Author of all texts about mythology on these web-pages is Lidija Bajuk:

  1. PERUN
      - The Sky
      - The Mountain
      - Leluya
      - Ball lightning
      - Candlemen
      - Fairies
      - Witches
      - Water
      - Bogorodica
      - The Moon
      - Corn Spirit
      - Hair
      - Embroidery
      - Light
      - Forest
      - The Cap, Little Hat


The source of night light, ''the night sun'', Sun's brother/sister, sometimes mother/father, i.e. son/daughter, deity of fruitfulness which governs the cycles of vegetation, pregnancy and growth.

Because of it, in many cultures, depending on the change of the moon, it has been represented as a pregnant woman, that is an ancestress or goddess, and the moonlight as milk. It protects farmers, travellers, seamen, merchants and thieves. A legend was recorded in which the moon represented as a pale, young man transforms into a fragile, fair haired maid. This legend records the mixing of different beliefs and religions from the pre-Christian era, or the possibility of an ancient deity to change sex. Some people believed that the Sun and the Moon were the same (one of them being the source of light during daytime and the other during night-time). Soon they were imagined as deities, a brother and a sister having an incestuous relationship, i.e. as twin brothers of diametrically opposite characters fighting for their beautiful sister's affection (the morning star). Others, believing that the night-time was reserved for love and passion, thought that the (night) sun was a handsome god coupled with Luna, a breathtaking goddess (like Volos and Voloska from the Slavic legends). The longer the history of mankind was, the more complicated legends became. Some of it happened because of the influence and mixing of different religions, some of it because of the human desire to tell more interesting stories, with more intrigues and suspense. So, one, two or three cultural archetypes would get moulded into a series of characters having different relationships (One example is the famous story of Cinderella, which exists in Croatian folk literature, in which the characters of Cinderella, her two stepsisters and stepmother actually have the same origin. Cinderella represents the night or winter aspect of the sun, her father the main deity of the heaven, the dead mother the daytime and the fruitful part of the year, the stepmother and her daughters the night-time and the winter cycle, and the prince the coming of spring.) Because of the misteriousness of the night, but also because of the presumption that songs are remains of old ritual holy scriptures, the Moon is an adventurer, wanderer, singer (in ancient Greece-Orpheus) and poet and his language is a mute language. Identifying dead ancestors with different plants and the transition of their souls into these plants has always been connected with the moon cult. The new moon, shaped like a sickle, symbolically appears in the shape of a farmer's tool among farming people. On different garments it represents a sign of protection or fertility and plenitude. On the other hand it is the predecessor of the crown, a symbol of power. This is the reason why it is the time of becoming young (You should hold your ear, jump three times and say: ''You are old and I am young!'' to the moon. It is also the time when sorcerers and vampires are born. It was an old custom in Medjimurje for one of the members of the household to announce the coming of the new moon, after which everybody crossed themselves three times, went out in the garden and kneeled facing the Moon and saying: ''May God grant me health this month. Make me young as you are.!'' Then they would bring out a bucket of water from which they would tell fortune and then wash their face. A newborn baby was brought out and shown to the new moon and the words: ''Here is a young child for you. It is young and you are old!'' were said three times so that the Moon wouldn't harm it. In pre-Christian times it was believed that, when the Moon came out, goddesses Friday and Sunday came with it, so on every first Friday of the month there were celebrations connected with prayers for good crops from the orchard and garden, and on every first Sunday of the month young girls and women went to springs to wash believing that the water had the strongest healing power at that time. The time of the waxing moon is good for ploughing, sowing plants that have a fruit above the ground, cutting your hair, christening, sharing secrets. On the contrary, during the time of the full Moon, as well as on every first Friday of the month, no work should be done (it is only recommended to cut wood, marry and conceive a child because it is going to be a boy), but you shouldn't spin or sew (because the clothes will fall apart or become your death apparel), wash, dance, leave your tools in the moonlight, drink water that reflects the ageing Moon, the moonlight shouldn't touch a wound (or it will never heal). This is also the time when sleep-walkers are born (people who have worn clothes which have been dried outside during the night are also prone to sleep-walking). A child should under no circumstances look at this ''dried up'' Moon or else it will drain it, that is the child will dry up, grow weak. Like there are solar dances in the ancient traditions (dedicated to the Sun), there are also lunar dances (dedicated to the Moon). They were mostly danced by women (the Moon either represents the female principle or is represented as a man to whom young women give themselves during a dance), the dance took place during the new or the full Moon. The waning Moon should be looked at if you have any ailments, and you should sew tuberous plants. The night between the last quarter and the new moon is the most dangerous time of the moon's cycle, governed by monsters and ghosts. In the old days peole were very afraid of the eclipse of the Moon because they thought that a horrible monster was hunting and devouring it (popular expressions used to indicate this evil time are: ''The Moon is caught!'' and ''The Moon is eaten.''), so they made deafening noise in order to chase it away. Similar to this belief is a disturbing legend of the rise of the mythical snake/dragon on a mountain which threatens to clogg every water spring causing draught.

