Khorovod (Хоровод). A lovely tray with an image from an early 19th century porcelain tea service that was originally made by the Popov Factory. (The photograph that was used for the tray is in the book "Russian Porcelain: Private Factories" [Khudozhnik RSFSR, 1980]. Many uses to consider: a dresser/vanity tray for jewelry or perfume, a tray for candy or nuts, or as a party favor. 6"x4¼"x½". Polished hard plastic, foreign import. Brand new.
The Khorovod, also known as Walking following the sun (Хоровод: Прогулка за солнцем), is an ancient Russian dance. The circular structure and movement of the khorovod originates from the pre-Christian worship of the sun god Yarila. Such elements of national culture consistently played an important role in Russia over the centuries. Dancing is a leisure activity, therefore there was a special time for it. In the spring, young people played a game known as “Stream”, a signifier of snow melting. Holding hands, participants climbed up the hills, devoting the dance to Mother Earth and calling out for spring. In July, they praised Kupala (Ivan Kupala is the Eastern Slavic folk festival dedicated to the summer solstice). They asked for the ripening of fruits. In honor of another character of Slavic mythology – Bereginya – the khorovod was made around a birch tree, which symbolized cleanliness and was considered to be the patroness of family and earth. In rural areas, with the advent of Christianity, a khorovod began at the time when there was no Lent or work in the fields.
Tales with a khorovod figure prominently in Snegurochka (the tale of winter, melting snow and spring), plus tales which end with a ritual celebration such as Tsar Saltan, Vasilisa the Beautiful, and many others.