Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In Russian folk-lore, a water-nymph.
The rusalki were thought to be most dangerous during Rusalka Week in early June, when they were supposed to leave the water to swing on tree branches at night.
“A very different being from the Domovoy is the Rusalka, or water nymph. A sweet pale face, shapely bust, and well rounded limbs, characterize the Rusalka. But her strength is like Samson's in her hair.”
“As fantastic and more picturesque is the Rusalka, a water spirit (from rus, 'a stream'), with wavy grass green tresses, and a full snow-white form covered with green leaves, or an ungirdled shift.”
“During the Rusalka week the relatives of drowned or strangled persons go out to their graves, taking with them pancakes, and spirits, and red eggs.”