Ledia Runnels' "World of Fantasy Fiction"

Ivan Bilibin 229

Ivan Bilibin 229 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Thou shalt have them,” answered the merchant’s daughter, “for the same price. Let me only sit through this third night by the side of thy promised husband.”

“What a fool is this girl!” thought the Tsar‘s daughter. “Presently I shall have all her possessions and Finist the Falcon for my husband into the bargain!” So she assented gladly and when Finist the Falcon fell asleep that night, for the third time she put into his hair the enchanted pin and brought the girl into his room, bidding her give over the golden plate and the diamond ball, and keep the flies from him till daybreak.

Through that long night also the merchant’s daughter bent over her loved one, weeping and crying: “Finist, my own dear, my bright Falcon with colored feathers, awake and know me! I have worn through the three pairs of iron shoes, I have broken to pieces the three iron staves, I have gnawed away the three stone church-loaves, all the while searching for thee, my love!” But by reason of the enchanted pin, although he heard through his sleep her crying and lamenting, and his heart grieved because of it, Finist the Falcon could not waken. So at length, when day-dawn was near, the girl said to herself: “Though he shall never be mine, yet in the past he loved me, and for that I shall kiss him once before I go away,” and she put her arms about his head to kiss him. As she did so, her hand touched the pin in his hair and she drew it out, lest by chance it harm him. Thus the spell of its enchantment was broken, and one of her tears, falling on his face, woke him.

And instantly, as he awoke, he recognized her, and knew that it was her lamenting he had heard through his sleep. She related to him all that had occurred, how her sisters had plotted, how she had journeyed in search of him, and how she had bought of the Tsar’s deceitful daughter the three nights by his side in exchange for the silver spindle, the golden hammer and nails, and the diamond ball that rolled of itself. Hearing, Finist the Falcon was angered against the Tsar’s daughter whom he had so nearly wed, but the merchant’s daughter he kissed, and turning into the Falcon, set her on his colored wings and flew to his own Tsardom.

Then he summoned all his princes and nobles and his officers of all ranks and told them the story, asking: “Which of these two am I to wed? With which can I spend a long life so happily that it will seem a short one: with her who would deceitfully sell my hours for playthings, or with her who sought me over three times nine lands? Do ye now discuss and decide.”

And all cried with one voice: “Thou shouldst leave the seller of thy rest and wed her (w)ho did follow thee!”

And so did Finist, the bright Falcon with colored wings.


(The text came from: Wheeler, Post, Russian Wonder Tales, New YorkThe Century Company 1912.)


Image Links:

The Feather of Finist the Falcon by Ivan Bilibin”                                                                                                                                                                               http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivan_Bilibin

More Images of Ivan Bilibin’s art:                                                                                                                                                                                                                         https://www.google.com/search?q=ivan+bilibin+finist+the+falcon+images&hl=en&prmd=imvnso&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=1R6AT4uFBMiG2gX_v82EBw&sqi=2&ved=0CCMQsAQ&biw=1600&bih=775

Research Links:

“Sur La Lune Fairy Tales:Russian Wonder Tales” http://www.surlalunefairytales.com/russian/russianwondertales/featherfinistfalcon.html

Legend of the Tengu Prince — Finally Available on Amazon.com!



Fantasy Action Adventure set in feudal Japan.

During a time of civil war, Karasu Hinata is born the son of a powerful warlord. When he is still a child, his family castle is taken by a rival clan. His father and mother are murdered right before his eyes.

Barely escaping with his life, he is spirited away by the king of the tengu. The shape-shifting raven leads him to the hidden mountain retreat of a sect of mystic warriors. Mountain priests who practice the magic of Shugendo.

Ten years have passed. The time has come for Karasu to leave the mystic’s protective lair and face his demons in the world beyond. But the fiend that haunts his nightmares is also the one that shattered his life. More than a bad dream, it wants him dead.

