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  1. Themes
  2. Culture
  3. Myths and legends
  4. Kingdom of Fanes

The Kingdom of Fanes

The collection of legends concerning the Kingdom of Fanes is a very special part of Ladin culture. The mystical tales deal with fundamental questions of life and are not comparable with other Alpine legends that mainly focus on one particular issue.

An immersion in the secret Kingdom of Fanes in the Dolomites. The legend tells us, that the kingdom formerly included the area from “Mt. Heiligkreuzkofel” in Alta Badia until Costabella Group in Trentino. The legend of Fanes is a national Ladin epic and tells about the rise and fall of the Kingdom of Fanes., about peaceful marmots and impressive eagles, about love and courage, about desire and greed and betrayal.

Frightening wizard & courageous princess

The king’s daughter Dolasilla with a white panzer and unfailing magical arrows and Ey de Net (night eye) who loves Dolasilla, but cannot marry her, are important protagonists in the epic. Also, there is the mighty wizard Spina de Mul (mule skeleton) who appears as a rotted mule.

The origin of the Fanes legend dates back to thousands of years. The tales were transmitted orally only, as Ladin culture did not have any written tradition until the middle of the 19th century. Karl Felix Wolff preserved the tales from oblivion by recording and publishing them in German language at the beginning of the 20th century.

Mystical tales & fabulous landscape

In the meantime, there are different books telling us about the Kingdom of Fanes and about the legends of the Dolomites – processed for children, with critical notes about the editing by Karl Felix Wolff or as a comic. If you know the legend of Fanes and hikes over the Armentara meadows in Fanes-Sennes-Prags Nature Park or on other settings mentioned in the tales, you will observe the fascinating landscape of the Dolomites from a different perspective.

Also, the name of Falzarego pass originates in the legend of Fanes. Here, the father of Dolasilla. As a false king (falza rego) would have become a rock due to his betrayal. The queen, however, is meant to live with the marmots in underground caves together with the twin sister of Dolasilla. Once a year at full moon, they drive around Lake Prags on a boat.

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