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Our Region on Postal Stamps
Region of Porcelain
The Region in Legends and Tales
How Vladař Commands the Rain and the Wind 

There is a long-lived tradition in the area of Žlutice that Vladař Hill (Ruler) decides what the weather will be. The highest peak far and near stands in the way of heavy clouds and thus, beneficial rain falls on the fertile land at the foot of the hill.

The old shepherd, Matěj Václavík, from a farm in the village of Vladořice discovered the real reason why the clouds either turned left or right in front of Vladař (as if at a junction) or moved back or forward. One day, when his sheep were grazing on the southern and most fragrant slope of the hill, he heard his sheepdog barking oddly. His "Wolf", as he called the sheepdog due to its wild nature, often caught a hare or some vermin, but when Wolf came back that day, he was carrying a bizarre bearded creature in his jaws. The frightened bearded manikin begged Matěj to save him from the jaws of the beastly dog and promised a kingly reward in return. When Matěj released him, the manikin told him that he was the king of all the farm gnomes in the land and that he lived in a castle under the hill from where he commanded the clouds, thunder and hail. For freeing him, he gave a very special gift to Matěj: a magic shepherd's whistle. If Matěj whistled on it, the gnome king would send him rain clouds so that his herd, which the gnome king would always protect, could graze on juicy pastures. The whistle burnt to ashes a long time ago, but the gnome king still tends the pastures to keep them ready for Matěj's herd. 

The remnants of a massive primeval hill fort situated on the dominant table mountain known as Vladař are a major archaeological site in the Karlovy Vary Region. The oldest ceramic findings date back to the beginning of the fortified settlement to the Early Bronze Age and its later existence to the Hallstatt period, during which most of the fortification system was built.

Adapted from: Vorel, J.: O lesních žínkách a jiné pověsti Žluticka (Of Wood Nymphs and Other Tales from the Area of Žlutice), 1990, page 7