Baldr`s Bale part 4

The iEsir took the body of Baldr and brought it to the sea. Hring- horni is the name of Baldr`s ship: it was greatest of all ships; the gods would have launched it and made Baldr`s pyre thereon, but the ship si i rred not forward. Then word was sent to Jotunheim after that giantess who is called Hyrrokkinn. When she had come, riding a wolf and having a viper for bridle, then she leaped off the steed; and Odin called to four berserks to tend the steed; but they were not able to hold it until they had felled it. Then Hyrrokkinn went to the prow of the boat and thrust it out at the first push, so that fire burst from the rollers, and all lands trembled. Thor became angry and clutched his hammer, and would straightway have broken her head, had not the gods prayed for peace for her.

Then was the body of Baldr borne out on shipboard; and when his wife, Nanna the daughter of Nep, saw that, straightway her heart burst with grief, and she died; she was borne to the pyre, and fire was kindled. Then Thor stood by and hallowed the pyre with Mjollnir; and before his feet ran a certain dwarf which was named Litr; Thor kicked at him with his foot and thrust him into the fire, and he burned. People of many races visited this burning:

First is to be told of Odin, how Frigg and the Valkyrs went with him, and his ravens; but Freyr drove in his chariot with the boar called Gold-mane, or Fearful-Tusk, and Heimdallr rode the horse called Gold-Top, and Freyja drove her cats. Thither came also much people of the Rime-Giants and the Hill- Giants. Odin laid on the pyre that gold ring which is called Draupnir; this quality attended it, that every ninth night there dropped from it eight gold rings of equal weight. Baldr`s horse was led to the bale-fire with all his trappings.

Now this is to be told concerning Hermodr, that he rode nine nights through dark dales and deep, so that he saw not before he was come to the river Gjoll and rode onto the Gjoll-Bridge; which bridge is thatched with glittering gold. Mddgudr is the maiden called who guards the bridge; she asked him his name and race, saying that the day before there had ridden over the bridge five companies of dead men; “but the bridge thunders no less under thee alone, and thou hast not the color of dead men. Why ridest thou hither on Hel-way?” He answered: “I am appointed to ride to Hel to seek out Baldr. Hast thou perchance seen Baldr on Hel-way?” She said that Baldr had ridden there over Gjoll`s Bridge,—“but down and north lieth Hel-way.”

Then Hermddr rode on till he came to Hel-gate; he dismounted from his steed and made his girths fast, mounted and pricked him with his spurs; and the steed leaped so hard over the gate that he came nowise near to it. Then Hermodr rode home to the hall and dismounted from his steed, went into the hall, and saw sitting there in the high-seat Baldr, his brother; and Hermodr tarried there overnight. At mom Hermodr prayed Hel that Baldr might ride home with him, and told how great weeping was among the disir.

All beloved

But Hel said that in this wise it should be put to the test, whether Baldr were so all-beloved as had been said: “If all things in the world, quick and dead, weep for him, then he shall go back to the disir; but he shall remain with Hel if any gainsay it or will not weep.” Then Hermodr arose; but Baldr led him out of the hall, and took the ring Draupnir and sent it to Odin for a remembrance. And Nanna sent Frigg a linen smock, and yet more gifts, and to Fulla a golden fingerring.

Then Hermodr rode his way back, and came into Asgard, and told all those tidings which he had seen and heard. Thereupon the .Esir sent over all the world messengers to pray that Baldr be wept out of Hel; and all men did this, and quick things, and the earth, and stones, and trees, and all metals,—even as thou must have seen that these things weep when they come out of frost and into the heat. Then, when the messengers went home, having well wrought their errand, they found, in a certain cave, where a giantess sat: she called herself Thokk. They prayed her to weep Baldr out of Hel; she answered:

“Thokk will weep waterless tears For Baldr`s bale-fare;

Living or dead, I loved not the churl`s son;

Let Hel hold to that she hath!”

And men deem that she who was there was Loki Laufeyarson, who hath wrought most ill among the Tesir.

