- Project Runeberg -  Through the Caucasus to the Volga /

(1931) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Gerald C. Wheeler - Tema: Russia
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - VIII. Excursions in Daghestan

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and a woman dancing within the ring of onlookers
sitting and standing around. This was the Gaucasian
dance "Lesghinka". The man in Caucasian dress
with a sheep-skin cap danced round with quick,
rhythmic steps and the arms held out sideways.
Then he drew a woman out of the ring ; she tripped
round staidly with half-bent head before him,
coyly shy, while he danced round after her, she
always eluding him; this represented the man
wooing the woman. Everything was restrained,
without any boisterousness. Each of them in his or
her way showed a natural grace in all the move
ments: he manly and strong as he swung round ;
she shy and womanly, with supple movements.
The feet moved with a light quickness like drum
taps in time with the music; they touched backs
ever so slightly, while the body was held quite stifF.
The dance is something like a Norwegian
"springer" : the same strong limber movements
in the man, and the lissome shyness in the girl;
but the rhythm and the position of the feet are
not the same, and the man never puts his arm
about the woman, or whirls her round as in the
"springer" ; so near an approach before others
would be unthinkable for the Oriental.
But it was growing towards evening, and the sun
was setting. While the muezzin high up in the
minaret was shouting his mournful call to prayer,
wc walked down through the narrow streets and
then the steep road to the mountain-foot, where
the cars were waiting. Wc were whirled along over
the plain, and soon wc were home again in the

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