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Title: Teutonic Mythology, Vol. 3 (of 3) - Gods and Goddesses of the Northland
Author: Rydberg, Viktor
Language: English
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                           Teutonic Mythology

                           Gods and Goddesses
                            of the Northland

                              THREE VOLUMES

                        By VIKTOR RYDBERG, Ph.D.,
                            AND OTHER WORKS.



                       RASMUS B. ANDERSON, LL.D.,
                    MYTHOLOGY," "VIKING TALES," ETC.

                 HON. RASMUS B. ANDERSON, LL.D., Ph.D.,
                            EDITOR IN CHIEF.
                           J. W. BUEL, Ph.D.,
                            MANAGING EDITOR.

                                VOL. III.

                            PUBLISHED BY THE
                            NORRŒNA SOCIETY,

                                _OF THE_

                             Viking Edition

      _There are but six hundred and fifty sets made for the world,
                            of which this is_

                                _No._ 99

                         [Illustration: NORRŒNA]

                              T. H. SMART,


(_From an etching by Lorenz Frölich._)

Loke, in the guise of a falcon, having been captured by Geirrod, promised
if released to bring Thor into the power of the giant without his hammer,
belt or iron gloves. Thor being persuaded by the crafty Loke, started
upon the journey. When he came to the river Vimer he attempted to ford
it, though the stream had become a great torrent. As he reached the
center the waters rose rapidly until they washed over his shoulders
and he seemed to be in imminent danger of being carried away. At this
juncture, looking toward the source of the river, he perceived Gjalp,
Geirrod's daughter, who stood astride the stream and was causing its
rapid growth. He thereupon seized a stone and threw it with his usual
precision at the offending woman, who retreated. But it was with much
struggling that Thor reached the bank which, however, he would have had
great difficulty in ascending but for his fortune to seize a projecting
shrub, by the aid of which he drew himself out of the raging waters.

See page 933.]





  Story of the Seven Sleepers                                       707

  The Anthropology of the Mythology                                 729

  Svipdag and Groa                                                  747

  Menglad's Identity with Freyja                                    751

  The Sword of Revenge                                              759

  Orvandel, the Star-Hero                                           767

  Svipdag Rescues Freyja from the Giants                            770

  Svipdag in Saxo's Account of Hotherus                             781

  Ericus Disertus in Saxo                                           793

  Later Fortunes of the Volund Sword                                808

  The Svipdag Epithet "Skirnir"                                     815

  Transformation and Death of Svipdag                               819

  Reminiscences of the Svipdag Myth                                 830

  Orvandel, Egil and Ebbo                                           847

  Frey Fostered in the Home of Orvandel                             865

  Ivalde, Svipdag's Grandfather                                     870

  Parallel Myths in Rigveda                                         874

  Judgment Passed on the Ivalde Sons                                884

  Olvalde and Ivalde Sons Identical                                 890

  A Review of Thorsdrapa                                            932

  Of Volund's Identity with Thjasse                                 952

  The Worst Deed of Revenge                                         956

  The Guard at Hvergelmer and the Elivagar                          968

  Slagfin, Egil, and Volund                                         971

  The Niflung Hoard left by Volund                                  975

  Slagfin-Gjuke a Star-Hero                                         981

  Slagfin's Appearance in the Moon Myth                             985

  Review of the Synonyms of Ivalde's Sons                           991


                                  VOL. III.

  Thor's Journey to Geirrodsgard                           Frontispiece

  Idun Brought Back to Asgard                                       807

  Thor, Hymir, and the Midgard Serpent                              915

  King Svafrlame Secures the Sword Tyrfing                         1003


(_Part IV. Continued from Volume II._)



Völuspa gives an account of the events which forebode and lead up to
Ragnarok. Among these we also find that _leika Mims synir_, that is, that
the sons of Mimer "spring up," "fly up," "get into lively motion." But
the meaning of this has hitherto been an unsolved problem.

In the strophe immediately preceding (the 44th) Völuspa describes how it
looks on the surface of Midgard when the end of the world is at hand.
Brothers and near kinsmen slay each other. The sacred bonds of morality
are broken. It is the storm-age and the wolf-age. Men no longer spare
or pity one another. Knives and axes rage. Volund's world-destroying
sword of revenge has already been fetched by Fjalar in the guise of the
red cock (str. 41), and from the Ironwood, where it hitherto had been
concealed by Angerboda and guarded by Egther; the wolf-giant Hate with
his companions have invaded the world, which it was the duty of the gods
to protect. The storms are attended by eclipses of the sun (str. 40).