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Иван Царевич и Серый Волк

Иван Царевич и Серый Волк (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When the elder sisters returned, they said: “What a beauty came today to church! No one could gaze enough at her. Thou, little slattern, shouldst have seen her rich gown! Surely she must have been a Princess from some other Province!”

Now so hastily had she changed her clothes that she had forgotten to take out of her hair a diamond pin, and as they talked her sisters caught sight of it. “What a lovely jewel!” they cried enviously. “Where didst thou get it?” And they would have taken it from her. But she ran to her attic room and hid it in the heart of the scarlet flower, so that though they searched everywhere they could not find it. Then, filled with envy, they went to their father and said: “Sir, our sister hath a secret lover who has given her a diamond ornament, and we doubt not that she will bring shame upon us.” But he would not hear them and bade them look to them selves.

That evening when all went to bed, the girl set the flower on the window-sill, and in a moment Finist the Falcon came flying in and was transformed into the handsome Prince, and they caressed one another and talked together till the dawn began to break.
Now the elder sisters were filled with malice and spite and they listened at the attic door hoping to find where she had hidden the diamond pin, and so heard the voices. They knocked at the door, crying: “With whom dost thou con verse, little sister?”

“It is I talking to myself,” she answered.

“If that is true, unlock thy door,” they said.

Then Finist the Falcon kissed her and bade her farewell, and turning into a falcon, flew out of the window and she unlocked the door.

Her sisters entered and looked all about the room, but there was no one to be seen. They went, however, to their father and said: “Sir, our sister hath a shameless lover who comes at night into her room. Only just now we listened and heard them conversing.” He paid no heed, however, but chided them and bade them better their own manners.

Each night thereafter the spiteful pair stole from their beds to creep to the attic and listen at the door, and each time they heard the sound of the loving talk between their sister and Finist the Falcon. Yet each morning they saw that no stranger was in the room, and at length, certain that whoever entered must do so by the window, they made a cunning plan. One evening they prepared a sweet drink of wine and in it they put a sleeping powder and prevailed on their sister to drink it. As soon as she did so she fell into a deep sleep, and when they had laid her on her bed, they fastened open knives and sharp needles upright on her window-sill and bolted the window.

(Continued… https://fairytalesbylediar.wordpress.com/2012/04/12/russian-fairy-tales-the-feather-of-finist-the-falcon-part-five/)

(The text came from: Wheeler, Post, Russian Wonder Tales, New York: The Century Company 1912.)


Image Links:

The Feather of Finist the Falcon by Ivan Bilibin”                                                                                                                                                                               http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivan_Bilibin

More Images of Ivan Bilibin’s art:                                                                                                                                                                                                                         https://www.google.com/search?q=ivan+bilibin+finist+the+falcon+images&hl=en&prmd=imvnso&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=1R6AT4uFBMiG2gX_v82EBw&sqi=2&ved=0CCMQsAQ&biw=1600&bih=775

Research Links:

“Sur La Lune Fairy Tales:Russian Wonder Tales” http://www.surlalunefairytales.com/russian/russianwondertales/featherfinistfalcon.html

The merchant set out to the Fair, and he purchased the pair of satin shoes and the silken petticoat, and then he bethought himself of the scarlet flower and went all about inquiring for one. But search as he might, he could find not a single blossom of that color in the whole town, and drove home sorrowful that he must disappoint his youngest daughter for the third time.

And as he rode along wondering where he might find the flower, he met by the roadside in the forest a little old man whom he had never seen, with a hooked nose, one eye, and a face covered with a golden beard like moss, who carried on his back a box.

“What dost thou carry, old man?” he asked.

“In my box,” answered the old man, “is a little scarlet flower which I am keeping for a present to the maiden who is to marry my son, Finist the Falcon.”

“I do not know thy son, old man,” said the merchant, “nor yet the maiden whom he is to marry. But a scarlet blossom is no great thing. Come, sell it to me, and with the money thou mayest buy a more suitable gift for the bridal.”