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Baldr`s Bale part 3

And Frigg took oaths to this purport, that fire and water should spare Baldr, likewise iron and metal of all kinds, stones, earth, trees, sicknesses, beasts, birds, venom, serpents. And when that was done and made known, then it was a diversion of Baldr`s and the Tesir, that he should stand up in the Thing, and all the others should some shoot at him, some hew at him, some beat him with stones; but whatsoever was done hurt him not at all, and that seemed to them all a very worshipful thing.

But when Loki Laufeyarson saw this, it pleased him ill that Baldr took no hurt. He went to Fensalir to Frigg, and made himself into the likeness of a woman. Then Frigg asked if that woman knew what the iEsir did at the Thing. She said that all were shooting at Baldr, and moreover, that he took no hurt. Then said Frigg: “Neither weapons nor trees may hurt Baldr: I have taken oaths of them all.” Then the woman asked: “Have all things taken oaths to spare Baldr?” and Frigg answered: “There grows a tree-sprout alone westward of Valhall; it is called Mistletoe; I thought it too young to ask the oath of.” Then straightway the woman turned away; but Loki took Mistletoe and pulled it up and went to the Thing.

Hodr stood outside the ring of men, because he was blind. Then spike Loki to him: “Why dost thou not shoot at Baldr?” He answered: “Because I see not where Baldr is; and for this also, that I am weaponless.” Then said Loki: “Do thou also after the manner of other men, and show Baldr honor as the other men do. I will direct thee where he stands; shoot at him with this wand.” Hodr took Mistletoe and shot at Baldr, being guided by Loki: the shaft flew through Baldr, and he fell dead to the earth; and that was the greatest mischance that has ever befallen among gods and men.

Baldr was fallen

Then, when Baldr was fallen, words failed all the TEsir, and their hands likewise to lay hold of him; each looked at the other, and all were of one mind as to him who had wrought the work, but none might take vengeance, so great a sanctuary was in that place. But when the ALsir tried to speak, then it befell first that weeping broke out, so that none might speak to the others with words concerning his grief. But Odin bore that misfortune by so much the worst, as he had most perception of how great harm and loss for the TEsir were in the death of Baldr.

Now when the gods had come to themselves, Frigg spake, and asked who there might be among the TEsir, who would fain have for his own all her love and favor: let him ride the road to Hel, and seek if he may find Baldr, and offer Hel a ransom if she will let Baldr come home to Asgard. And he is named Hermodr the Bold, Odin`s son, who undertook that embassy. Then Sleipnir was taken, Odin`s steed, and led forward; and Hermodr mounted on that horse and galloped off.

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Baldr`s Bale part 2

Bjomson, a dramatist, poet, novelist, writer of stories, and political leader, was a great national figure, dominating the intellectual life of his country for half a century. His short stories are exquisitely written idylls, whose influence was felt throughout all the Scandinavian countries. Of his younger contemporaries Alexander Kielland is probably the most important. Like Bjomson he felt the influence of Europe, and used his knowledge of foreign literature the better to depict the people of his native land.

Among contemporary Norwegian writers Knut Hamsun and Johan Bojer stand supreme. Both are best known by their novels of modem life, though both wrote some plays and short stories. Hamsun wrote only a few of the latter: Bojer devoted more time to the form and produced a few literary masterpieces.

Sweden, like Denmark, has a literature that dates back to the Middle Ages, and even in the Eighteenth Century could boast of several writers, but the late Nineteenth was one of the richest periods in her literary annals. The first of the stories chosen for inclusion is one of August Strindberg`s. During the closing years of the last century Strindberg was Sweden`s most distinguished man of letters: dramatist, novelist and scientist, he wrote volumes of sketches and short stories, of which Love and Bread shows/the best-known aspect of his sceptical philosophy. Selma Lagerlof is chiefly known for her novels and stories of the country people among whom she lived.

The modem Swedish writers have brought the short story to a high point of technical perfection, but in so doing they have remained essentially products of their own land, if only by reason of their insistence upon local themes and the description of backgrounds that are familiar to them.


