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Aino is a figure in the Finnish national epic Kalevala. She was the beautiful sister of Joukahainen, who having lost a singing contest to the storied Väinämöinen, promised Aino’s “hands and feet” in marriage if Väinämöinen would save him from drowning in the swamp into which Joukahainen had been thrown. Aino’s mother was pleased at the idea of marrying her daughter to such a famous and well born person, but Aino did not want to marry such an old man. Rather than submit to this fate, Aino drowned herself (or ended up as a nix). However, she returned to taunt the grieving Väinämöinen as a salmon.
The name Aino, meaning “the only one”, was invented by Elias Lönnrot who composed the Kalevala. In the original poems she was mentioned as “the only daughter” (aino tytti).
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Säv. Jussi Chydenius
San. Eino Leino
Video & Audio: Jyri Sariola / Mimix Studio
Ilmakuvat: Teemu Hammaren
Puvustus: Marja Rak