The Zorya – Guardian Goddesses who prevent the Final Judgement

  • Attributes: Protection, death, rebirth, wisdom, mysticism, magic
  • Symbols: Stars, carriages, horses
  • Place: Russia

Slavic mythology tells that three Goddesses (sometimes only two) protect the universe against the final judgment. They are The Zorya (or Zarya, Zvezda or Zwezda), also known as Auroras.

The three Goddesses serve the Sun God Dažbog, their father.

The Zorya of the morning star is called Utrennyaya (“morning” in Russian), it is she who opens every morning the gate of the sky for the carriage of the sun to illuminate the world. Represented as an armed and courageous warrior, she is the patroness of horses and she is associated with the planet Venus. She is invoked for protection against death in battle.

The Zorya of the evening star is called Vechernyaya (“night” in Russian), and she is responsible for closing the gate of the sky when the sun returns. Associated with the planet Mercury, she is represented as a warrior, but serene Goddess.

The Zorya of the midnight star is called Polunochnaya (“midnight” in Russian), but some legends omit her, stating the existence of the other two Auroras only. The appearance of this Goddess is a mystery and they say that the Sun dies every night in her arms and then is born again at dawn. She is a deity of death, rebirth, mysticism, magic and wisdom.

Due to their nature, the Zorya are often associated with the Triple Goddess, hence the Auroras of the Morning, Evening and Night representing the Maiden, the Mother and the Crone, respectively.

The Final Judgement

For the Slavic people, the Zorya have a duty above the others: The three Goddesses hold the hound of the apocalypse, Simargl, who is chained to the Polaris star of the Ursa Minor.

If the chain breaks or drops, the dog will devour the constellation and the world as we know it.

The Zorya in pop culture

In American Gods, Neil Gaiman’s novel adapted into a TV series in 2017, the Zorya are three sisters.

The main characters, Shadow Moon e Mr. Wednesday, are welcomed in their apartment in Chicago. Wednesday says the place is very different from what he was expecting since Vechernyaya used to be worshiped in ancient times.

The three sisters take turns while they watch the skies, preventing Simargl from escaping and bringing the end of the world. Simargl is held in Polaris, from Ursa Minor constellation.

They live with the God Czernobog, Slavic God of darkness.

All these deities belong to the ancient Gods who were brought to America by the immigrants.

The Zorya - American Gods

Goddess Tarot

Goddess Tarot - The Zorya

The Zorya are Goddesses present in the Goddess Tarot. The card number XIX, The Zorya, represents the Sun.

In Russian mythology, the three Zoryas are the servant Goddesses of the Sun God. Just as it brings warmth and light to the world, the Sun represents the brightness of intellect, creativity and fertility.

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