‘The Three Enchanted Princes’: Ritual Syntax and the Interpretation of Fairytales 




On Tues Feb 13, 6;30pm, Helena Tužinská and Chris Knight are speaking LIVE in the Daryll Forde Room, 2nd Floor, UCL Anthropology Dept. You can join us on ZOOM (ID 384 186 2174 Passcode Wawilak). Helena Tužinská, PhD. is an Associate Professor at the Department of Archaeology and Cultural Anthropology, Faculty of Arts, Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia. Her research focuses on ritual, communicative space, court interpreting, and cultural expertise.

Chris and Helena write: “The fairy tale ‘The Three Enchanted Princes’ starkly contrasts a picture of nature as barren wilderness against an idealised image of fertility in the form of cultivated gardens and landscapes. The version we examine, first published in Slovakia in 1881, specifies fourteen days as the interval between spells, like several other recorded variants. What distinguishes these Slovak versions from the other widely distributed European variants is the stress on monthly periodicity of the enchantment and the references to hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Both the heroine’s (time-bound) and the hero’s (space-bound) adventures are discussed in light of the overthrow of the moon’s former centrality in favour of a new reliance on seasonality and hence on the sun.”