southern russia
America is denying visas to gay Chechens attempting to flee systematic 'murder'
The United States has denied visas for roughly forty gay Chechens currently in hiding fearing severe persecution for their sexual identity. The individuals are hiding in various locations around Russia after a wave of kidnappings, torture, and disappearances of gay people were reported in Chechnya, a semi-autonomous region in southern Russia that borders Georgia.

The United States has denied visas for roughly forty gay Chechens currently in hiding fearing severe persecution for their sexual identity.

The individuals are hiding in various locations around Russia after a wave of kidnappings, torture, and disappearances of gay people were reported in Chechnya, a semi-autonomous region in southern Russia that borders Georgia.

A US State Department official declined to confirm or deny if the individuals had been denied visas, telling the Independent that visa records are confidential under US law and that they are unable to discuss individual visa requests. A spokesperson for the Russian LGBT Network had confirmed the visa denials to Buzzfeed News.

albaharuland  asked:

Hi! I wanted to ask about fantasy world building based on a mix of cultures, even if those cultures are totally different. For example, a country that has an architecture based on egyptian and arab art, or one that is a mix between indian and russian architecture. I dont know if that would be appropiation or offensive, or how to avoid it or doing it in a respectful way. Also if there is a problem only using the art part and having a different made up traditions/lore (thanks for your time!)

On Combining Cultures Respectfully, Art, and Architecture

“Does it make sense within the world”

Avatar: the Last Airbender mixes Inuit and Japanese culture. Is this any form of sensical in the modern world? Sort of, with how there’s a language link between Siberia and the Canadian Arctic. Does it make sense within the confines of A:tLA? Absolutely yes.

I’m not against the concept of cultural blending. It just has to be sensical within the world itself. They might not be neighbours in the real world, but if you end up with a culture that’s “ocean-heavy Arctic on top of Asia”, then Inuit+ Japan makes tons of sense. But had it been even “continental Arctic”, then the Inuit influence would’ve barely made any sense at all, because they’re really not a continental people.

-Mod Lesya

Like mixed-race characters, blending real-world cultures in fantasy isn’t prima facie a problem, but you’d better make sure it makes sense within the world you’re constructing.  Lots of times authors fall prey to the “Rule of Cool” and just throw in things they think are neat without thinking about how they could have reasonably got there.

In the cases you mentioned, there are some historiocultural overlaps between Indian and Russian cultures (for instance, similar building materials, similar types of timbers in temperate parts of India and southern Russia, very deep cultural roots shared between Slavic and certain Indic cultures, etc.) that would give you a foundation to build on.  Other times shared cultural aspects have a common but non-native root—for instance the Russian onion dome and characteristic Indian Taj Mahal-style dome may have a shared origin in Islamic and Middle Eastern architecture.  Islamic culture is native to neither India nor Russia, but it touched and influenced both areas extensively.

Similar constraints hold for Egyptian and Arab art and architecture.  They used similar building materials but produced different results because the culture and artistic preferences were historically different, but we know that Arab culture strongly influenced Egyptian art and architecture in the Islamic period (think going from pyramids to Graeco-Roman amphitheaters to mosques and minarets, but all made out of limestone, mud brick, and very little wood).  Saladin Ahmed’s fantasy novel(s) feature an Islamic/Middle Eastern-influenced culture built on top of a dead Ancient Egypt-analogue [Nikhil’s note: I’m reading this right now and it’s awesome and you should too].

But regardless of the cultural influence, the material culture stays similar in place—in some Indo-Russian hybrid you might be looking at imported marble and precious stones for those buildings whose patrons could afford it, provided they have access to those materials either through production or trade, but for poorer constructions you’re looking at local building materials—so maybe thatch and half-timber framing and wattle-and-daub in Indo-Russia, or stone and mud brick in a desert environment like Arabegypt.  Art and architecture are functions of culture, and culture as a primitive exercise arises from the local environment, since it’s only once you get to the level of at least an organized economic community that outside trade starts to be a significant factor, which would facilitate creating art and architecture that would be exotic to the local environment.

