In the Crimea there is a legend about this mermaid, in the vicinity of the Village of Miskhor. In one of the small houses there lived a young maiden of Arz. For many years she was in love with the shepherd Abiy-aka, who was also in love with her. Sometimes they met at the spring, while a jug of water was being collected. And in one of these meetings Abi-aka, he said that in the evening he and his parents would come to an agreement about a wedding at her house.
She was very happy to see Arzha, she could not sit still in the same place all evening, everything was bustling, everything was falling from her hands, but she was already dreaming of loving him and raising children with her beloved, setting up a home, thinking of whom to call for, dreaming of how to tell her friends.
And then came the long-awaited evening, came the parents of the beloved, sat down at the table and began to discuss how the wedding will be governed. Father Arza strongly resisted, said that the family of Aby-aka is very poor, there is no match for him, that the sheep are few, the vineyards are not very large, and the land is not very large. A few hours of interpretation, but to reach agreement they could not.
Arza, leaning her ear against the door, and was afraid to move and became blacker than the cloud in the May storm. Maybe the parents of Abi-aka left, if Arza did not fly into the hall and fell to her parents’ feet. Arza screamed and asked, threatened to rush from the cliff so that no one could get to her, she begged her father. In general, the father stated how many sheep he has, how much gold he needed for the land indicated which should be bought, and all this he has to do in one year.
Finally he said that all those who came to ask for his daughter’s hands will be denied, but exactly in one year, if everything he asked for was not be fulfilled, then Arza will marry at the behest of her father, and this is what they decided.
The year flew by unnoticed, very rarely Arza saw Abiy-aka, but in her heart, she was with him all the time. Abi-aka decided to work day and night. Parents and relatives began to help him in everything and, to full of all surprise, their family began to grow rich.
Then Abi-aka grapes sold to distant lands and a successful sell, then the wool successfully made profits. And in the sea the fish were full in the boat. Everyone began to say that all the divine forces helped in this love, they only rejoiced, they only prayed for Abi-aka and Arza. And on that day, Abi-aka came to Arza’s father and said that he had fulfilled everything agreed upon, that even more had come and he had managed to build a house near the sea.
Arza’s father heard how Abi-aka became a merchant, that his strength and weight in Mishor was growing and he gladly agreed to give his daughter to marry. The wedding day was chosen quickly, preparations began at full speed. On the appointed day since the morning, still the sun did not have time to appear on the horizon, Arza jumped to her feet, out of bed, grabbed a jug and ran to the water source to dial. She ran to the spring, jammed the jug under the trickle, the sun lighted the deserted streets with the first rays, when suddenly something moved behind her back.
No sooner had Arza come to her senses than she was immediately twisted and thrown into a sack. They were thieves from Turkey, they collected beautiful women for the Sultan. As Arza told her her father would pay gold, but no one listened to her, she was loaded onto a boat and sent to the Turkish coast.
Arzu never returned, they all looked but could not find her. For several weeks the search was on, the whole village was turned upside down, and Arzas was not found anywhere. He became distraught with Abi-aka’s grief and rushed from the cliff into the sea abyss.
Arzes was brought to Istanbul, to the sultan in the palace, they gave her to him for the harem. Sultan decided that she was his favorite wife, but he could not make her fall in love him. Arza, in delirium, spent a year, tossing about at night, sobbing in the afternoon, and in the evening the sultan came.
And after a year or so, Arza had a child borne by the Sultan, and the hero was born, the only son of the Sultan. The feast in Istanbul was arranged, which Turkey had not seen for a long time, and Sultan was shining like a sun. For 15 years he wanted an heir, but all he got was daughters. He finally had an heir. At the feast, a merchant from Miskhor, presented his sultan’s gifts to him and his wife, and a copper jug for bathing.
She asked the merchant about Abiy-aka. The merchant told her everything and how his wife to be was stolen from the wedding and how he search still continues. Arza listened silently and that night she took her son and rushed from the fortress wall into the sea and turned into a mermaid with her baby and swam up to the village. He sits all the night on a rock, and with the first rays of the sun, he sailed away for a year.
The grief of Arza is still in mourning, as if the tears are shed by the earth. That’s how the monument of a mermaid with a child appeared in a beautiful village on the Black Sea coast in Miskhor.
Source: The village of Miskhor is located on the southern coast of the Crimean peninsula. On both sides of Mishor, the most beautiful villages of Koreiz and Gaspra are located. https://www.krym4you.com; Portrait of a Woman by Yakov Kapkov (1816-1854) 1831 Vitebsk regional museum, Belarus.