Old Grandfather Rangavelas (Explicit)
Ου παππούς ου Ραγκαβέλας
Old grandfather1 bre, bre, bre, old grandfather Rangavélas,
old grandfather Rangavélas had an ass that limped along;
dummy phalli filled her bags; she was carrying a foal.
He led her round the villages: Spoúrta, Vántsis, Kirasiá2.
Spoúrta, Vántsis, Kirasiá: buy a phallus, bring a cunt.
Maids and married women bought, widows too and plighted girls.
And yet one well-respected widow missed the chance to purchase one.
She seized the bags and emptied them; a phallus with two heads fell out.
One grabbed it, then another; they broke the head into two parts.
Translated by John Leatham
1grandfather: often used, as here, as an endearment: old man
2Spourta, Vantses, Kerasia: villages near Kozani
Ου παππούς ου Ραγκαβέλας
Ου παππούς, μπρε, μπρε, μπρε, ου παππούς ου Ραγκαβέλας,
ου παππούς ου Ραγκαβέλας είχιν μια κουτσή γουμάρα,
ήταν πούτσις φουρτουμένη, ήταν κι αγκαστρωμένη.
Τ’ σιργιανούσι στα χουριά, Σπούρτα, Βάντσις, Κιρασιά1
Σπούρτα, Βάντσις, Κιρασιά, πάρτι πούτσις φέρτι μ’νιά.
Πήραν νιες κι παντριμένις, χήρις κι αρραβουνιασμένις,
κι μια χήρα πινιμένη δεν ιπρόφτασι να πάρει.
Παίρν’ τινάζει τα τσουβάλια, πέφτει μια μι δυο κιφάλια.
Τράβα η μια κι τράβα η άλλη και της κόψαν το κιφάλι.
1Σπούρτα, Βάντσες, Κερασιά: χωριά της Kοζάνης
From amongst the content of Carnival songs emerges a grotesque landscape of human faults and weaknesses, a map of social roles and relationships, where everything is catalytically lampooned without, however, losing a deeper sense of affection and acceptance. Bishops, priests, monks, old men and women, with inadmissible or inopportune erotic desires, and rapacious women –most of them without a man: widows, nuns, and priests’ wives– are the main objects of these satirical songs. The extremely bold jokes and the ridiculing of taboos give the impression of rampant sexuality. Nevertheless, despite this climate of unbridled eroticism, sexuality continues to be dealt with as a socially defined phenomenon, and therefore forbidden or reprehensible among certain groups of people, such as those just mentioned.
Women, always the butt of the harshest social criticism, are here too in the spotlight. What is most severely satirized is their erotic voracity. Men, on a symbolic level and with magical expediency, claim the reproductive power of women by means of female disguises; but on a social plane of moral judgment, as the main performers of these particular songs, they make fun of the role they have taken on and reconfirm their authority over female sexuality. (See also Five and ten priests' wives and An old man was approaching). Miranda Terzopoulou (1994)
The song was recorded in Kozani (Macedonia), in 1990.