Snorri Sturluson (1178—1241)

Snorri Sturluson was bom in Iceland of an old Icelandic family. He received a good education, acquired wealth through marriage, and became a powerful landowner. He made several visits to Norway, where he was well received at court. Later in life he was implicated in political quarrels and wars, and was finally murdered by his son-in-law. He wrote many sagas, the Heimskringla, and the Prose, or Younger, Edda. His work was founded upon oral tradition and the writings of the earlier poets and historians.

Sturluson`s long works are full of episodes and incidents, many of which, like Baldr`s Bale, are unified short stories.

This version is from the translation of The Prose Edda, by Arthur Gilchrist Brodeur, published by the American-Scandinavian Foundation, New York, 1916, by whose permission it is here included.

Baldr`s Bale

(From the Prose Edda)

Now shall be told of those tidings which seemed of more consequence to the Yesir. The beginning of the story is this, that Baldr the Good dreamed great and perilous dreams touching his life. When he told these dreams to the Yesir, then they took counsel together; and this was their decision: to ask safety for Baldr from all kinds of dangers.

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Baldr`s Bale part 1

The Scandinavian Countries

Iceland Denmark Norway Sweden

There are four groups included under the heading Scandinavian Countries: the Icelandic, the Danish, the Norwegian, and the Swedish. Though there is an interesting modem Icelandic literature from which short stories could be selected for inclusion in this collection, the contribution of Iceland has been chosen from the Old Norse literature, which flourished nearly a thousand years ago, and which has since that time affected all the Scandinavian countries, England, France, and Germany.

On the other hand, the early beginnings of Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian literature are either too closely imitative of the Icelandic, or are not of themselves sufficiently interesting, and the most significant stories of those countries were written in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries.

The Icelandic story is found Imbedded in the Eddas and sagas, the great collections of mythology, religion, and history that were brought together between the Ninth and the Fourteenth Centuries. The first is the Elder Edda, written in verse, and collected by Samund the Wise before or about the year 1300. The Prose, or Younger, Edda, based largely upon the Elder Edda, was the work of Snorri Sturluson, who lived in the Thirteenth Century. The same writer composed the famous collection known as the Heimskringla.

The saga literature of Iceland is very extensive. Over two hundred volumes of these narratives are still in existence. Sagas were written and rewritten until the most finished products, like the Volsunga Saga, stand revealed as the work of genuine artists.

Iceland and Denmark have been in close relationship since the earliest days. The literature of Denmark dates back nearly a thousand years, but that country, like many others, does not emerge as a distinct entity of interest to the world at large until the Nineteenth Century, although occasional figures like those of Ludwig Holberg and Oehlenschlager stand out as exceptions.

The first of the modern writers is Hans Christian Andersen, a writer of genius whose fairy tales are the delight of the entire world. Meyer Goldschmidt, though he was of a more realistic turn of mind, developed a certain type of short story with rare skill and Drachmann, too, has done some excellent work in this form, though he was also a painter, poet, novelist, politician, and man of affairs.

With Jacobsen we come to the first outstanding Danish novelist. He is said to have initiated realistic and psychological fiction in Denmark, though his debt to Andersen is freely acknowledged.

Norway was separated in 1814 from Denmark, and not long after it set about forming a literature of its own. To Wergeland and Welhaven is due the credit of having initiated the movement that produced Ibsen and Bjomson. But before these two came Asbjomson and Moe, whose collections of stories served to show later writers the wealth of material that was ready to hand. It is well known that Ibsen made use of the Asbjornson collections in writing his Peer Gynt.

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Falcon part 6

He lay thus, while the herald read aloud the law, “twelve sols in silver—six ounces of flesh from near the heart—thus Sir Enguerrand protects the pleasures of the nobles.” He did not look up, when his skin was cut open, so that the smell of blood should attract the falcon, and when it plunged its beak in his breast, he did not utter a cry, merely quivered, so that the bird`s eyes flashed angrily, and it stretched out its wings as if about to flap them.

