In 263 MG, two nomadic groups came across it at about the same time. In the ensuing battle, the Battle of the Pyre?, one group was devastated and driven away. The other remained, mourning the loss of their leader, Rurik Karre?.
His son, Volodomyr Rurikson?, decided to feed his father's body to the flame earning it the title of Rurik's Pyre. He also decided that the group should remain there. He constructed a building, the Firehall, around the pyre, and founded the village that would become Medvedgorod.
From this beginning the Matriarchate of Periaslavl grew. The pyre continues to burn, the Firehall has been expanded repeatedly, and now both lie in the larger palace called the Dvorets Materi.
It has a personal connection to the velikomat, and no girl can be accepted as velikodoch without it's approval. It also amplifies her magic. These things are attested by every velikomat, starting with Helga Mikhailovna, but the cause has escaped understanding as yet.
In the centuries that followed Rurik's death and burning, Periaslavlans have emulated Volodomyr's act. Bodies, letters, contracts, clothing, and many other items have been fed to the pyre. One of the duties of the velikomat and velikodoch is to place such items in the pyre for people who cannot make the pilgrimage themselves, and many scribes are employed to help create certificates when this is done. Most Periaslavlans also try to make the pilgrimage at least once in their life, and they bear items collected over time by friends and neighbors.