Friday 11 May 2012

postcard challenge

week 19 Bulgaria..

I am full of cold, and only have mine half done this page yet, but I will get to it.

Here is the front of the card, it is the legendary hero Krali Marko and his magical horse, Sharkoliya.

They thunder through a mythic landscape where fierce women ride the whirlwinds, children ride on dreams and nightmares, and sparks fly from Sharkoliya's hooves.

This is a Bulgarian ritual song for a young unmarried man..

Dawn is breaking
But such a dawn as you've never seen.
The dawn is a young man riding on a horse.
The horse breathes and makes the dawn.
The moon is a ring on the young man's finger,
And his weapons are small stars.

Once upon a time horses were sacred. They were the companions of heroes, and galloped between the worlds bearing the gifts of life and death. 

The cult of the horse was deeply rooted in Bulgaria’s ancestral Thracian, Slavic and Proto-Bulgarian cultures, and has left a rich legacy in the country’s traditional tales and folklore.

The ancient Thracians practiced horse burial and sacrifice and revered the Thracian Horseman god, Hero, son and lover of the great mother goddess, Bendis. He was both the sun and the ruler of the nether world, bringer of life, death and fertility.

The horse was sacred to both the Slavs and to the nomadic Proto-Bulgarians, who founded the first Bulgarian kingdom in the Balkans under Khan Asparuh in 681 AD. The Proto-Bulgarians drank mares’ milk, divined with horse’s entrails, and their banner was a horse tail upon a spear. The horse was sacred to their sky god, Tangra. 

After the adoption of Christianity in the 9
th century, the Thracian Horseman god was reincarnated in the Christian figure of St George, the dragon slayer, seen as the bringer of summer and fertility. St Dimiter, another warrior saint, is St George's twin brother and the bringer of winter. On 26th October (Dimitrovden) he rides his red horse across the sky, heralding the start of winter. When he shakes his beard, snow falls. 

The medieval hero, Krali Marko on his horse Sharkoliya is also a mythological descendent of the Thracian Horseman. King Marko - Krali Marko or Marko Kraleviti - was a real historical figure living around the 14th century AD, who later became overlaid with earlier mythologies. 

Marko was a Serb, son of Vulkashin. He ruled from the fortified town of Prilep, now in Macedonia, over a kingdom then inhabited by ethnic Bulgarians. The tales about him contain elements that go back to Thracian times. 

and the back..

HERE IS WHERE YOU LINK UP..add your name and blog link and then go visiting. please only link up if you are taking part in the postcard challenge.


  1. What a great card. Take dare of yOurself and I hope you feel better soon. Xxx

  2. Love your historical postcard and information. I saw some of the wonderful Thracian artifacts at an exhibition some time back, it was fantastic! Valerie

  3. Wonderful historical mythology lesson Darcy!!! Makes you wonder about that ancient burial site recently uncovered here...with the horse in?
    Hope you feel better soon :D XXX

  4. What a great story...bordering on a mythological tale. Love the education involved in this's priceless AND fun! Thanks, Darcy...well done!


  5. Great research, so interesting and a super postcard. Empathise with the cold things as I am struggling with a cough, cold and a sore throat and we are off to cottage country with the grandchildren at lunch time for the weekend, drugs required I think. Take care.
    Jen x

  6. You might be full of cold but your postcard doesn't show that! I love the stylized image and the simple 3 colour combo, it's very striking. Interesting research too.

    I too had to do some research - I didn't have a clue what to do for Bulgaria, I knew NOTHING about it!

    ps hope you feel better soon.

  7. Oh my, I am getting getting over a terrible cold. My sympathies and feel better! Your card is quite striking and I love the bold design. You did a great job despite feeling poorly which makes me feel even more guilty for my poor effort. Yikes. There is always next week!

  8. You poor thing, well done for getting the card done! I hope you're feeling better soon.
    Love your choice of image and colours, wonderful history to go with it too! Mx

  9. Love the postcard. (Sorry I logged in twice.)

  10. aw, sorry you are still under the weather...hugs

    postcard is lovely, thanks so much for the song and story.

  11. what a wonderful figure!!! And I loved the history you provided!!!
    Since I am concentrating on eating food and looking at flowers it is fun to know more about the country!
    thanks for the vacation!

  12. great research. a good read..hope you will soon be feeling better. take care.x

  13. Oh Darcy, I do hope you get better soon. That is a fantastic story and quite the hero. It's a lovely card this week!

  14. Hope you are feeling better soon. Thanks for the mythology lesson! Great card.

  15. It is great to read about the history of the different countries that we are travelling to, great card. Cheers

  16. Darcy hope you are feeling better.
    Love all the different types of faces you have created thus far.
    Postcard challenge is on my blog & Thank You
    for picking my NZ card for top ten !

  17. I'm finally here. :) Love reading about the sacred horse. :)

  18. Darcy better late than never. Bulgaria was really interesting.