THE LEGEND OF DOCHIA
They say that Decebalus had a sister named Dochia.She was do young, so brave and beautiful that, when the Roman Emperor Traian saw her, he immediately fell in love with her.
He told her: ” I saw how you, Dochia, bravely defended the city of Sarmizegetusa. Now, that I have defeated your brother and conquered Dacia, after the war has finally ended, I want you to come with e to Rome.You will live there in wealth and happiness, in my palace with golden walls and filled with lots of wonderful things.”
” Many thanks, Emperor”, said Dochia, ”but I cannot go to Rome”.
” Why not?” he asked.
” Because I am the sister of Decebalus. And he went and killed himself so as not to become your prisoner. No matter how wonderful your palace is, I will only be another prisoner there. And there are lots of more beautiful Dacian girls than me, if you want, marry them to your Roman soldiers, to make a new people which will have in them our stubbornness and bravery and your greatness. As for me, I will not leave, I will stay here on the sacred land of Dacia”.
Traian, the Emperor, took her advice. But when he found out that Dochia had taken a flock of sheep, becoming a shepherdess and climbing the mountains, far from him, he got really angry.
Being such a great and powerful emperor, he wanted that at least Decebalus’s sister to be his prize of triumph. So, he took a few faithful soldiers and went after Dochia. He went on for days and weeks and he finally found her on top of Mount Ceahlau: she was guarding the grazing sheep in a grassy valley with lots of white, red and blue mountain flowers.
“Dochia, now you cannot escape! I’m taking you with me!” said Traian
“No, Emperor, I would rather die than be your slave in Rome!” answered Dochia.
“I only want the best for you, Dochia, you will live in wealth!” he added.
“If you want the best, let me stay here in my country, Dacia! she replied.
“You are relentless! I will take you against your will! I will kidnap you!” he made a sign to the soldiers to grab her.
Scared, Dochia lifted her arms to the sky and whispered: “I want to become stone and stay here in my country!” And so, in the blink of an eye, beautiful Dochia, with all her sheep, spread around her, turned into rocks, stuck in the mountain.
Traian stayed still with astonishment. When he came to, he said: “I have to give up. The Dacians, men and women are tied to their country as are mountains to their rocks. I will take Dochia’s advice and bring as many Romans here as possible.” In the end, Traian went back to Rome.
And even today, you can see a tall rock, like a shepherdess, surrounded by dozens of stones spread around the area, looking like sheep. From ancient times, Romanians call these rocks ”Old Dochia and her flock of sheep”.