“Nay,” replied the little old man. “It has no price, for wherever it goeth there goeth the love of my son, and I have sworn it shall be his wife’s.”

The merchant argued and persuaded, for now that he had found the flower he was loath to go home without it, and ended by offering in exchange for it both the satin shoes and the silken petticoat, till at length the little old man said: “Thou canst have the scarlet flower for thy daughter only on condition that she weds my son, Finist the Falcon.”

The merchant thought a moment. Not to bring the flower would grieve his daughter, yet as the price of it he must promise to wed her to a stranger.

“Well, old man,” he said, “give me the flower, and if my daughter will take thy son, he shall have her.”

“Have no fear,” said the little old man. “Whom my son woos, her will he wed!” and giving the box to the other, he instantly vanished.

The merchant, greatly disturbed at his sudden disappearance, hurried home, where his three daughters came out to greet him. He gave to the eldest the satin shoes and to the second the silken petticoat, and to see them they clapped their hands for delight. Then he gave to his youngest daughter the little box and said: “Here is thy scarlet flower, my daughter, but as for me, I take no joy of it, for I had it of a stranger, though it was not for sale, and in return for it I have promised that thou shalt wed his son, Finist the Falcon.”

(Continued… https://fairytalesbylediar.wordpress.com/2012/04/10/russian-fairy-tales-the-feather-of-finist-the-falcon-part-three/)


Image Links:

The Feather of Finist the Falcon by Ivan Bilibin”                                                                                                                                                                               http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivan_Bilibin

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Research Links:

“Sur La Lune Fairy Tales:Russian Wonder Tales”                                                                               http://www.surlalunefairytales.com/russian/russianwondertales/featherfinistfalcon.html

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заставка к сказке перышко финист

заставка к сказке перышко финист (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One day, when the merchant set out for the Fair, he called his three daughters and asked: “My dear daughters, what do ye most desire me to buy for you?” The eldest answered, “Bring me a piece of rich brocade for a gown.” The second said, “Bring me a fine scarf for a shawl.” But the youngest replied: “Little father, bring me only a scarlet flower to set in my window.”

The two sisters laughed at her request. “Little fool,” they said, “what dost thou want of a scarlet flower? Thou wouldst better ask for a new apron.” But she paid no heed and when the merchant asked her again, she said: “Little father, buy for me only the scarlet blossom.”

The merchant bade them good-by and drove to the Fair, and whether in a short while or a long while, he came again to his house. He brought the rich brocade for the eldest daughter and the fine scarf for the second, but he quite forgot to bring the little scarlet flower. The eldest daughters were so rejoiced at their gifts that he felt sorry for his forgetfulness, and to comfort her, said to the youngest: “Never mind, I shall soon go again to the Fair, and shall bring thee a gift also.” And she answered: “It is no matter, little father; another time thou wilt remember.” And while her sisters, cutting and sewing their fine stuffs, laughed at her, she was silent.

Time passed, and again the merchant made ready to go to the Fair, and calling his daughters, he asked: “Well, my daughters, what shall I buy for you?” The eldest answered, “Bring me a gold chain,” and the second, “Buy me a pair of golden earrings”; but the third said, “Little father, I want nothing but a scarlet flower to set in my window.”

The merchant went to the Fair and he bought for the eldest daughter the chain and for the second the earrings, but again he forgot the scarlet flower. When he returned and the eldest two daughters took joy in their golden jewelry, he comforted the youngest as before, saying: “A simple flower is no great thing. Never mind. When I go again I shall bring thee a gift.” And again she answered: “It is no matter, little father; another time perhaps I shall be luckier.”

A third time the merchant made ready to go to the Fair, and called his three daughters and asked them what they most desired. The first answered, “Bring me a pair of satin shoes,” the second said, “Buy me a silken petticoat”; but the youngest said as before, “Little father, all my desire is for the scarlet flower to set in my window.”