-Mod Nikhil

I’M FUCKIN CRYING @pinkplumcake @janiedean @tenitchyfingers @georgeorwell E TUTTI GLI ALTRI

I bet you know that cunt Salvini was coming to Naples for votes after years of being a racist piece of shit towards Southern Italians

so Russia Today was livestraming the clashes that ensued (yes there’s been a huge backlash and the whole city is on fire hahahaha)




inb4 it’s mostly americans in the comment section but not only hahaha

One by one, the sons of Feanor are reborn into the modern world.

Amras is first, of course, and he grows into a somewhat quiet life as a school-teacher in London. By chance, he runs into a man that looks exactly like him, a businessman from Glasgow, and they both remember. They resolve to look for their brothers, but aren’t sure where to start.

One week, Amrod goes to Seattle on a business trip and turns on the TV. It’s playing reruns of North Woods Law on Animal Planet, and just as he switches the channel, he catches a glimpse of someone familiar. He finishes his work, flies back to collect his twin, then purchases all seven seasons and two plane tickets to Maine. It takes them a long while to narrow down their search based on information in the show, but eventually, they find Celegorm. It turns out, they find all their brothers just by luck and coincidence.  

They find Caranthir in southern Russia, downing vodka and starting and finishing fights. He starts to brawl with Celegorm, and that fight, he doesn’t finish. When he wakes up in the hospital, he remembers who he is.

Then, they find Curufin using his engineering degree to build housing in Uganda. At first, he pretends he doesn’t know them, but they soon realize he has always known, and does what he does because he thinks his son would want him to.

Maedhros, they find rescuing dogs from illegal fights from all over South America. He tells them that in this life, he lost his hand when he startled a particularly viciously abused dog. They ask him which dog, and he calls over a truly giant doberman, which promptly bowls over Celegorm in excitement. The hunter is overjoyed to see Huan reborn as well, but Curufin is bitter. They’ve found his brother’s dog. They haven’t found his son.

They spend years looking and hoping to find the rest of their family, but to no avail. Maedhros suggests they take a vacation and return with fresh eyes. That is how they get lost spelunking in Carvoeiro and find Maglor. He is old, and he does not trust his eyes.

Maedhros decides that the best thing for Maglor is to stay in one place, surrounded by familiar faces. Curufin decides that the rest of their family might still be out there and it is their duty to find them. The brothers split - Celegorm takes Maedhros, Maglor, and Amras to his home in Maine, where it is quiet and humans are sparse, and the other three turn Amrod’s home in Glasgow into the base of operations for their world wide search.

After nearly a decade, it turns out they were right. They first bring Nerdanel to Maine from the Middle East, where she was studying art and architecture. Then they bring Celebrimbor from Japan, where he was attempting to relearn swordsmithing.

They find Feanor in Melbourne and leave him there until Nerdanel retrieves him herself. 

It takes years and years, but eventually, they learn to be a functional family, living deep in the woods, together.

There are still those they search for, those they never find, those they miss with all their heart. But for the most part, they are content.


The Neo-Cons Supporting The Syrian Strike

Bashar al-Assad

I like Ben Shapiro a lot, though he’s on the wrong side here. Lauren kills it here again, and love her comments on that moderate fraud Tomi Lahren.


Close Future - Part 8



Part 1 // Part 2 // Part 3 // Part 4 // Part 5 // Part 6 // Part 7

Summary: The team attempts to proceed with their new mission to locate the men that almost had you killed again, and you begin to dig through the past to help.

Warnings: None

Words: 1 917 (very short cause I haven’t updated this in so long that I am panicking).

A/N: Okay so even though this is short, I still like how informative it is and how that’s different from the previous parts.

Anyway, enjoy a new part and please tell me what you think or what you want to happen in this story!

