The “karakoncolos/kalikancaros” belief in Turkish and Greek sources [Türkçe ve yunanca kaynaklarda karakoncolos/kalikancaros inancı]
The belief in “karakoncolos/kalikancaros” is seen in a wide geography spreading from Central Anatolia and Black Sea region in Turkey to Balkan Peninsula including Greece Bulgaria and Serbia. Though karakoncolos is defined under different names in Turkish sources the period it is depicted and its features are almost similar. According to this the karakoncolos believed to have emerged on the coldest days of the year is depicted as a creature that is often hairy resembling animal haunting people and disturbing them. One of the first written sources in Turkish that included the belief in karakoncolos is Evliya Çelebi’s Seyahatnâme. Today it is rarely a tradition in games such as “karakoncilo” in the Eastern Black Sea or a belief that has been almost forgotten or even unknown by the majority even though it continues to exist as a trivial image in Turkish literature and cinema. On the other hand this belief often referred to as kalikancaros in Greek was compiled by the folklorist Nikolaos Politis at an early date (1904). In this study first of all referring to the various beliefs concerning kalikancaros in the mentioned compilations of Politis the rewritings of them in the present Greek children’s literature by Filippos Mandilaras will be introduced. In today’s Greece it will be revealed that especially during the Christmas period it continues to exist as a popular figure of the musical performances in schools and in children’s books. When we have a look at the Turkish and Greek compilations of this belief in general which is spread over a wide geographical area we can see that the reviewed Turkish sources are mostly collected from the Eastern Black Sea region and rarely lived as an almost forgotten tradition. Today in Greece also due to the Velloudios’ paintings which still circulate today the mentioned belief continues to exist as a “national” and a popular element of the childrens’ literature. © 2019 Milli Folklor Dergisi. All rights reserved.