Skip to the main content

Original scientific paper

Pagan Gods and Their Christian Substitutes

Vitomir Belaj ; University of Zagreb, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology, 10000 Zagreb, Ivana Lucica 3, Croatia

Full text: croatian pdf 875 Kb

page 169-197

downloads: 9.560



The article analyzes the phenomenon of supplementing pagan Slavic gods with Christian saints on pre-Christian sacred places. The analysis encompasses only the regions next to pagan ‘sacred triangles’ which have been established on Croatian territory through previous research, since the continuity of sacredness of a place (or even of the name of that place) can hardly be proven if isolated from the spatial context provided by the landscape. Those were the places which were assumed to be the places of worship of Perun, Veles, Mokosh and Yarilo. The article also points to the dangers of premature conclusions based on unproved (or improvable) hypotheses. Special attention is dedicated to St. Ilija and St. Vitus (cro. Vid), substitutes of the main Slavic god ‘sitting on the summit and far from the town’ (*vysoko na vrъhu… sěditъ, daleko ględiъ), who was several time convincingly proven to be Perun, while the assumptions on the cult of Svantevit among the Southern Slavs were rejected due to the lack of arguments.


mythology, substitutes, Croats, Christianization

Hrčak ID:



Article data in other languages: croatian

Visits: 12.511 *