(I’ve reposted this three times cause it got like no notes and I really want people to read this :)))) )

Originally posted by 30000fps

She was sat in the ops-center, bandages wrapped securely around her neck with a vague bloodstain at the back from the slowly healing wound. Her eyes were surrounded by dark circles, her skin not as lively as it usually was. Perhaps it wasn’t so strange. The amount of drugs she had been induced to were far beyond a healthy dose. Even Bruce had been surprised of how early she was able to handle herself after having the drugs flushed from her system.

“So…” Tony began as he had gathered everyone in the high-tech room. He been working so hard for the two days that Y/N had recovered that she hadn’t seen him at all. She was thankful for his effort but wished he would allow himself a break from time to time. “We’ve made progress.”

He turned around to the large screen behind him which everyone was facing in a half circle. That included Sam, Steve, Bucky, Natasha and Scott.

Tony pulled out a map and on the side of the screen there were portraits of the men who did not survive Tony’s missiles digging into their cars. “Their bombs did not detonate alone with yours and the two other guys. I managed to track down the signal used from the remote control they had and this is where it ended up…” He zoomed in on the map to a circled New York, of more accurately, uptown Manhattan.

“That’s where the signal is from?” Y/N took a step forward, inspecting the map.

“That, and here…” Tony pressed down on the tablet in his hand. The local map zoomed out and turned into a world map and the single, red-marked, area spread out into a hundred ones all across the globe. “Clearly they’ve changed the route of the signal to multiple transmitters to divert its true source, but they’ve done it well. It’s untraceable. No matter which source I look into it links back to all of these areas.”

“How is this progress?” Steve questioned as Tony had done nothing but show a dead end in their search.

“Because even if they’re good, I’m better…” Tony swiped his finger across the tablet and all of the dots disappeared except one. A small spot was marked out in Chechnya, southern Russia, close to the Georgian border.

Y/N felt her heart stop for a second and her crossed arms fell limply to her sides. “I was there.” She stated, eyes glued to the pulsating circle in the Russian province. “I was on a side mission there. General Maston gave it to me during our long break in between Bosnia and Tajikistan.”

She turned back to Sam who had a troubled expression on his face.

“Since when does the U.S military operate there?” Scott questioned, pulling his head back.

“Since the U.S government barely knew our elite team existed.” She replied and turned back to face the screen. “I was sent on a three month operation, which was the entire break, alone. It paid twice of what my usual assignments.”

“What did you do?” Sam was curious as he had no idea that she had done this. He only assumed that she had not been allowed to tell Sam of the mission, or at least he hoped that was the case.

“I went undercover, was given an alias as a NEW guard traveling through Serbia looking for work.”

“Sorry if I’m not in on the lango, but what’s a NEW guard? Cause I assume it’s not just a guard that is new.” Scott looked between everyone for answers cluelessly.

“Naval Equipment and Weaponry. NEW guards are the most expensive hirelings on the market due to their skill in guarding and transporting valuable cargo. Practically all NEW guards become mercenaries after they retire…” Sam briefed everyone that weren’t familiar with the position, arms crossed and focused on Y/N still.

“Exactly, so I posed as Victoria Brenkov, former NEW guard for the U.S military to be hired by the Russian crime lord Nikolai Prakovich, which I was.”

“I know him.” Natasha interrupted. “He is considered one of the idols of the Russian extremist rebels, or he used to be before he died. He only speaks Russian however… Are you fluent?

Natasha asked in the language Y/N had learnt decades ago and had honed since. “As fluent as I can be.” She replied in the Slavic tongue.

“What was the goal of the mission?” Steve intervened, looking between Natasha and Y/N before settling on Y/N.

“Prakovich had unrestricted access to military weaponry, my mission was to find out how, end his supply, and return the weapons and ammunition stolen… Im not talking about a handgun or a petty hand grenade. Prakovich had two, heavy artillery drones for starters. One hadn’t even been used by the military themselves yet because of how new it was. He had enough C4 to blow up half a city of his choosing and enough machine guns to supply a lesser army.”

