The Babacaia Rock

The Babacaia Rock – Stânca Babacaia (Babacai, Baba Gaia or Baba Geea) is a strange stone, relatively close to the Romanian riverbank, with a height of 7 meters, the normal level of the Danube in the gorge, and it is the only occurrence of this kind on all 140 kilometers between Baziaş and Portile de Fier. It is an eroded limestone relic from Cretaceous, left on the old riverbed. Its presence has generated all sorts of local legends, and some people with rich fantasy included it in the category of so-called civilization simulacra of the Pelasgians, associating the name of Baba Geea – Mother Earth with Zamolxe’s Dochia on Ceahlău.
Babacaia – is a rocky spur near the Coronini village (former Pescari) placed in the Pescari-Alibeg gorge, that existed here prior to creating the reservoir for the hydroelectric plant Porţile de Fier I . On this rocky spur were tied the ropes which prevented vessels that entered into the Danube Gorge to escape without customs clearance. Around this rock were woven many legends. One said that a Serbian prince tied his wife on it, saying: “Babo, Kaji is”, which means “wife, repent.” Vainglorious, while she was submerged in water, it her last moment of life, raised her finger iout of the water, as a sign that she remains relentless. Moreover, she asked the prevailing wind in the area, Coşava or Gorniacul, to blow harder and remind people that she has been subject to great injustice. Since then, the strong wind Coşava has always created problems to the vessels passing by. Another legend talks about a Coronini captain, who had kidnapped a odalisque from a pasha’s harem in Golubăţ, on the other side of the Danube, and ran away with her, on the left side. But he had been caught and beheaded near the Babacai cliff. In turn, the girl was pinned on the rock, with the captain’s head hanging on her neck. There is a legend that appears to be a variant of the previous one and that belongs to the Turks. According to it, the pasha of Golub crossed the Danube to punish the city Coronini because the captain dared to steal the heart of his favourite odalisque, a girl of incomparable beauty. Pasha would have killed all the garrison and set the Coronini city on fire; the captain was beheaded, and the “infidel” was tied to the rock Babacai, left to die here.
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