Thursday, May 01, 2008

Shurale, The Tickling Monster

The above illustration is from A Russian fairy tale concerning a monster named Shurale. A few more illustrations from this book can be found here.

"There is not a single child in Russia who doesn't know who Baba Yaga, Kaschei Bessmertni and Zmei Gorinich are. They are the mythical characters of Russian folklore. In Tatar folklore, the name of Shurale is similarly well-known. This bogeyman is described as a human-like creature with a body completely covered by fur and a horn growing from the middle of his forehead. Shurale (Shoo - rah - leh , pronounced to rhyme with "sure, I lay") has long, bony pointy fingers with which he likes to tickle humans who are unlucky enough to have lost their way in the middle of the black forest (kara urman). Shurale patiently waits behind the trees for his victims. Once the abominable forest creature catches them, he usually tickles them to death."
- quote source

I didn't have much luck finding imagery of this creature but I did find the below picture on google.

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