Summary of “Dushenka”

In the first lines the author claims that he is not going to sing the military exploits of antiquity – he does not write for glory, “But in order to cool, have fun and rest in the hours / Chloe laughed pleasantly.”

Following Apuleius and Lafontaine, the author wishes to glorify Dushenka, although he realizes that his free, versatile verse does not compare with the poems and prose of his predecessors.

In ancient Greece, in Jupiterovo, when the “authoritative tribe” multiplied so much that every city has its own special king, one monarch is still distinguished from the rest by wealth, pleasant appearance and kindness, and most of all by having three beautiful daughters. But the younger daughter with her appearance still eclipses the beauty of the others. The Greeks call this beauty Psyche, which means “soul” – the Russian narrators call her Darling.

The glory of the youngest princess is spread everywhere, and now the

“fun, laughter, games of the cathedral”, cupids and marshmallows leave Venus and run away to Dushenka. The goddess of love no one brings any more victims or incense. Soon the evil spirits report to the goddess that Venus’ servants appropriated Dushenka, and, although the princess did not even think to anger the gods, they add that she did it to annoy Venus. After believing their lies, the angry goddess immediately flies to her son Amur and begs him to stand up for her scorned honor, to make Dushen ugly, so that everyone turns her away from her, or give her a husband worse than that in the world.

Cupid, to reassure his mother, promises to take revenge on the princess. And soon, to Venus comes the news that Doshenka is left by all – former admirers do not even approach her closely, but only bow from afar. Such a miracle troubles the minds of the Greeks. Everyone is lost in conjecture… Finally, Venus announces to all of Greece what the gods are angry with, and promises terrible troubles, if Dushenka is not brought to her. But the king and all relatives unanimously deny the goddess.


Doshenka in tears appeals to Cupid: why is she alone, without a spouse, even without a boyfriend? The relatives everywhere are looking for her suitors, but, fearing the wrath of the gods, no one wants to marry the princess. In the end it is decided to turn to the Oracle and the Oracle responds that the destined spouse for Doshenka is a monster, yawning everyone, tearing hearts and carrying a quiver of terrible arrows, and that the girl connected with him, we must take her to the top of the mountain, where he was no one was hawking, and leave there.

Such an answer plunges all into sorrow. It is a pity to give the girl to some monster, and all relatives declare that it is better to endure persecution and misfortune than to take Dasha to the victim, especially since it is not even known where. But the princess of generosity (or because she wants to have a husband, anyway) she says to her father: “I must save you by my misfortune.” And where to go, Doshenka decides simply: the horses harnessed to the carriage must be let go without a driver, and let her lead by fate itself.

A few weeks later the horses stop at some mountain and do not want to go any further. Then Dushenku lead to the height without a road, past precipices and caves, where some evil beasts roar. And at the top the king and his whole court, saying goodbye to the girl, leave her alone and, heartbroken, leave.

However, Doshenka remains there for long. Invisible Zephyr picks her up and raises her to the “unknown village of heaven”. The princess falls into magnificent halls, where nymphs, cupids and marshmallows fulfill all her desires. At night, Dushenka comes to her husband, but since he is in the dark, the girl does not know who it is. The husband herself answers her questions, that she can not see him until now. In the morning, he disappears, leaving Dushen perplexed… and in love.

For a few days the princess needs to see the luxurious chambers and the adjoining forests, gardens and groves that show her many wonders and wonders. And one day, going deeper into the forest, she finds a grotto leading to a dark cave, and, having gone there, finds her husband. Since then, Doshenka every day comes to this grotto, and every night her husband visits her in the bedchamber.

So three years pass. Doshenka is happy, but she does not give rest to the desire to find out what her husband looks like. However, he only begs for all her requests, that she does not aspire to see him, was obedient to him and did not listen to any advice in this matter, not even from the closest relatives.

One day Doshenka learns that her sisters have come to look for her to that terrible mountain where the princess was once abandoned. Soulful at once

continuously tells Zephyr move them in her paradise, unwelcomed and tries to “any of the fun.” When asked where her husband is, she initially answers: “There is no home,” but then, unable to stand it, admits in all the oddities of her marriage. She does not know that her sisters, envying her, only dream of depriving Doshenka of her happiness. Therefore, they say that they supposedly saw a terrible serpent creeping into the grotto, and that this is de Dyenenkin’s husband. She, horrified, decides to commit suicide, but the evil-minded sisters object to her that first she, like an honest woman, must kill the monster. They even get it and bring it for this purpose a lamp and a sword, and then they return home.

