Home    Number 3, 2019

Ritual Elements of the Shorikyol Celebration in Mari’s Folk Games

[Obriadovye elementy prazdnika Shorykiol v mariiskikh narodnykh igrakh]

DOI: https://doi.org/10.31857/S086954150005290-9

Type of publication: Research Article

Submitted: 11.12.2017

Accepted: 18.03.2019

About author(s)

Maria A. Klyucheva | https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7518-1649 | keymachine@yandex.ru | Mari Scientific Research Institute of Language, Literature and History named after V.M. Vasilyev (44 Krasnoarmeiskaia St., Yoshkar-Ola, 424036, Russia)


Volga-Ural region peoples, calendar rituals, Shorikyol, folk games, Mari gaming vocabulary, game folklore, lead player, costumed characters


The article examines the Mari gaming vocabulary and texts that are featured in children’s action games and nursery poetry to which one can find correspondences in rituals of the winter holiday Shorikyol. Thus, the saying Taga-taga-tagashym… (“Bara-bara-barashka…”) that follows children’s game massage may be associated with blessing texts that “walking inspectors” of yards would usually say to landlords. The name Vasli (“Vasiliy”) in game names is connected both to Vasiliy’s day (January 1) and the names of costumed characters such as Vasli kugyza (“Old man Vasiliy”) and Vasli kuva (“Old woman Vasilisa”). The article is drawn on rare archive sources and field records. The Mari material is considered in the context of folklore and ethnographic data on the neighbouring and related peoples, and an argument is made about a significant similarity between the Finno-Ugric and the North Russian game traditions.


Klyucheva, M.A. 2019. Obriadovye elementy prazdnika Shorykiol v mariiskikh narodnykh igrakh [Ritual Elements of the Shorikyol Celebration in Mari’s Folk Games]. Etnograficheskoe obozrenie 3: 150-165. https://doi.org/10.31857/S086954150005290-9

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