Director Jerzy Hoffman brings one of Poland's most famous legends to the screen with this tale of a cruel prince determined to hold onto power, and a brave young warrior who longs to marry a beautiful princess. The time was the 9th Century, and various Slavic tribes wandered the land that would later be known as Poland. As opposed to praising a single deity that united them all, each tribe worshipped their own distinct god. Popiel was a cruel prince who, along with his scheming wife, nefariously plotted to find a means of passing control of the land to their sun and heir. Recognizing the crimes that he is ordered to carry out in order to make this transition of power possible, the commander of Popiel's army - a noble soul named Piastun - decides to part ways with the corrupted ruler. But Popiel strikes back at Piastun with such ferocity that the prince's former aid nearly loses his life. Nursed back to health by a young hunter and warrior named Ziemowit Pastowic, Piastun ultimately makes a full recover. Ziemowit has only recently returned to his homeland after years of sailing the sea with Vikings, and now he has fallen for a pretty merchant's daughter named Dziwa. Later, as Ziemowit asks for Dziwa's hand in marriage, he is devastated to learn that her controlling father Wisz is determined to ensure that his daughter will become a high priestess in a local temple.