Victor Vasnetsov.A Knight at the Crossroads. 1878. Oil on canvas. The Museum of Russian Art, Kiev, Ukraine.
In many Russian folk-tales, a traveling vityaz (knight) comes to a crossroads where there is a stone inscribed with an un-inspiring choice: If you go to the right – you’ll loose your horse; If you go to the left – you’ll loose your life; If you go forwards – you’ll loose both… Or a variation of these three…..