This is a book of old Russian folklore retold for young people and the young at heart. The tales are a good sampling of Slavic märchen, or folk-tales. The stories in this book are those that Russian peasants tell their children and each other, or at least did tell their children before the October Revolution of 1917.

This is a book written far away in Russia, for English children who play in deep lanes with wild roses above them in the high hedges, or by the small singing becks that dance down the gray fells at home. Illustrated by Dimitri Mitrokhin, Russian fairyland is quite different to anything seen or experienced in Western Europe or America. Under the windows of the author's house, the wavelets of the Volkhov River are beating quietly in the dusk. A gold light burns on a timber raft floating down the river. Beyond the river in the blue midsummer twilight are the broad Russian steppes, stretching all the way to the Ukraine, and the distant forests of Novgorod, through which the Vikings passed on their way to the Black Sea and Byzantium a thousand years ago. Somewhere in that forest of great trees--a forest so big that the forests of England are little woods beside it--is the hut where old Peter sits at night and tells these stories to his grandchildren.

In Russia hardly anybody is too old for fairy stories, and the author even heard soldiers on their way to the front during WWI talking of very wise and very beautiful princesses as they drank their tea by the side of the road. He believed there must be more fairy stories told in Russia than anywhere else in the world. In this book are a few of those he liked best.

£3, or approx NZ$6.40, of the Publisher's profit from the sale of this book will be donated to charity.

For more information, a table of contents or to order, go to

To view the "Western European Tales" collection follow this link

Abela Publishing

Author's Bio: 

The author/editor of this book, Arthur Ransome, spent time in Russia during World War I as a journalist for a radical British newspaper, the Daily News, meeting among others, Lenin and Trotsky and was also known in the London bohemian artistic scene.
Abela Publishing has been established by John Halsted as a social enterprise. By this we mean we exist to raise funds for charities. We publish new and old childrens stories, fairy tales, folklore, myths and legends and donate 33% of our profits to charities around the world.

To see which charities are currently supported by Abela Publishing go to