what to wear when…in a ukrainian fairy tale.
examples: магічне яйце (the magic egg), селянських і ворон царя (the poor man and the raven tsar), корови голова (the cow’s head, a cinderella variant that features a father’s love instead of a prince’s proposal and oksana’s step-sister olena as the false heroine)
a high frequency of animal tales is especially characteristic of the ukrainian repertoire…ukrainian fairy tales, told in colloquial language, contain a number of formalized expressions that are often rhymed. introductory formulas serve to transport the audience into the fictional time and world of fairy tales…a frequent formula goes: “in a certain kingdom, in a certain land, there lived…” or “long, long ago, when we did not yet exist…” or “when perhaps our great-grandparents were not in the world…” a standard conclusion of ukrainian fairy tales ending with a marriage goes: “i was there and drank mead and wine. it ran down my mustache but did not go into my mouth.” [the archetypal hero ivan] is characterized by various epithets [that reflect his parentage, socioeconomic status, or personality]. we find two groups of heroes, often the youngest of three brothers. on the one hand, there are unpromising heroes, like ivan the fool, who become strong and handsome in the course of the story. on the other hand, there are valiant knights (geroi-bogatyri), like ivan the bitch’s son, who are predominantly dragon-slayers. the hero’s helpers are often females, his wife or fiancée, sometimes endowed with supernatural capacities, and baba yaga [one of many characters that appear in both ukrainian and russian fairy tales]. human adversaries are the king, the hero’s uncle, and (especially in ukrainian tales) the pan, the polish landlord…outlaw folklore plays an important part in the narrative traditions of the ukrainian carpathians (for example, in tales about the bandits oleksa dovbush or nikolai shuhai, who became popular heroes).
post 709 of an infinity-part series