“How could he have all that without the military doing something about it?” Sam’s anger began to boil. He hated criminals more than anything, but it was even worse when they stole something so close to his heart. The military had been his entire life before the Avengers. He could barely tolerate to hear someone defile something so honorable.

Y/N sighed, and everyone could tell they wouldn’t like whatever she was about to say. “Because Prakovich’s supplier was General Matson, one of the most important generals through out military history.”

Sam didn’t want to believe her, yet he believed every word. General Matson had seemed like a true general. Strict, constructive yet fair, but he had also seemed mysterious at times. Somehow it didn’t surprise Sam as much as it perhaps should have to hear that the general was the inside man for a Russian drug lord.

“Matson disappeared seven months ago.” Sam stated, eyes glued to the floor before his feet before snapping up to Y/N. “Did you have anything to do with that?”

“I’m afraid not. I wish I would have been able to take him in, prove that he was a traitor, but he managed to escape before I got my hands on him.” She admitted and dragged her hand to her neck, trying not to itch back as the wound itched as it healed.

Natasha furrowed her eyebrows, thinking deeply. “Why would he send you on a mission to take out the guy who he was working for?”

“Honestly, I don’t know.” Y/N admitted with a heavy sigh. “I don’t even know who was working for who, who had to pay and who got paid, or if they simply were partners. For all I know, Matson could have been on board with the rebels that followed Prakovich and his vision of rebuilding the Soviet empire. There was a point in my life where I thought I knew that man, but that ended the second I found out he was Prakovich’s inside-man.”

“You say you were in Serbia, but we were talking about Chechnya.” Bucky diverted the conversation back to where it had started. They needed to get a grip of the situation before Y/N could tell her entire backstory.

“Prakovich originally operated there and was only passing through Serbia at the time of my assignment to the mission. We moved back to Russia within a week of my hire. As we settled in at his hide out, this American courier started showing up. I never got his name but he came with intel on American, military, troops and their movement. My guess is he was the messenger between Matson and Prakovich.”

“Why would the signal in the chips lead back to Chechnya if you took care of this Prako guy?” Tony questioned as he really couldn’t see how any of Y/N’s information was helping their investigation to move forward.

“I don’t know.” She said truthfully, looking up at the screen. “Prakovich died in a shootout between him and a swat team under Matson’s command and on my mark. I confirmed his death.”

“Some people have a way of showing up unexpectedly after the grave these days.” Sam suggested, which was a theory that no one in the room liked. Sam didn’t know what to say or think. Matson had been his commanding general and had been in charge over all assignments Sam had ever made, including when he joined the elite force with Y/N. He hated to imagine the man doing anything but good, but truth be told, he trusted Y/N far more than he did Matson.

Y/N suddenly began to shake her head. “I can’t imagine what you’ve seen or what you know to say that with confidence, but I watched Prakovich’s body burn, literally… He was cremated.”

“What kind of crimes was Prakovich into?” Tony asked with a suddenly raised interest as he hadn’t really thought to ask that question until that point.

“What crimes wasn’t he into is probably a better question. He did everything from aid the cartels deliver their drugs across the Mexican border to forfeiting and selling black market meds. This guy had his fingers in everything. He was far more a company than a one man band.” Y/N nudged her head towards Tony’s tablet, asking for permission and receiving it. She wasn’t too familiar with the software used in his tech and also the screens and tablets around, but she had played around with it a few times to be somewhat confident in what she was doing.

“Falluja, Kharkiv, Thimphu and Ensenada.” She marked out the cities as she named them. “These are all the places where Prakovich had his closest associates, which were more like coworkers only they got paid a tenth of what he got. They took care of his business whenever he couldn’t but never did a single move without his permission… Of course, General Matson is also on this list.”

“Iraq, Ukraine, Bhutan and Ecuador.” Sam put the cities in their respective countries. “That’s the Middle East, Europe, Asia and South America all in one go.”

