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#Stories of jewellery - ROSES

on 19.03.2018 21:56

This week in  stories of jewellery  we  have  one of the most legendary  and romantic  collections -  Rose Collection Heavy Romantic made by our jeweller and Baltu Rotas co-founder Inita Straupe. Rose Collection tells  a story  about  love  and  trust  and  happens  in  one of the most beautiful  places  in  Latvia  - Turaida.  Story  of  Rose  is  told  to us by manager of Baltu Rotas Riga shop Linda Lūse.

Linda, could you tell us about your work in Baltu Rotas?

I work  in  Baltu Rotas  already  fifth  year  and it feels like the time has gone  by  really  fast.  First  I  was  a  sales  person  and  now  I am  the manager,  as  well  I work with the online shop orders and manage the whole sale.

Do you remember the first time you saw Baltu Rotas jewellery?

Yes, I do. And it was jewellery from Rose collection. It was a present to my mom, there  rose earrings and a necklace. Now recently I gave her a ring as well and it is a nice addition to the set.

So the name of the Rose collection - Heavy Romantic?

Yes, that is the  title  of  this collection. At the very beginning when Inita Straupe started  with  this  collection the roses were quite massive and physically heavy, nevertheless the story of Rose of Turaida is heavy as well.  Yes,  it is  a  love story,  but  it  does  not  have  the  Disney happy ending, it is a heavy story but it depends how you look at it.

Could you tell us the whole legend?

In the beginning of the 17th century, the Swedish army occupied Turaida Castle.  Greif,  the castle clerk,  found  an  infant  girl  on  the  battlefield among  the  corpses.  He adopted the child and named her Maija. Greif cared  for  Maija as  his  own daughter, providing her a good education. As  a   beautiful  young  woman,   Maija  had  many   admirers  but  she refused  to  marry  any  of them.  In  1620  she  agreed  to  marry Heil, a gardener  from  Sigulda Castle;  they  loved  each  other  deeply, and a wedding  was  planned for autumn. Meanwhile, the two lovers secretly met  each  other in  the  evenings  in a  big cave  between  Sigulda  and Turaida.  (In present day  Latvia, it is called Gutmanis Cave.)   Heil dug a smaller  cave  next  to the  big  one  and  decorated  it  with  flowers  to please his bride.
One  day  Maija  received  a  message  that  Heil wanted to see her that afternoon.  After  lunch  Maija  went  to  the  cave  together  with Greif’s eight-year-old  daughter  Lenta. Later that  evening  Heil  charged  into Turaida  Castle  and  announced  that  Maija  had  been murdered. The Turaida  villagers  followed  him  to the  cave,  where  they  found Maija lying  on  the ground  with a  scarf  around  her  neck - and  without any signs  of  life. The  Constable’s  wife  immediately  called  for  the  local judge  to  come  and investigate the crime; the trial took place the very next day.  Heil’s  blood-stained  gardening  axe  was  found in the cave and used as evidence to convict Heil of murder. 
However, no one believed  that Heil  had committed such a horrific act. The  Constable  of  Turaida  recalled  Jakubovskis  and   Skudritis,  two brutal  Polish  soldiers in his army who loved to drink.On the day of the trial,   Skudritis   came   to   the   castle   offering  testimony  about  the murder.  His  friend  Jakubovskis  had  fallen  in love with Maija, but she had   refused   him.   In  his   anger  of   rejection,  lovelorn  Jakubovskis concocted  a  plan  to  take  her by force. The soldiers had written and sent  the dubious message regarding Heil’s desire to meet  Maija. When  Maija  entered  the cave, they attacked her. She tried defending herself, but  quickly  concluded  that  she couldn’t beat the strength of two men.  At that point,  Maija offered  to  give  Jakubovskis a scarf that would  protect  him  from any battle wounds. She volunteered to test it and  tied  the  scarf  around  her  neck but when Jakubovskis struck her with  his sword,  Maija collapsed dead. In the horror  of the attack, Maija had  decided  better to  die than to  betray  her love for Greif. When the news  became  public,  Jakubovskis  hanged  himself  in  a  tree. Greif’s young  daughter  Lenta was found a week later living in another village and  in  total  shock  after  witnessing  the tragic event.  A grief-stricken Heil  left  Sigulda Castle, his home of many years – and never to return.

Until the 19
th  century,  locals  considered  this  story  about  the Rose of Turaida  to  be a  legend.  However,  during  restoration  of   the ancient walls   of   Turaida   Castle   in   the   middle   of  the  19th  century,  some documents  were  found  that  proved  validity  of the story. Called “the Rose of Turaida”,  the  gravesite  has become a symbol of fidelity for all lovers.  In  present-day  Latvia,  many  newly-married  couples  visit the grave and lay flowers in honor of Maija’s devotion to Heil.

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Baltu Rotas
Inita Straupe
Rose jewellery
Rose of Turaida
Turaidas Roze