Publication[ edit ] This skaz was first published in the several issues of the Sverdlovsk newspaper Na Smenu! Tjatino podarenje , but the title was changed prior to publication. Nastasya becomes the owner of the Malachite Casket , filled with jewellery, which Stepan got from the legendary Mistress of the Copper Mountain. Only Tanyushka likes to play with the Casket, and every piece of jewellery looks good on her. With black hair and green eyes, Tanyushka does not look like her mother at all, as if she was born to different parents. Her appearance resembles that of the Mistress of the Copper Mountain.
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He preferred to start with the stories about gold and gold prospectors, because the believed this legends to be of more ancient origin.
Studies show that in many cases Pavel Bazhov used popular beliefs and molded them into his own original mythology. He believed that the stories about the Gumyoshevsky mine were the closest to the original folklore. He said: "In my opinion, they represent the attempt to reconstruct the folklore of this mine". Most of them were green ones, chrysolites, folks call them.
Although speaking about the blue snake was a bad omen among the local miners, to see one was a good sign, and it meant that a person would find a gold nugget. Mining and mine exploration in particular were always connected with some supernatural forces which presumably helped the workers. Even as late as the 19th century, people used to say about the lucky workers that they "knew the words" and had certain helpers.
All these creatures, with the exception of the cats, were depicted on the Permian bronze casts the 5—15 centuries. They belong to different age groups: Poskakushka is a little girl, Golden Hair and the Mistress are maidens, Veselukha is a young woman, the blue snake is a woman, Sinyushka is an old woman. They mostly contact men, e. Poskakushka helps Fedyunka to find gold; the blue snake appears before boys; the Mistress traditionally helps single men only.
Both of them are keepers of hidden underground riches. The Mistress, described as either a beautiful green-eyed woman in malachite gown or a lizard with the crown on her head, is the keeper of gemstones. Poloz is the master of every existing piece of gold. The miners believed that if a gold-bearing lode disappeared, it meant that the Great Snake moved it to a different place. The relationship between Poloz and the Mistress is unclear. Bazhov commented that he asked some story-tellers about it, but they could not answer the question.
Even those who had been rewarded by them rarely live happily ever after. These characters usually die soon. The owners of the Ural plants were depicted as worthless, idle, greedy and cruel.
In such stories the children are the main characters and the mythical creatures do not threaten them, but instead help them, which compensated "for the inadequacy of the social and family help" and helped to create "favourable living conditions" for the children, therefore promoting a positive attitude in the young readers. But in the pre-war stories the class criteria existed as the background only. The conflict between the characters came from the collision between poetic and pragmatical, grand and common, irrational and rational.
Some considered The Malachite Box pure folklore, others thought of it was a literary work penned by Bazhov. Bazhov into the truly artistic, poetic works of art". How many wonderful sources are there for woodcutters and artists, for drama, opera and ballet, not to mention cinema!
Selected stories have been a part of school core curriculum since the Soviet Union,  and are still used for education purposes nowadays. The Malachite Casket became the symbol of the Urals. The most popular tales were written between and During Soviet times, every edition of The Malachite Box had a foreword written by a famous writer or scholar, commenting on the creativity of the Ural miners, cruel landlords, social oppression and the "great workers unbroken by the centuries of slavery".
It is mighty, talented, creatively gifted". The Soviet poet Demyan Bedny was so impressed with the tales that he decided to adapt them into poetry. He began the work on 27 June and adapted the 14 original stories by 1 October Bedny made some changes to the length of some scenes, changed the character names, the endings, the dialogues, and the titles of several stories, e. Bedny was not happy with them and abandoned the book.
It was published after his death in , and is not well known now. They play was finished on 11 August and was performed at the Sverdlovsk Youth Theatre the same year.
The Malachite Casket (fairy tale)
Early life[ edit ] Bazhov was born in Sysert , a city in the Urals. His family, like most in factory towns, struggled to make ends meet and had virtually no political power in Czarist Russia. From these beginnings, Bazhov found a calling in public service. Between and he studied in a religious school in Yekaterinburg. He took part in many protests, the most famous one resulting in him receiving a note of political disloyalty from his reactionary teacher on his certificate.