Y/N nodded. “And I don’t doubt for a second he had more, but these are the only ones I know of. These four were his best however. There’s Jamal Sarim, Alec Volokov, Henry Adams and Ricardo Santos. As you can tell, one of these doesn’t belong… Henry Adams. He was a war child. Had the perks of being a local and also speaking English which made things easier for Prakovich.”

“Where did they go after Prakovich was killed?” Natasha was listening to every word that Y/N had to say. It was in Natasha’s blood to listen but everything about their ongoing mission was unusually captivating, even for a workaholic like herself.

“I don’t have a single clue. I wouldn’t even know how to start looking for them to be honest.”

Tony cleared his throat dramatically with a dumb grin on his face. “Leave that to Friday.”

Searching now, sir.” Friday’s voice echoed through multiple speakers spotting the ceiling. “Expected search time is an hour, sir. Someone professional has attempted to keep these names in the dark.

“That’s interesting, right?” Scott commented, nudging his elbow into Bucky’s arm for Bucky to agree. Bucky simply rolled his eyes and took a step away from Scott.

“Matson?” Sam took a step forward to stand beside Y/N who nodded quietly with a tired and worried look on her face.




[si-meer-ee-uh n] 

1. Classical Mythology. of, relating to, or suggestive of a western people believed to dwell in perpetual darkness.

2. very dark; gloomy:
    deep, Cimmerian caverns.

Cimmerian, also spelled Kimmerian, comes from the Latin plural noun Cimmeriī, a borrowing from the Greek plural noun Kimmérioi. In the Odyssey the mythical Cimmerians lived at the edge of Oceanus that surrounds the earth in a city wrapped in mist and fog, where the sun never shines, near the entrance to Hades. The historical, “real” Cimmerians are mentioned in Assyrian sources (Gimirri), the Hebrew Bible (Gomer in Genesis 10:2), and by the Greek historian Herodotus (5th century b.c.). Herodotus says that the Cimmerians were nomads driven south from the steppes of southern Russia by the Scythians through the Caucasus Mountains, turned west, and c676b.c. overthrew the kingdom of Phrygia (in west central Turkey), whose last king was Midas. The connection between myth and history is that there are variant readings for Homer’s Kimmérioi—Cheimérioi, “Wintry People, Stormy people”; and Kerbérioi “Cerberus’s People,” both of which were displaced by the historical Cimmerians. Cimmerian entered English in the 16th century in reference to the nomads, and in the 19th century in reference to the Homeric people.

“The sunny English noon had swallowed him as completely as if he had gone out into Cimmerian night.”
- Edith Wharton, “Afterward,” Tales of Men and Ghosts, 1910

Linda is from Grozny, the capital of Chechnya, a republic in Southern Russia where ancient traditions mix with modernity and many women wear colourful scarves on their head.

While visiting this unique place a few days ago, I discovered a new city, totally rebuilt, but where memories of war are still alive.

In 2003 the United Nations called Grozny the most destroyed city on earth after years of terrible battles.

In one of these battles, Linda lost her father, who was accidentally shot in his way to work. At that time, Linda’s mother was pregnant with her second child.

Linda and her sister were raised by a single mother, in a time of war, but received a wonderful education. Today Linda studies medicine preparing to become a paediatrician.

This strong Chechen woman had a tough childhood and now she wants to dedicate her life to help other children in need.



European vampires originate from Eastern Europe, sharing the universal root upir. (Possibly) the first ever recorded vampire was Jure Grando, from Croatia.


Through the 9th and 10th centuries the Eastern Orthodox Church and the western Roman Church were struggling with each other for supremacy. They formally broke in 1054 AD, with the Bulgarians, Russians, and Serbians staying Orthodox, while the Poles, Czechs, and Croatians went Roman. This split caused a big difference in the development of vampire lore - the Roman church believed incorrupt bodies were saints, while the Orthodox church believed they were vampires.