The seneschal`s daughters leaned their heads forward with a gleam of interest in their strangely dreamy eyes, but they did not raise their hands from their laps, and their robes lay as before in unruffled folds. The horses snorted at the smell of blood and stamped on the frosty ground, so that the red cloths fluttered in the blue pallor of the morning air; but Renaud lay silent, and the huntsmen stood in vain with distended cheeks and their horns at their lips, ready to drown his cry of pain.

Renaud dreamed

The first pang had torn at his most delicate fibers; it was as if his heart would go with it, but afterwards he had almost grown insensible with satisfaction, with dizzy torpor, and as the blood flowed warm from the wound, and the keen beak tore at his breast, Renaud dreamed himself in the lofty azure atmosphere of his dreams, and he understood all, death and honor, and he felt how it burned and dazzled—the golden sun of the heroic sagas.

When Sir Enguerrand thought that the six ounces of the law were fulfilled, he gave the signal to his men to blow, and the falcon was lifted off, satiated with blood, his eyes again filled with calm pride. The procession was again set in motion, with greater mirth than before, toward the reeds which shone yellow in the distance; but Renaud could not be wakened. He had dreamed himself to death. They merely unbound him and let him lie with red heather beneath his head.

But the Iceland falcon was never allowed to sit on his master`s hand, for Sir Enguerrand did not love to drink from a goblet on which the lips of another had imprinted a kiss.

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Falcon part 5

They formed a semi-circle, plume by plume, shoulder by shoulder, round a bush where the prisoner was tied. As the horse-cloths fluttered in the wind, red penetrated deep into the shadow, gloomy like hopeless longing, and red burned in the sunshine, light as victorious jubilation. The noble ladies` supple necks leaned forward out of the carriage, and their conical hoods formed one line with the sloping contours of their shoulders.

They were like herons, Renaud thought, and he almost expected them to utter shrill cries when the notes of the horns fell far away like projected stones, and all grew silent. But when he saw them more clearly, with their thin, straight lips and strangely dreamy eyes, which were always directed in cold ecstasy toward something infinitely distant, and the indolent white hands in their laps and the long folds of their robes, then they seemed to him wondrously beautiful like the richest images of saints with dimly burning candle flames at their feet, and it pained him that they should see him bound. He let his eyes run on, past the damsels—pretty, shy birds, whom he would have liked to frighten with a whistle—past the retainer`s red faces and mouths gaping with curiosity, past the brown plain, where he had run until he was tired and dreamed until he was weary.

Long sunny day

He knew the fate that awaited him, but when the Iceland falcon was brought forward, and he understood that this was the bird which was to execute the punishment, he laughed with joy. His heart throbbed with pride, as when they were his—the bird and the long sunny day and the fields with listening winds and swaying trees with the yellow leaves of autumn. When the falcon had again beheld the light and accustomed himself to seeing, he gathered his strength for flight and waited to be cast aloft from the bearer, whilst his eyes sought for prey in the air—they were keen and fierce with hunger and flamed as with sparks, and they had no memories in their depths, they recognized none.

But Renaud`s eyes looked anxiously inquiring into the bird`s and were moistened with sorrow not to meet their gaze. They should have reflected his days of daring and longing, his contempt and his dreams on the red heather, but they merely waited greedily for prey, cold and cruel, like the curiosity of the people or the jest on Sir Enguerrand`s thin lips. He felt the pang of grief more bitterly than before, and turned his head aside to recollect himself, with his eyelids closed about fluttering thoughts.

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Falcon part 4

Wandering boys soon caught sight of Sir Enguerrand`s bird in Rengud`s hand; the knight`s menials seized him and led him to the castle, and he shivered when the falcon was taken from him, motionless and proud as always, without turning his bent neck, without a glance from his cold, calm eyes. The bird was taken to his master, but he had not even a caress for the favorite he had missed, for he had allowed himself to be touched by ignoble hands. Sir Enguerrand gazed down in silence at Renaud, and in his mind there settled more and more distinctly the memory of an old game-law of the days when the noble`s foot lay steel-shod on the neck of the people, and pleasures fluttered inviolable about his shoulders—and his eyebrows closed about the certainty that the old law had never been repealed. The law provided that he who stole a falcon with the mark of a knight on its foot should pay twelve sols of silver or six ounces of flesh from his ribs under the beak of a famished bird of prey.

