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DOI: 10.23671/VNC.2019.73.43114

THE IMAGE OF PERSIAN SIMURG IN THE OSSETIAN FOLKLORE

Sokaeva, Diana V. , Shafaghi, Mariam
Izvestia SOIGSI. 2019. IIS 34 (73).
Abstract:
The article is devoted to considering the influence of the image of Simurg, known from ancient
and medieval sources, «Avesta» and «Shahnameh», on Ossetian folklore. The image of a large eagle-
like bird could have appeared in Persian and Ossetian folklore from a common Iranian basis, acquiring
various characteristics with time. In the Persian folklore and literature the image in question
has split into two: the sacred eagle-like bird and the sacred chicken. In the Ossetian folklore, there
is also the image of an eagle, whose nest is on the top of a huge tree of the seventh dungeon, and a
sacred chicken (silver, chicken of the Sun), flying to a milk lake. The analysis of the Ossetian fairy
tales showed the presence of an image of a sacred chicken, which correlates with a bird girl, popular
image of Ossetian fairy tales and fairy tale prose. The eagle-like Simurg and Simurg the chicken of
Persian folklore, the sacred chicken and the bird girl of Ossetian folklore are the mediators of the
three vertical spheres of the mythological space, as well as the sacred image of the mythological and
religious representations of the Ossetians, the patron of men and travelers, Uastirdzhi. Various possible
versions of replacing a girl-bird of a milk lake with a sacred chicken of a milk lake are proposed;
the ritual basis of the image of the chicken and its feature in the Ossetian ritual is considered. Various
approaches of the researchers are noted in relation to the moment of the appearance of Simurg in the
Slavic pagan pantheon, in particular, the version of the transmitting this image by the Sarmatians
and Alans from Iran to Ancient Russia, although there is an assumption that the dog-bird image
existed in the Koban culture of the Caucasus. The discussion on the origin of the eagle motif is indicated:
the Eurasian myth or the Vedic-Avestan proper; comparing the data of Ossetian, Persian
and Finno-Ugric mythology it was found that the Ossetian folklore develops, like Vedic mythology,
a variant of an eagle-snake, and not an eagle-toad. By analyzing the Persian fairy tale, it was found
that the image of Simurg appears in it in a forked state: Simurg, like an eagle from an Ossetian fairy
tale conveying the hero to the right place; Wise Simurg, answering the questions of the hero.
Keywords: pan-Iranian mythology, Iranian mythology, «Avesta», «Shahnameh», Ossetian fairy tale, Persian fairy tale, Simurg, mediator, Slavic pagan pantheon.
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