Labyrinths and seids
The territory of Northern Karelia is studied by ethnographers over four hundred years. Many scientists devote all his time to studying the life and history of the tribe of the Sami are an ancient people who lived here before the active migration of the Slavs in Karelia. Unique spiritual and material culture of the Saami is not only scientific and cognitive interest, because understanding the lifestyle of the ancestors will allow modern people to better understand their own lives.
Pagan beliefs were given mystical power stones, mountains, trees, and various deified natural phenomena. The most widespread was the cult of worship of the seids – detached stones or intricate compositions. It is worth noting that among the peoples living in the tundra zone of Eurasia, the stones occupy a special place. The ancient inhabitants of the Karelian lands were built of stone labyrinths and seids. Almost every mountain and every lake you can find these mysterious constructions made of stone. Mention of unusual monuments and compositions of the stones were found in the notes of the Russian diplomats arriving to the Kola Peninsula for negotiations about the location of Russian-Danish border in 1952.
1877 marked the first anthropological exhibition in tsarist Russia.The research team involved in the study of the Russian North and Lapland, represented in this exhibition, a report of the collected materials, which featured “images and schematic drawings of two Babylonian”. Unfortunately, all reports and drawings were lost. After a few years was put forward the theory that such structures are found only in the Northern part of Russia. Its Foundation was based on the fact that evidence of the existence of such structures in Finland, Sweden and other Northern States was not available.
At the beginning of the last century by a group of ethnographers were examined several labyrinths in the area of the river be. After a few years the collected data were systematized and published in the “proceedings of the archaeological Commission”. The article was considered famous at that time, the labyrinths; also an attempt was made to interpret their origin and to find out the date of their construction. In 20-ies of XX century the majority of the Karelian seids and labyrinths described in the book “Solovetsky labyrinths” M. Vinogradov.
Ordinary tourists and travelers are also able to see and study the ancient monuments. It should be remembered that stone buildings are protected by law, and harm to cultural heritage is punishable by law. A plethora of mazes is located on the shores of the White sea and the Baltic sea, and on Islands in lakes and estuaries. Mazes can be as a unit, and to form groups and to coexist with other mysterious stone structures. Labyrinths laid out in the shape of a complex spiral, the diameter of which can vary from 5 to fifty meters. And if the form is more or less clear, the questions of who, when and why they were built still remain closed.