Two daughters

Sir Enguerrand knew of Renaud`s poverty and looked at his brown, naked breast. He stretched out his hand, and touched it with a testing, unfeeling gesture. Then he sent a message to the neighboring castle, which raised its pointed roofs above the forest, and invited the seneschal and his two daughters to be his guests three days later and see some falcons fly, after they had heightened the solemnity of a thief`s punishment by their presence—and they were to come before dawn.

Renaud`s eyes had been dilated by the darkness of his prison, they were black and immobile and the pupils merely contracted as they slowly grew brighter and reflected the torn clouds and rising sun in the east. Behind Sir Enguerrand was borne the Iceland falcon, his claws sharply fastened in the glove and a hood over his keen, hungry eyes which had not seen food for three days.

But farther behind swayed a line of color which burned and flamed. Six light-colored horses, almost blue in the dawn, were led by pages at a gallop, and red velvet cloths were lifted from their curved necks. The carriage that they drew was red, and in it gold shone heavily over the delicate breasts and slender arms of the seneschal`s daughters.

Six mounted damsels followed with hair as blonde as corn and their pointed feet playing under the folds of their skirts. Six huntsmen blew notes, which seemed to dance and turn round like wheels out of the mouths of the crooked horns, and the lines of the plain also danced and dashed past one another in a wine-colored mist, while the clouds above had shining borders like butterflies` wings.

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Falcon part 3

Afterwards he did not fly again that day; when Renaud threw him aloft and ran with an enticing call, he beat his wings a few times and settled on his shoulder again in proud coldness against the laughing face of the boy. He seemed to despise all trifling, and Renaud soon ceased, while his look acquired the far-gazing seriousness of the falcon`s. He became more devoted to him than to anything he had possessed. It seemed to him that the falcon was his own soul, his longing with broad wings and victorious glance.

But there was pain in his love, gloomy foreboding of misfortune, and at times he feared lest the bird should fly from him in indifference, disappear with a mocking sound of bells, and it would be like death, so void. Or it seemed to him that the falcon was honor, resplendent with sunshine in the azure air, which now rested on his shoulder for fresh journeys. In the midst of his joy he was oppressed by his insignificance; he scarcely dared to look at the bird, and his heart ached that he would never share his joy, that his gaze would never soften at the sight of his master, and he fled to the land of dreams.

He laid himself down in the middle of the moor with red heather under his head; while the clouds glided past like the fates of men, light and heavy, concentrated within firm lines or scattered in flight, always with the invisible hand of the wind on his shoulder, and the bushes bent down their rustling golden twigs, and Renaud told stories to his falcon.

Sword Excalibur

King Arthur had come again from the sea of Brittany. His sword Excalibur, blue like the night sky in cold weather, was handed him again; his twelve knights raised their heavy heads from the table of stone and shook off their sleep; the ground rang under their steps. Gareth was present, the Prince`s son, who dressed as a scullion and turned Lynnette`s echoing mockery into love. Renaud was also there, a noble born, and his horse pranced under him, and the falcon, who now slept with lowered head, sat erect on his hand and sought his glance with eyes resplendent with joy and the golden sun of the heroic sagas.

But the clouds glided past like the fates of men, were driven all dark one above the other, and formed an arch of gigantic blocks, where the rays of the sun fell through the openings, pale and sharp as spears, and the falcon dreamed gloomy dreams of impotent, wrath and awoke with a shriek.

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Falcon part 2

And the falcon became his. He bent his head forward to listen, his eyes calm and watchful, when the frosty twigs cracked under Renaud`s step in the silence of the morning. He sprang lightly down from his cage and stretched himself toward his hand and flapped his wings as if to fly—this was merely a reminder—and so they hastened out to the expanses of the moors, which were gradually becoming light.

