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RUSSIAN GODS


Official Names: Dievans
Nicknames: The Gods of Russia, Slavic Gods, Baltic gods, Latvian gods, Lithuanian gods, Estonian gods, Polish gods, et al.
Former Aliases: None known
Other Current Aliases: None known
First Appearance: (Perun) Captain America #352

==Origin==

Dimension of Origin: Other-world (not to be confused with the Celtic Otherworld of the Tuatha de Danaan)
Habitat: Temperate
Gravity: Earth-like
Atmosphere: Earth-like
Population: 500-750 range
Other Associated Dimensions: Other-world is a blanket term for all the worlds of the Slavic gods including but not limited to Bouyun, land of the majestic city Iriys, where the gods dwell, and Vela, the region of the underworld set aside for the shades (spirits) of their worshippers. Bouyun is described as a land of great bliss with a river flowing out of a great rocky edifice. The waters of this river are said to have healing properties. The river flows under the earth to the land of the dead. Other-world, sometimes known as Svarga, after the god Svarog, is also home to a number of divinities such as faeries, elves, dwarves and demonic-type beings dominated by Chert, the god of misfortune. Several other beings related the Dievans, such as the domovoi and the leshii. actually preside on Earth in specialized roles to human beings like elves and faeries.

==History==

The Dievans or Gods of Russia are a race of superhumanly powerful humanoid beings who were once worshipped by the ancient Slavic tribes of Eastern Europe from about 500 BC to 1000 AD when Christianity was first introduced. They have very few worshippers today, and very little is known about their history today.

The Dievans dwell in the realm known as Svarga, or as it is known in Russian folklore, Otherworld, a small "pocket" dimension adjacent to Earth, consisting of the land of Bouyun and possibly a number of other worlds; an interdimensional nexus between Earth and Bouyun allegedly exists somewhere on Earth, possibly on Mount Ceahlau in Romania or near Bald Mountain (modern Mount Triglaf) near Kiev. The Dievans' human worshippers in the Baltic area called these gods by different names than those by which the gods were known in ancient Russia: for example, the Slavs called the king of the gods Svarog, whereas the Baltic tribes called him Dievs, from where they derive their name. The Russian gods no longer have or actively seek worshippers on Earth. However, certain Russian gods, such as Perun and Saule, still take active interest in the welfare of humanity, and still visit Earth incognito while in mortal form. Perun has since become a member of the Supreme Soviets. 

The precise origin of the Russian gods, like that of all of Earth's pantheons of gods, is shrouded in legend. The earliest Russian gods were Rod and Erce, the primeval ancestors of the Slavic gods. It is believed that Erce was actually Gaea, the primordial earth-mother who had survived the destruction of the Elder Gods of Earth by infusing her life into the life-giving essence of the Earth. Many of the Elder Gods had degenerated into demonic status and were destroyed by Atum or had fled Earth for other planes of existence. Atum had been born from Gaea by mating with the sentient biosphere of the Earth known as the Demiurge. Atum later departed the earth after shedding the excess demonic energies of the Elder Gods he had slain; some of these energies becoming demonic beings like Mephisto, Satannish and possibly Surtur, enemy of the Asgardian gods

Rod and Erce sired several children, many of whom with names that are still unknown. Lacking a truly defined pantheon, their worship was scattered throughout Eastern Europe and Western Asia, reaching lands already dominated by the rival Olympian, Norse and Celtic gods. Most of their worshippers were located on the shore of the Baltic Sea in the area of modern Latvia and Lithuania, but their worshippers didn't keep records on their gods and what little we know about them has been passed down orally. It is known that Svarog, the son of Rod and Erce, was often at war with Zaltys, the serpent-god, eventually over-powering him and exiling him to the underworld. Afterward, Svarog became ruler of the Baltic Gods.

It is known that the Latvians and Lithuanians integrated several foreign gods into their pantheon, such as Dyaus, the Vedic god of rain, and father of the thunder-god, Indra. In Lithuania, Dyaus was known as Dievs, and Svarog assimilated his worship into his own to become a god of sky. The Baltic gods became known as Dievans as a result. Eventually, Svarog meanwhile became so powerful that he decided to live through his sons and shared his power among his them, Among them, Perun and Svantovit became so powerful that they were able to eclipse all  and their brothers and gain control of their shares for themselves. Perun briefly overthrew Svarog as Ruler of the Russian gods, but Svarog later regained his throne, imprisoning Perun within a mystical amulet that was later lost on Earth. 

On Earth, worship of the Dievans spread through the Slavic tribes of Eastern Europe and reached its zenith in Ancient Russia, founded by Viking invaders who integrated characteristics of their native Asgardian gods. The Ancient Russians revered Perun as their patron god, but they also rejected several of the more older Baltic gods. However, in 980 AD, worship of the Russian gods fell into decline under Vladimir the Great in favor of Christianity. Hundreds of oak statues and symbols of pagan beliefs were either destroyed or dumped unto the Dnieper River as a result. The few Slavic gods still living on Earth retreated to the extra-dimensional realm of Svarga, created by Svarog. 

