing.
abmdsudi (50568) 2014-03-23 8:48
What a difference colourful shot superbly worked and supported by a fascinating narrative. I like the approach, you've transformed this given it a much stronger image and focused of attention where it matters. This is not a shot I'd have thought of taking but this looks a perfect resting place for the effigy!! Wonderful image, great job on the exposure with no burnt out highlights, Excellent and tfs.
mesutilgim (92414) 2014-03-23 14:05
Hello dear Krzysztof,
My green smilies are "sold out" for today but I could not wait and write you something for this wonderfull capture with many interesting notes.
I've learned again something through TE !
TFS and best regards
clic (16628) 2014-03-23 16:16
You posted much interesting informations about this representation of a witch that I first mistook for a funeral icon that relatives post alongside highways after the death of a parent in a car accident.
Nice and original poster, indeed!
See you soon!
jmdias (61390) 2014-03-28 1:49
interesting this doll made of plants and flowers, in some aspects is similar with those ones make of snow. very interesting aspect of the tradition in this region of the world. your note is nice too.
fritzi007 (10401) 2014-08-11 14:17
wirklich ein super Foto und eine riesengroße Information, gratuliere dir!
- Copyright: Krzysztof Dera (Fis2) (93911)
- Genre: Places
- Medium: Color
- Date Taken: 2014-03-22
- Categories: Daily Life, Ceremony, Event
- Camera: Canon EOS 30D, Canon EF-S 18-55mm f3,5-5,6
- Exposure: f/4, 1/40 seconds
- More Photo Info: view
- Photo Version: Original Version
- Date Submitted: 2014-03-22 6:46