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Ivan Bilibin's Alkonost

The Alkonost is a legendary woman-headed bird in Slavic folklore. Alkonost is more likely an individual character, as was noted in some legends about this bird.[1]


The name of the Alkonost came from a Greek demigoddess whose name was Alcyone. In Greek mythology, Alcyone was transformed by the gods into a kingfisher.[2][better source needed]

Alkonost makes amazingly beautiful sounds, and those who hear these sounds forget everything they know and want nothing more ever again.[3][better source needed][1] She lives in the underworld with her counterpart, the Sirin.[4][better source needed] The Alkonost lays her eggs on a beach and then rolls them into the sea. When the Alkonost's eggs hatch, a thunderstorm sets in and the sea becomes so rough that it becomes impossible to traverse. She is also the sister of other birds from Slavic mythology, such as Rarog and Stratim.[1]

According to folk tales, at the morning of the Apple Feast of the Saviour day, Sirin flies into the apple orchard and cries sadly. In the afternoon, the Alkonost flies to this place, beginning to rejoice and laugh. Alkonost brushes dew from her wings, granting healing powers to all fruits on the tree she is sitting on.[5]


In popular culture[edit]

  • Alkonost is featured in the digital card game Mythgard (2019) as a rare minion in the Dreni faction.
  • The RO-86 Alkonost, a heavy bomber resembling the Tu-160, is added as part of a downloadable content for the online mode of Grand Theft Auto V.
  • The Alkonost is the name of the starship in The Boys from The Baltic Stars TTRPG game of Orbital Blues.
  • Croatian singer Nina Kraljić that performed at the Eurovision Song Contest 2016 sings under the name of Alkonost of Balkan. [6]
  • Alkonost is a Russian epic folk metal band formed in Naberezhnye Chelny, Tatarstan, Russia in 1995.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Алконост". PR in mythology. Electronic encyclopedia.
  2. ^ Nina, Lena G. "Everything Slavic Related". self-published. Archived from the original (blog) on 2011-08-27. Retrieved 2011-05-27 – via Tumblr.[better source needed]
  3. ^ Torpie, Kate (2007). Groovy Tubes: Mythical Beasts. Groovy Tube Books (children's illustrated ed.). Norwalk, CT: InnovativeKids. p. 23. ASIN B002YX0E8Y. Retrieved 18 November 2016.[better source needed]
  4. ^ Matthews, John; Matthews, Caitlin (2010). The Element Encyclopedia of Magical Creatures: The Ultimate A–Z of Fantastic Beings from Myth and Magic (children's illustrated ed.). London: HarperCollins UK. p. 16. ISBN 978-0007365050. Retrieved 18 November 2016.[better source needed]
  5. ^ Bobrov A. A. (2004). Русский месяцеслов на все времена. Памятные даты, праздники, обряды, именины [Russian months for all time. Memorable dates, holidays, ceremonies, name days] (in Russian). M.: Veche. ISBN 5-7838-1304-4.
  6. ^ "Nina Kraljić Alkonost of Balkan".

External links[edit]

  • Media related to Alkonost at Wikimedia Commons