Only few know, that the Khanty people have besides favourite Day of the raven one more holiday, Seeing-off the swan, which is devoted to meeting and seeing-off this sacred bird.
Here is what I. S. Posokhov, an elderly man, Khanty by birth, has told about the rite of this holiday, which he was lucky to witness once in autumn:
“In the day of the holiday we came to the sacred place, and the hunters informed about their arrival by three volleys from the fowling piece. On hearing the shoot, the guardian of the sacred place came out to the bank to meet smartly dressed guests.
After that, women set the fire on piled up firewood, and put the foodstuffs on the board nearby. They sprinkled the fire with spirits, threw coins into the fire, then lined up and, bowing, whispered:
“You holy bird, you sacred bird, We came to you, and what we brought Is all for you, with all our heart. Our parting now isn’t far. Fly over forests and high hills, Fly far and far on your strong wings, We wait for you again in spring. You’re leaving soon the land of birth- Let blue sky be above the Earth!”After that women turned over the right shoulder finishing the rite, and then started the meal. Aside on the peg there hung bundles with presents. It was the common place for holding the rite. The main rite was held in the sacred place, where only men could be admitted. There they made sacrifices in honour of the holy bird.”