Monday, 18 December 2017
Princesses of stone
Here is my answer to the question "Is there a fairy tale about a princess turning into a statue?":
The term is “petrification” or petrified. Death by being turned to stone. Medusa was a gorgon monster in Greek myth, turned people into stone if they looked at her eyes. The ones she turned to stone were mainly heroes and warriors, attempting to kill her. They failed, except for Perseus. He managed to cut off her head and use it to turn the Kraken into stone. However, the Medusa’s eyes were still powerful after death so Perseus never looked at the eyes and kept it within a sack.
There are numerous stories of princesses and maidens turning to stone. There is Cornish fairytales of stone circle megaliths that were once dancing princesses. The Merry Maidens circle is “stone dance” in St. Buryan in Cornwall. The story goes that 19 maidens were petrified into stone by a god who was punishing them for dancing on Sunday.
Another is the Tregeseal East Stone Circle, or otherwise called “The Dancing Stones”. More women petrified to stone for dancing and offending a god. More stone circles that are petrified princesses are the Boskednan Stones or “Nine Maidens” as they’re also called.
(The Hurlers are stone circles in St. Cleer village in Cornwall. These were once men who were punished by a god and petrified into stones because they were hurling balls on a sunday. Other male stones are the Pipers of Bodmin Moor).
In real life plenty of maidens and princesses (along with other people and animals) were all turned into petrified forms in Pompeii, 79 CE, when Mount Vesuvius erupted. Image shows the famous two maidens petrified into statues after the hot ash fell from Mount Vesuvius in Pompeii.
By Rayne Belladonna