Paintings

Description of Karl Bryullov’s painting “Guessing Svetlana”


The tradition of holy divination is very old. She came from paganism that reigned in ancient Russia before Prince Vladimir baptized her. And even after baptism, superstitions did not go anywhere, they simply merged with the new faith and established themselves as firmly as a new faith would never have consolidated.

There is fortune-telling, which is considered very scary and at the same time very accurate. We need to take two mirrors, large and small. Put a big one in front of you, put candles on the sides, and, having uttered the necessary words, put a small mirror in front of you so that a fiery corridor forms in the depths of the mirrors. A reflection will follow him, gradually approaching, and you need to have time to make out his face and lower the mirror before he comes close. Otherwise, it can hit the face and leave a birthmark, or even drag it away with you.

That's exactly what Svetlana is going to guess. She is wearing an elegant dress, kokoshnik and pearl beads. She dressed up like a bride - not every day you meet your betrothed, albeit only in reflection - and removed the pectoral cross, which any Orthodox Christian should wear without taking off. Indeed, if it is not removed and put in a sock under the left heel, witchcraft will not work. The girl’s face is tense. She looks in her reflection as if she is already trying to see her fiancé — without raising her mirror, without saying a word.

She must be scared. After all, a sorcerer both destroys his soul and exposes himself to danger, but curiosity is much stronger than fear. The mirror looks old and is probably pulled out of a grandmother's chest. A candle in an old candlestick, burns evenly and brightly.

And who knows what might happen tonight? Maybe the truth will come narrowed, or maybe the horned devil will come and laugh, knocking on the mirror from that side. Together with the girl, the viewer asks this question and involuntarily begins to get nervous.





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Watch the video: Апрель Русский Музей. (December 2021).