'A Recount about Sosriqwe' Translated & Annotated by

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Historical Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: September 30, 2016

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Submitted: September 30, 2016





  1. A Recount about Sosriqwe


Sosriqwe was in love with a girl from among the Narts known as ‘Nart-Zhan’. Right before Sosriqwe attended the Nart Olympics, both met and pledged to each other that neither will continue living if the other dies.

Three days after Sosriqwe’s departure, he learnt that his precious beloved had died and been buried. He rushed to her grave, and started removing the hoarded rocks. The Narts spent a whole day gathering and hoarding those rocks over her grave. So, when Sosriqwe reached into the bottom of the grave and opened the casket, he saw his beloved Nart-Zhan laying lifelessly breathless. He threw himself over her corpse and began lamenting silently. After some time had passed, two snakes emerged from an underside hole of the grave and began brawling against each other, until finally one snake killed the other.

The surviving serpent vanished into an unknown direction, and then returned with a green leaf and swabbed the lifeless snake with it, only to revive it back to life then disappeared once again.

Sosriqwe took that green leaf and began to laver it over Nart-Zhan’s corpse, and before he completed wiping her whole body with the leaf, Nart-Zhan’s soul rushed back into her. Consequently, Sosriqwe married this girl.


(Qumuq, M. I984, p. 270)

Translated into Arabic from Russian text ‘Circassian Folklore’ by Adam Ghut, p. 75.


* Among the numerous ideologies embracing the snake as an emblem in the world of myth, ‘A Recount about Sosriqwe’ shares the equivalent notion. The narrative evidently represents the immortality concept the serpent generally represents. The grave is implying the meeting point between death and resurrection by employing a green leaf.  Another interesting feature is the vegetative element found within the underworld; the existence of trees, or more precisely their roots that are similar in figure to that of the serpent.  Both trees and snakes share the common action of shedding skin and emerging with a new life, this notion applies throughout this narrative as a metaphor, rendering the rebirth process. 



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