The night is coming. Waiting for the spouse to fall asleep, Doshenka lights it with a lamp… and discovers that it’s the Cupid himself. In admiration, admiring him, she accidentally spills the oil from the lamp to the thigh of her husband. Waking up from the pain, he sees a naked sword and thinks that the wife has planned evil for him. “And Doshenka then, down, died.” She comes to herself on the same mountain where she long ago said goodbye to her relatives. The poor girl understands that she herself is to blame for this disaster – she is crying out loud, crying, asking for forgiveness. Cupid stealthily watching her, already wanted to rush to the feet of her lover, but, coming to her senses, descends to her, as it should be to God, in the full splendor of her greatness and declares that Dushenka’s transgressing law is now in disgrace with the gods, and therefore he is no longer can be with her together, but provides her with fate. And, not listening to her excuses, disappears.

Unfortunate princess remains only suicide. She throws herself into the abyss, but one of the marshmallows picks it up and carefully transfers it to the lawn. Deciding to slaughter, Dushenka is looking for a sharp stone, but all the stones in her hands turn into pieces of bread. The branches of the tree on which she wants to hang herself, lower her unscathed to the ground. Fish-naiads do not allow it to drown in the river. Noticing the fire on the shore in the wood, the princess tries to burn herself, but an unknown force extinguishes the flame before her.

“Destiny has appointed that Dushenka lived / And in life would suffer.” The princess tells the old fisherman who returned to his firewood about his misfortunes and learns from him – alas! – that it is waiting for new troubles: Venus has already sent out letters everywhere, in which she demands that Dushenka be found and presented to her, and she was not dared to hide under the fear of her anger. Realizing that it is impossible to hide all the time, poor Doshenka asks for help from the most powerful goddesses, but Juno, Ceres and Minerva for one reason or another refuse her. Then the princess goes to Venus herself. But, having appeared in the temple of the goddess of love, the beauty attracts all her views – the people take her for Venus, kneel… and just at that moment the goddess herself enters.

To properly take revenge on Doshenka, Venus makes her his slave and gives her such instructions, from which she must die or at least turn bad. On the first day she orders the princess to bring living and dead water. Upon learning about this, Cupid tells his servants to help Dushenka. Faithful Zephyr immediately transfers her former mistress to that destiny where such waters flow, explains that the snake of Gorynich Miracle-Yuda, guarding the water, should be treated to a drink, and hands her a large flask with snake for snake. So Doshenka performs the first assignment.

Venus gives the princess a new business – go to the Garden of the Hesperides and bring out golden apples. And that garden is guarded by Kashchei, who thinks all the riddles coming, and whoever can not guess them eats. But Zephyr beforehand calls Dushenka answers to the riddles, and she honors her second assignment.

Then the goddess of love sends the princess to hell to Proserpine, telling her to take a pot and, without looking into it, bring it to her. Thanks to Zephyr’s advice, Dushenka manages to safely go to hell and return back. But, without curiosity, she opens the pot. From there flies out a thick smoke, and the princess’s face immediately becomes covered with black, which can neither be erased nor washed away. Ashamed of her appearance, the unfortunate hides in a cave with the intention of never going out.

Although Cupid, trying to please Venus, pretended not to think about Doshenka, he had not forgotten her or her sisters. He informs his sisters that he intends to take both of them to his wife, and let them just ascend to a high mountain and rush down – Zephyr will immediately pick them up and bring them to him. Delighted sisters rush to jump into the abyss, but Zephyr just blows them in the back, and they are broken. After this

Guo Amour, describing his mother, as Daredenka has grown fat, is trying to get a reconciliation with his wife from the satisfied goddess, for he loves a beautiful soul in her, not a transitory appearance. He finds Dushenka, speaks to her, and they forgive each other.

And when their marriage is recognized by all the gods, Venus, having judged that it is unprofitable for her to keep a naughty girl in her family, returns the former beauty to her daughter-in-law. Since then, Cupid and Dosyenka live happily.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

Summary of “Dushenka”