The origin of Slavic vampire myths developed during the 9th century as a result of conflict between pre-Christian paganism and Christianity. Christianity won out with the vampires and other pagan beliefs surviving in folklore.

Becoming Vampires

In Slavic folklore, magicians (witches, warlocks, etc…) or an immoral person, suffering an ‘unnatural’ or untimely death such as suicide, excommunication, improper burial rituals, an animal jumping or a bird flying over the corpse or the empty grave (Serbian folk belief), and even being born with a caul, were said to become vampires. In southern Russia, people who were known to talk to themselves were believed to be at risk of becoming vampires. Slavic vampires were able to appear as butterflies, echoing an earlier belief of the butterfly symbolising a departed soul. Some traditions spoke of “living vampires” or “people with two souls”, a kind of witch capable of leaving its body and engaging in harmful and vampiric activity while sleeping.


In south Slavic folklore, a vampire was believed to pass through several distinct stages in its development. 

  • The first 40 days were considered decisive for the making of a vampire; it started out as an invisible shadow and then gradually gained strength from the blood it had sucked, forming a (typically invisible) jelly-like, boneless mass, and eventually building up a human-like body nearly identical to the one the person had had in life.
  • This development allowed the creature to ultimately leave its grave and begin a new life as a human.
  • The vampire, who was usually male, was also sexually active and could have children, either with his widow or a new wife.
  • These could become vampires themselves, but could also have a special ability to see and kill vampires, allowing them to become vampire hunters.
  • The same talent was believed to be found in persons born on Saturday.


To kill a vampire, a wooden stake must be thrust through them (the heart). Another method, is to kill it with fire (while it is awake) and by using the Rite of Exorcism, if found in its grave during the day. To protect homes, people placed mashed garlic and wine at their windows and thresholds to keep them from entering.

In Bulgaria from the Middle Ages through to the beginning of the 20th Century, it was a common practice to pin corpses through the heart with an iron stake to prevent their return as a vampire.

Romanian vampires were said to bite their victims over the heart or between the eyes, and sudden deaths could indicate the presence of a vampire. Graves were often opened five or seven years after burial and the corpse checked for vampirism, before being washed and reburied.

Pokémon in our Biomes pt. 1

I’ve recently decided to make a series of posts with hypothetical thinking and analyzing of what Pokémon species could potentially be found in the world’s biomes. Not at all relative to the games, I will be focusing primarily of the elements, design, and relativity to real life flora and fauna of Pokémon to depict where different species would roam on our big blue marble.

For my first biome, I will be focusing on Boreal Forests of Canada and the USA, which are the forest regions more in the northern regions of the countries. Usually subject to cold, dry, snowy weather for most of the year, boreal forests are made up of usually aride, lifeless soil, but tons of coniferous needling trees and warm blooded mammals and birds, as well as numerous bodies of water.

Let’s get started! 

Keep reading

January 16, 2017 - Siberian Accentor or Mountain Accentor (Prunella montanella)

These accentors breed in parts of northern and southern Russia and Mongolia, wintering in central and eastern China and Korea. They eat mostly insects and spiders, along with seeds and fruits during the winter, foraging primarily on the ground. Their cup-shaped nests are made from sticks and grass, usually near the ground in thick shrubs.


The wall which stood for centuries along the southern border of Old Russia has collapsed. Fallen mutants now scavenge the tombs of the Golden Age, and the plague they have unearthed in the wastes is more dangerous than even they understand. Join Lord Saladin. Journey into the Plaguelands. Learn the fate of the Iron Lords and stop the growing threat before it is too late.

Rasputin Murdered

The corpse of Rasputin, with the fatal bullet wound clearly visible on his forehead.