Their eyes gazed sharply at the dark red sky. Black lay the hills and the sparse thickets, and the trees slept on, their boughs heavy with silent birds. But the sky became brighter, flaming with gold and red, and the lines of the fields became blue, and the owl flew low over the ground seeking her hiding-place, and the day-birds stretched their wings and chirped gently on account of the cold, and their flight stood black against the glimmering air. But Reriaud and his falcon hastened past, for these were sparrows and thrushes—no prey for them.

Grew smaller against

Down toward the marshes the herons were already shrieking and flying with long strokes of the wing in wide circles; there was their prey. There the falcon was cast aloft, his breast already distended and his wings ready to beat, and Renaud saw him turn to gold in the sunshine, stood with blind eyes and whirling brain, whilst the bird grew smaller against the deep azure, and he heard how the sound of his bells mocked the cries of the herons.

They circled like wheels in their fear. Now they thought to dart down to the shore and hide their long necks and stupid, terrified heads with the backward-leaning crests under the dark trees; now they tried in hesitating uncertainty to rise up in a spiral, relying on their broad wings to carry them higher than the enemy could pursue, and they wavered like reeds with the pale terror of their hearts.

But the falcon from the beginning picked out one of the strongest, one of those which at once flew aloft, for he loved to try his strength and feel keen, light air beneath his wings, and he raised himself as quickly and unswervingly as if he had circled about a sunbeam. Soon he was highest. Less than a sparrow he seemed, but something in the position of his wings, in the concentrated strength of his body, gave one an idea of the flashing wildness of his eyes and of his extended claws— and suddenly he fell, heavy as steel, on the neck of his defenseless, upward-turning prey, and the two sank like a stone, hardly whirling even a wing`s breadth.

Then Renaud ran and swam and waded to get there quickly, before the heron, stupefied by the blow, could pull itself together and in the wildness of despair use its keen beak; but the falcon dealt the death-blow sharply and quickly, and turned his large eyes, already calmed, toward his master, for he did not love to stain his feathers with blood, and waited to have the warm heart given him.

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Falcon part 1

Per Hallstrom (1866—1960)

Per Hallstrom travelled widely. He was for some time an ana-lytical chemist in Chicago, and his work shows traces of foreign influence. He brought the art of writing stories to a high point of perfection and is one of the few Scandinavian masters of that form.

The Falcon is translated by Herbert G. Wright. It first appeared in the American-Scandinavian Review, October, 1920, and is reprinted by permission of the editor.

The Falcon

Sir Enguerrand rode out hunting every day, and generally with his red, gold-embroidered glove on, for only the( flight of the Iceland falcon with his tinkling bells could awaken music within him and make him breathe the keen, light morning air with joy, as he were drinking an animating wine. One day the falcon had driven a heron bleeding into a marsh behind a copse, where the huntsman found it and broke its neck, but the falcon himself was gone.

Whether he had been attracted by a fresh prey, or, had shunned the brown water, or by some caprice had let himself be thrown aloft and carried away by the wind—in vain they searched; in vain they called caressing names; in vain they let the sound of the horn beat against every height. Sir En- guerrand struck the trembling mouth of the head falconer with his glove until the blood flowed, and rode home at a gallop over the tufts of grass, his lips closed still more firmly and his eyelids lowered still more gloomily over the listless pupils—and the falcon was not found.

But Renaud found him, caught by the thong round his foot in a briarbush, motionless, awaiting death from starvation with a firm grip of the branch, one wing hanging, the other raised defiantly, the narrow head stretched forward threateningly with eyes fixed and beak keen— beautiful he was amidst the blood-red berries. Renaud`s hand trembled with eagerness as he disentangled the thong from the thorns, as the bells jingled about his fingers on the ring with the mark of Sir Enguerrand. He called aloud with joy, when the sharp claws cut into his sinewy arm, and he was his, the falcon with the broadest breast and the longest wings and the proudest eyes of burning gold.

