Legends of my Town
   Why Roosters?   On top of the oldest Riga    Churches - Dome    Cathedral, St. Peter’s, St.    John’s and St. Jacob’s...
   The Legend    The time before the rooster’s first song is full    of evil    There are four the roosters should be rai...
   Tradition demanded that after    the restoration of the St.Peter’s    Church tower, the construction    foreman must s...
St.Peter’s Church tower stood for 200 yearsuntil World War II, when it burnt down alongwith the church on June 29, 1941 – ...
The Practical Meaning The rooster on a church steeple serves as a wind indicator. This is very important for Riga as a sea...
1.   Roosters and Other Animals     So there you have it. The Riga Roosters keep     watchful eyes over the city, welcomin...
   Legend of the cats   The legend known by most Riga`s people, which is    also told to tourists, comes in at least two...
   The other and perhaps older version of the cat    legend has it, that the wealthy tradesman placed    the two statues ...
Legends of myTown, Riga, Latvia   10
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Latvia - Riga roosters

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Latvia - Riga roosters

  1. 1. Legends of my Town
  2. 2.  Why Roosters? On top of the oldest Riga Churches - Dome Cathedral, St. Peter’s, St. John’s and St. Jacob’s – are decorated with roosters (weathercock), not crosses. According to Christian tradition, the rooster is a vigilant defender against evil, and with his morning song he can drive away all bad things. Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 2
  3. 3.  The Legend The time before the rooster’s first song is full of evil There are four the roosters should be raised as high as possible, to hear their songs from far away Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 3
  4. 4.  Tradition demanded that after the restoration of the St.Peter’s Church tower, the construction foreman must sit on the rooster’s back, drink a glass of wine and then drop the glass to the ground. The number of fragments the glass splits into is the number of years the tower will remain standing. Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 2 2
  5. 5. St.Peter’s Church tower stood for 200 yearsuntil World War II, when it burnt down alongwith the church on June 29, 1941 – exactly onSt.Peter’s day.Legend tells that the Riga Rooster whichadorns the top of the oldest church spires inthe city serves as a wind indicator to guidevisitors into the city. Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 5
  6. 6. The Practical Meaning The rooster on a church steeple serves as a wind indicator. This is very important for Riga as a seaport since the wind direction means a great deal for sailing vessels. Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 6
  7. 7. 1. Roosters and Other Animals So there you have it. The Riga Roosters keep watchful eyes over the city, welcoming visitors and defending against evil. But it’s not just the tops of churches that house ornamental touches adding the unique flair to the city and its architecture. Buildings of all types throughout town are topped with all sorts of figurines, animals, and sculptures.  One particularly interesting story is the ―Cat House.‖ Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 7
  8. 8.  Legend of the cats The legend known by most Riga`s people, which is also told to tourists, comes in at least two versions. One version of the legend has it, that the wealthy tradesman who commissioned the building was refused membership of the Riga Tradesman Guild, mostly just called the Great Guild. The central element of both versions is the anecdote, that seeking retribution, the tradesman had two copper statues of angry-looking cats with arched backs and raised tails placed on the turret rooftops with their tails turned towards the house of the Great Guild, situated across the street. Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 8
  9. 9.  The other and perhaps older version of the cat legend has it, that the wealthy tradesman placed the two statues of angry-looking cats on the building turret rooftops with their tails towards the Riga Town Hall, following a dispute with the Riga City Council, after which he urged the erection of the building .The Riga Town Hall at the time was in the same direction as the Great Guild, but it burned down during World War II, was demolished 1954 and only rebuilt at the very same place in the years 2000—01 Legends of my Town, Riga, Latvia 9
  10. 10. Legends of myTown, Riga, Latvia 10

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