The dark Moon was often identified with the fallen Sun, Hors, the rulers of the underground (with Tur/Volos/Veles/Velebic/Vlas(in)/Vlasic/Blaise – the patron saint of agriculture and farming which are the origins of different geographical names in Croatia like Veles, Velesovo, Velesovac, Velez, Vlasic, Volosko always situated in valleys near water; with Podzemljar (''undergroundman''), Tatomir, Pokol, Paklenjak (''hellman'') - which are the origins of town names in Croatia such as Paklarevo, Paklenik, Paklesnica, Pakliste, Peklenica; with Poklad), with dusk and night (with Prijezd, Crn-bog (''black god''), Mracnjak(''darkman''); there is a saying ''Every cow is dark in the night.'') and with winter (Zim(o)nik-''winterman''), with keepers of treasures (with Oganj (''fireman''), (J)Anje, (J)Anja (''lamb''), Janko (of Budim), Rajko, Bluebeard, Pepelnjak, Zlarin, goldsmith, dwarf), with the demons of evil (Pripegal, Zli-bog (''evil god''), Ljut-bog (''angry god''), Strah (''fear''), Hudic (''bad one''), evil spirit, rage, misery, devil, satan, ghost) with black, green or brown monsters (a winged snake, a dragon (zmaj, ala, azdaja, halva) a black winged horse, a beast, a fire-wolf, a werewolf, a vampire, a doghead, a water-sprite), with strong, superhuman creatures (Zmajan (''dragonman''), Sur, Bas-celik (''bas-steel''), Balacko, Bakonja, the Ironman, the Giant), with foreigners ( Alija (''Moslem''), the Arab, the Gypsy or Moore, the king of Budim, Tucipetar(''Peter that hits''), the Hungarian, the Venetian, the Tatar, the sultan, the pasha, the bey, the aga, the vizier, the black man/duke, Bluebeard). Although they are of divine origin, they are rulers of night and darkness and cause storms, so, as Christianity spread, they lost their good features and became the representatives of discord, heartlessness, envy, trickery, spite, injustice, quarrel, greed, theft, violence and crime, but also the symbols of resurrection (they devour the old man, that is the old Sun in order for the new man to be born). In a Czech novel from the 15th century it is said: ''What devil, what dragon, what ruler of the underground possessed you to rebel against me?'' But, the ones that remain are the guards and safekeepers of the material and spiritual treasure. Only a hero can come freely near it after he overcomes the monster (embodied in himself or in some other creature). That's the reason the spots on the Moon were thought to be the marks of a dragon. In fact it has something to do with the fact that the human imagination tried to give these creatures the form of black threatening clouds which are the principal reasons for darkness (As it is suggested in the saying: ''The night has power.'' and the curse: ''May you be devoured by darkness!''), storms, cold, hunger, disease, poverty, war and death (when it is getting cloudy in Medjimurje people say: ''The weather is growing a beard!'' which refers to Veles' beard, snake's bed of sheep's fleece, actually an alusion to cattle they were guarding). Because they were afraid of them, people had rituals to get them in good spirit, sometimes even sacrificing people. It makes sense then that dwellings of such blood-thirsty and vengeful gods or evil spirits were damp, foggy, dark, deserted, cold, underground, distant and inaccessible places which you could approach only by crossing a silver bridge or the Milky Way (it was for example the roots of a mythical tree, the Lower Chambers, or the Seventh Room of the Ada Castle in the Copper Avenue of the western city of Budim, Constantinople, Boot-city in the middle of Legen/Legjan/Le(dj)an, the moore or wasteland in Goleč, Lelej-mountain or Glass-mountain surrounded by Suton(''dusk''), Mračaj, Mrak(oč), Mrklica (''darkness''), Nevid (''non-see'') in Arabia, Bezdan(''abyss''), Djidjin-land, Hades, India, Paklina/Pakao (''hell''), subconscious, Talia, Tartar, Turkey, Ud(b)ina or Hungary). (According to psychoanalysts, the monster represents the unconscious, unnatural desires that have to be overcome in order for a person to develop to the highest spiritual level.) Illnesses can be caused by all the supernatural forces and the spirits of the dead, especially the ones that are not worshipped (e.g. fairies, Thundermaker, black magicians) or the ones that have in time become completely degenerated (like dragons and witches). Misfortune can be easily passed on from one person to another, especially to children, beautiful, gentle or happy people. That is why it shouldn't be refered to too often, euphemisms should be used and words of praise should be accompanied with magical words against spells, such as: ''Eyes into the stone!'' or ''Eyes into the tree-stump!'' During holidays purifying baths should be organized, magical herbs should be used, ceremonial walks, sways and rollings should take place, strong people's shirts should be worn, bonfires, shoutings, dances and sacrifices should be organized. Beech, henbane, bitter oak, hornbeam, cypress, pear tree, blueberry, water-lily, hazel, walnut, yew-tree and cane are sacred Moon plants. The Moon is also represented by the bull/cow (their horns represent the horned Moon, i.e. the new moon), bumblebee, jackal, raven, adder, lamb (the black lamb represents ''the dead of night'', and it is often identified with the shepherd), goat, stag, dark haired horse/mare (old Slavs predicted the mood of Triglav (''the threeheaded one'') using black horses, a bit different from the white horses of St. Vid; there are famous riddles: ''The grey horse jumped over the sea, not wetting its hoofs'' and ''Our white horse crossed the meadow, nobody knows where it went.''), cuckoo, weasel, bear, mouse, fly, black dog, duck, peacock, fish, owl, scorpio, boar, otter, wolf/she-wolf, rabbit (because it multiplies fast, it is a symbol of the magic of fertility and hunting), snake and frog. In Croatian folk literature it is also represented by human characters - Old Novak (the last quarter) and his son Grujica Novak or Novaković (the new moon), and sometimes Novak Debeljak (''fat one'') (the full moon), Andrijaš, Mihajlo, Gavan (derived from the word ''ogavan'', meaning ''disgusting''), etc. Silver is the Moon's metal of shiny white colour, the colour of wisdom. It is also the colour of water, the same as green which refers to the relation between the guard of the waters and the springs. Here, the symbolism of the silver, shiny white, or pale colour becomes close to the symbolism of the black colour meaning shadow, darkness, night, cold, the North, depth, undreground, chaos, impurity, sterility, nothingness, instinct, unconsciousness, fall, difficulty, sadness, anxiety, renunciation, ignorance, deformity, misery, punishment and death. But black is also the colour of Mother Earth in which, through the colour red, the colour of fire and blood, life is renewed through the symbolism of green (remember the green snake, the dragon with the red muzzle). The mixture of black and white is grey which symbolizes the man. Like black and white, red is understood in two ways - as a day, male colour and as the night, female colour. The latter is found under the green of the vegetation and the blackness of the Earth, so when it is hidden it represents the colour of underground fire, soul, heart, knowledge and wisdom. When it is spilt it is a mark of hatred, lust, cruelty, death and hell (that is why women who had the period were forbidden to touch and the same prohibition refered to hangmen and blacksmiths). Similar to this symbolism is the symbolism of the brown colour of copper (something between red and ochre), as the colours of the underworld.