Lesovik Forest SpiritLesovik Forest Spirit


The Lesovik or is a male woodland spirit in Slavic mythology who protects wild animals and forests. He is roughly analogous to the Woodwose of Western Europe and the Basajaun of the Basque Country. These are forest spirits who are green and lead travellers of their track.

A male Lesovik has the form of a man with a green beard and long shaggy hair. He has green eyes, cast no shadow and wears boots on the wrong foot. He is also regarded as the guardian of animals of the forest.

During Winter they would hide and remain calm. In Spring they can be heard howling and would fight with themselves causing storms and rain in hope to bring Autumn quickly and ruin Spring. However the rains and storms soon ended.

Each forest has its own family with a wife known as Lesovikha and children known as Leshonki. They lead travellers through the forest in the wrong direction until they were thoroughly lost or were stuck in a bog. The spirit would then disappear leaving the traveller in despair. To ward off the troublesome Lesovik it is advised to carry some bread to give as a gift or to wear one’s clothes inside out until one reaches the end of the forest.