He was all the more his, since he would never be able to show him to anyone, for he knew that rigorous laws protected the sport of the knights. In the forest he would build a cage for him; early in the morning he would steal thither, before the bird had shaken off the cold; over the fields they would go together, sweeping with their gaze the white upper regions; they would become fond of each other, as they let the sunshine rise and fall over their heads and the wind carry off their silent thoughts, and the falcon would never miss his red glove nor the restraint of his pearl-bedecked hood.

He fastened him again and ran toward the pool. Soon he came back with a duck which he had killed with a stone, and the falcon took it, and Renaud`s heart was benumbed with intoxication, for it was a sign that the falcon did not despise him and would be his.

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Kukeri Carnival

Visit Bulgaria and become part of the different world of the Kukeri Carnival

Kukeri Carnival – The boundless magic called Kukeri Carnival!

Among the most colourful customs in the Bulgarian Calendar of traditions are the Kukeri Games. When you travel to Bulgaria (private Sofia tour) you will see for yourselves that people preserved the custom with its whole pagan power. Although the custom bears the peculiar characteristics of each different region, as a whole, the ceremonies and rituals are pretty much the same. Once you’ve been part of the spectacular scenario of folk theatre, kukeri games, you will come back again and again. For the sound of the cow-bells called `chan` that starts early in the morning cannot be mistaken; as well as the scary, hairy masks and crazy costumes and the people wearing them jumping around.

Travel to Bulgaria for a festive Bulgaria holiday

kukeri carnival

The roots of this holiday can be sought as far back as the early centuries long before Christianity. Bulgarians used to worship Surva and devoted the holiday of New Year to that God. Asking Him to bless their fields and send happiness and prosperity to them.

In ancient pagan times the man used to believe that the world of the living and that of his ancestors are one whole and closely connected. Man used to believe in his own fertility like in the fertility of his land and animals. Strongly believing that those ancestors from `the other world` had the necessary extraordinary power `to ensure` that fertility, he sought for connection with them in every significant moment of his life. To be able to experience it, man needed to be `somebody else`. The mask is his means `to get to the other side` and contribute to his own prosperity. The mask stays at the border between `our` and `the other` world.

Being part of a Kukeri Carnival

To be part of a Kukeri Carnival is one of the things to do in Bulgaria. The best places to visit in Bulgaria for kukeri are Pernik, Razlog, Smolyan. Actually, almost all around the country there are celebrations like that. Whole Bulgaria tries to scare the evil spirits away and meet the new season, spring. You can travel to Bulgaria and `cleanse` yourselves while dancing and jumping around with the kukeri.

kukeri carnival

From Christmas till beginning of spring Bulgaria is literary `invaded` by Kukers. Winter rituals start during `the dirty days` (12 days from Christmas on) when according to the people`s beliefs, `evil power` would come from the world of the dead. The rituals are mainly in the western Bulgaria. The main idea of the Kukers of this region is to send `the evil spirits` away. Because they might harm the living. The only protected are the ones with masks. Not only are they protected, but they also have the power to protect the others.

The article above has been taken from To learn extra, please click on the next hyperlink Kukeri Carnival.

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The `Pearl of the Black Sea` is impatient to see you enjoying your Bulgaria vacation

Bulgaria vacation in Nessebar– the scent of the sea and of journey through times long since passed

Often referred to as the `Pearl of the Black Sea` and `Bulgaria`s Dubrovnik`, Nessebar is more like a magical and timeless feeling than a resort. Windmills, ancient fortresses and sea depths that keep ancient secrets… This is not a fairytale for times long since passed but the decor of a modern and contemporary town – Nessebar, perfect for a great Bulgaria vacation and private tour Bulgaria.

bulgaria vacation

Nessebar is a town with ancient and rich history. İt is in the central part of the Bulgarian Black Sea coast, about 30 km away from Burgas. The ancient part of the town is situated on a peninsula connected to the mainland by a narrow man-made isthmus. Variety of different civilizations, that occupied the place, left their marks. As a result, in 1983 UNESCO included Nessebar in its list of World Heritage Sites. This is due to the abundance of historic buildings in the town. Thus it made the town a desired place for a memorable holiday in Bulgaria.