December 31 1916, Petrograd [St. Petersburg]–Few figures from the First World War have more myths surrounding them than that shadowy figure, Rasputin.  A self-proclaimed mystic healer, Rasputin had served the Imperial family since 1907, and was highly valued by the Czarina for the effect he seemed to have on the hemophiliac Czarevich Alexei.  After the Czar left for Stavka in 1915, the Czarina was left in charge of the Imperial household and thus had considerable authority over the government.  With the war going poorly and inflation soaring, the German-born Czarina was an easy target of discontent, and much of the blame was also placed at the feet of Rasputin.  Although his influence over Russian governance (and the allegation that he was having an affair with the Czarina) has been greatly exaggerated over the years, many leading Russians at the time thought him to be the root of the country’s wartime failings.  Kerensky gave a speech in November in which he called the government a bunch of “cowards” and “assassins” “guided by the contemptible Rasputin!”

By the end of 1916, Prince Felix Yusupov (descended from Nogai royalty) decided that speeches were not enough, and planned to kill Rasputin, inviting him to his house on the night of December 30.  The usual account of the murder is Yusupov’s, and is not considered to be very reliable.  The oft-repeated story that Rasputin was poisoned, beaten, shot, and then drowned is almost certainly an exaggeration, concocted by Yusupov to make Rasputin seem like an otherworldly villain.  In actuality, Rasputin was most likely shot twice in the torso, beaten, and then killed by a shot to the forehead, before his (by now quite dead) body was thrown into the Neva in the wee hours of December 31.

It is possible that British intelligence may have had some role in the murder, as well; one of Yusupov’s close friends was British agent Oswald Rayner.  There are many indications he was present that night, and some evidence to suggest that he fired the fatal bullet.  Whether there was any larger British involvement in the murder is unknown.

Yusupov’s involvement was soon uncovered, and he was exiled to his estate in southern Russia.  After the February Revolution, Yusupov left for France, where he remained until his death in 1967.  In 1932, he and his wife Irina successfully sued MGM for libel, as their movie Rasputin and the Empress’ clear analogue for Irina was seduced by Irina in the film.  This resulted in the now-common disclaimer seen in films and television shows that “No identification with actual persons (living or deceased) is intended or should be inferred.”

Today in 1915: Congressman Indicted for Inciting Peace Strikes in Munitions Factories
Today in 1914:  Churchill Proposes Attacks in German Bight, Gallipoli

Today in 1914 will be replaced by a new Today in 1916 feature, beginning tomorrow.


 Russian costumes are not only beautiful, they are also convenient in wearing because they were created for work without restricting freedom of movement. The variety of colors for traditional costume displays love for beauty. The Russian word “beautiful” (krasivyi) comes from the word “krasny”, the Russian for “red”. Ethnic Russian clothes include kaftan, kosovorotka and ushanka for men, sarafan and kokoshnik for women. Sarafan is a traditional Russian long, trapeze-shaped jumper dress (pinafore) worn as Russian folk costume by women and girls. Chronicles first mention it under the year 1376, and since that time it was worn well until the 21st century. Plain sarafans are still designed and worn today as a summer-time light dress. Russian women from the upper and middle classes stopped wearing traditional Russian costume in the 18th century, during Peter the Great’s modernization of Russia, apart from the kokoshniks as part a court dress (although the clothing style of Russian aristocrats differed greatly from those of commoners). It is now worn as folk costume for performing Russian folk songs and folk dancing.

Russian costumes differ a lot from each other. Each province had its own traditional costume. For example, black embroidery was traditional for the Belgorod Region (southern Russia), whereas costumes of peasant women in the Ryazan Region (central Russia) were embroidered mostly with red. The Cossacks of Southern Russia have a separate brand of culture within ethnic Russian, their clothes including papakha, which they share with the peoples of the Northern Caucasus.

Rare Slavic “Axe of Perun” Pendant, 10th-12th Century AD

Axehead pendants were popular in the late Viking age during the 10th-12th centuries and were mostly found in Western Russia and Southern Scandinavia. They were identified by some researchers as amulets representing an axe of the highest god of the Slavic pantheon, Perun, the god of thunder and lightning.