(Continued… https://fairytalesbylediar.wordpress.com/2012/04/08/russian-fairy-tales-the-feather-of-finist-the-falcon-part-two/)

(The text came from: Wheeler, Post, Russian Wonder Tales, New York: The Century Company 1912.)


Image Links:

The Feather of Finist the Falcon by Ivan Bilibin”                                                                                                                                                                               http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivan_Bilibin

More Images of Ivan Bilibin’s art:                                                                                                                                                                                                                         https://www.google.com/search?q=ivan+bilibin+finist+the+falcon+images&hl=en&prmd=imvnso&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=1R6AT4uFBMiG2gX_v82EBw&sqi=2&ved=0CCMQsAQ&biw=1600&bih=775

Research Links:

“Sur La Lune Fairy Tales:Russian Wonder Tales”                                                                        http://www.surlalunefairytales.com/russian/russianwondertales/featherfinistfalcon.html

(Here is the second half of the Russian fairy tale entitled: Marya Morevna)

When he came again to Koshchey‘s palace he found his beloved Marya Morevna alone again and asked her, “Could you ask Koshchey where he got such wonderfully fast horse?”

That night she asked Koschey about the horse. He told her, “Behind the Fire River lives Baba Yaga. She has many good horses. Once I worked as a herdsman for her and she gave me this horse as a present.”

The next day, Prince Ivan decided to go to Baba Yaga and get a horse even better than Koshchey’s. He walked for a long time and became very hungry. All of a sudden he saw a bird with nestlings. He drew an arrow to shoot them for his meal.

But the mother bird begged him, “Don’t touch my children, Tsar Ivan. I could be helpful to you.”

Ivan had a kind heart and did not kill the small birds. Later in the woods he saw a beehive. But the bees begged him not to take their honey.

Then Ivan saw a lioness and her cub. “This is a good dinner,” he thought, aiming his arrow. But the lioness begged him, “Oh, Tsar Ivan, please, don’t kill my baby. I could be useful for you in the future.”

At last, tired and very hungry, Ivan came to the house of Baba Yaga and asked to work for her. She told him, “You can be my herdsman for three days. If you bring all my horses back safely at the end of the day, I will give you the pick of my horses. But if a single horse is missing, I’ll kill you, Ivan.”

The next morning when Ivan opened the stable door, all the horses ran away and disappeared. He started weeping and just lay down to sleep, since there was nothing he could do.

At sunset the bird whose nestling he had spared awakened him, saying, “Get up, Tsar Ivan, all your horses are back in the stable!”

When Baba Yaga found out, she cursed at her horses, yelling, “Why did you come home?”

They answered, “We were frightened back here. All the birds from the whole world came and pecked us!”

The next day the lioness helped Ivan round the horses up when they ran away. Baba Yaga was more furious than before at the horses. “Why did you come home this time?”

“Ah, we were so frightened. Wild animals from around the world came and chased us.”

On the third day the bees helped Ivan and one old bee said, “Do not go back to Baba Yaga. Go to the stable, take a scruffy small horse and run away.” He did everything as the bee recommended.

In the morning Baba Yaga discovered the loss and ran after Prince Ivan, but fell down into the Fire River and drowned. Ivan took good care of the small horse and before long it turned into a wonderful, strong horse.

Ivan returned to Koshchey’s house and took Marya Morevna away. Koshchey did his best to overtake them. But Ivan’s horse vanquished Koshchey’s.

Marya Morevna and Ivan visited his brothers-in-law and then returned home. Everybody lived happily ever after.

(If you like what you read here, you might also enjoy “Creative Musings” http://creativemusingsoflediar.com/, another blog of creative writing.)



Russian Folklore” http://stpetersburg-guide.com/folk/ilya.shtml

“One of Kyives Oldest Tress” http://explorationart.wordpress.com/2012/03/25/one-of-kyives-oldest-trees/

et cetera