Enjoy the `multi-coloured` Bulgaria tourism in Nessebar

The hard task is for the tourists now – how to capture all the beauty of Nessebar!? With a camera, through knowledge or experience, or simply by touching an ancient stone… Or why not use all of these and plunge into the adventure of living Nessebar.

This article is copied from For more information, you can click on Bulgaria vacation.

Read More about Kukeri Carnival


Private Tour Bulgaria

The importance of being Important while on Customized Tours Bulgaria

As a company, we in EnmarBg decided to focus on customized, private tour Bulgaria because we believe that it`s best when you travel with the people you love, family or friends.

private tour bulgaria

Yes, you will see several itineraries already done on our website for you but our intention, in fact is to help you get an idea of what Bulgaria is. We also like to help you get acquainted with the country and the region. (Sofia sightseeing) And not only that but to help you learn a little bit more about the culture of this amazing country before you start planning your Bulgaria holidays.

We believe that everybody needs personal touch, understanding and excellent service. That`s why we devote our hobby and job on following you, your interests and your dreams. Travelling is not just going from one place to another. It is a journey that should touch one`s soul. It is a journey that one should go back to again and again in their memories with a smile…

Design Your Private Tour Bulgaria

Customized, Private & Personal Bulgaria Tours

If we can make a tourist remember their private tour Bulgaria with joy; If we can make them feel that they should share it with family and friends; when we make them want to visit once again that small, ex-communist country, a country profoundly rich in history, culture, adventures; when we make tourists keep that country with beautiful nature in their hearts, then only, we from EnmarBg, can be proud of ourselves but also more demanding of ourselves as people and our job.

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Customized Tour Balkan

Customized Tours Balkan Day 1 Our Balkan Holidays tour starts from Sofia to Thessaloniki sister of Alexander the Great

customized balkan tour

Our Customized Tours Balkan starts… 310 km, 4 hours (Bulgaria – Greece)

In the morning we leave Sofia for Rupitе. It will be a short stay in Bulgaria but a good starting point for an unforgettable Balkan Holidays tour.

Rupite is the place where Baba Vanga (Grandmother Vanga – one of the most famous prophets of the world) had received people for almost 25 years before she passed away. Rupite is a sacred place, suggested to her by the forces from above. When Vanga was asked why she chose this site to spend the rest of her life and to build the temple she said mysteriously: “I have my time here. This site is very special. I use it like an accumulator and it gives me energy and power. A terrible fire burned there in the past and a great secret is hidden in the ridge above us.”

Great emotions hide in the customized tours Balkan

Following a lunch break, we leave for Thessaloniki, Greece. Then we pass the border, and we arrive in Thessaloniki. The name of the city comes from Alexander the Great`s half-sister. Cassander of Macedon founded the city in 315 BC. Thessaloniki is Greece’s 2nd major economic, industrial, commercial and political centre. It is also the only city in Greece that has ministry building (Ministry of Macedonia) outside of capitol. In Thessaloniki we will visit Ataturk’s house (the founder of the Republic of Turkey), the White Tower, St. Dimitrios Cathedral. As well as the Statue of Alexander the Great, Venezelo and Constantine statues, Vardar, Eleftherios, Macedonia and Aristotle Squares.

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Private Balkan trip

Wake your senses up with private Balkan trip

A private Balkan trip in the Balkan countries means a good possibility to sink into the history of the region and put the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle together.

What is a better way to tease and wake your senses up than travelling? They say that travelling is the key to happiness. Do you believe it? I do. Join us and let`s find out together.

The countries on the Balkan Peninsula are all different and at the same time they share this `similar difference`. (Balkan tours 2019 ) For example, `The coffee we had tastes like the Turkish coffee but they call it Greek. Or, ‘ Isn`t that dish the same as the one we had in the place, etc.` These kinds of conversations probably look familiar to you. I am sure most of you experienced them and enjoyed them really much.

croatia balkan tours 2019

Our private Balkan trip travels around the Balkan countries and enjoys their most interesting, attractive and `have-great-stories-to-tell` places.

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