Syntyloitsuja - Hirvi Picture

Another comic made for Nuorten Luonto - an environmentalist youth magazine.

Syntyloitsu literally means "spell/hex of birth" and it is a concept in old Finnish mythology. The spells describe how a thing (animal, plant, tool, natural phenomena...) first came to be and it was believed that if you knew the origins of a being, you could control it. For example, you could treat a bee sting with the bee's birth spell.

Here we have the birth of the moose. The spell describes that the moose was born in the windy, treeless swamp. Its' back is made of (hollow or fallen) birch, legs are stakes, head of the roots of European ash and the rest of the body is rotten wood. The moose was very respected in the old Finnish animistic religion, even viewed as one of the the forefathers of man (the other being the bear). There was also a belief that a moose would run across the sky carrying the sun on its antlers.

Fun fact: the little moose drawings under the comic title are referenced from rock paintings of Astuvansalmi, Ristiina, Finland.

Poem according to Suomen kansan muinaisia loitsurunoja (Salakirjat), but I had to shorten it very heavily to make it fit the length of the comic I was assigned to.

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