Around 1000 AD, Svarog was approached by Odin, Chieftain of the Asgardian gods, to meet with the rulers of the other gods once worshipped on Earth to discuss the threat of the Third Host of the Celestials. The Celestials had threatened to seal off the portals of each of their godly realms unless they promised to stop interfering in mortal affairs. Both Svarog and Odin swore to this pledge, and Svarog made a vow to Odin to donate the necessary life energies to the Asgardians slain during the Fourth Host of the Celestials. When Thor came to Svarga to petition a portion of the required life energies as part of this vow, Svarog saw that a debt had been paid to his realm and offered Thor the necessary energies to restore the slain Asgardian gods to life. Svarog also made a subsequent visit to Asgard to meet with the other godheads over threat of Thanos with the Infinity Gauntlet.

In modern Russian folklore, the last existing trace of the Slavic gods on Earth, Svarga became known as Other-World.  Recently, a Soviet official named Valeri Sovloyev discovered the amulet containing Perun. When he released Perun, the thunder-god's essence took control of his body as an agent of the Supreme Soviets, a group of costumed adventurers under the employ of the Russian Government. Except for very rare appearances, unlike the Olympians and the Asgardians, the Russian Gods have had very little contact with humans, apart from Perun and the Supreme Soviets. Five Russian mutants, known as Soyuz, have since appeared using names of the Russian gods as their public costumed identities. 

Relations with Other Pantheons: The relations of the Russian gods to the other European gods prior to the formation of the Council Elite is somewhat vague. The Vikings who invaded Russia definitely based their worship of Perun on Thor and worship of Triglav was almost entirely merged with Tiermes (Tyr). Relations between the Asgardians and Dievans are tenuous at best. Along those lines, some Finnish gods are sometimes mistaken as Slavic in origin and vice versa. Following the Sarmatian invasions of Persia, Eastern influences from Iran changed how certain gods were worshipped as well, establishing patterns of "good" vs. "evil." The Dievans are therefore possibly aware of the Yazatas of Persia and  the Devas or Gods of India. The Gods of Olympus as well might have tensions with the Dievans following regions of Illyria (Yugoslavia) and Dacia (Romania) being acquired by Slavic influences from the North. (Some Illyrian gods may actually be surviving Roman gods.) The Slavic gods have worshippers as far east as Siberia, sharing boundaries and regions with modern-day worshippers of the Anunnaki and the Xian or Gods of China.

==Characteristics== 

Body Type: Humanoid
Avg. Height: 6' 5"
Eyes: Two
Hair: Normal
Skin: Normal
Limbs: Two
Fingers: Five with opposable thumb
Toes: Five
Special Adaptations: The Dievans or Russian gods are exceptionally long-lived, but they are not immortal like the Olympian gods; they age very slowly upon reaching adulthood, but they are not invulnerable to death. They are physically more durable than human beings; their skin, bone and tissue being three times more durable and dense than similar tissue in human beings.

==Powers== 

Avg. Strength Level: All Dievans are superhumanly strong with the average male being able to lift (press) about 30 tons under optimal conditions and the average female being able to lift (press) about 25 tons under optimal conditions.
Known Powers: The Dievans possess superhuman strength, stamina , longevity and resistance to harm. They are also inclined to tap and manipulate mystical energies for feats of magic, mostly for altering their appearance, communicating over long distances, teleporting through dimension barriers and casting spells. The scope of their powers mostly limited to one object, idea or field, usually tied into their personality. For example, as the Russian god of storm, Perun has dominance over the weather and rain, whereas, Veles, god of animals and forest, can summon animals and control aspects of wildlife in the forest.
Known Abilities: The Dievans have several traits in common with the Asgardian gods as far as honor and skills in war. They are exceptional warriors more inclined to use magic than to violence.

==Miscellaneous== 

Type of Government: Monarchy
Level Of Technology: Magic
Cultural Traits: The Russian Gods were worshipped as gods in Ancient Russia and along the Baltic Sea into Poland and parts of Germany as well as far south as the shore of the Black Sea and into Eastern Siberia. They are still honored in parts of modern Asia, providing the basis of their modern folklore: the legend of Baba Yaga inspiring the story of "Hansel and Gretel."
Names of Representatives: Austrine, Bangputys, Brekstine, Chert/Chernobog, Chors/Dazhbog, Indraja, Junda, Kalvis, Kupala, Lada, Marzana, Mati, Meness, Milda, Perchta, Perun, Pikuolis, Protrimpas, Saule, Selijna, Svantovit, Svarovic, Svarog, Triglav, Ursula, Vaivora, Vakarine, Veles, Yarilo/Byelbog, Zleja, et al.

==Trivia==

==References==

==External Links==

 

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Last Updated: 10/25/2013