Our winter expedition to the Cossack village Ust-Khopiorskaya was completed in January 2009. We chose the winter time for a special reason. This time coincides with the unique time of the Russian folklore calendar “svyatki” which happens between Russian Christmas (January 7) and Epiphany (January 19). These holy evenings were full of special Christmas rituals, visiting guests, greeting each other, games and fortune-telling. In Russian tradition, time moves in circles and every New Year could be happier then the previous one. Christmas rituals are full of the ideas of leaving all evil and bad things behind in the previous year and meeting the new year with hope for a better life. The purpose of our expedition was to collect folk memories about the rituals, mythological stories, games, songs, fortune-tellings and just to enjoy the wonderful Cossack area.

Man singing in the Don Cossak Expedition
Photo by Anna Berman

About This Expedition

  • Dates:

    January 2, 2009 to January 12, 2009

  • Location:

    Cossack village Ust-Khopiorskaya, Seraphimovich district in Volgograd province, Russia

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