Then suddenly the Hjallar-horn sounds, announcing that the destruction
of the world is now to be fulfilled, and just as the first notes of this
trumpet penetrate the world, Mimer's sons spring up. "The old tree,"
the world-tree, groans and trembles. When Mimer's sons "spring up" Odin
is engaged in conversation with the head of their father, his faithful
adviser, in regard to the impending conflict, which is the last one in
which the gods are to take a hand.

I shall here give reasons for the assumption that the blast from the
Hjallar-horn wakes Mimer's sons from a sleep that has lasted through
centuries, and that the Christian legend concerning the seven sleepers
has its chief, if not its only, root in a Teutonic myth which in the
second half of the fifth or in the first half of the sixth century was
changed into a legend. At that time large portions of the Teutonic
race had already been converted to Christianity: the Goths, Vandals,
Gepidians, Rugians, Burgundians, and Swabians were Christians.
Considerable parts of the Roman empire were settled by the Teutons or
governed by their swords. The Franks were on the point of entering the
Christian Church, and behind them the Alamannians and Longobardians.
Their myths and sagas were reconstructed so far as they could be adapted
to the new forms and ideas, and if they, more or less transformed,
assumed the garb of a Christian legend, then this guise enabled them to
travel to the utmost limits of Christendom; and if they also contained,
as in the case here in question, ideas that were not entirely foreign to
the Greek-Roman world, then they might the more easily acquire the right
of Roman nativity.

In its oldest form the legend of "the seven sleepers" has the following
outlines (_Miraculorum Liber_, vii., i. 92):

"Seven brothers"[1] have their place of rest near the city of Ephesus,
and the story of them is as follows: In the time of the Emperor Decius,
while the persecution of the Christians took place, seven men were
captured and brought before the ruler. Their names were Maximianus,
Malchus, Martinianus, Constantius, Dionysius, Joannes, and Serapion.
All sorts of persuasion was attempted, but they would not yield. The
emperor, who was pleased with their courteous manners, gave them time
for reflection, so that they should not at once fall under the sentence
of death. But they concealed themselves in a cave and remained there
many days. Still, one of them went out to get provisions and attend
to other necessary matters. But when the emperor returned to the same
city, these men prayed to God, asking Him in His mercy to save them out
of this danger, and when, lying on the ground, they had finished their
prayers, they fell asleep. When the emperor learned that they were in
the above-mentioned cave, he, under divine influence, commanded that
the entrance of the cave should be closed with large stones, "for,"
said he, "as they are unwilling to offer sacrifices to our gods, they
must perish there." While this transpired a Christian man had engraved
the names of the seven men on a leaden tablet, and also their testimony
in regard to their belief, and he had secretly laid the tablet in the
entrance of the cave before the latter was closed. After many years, the
congregations having secured peace and the Christian Theodosius having
gained the imperial dignity, the false doctrine of the Sadducees, who
denied resurrection, was spread among the people. At this time it happens
that a citizen of Ephesus is about to make an enclosure for his sheep on
the mountain in question, and for this purpose he loosens the stones at
the entrance of the cave, so that the cave was opened, but without his
becoming aware of what was concealed within. But the Lord sent a breath
of life into the seven men and they arose. Thinking they had slept only
one night, they sent one of their number, a youth, to buy food. When he
came to the city gate he was astonished, for he saw the glorious sign
of the Cross, and he heard people aver by the name of Christ. But when
he produced his money, which was from the time of Decius, he was seized
by the vendor, who insisted that he must have found secreted treasures
from former times, and who, as the youth made a stout denial, brought him
before the bishop and the judge. Pressed by them, he was forced to reveal
his secret, and he conducted them to the cave where the men were. At
the entrance the bishop then finds the leaden tablet, on which all that
concerned their case was noted down, and when he had talked with the men
a messenger was despatched to the Emperor Theodosius. He came and kneeled
on the ground and worshipped them, and they said to the ruler: "Most
august Augustus! there has sprung up a false doctrine which tries to turn
the Christian people from the promises of God, claiming that there is no
resurrection of the dead. In order that you may know that we are all to
appear before the judgment-seat of Christ according to the words of the
Apostle Paul, the Lord God has raised us from the dead and commanded us
to make this statement to you. See to it that you are not deceived and
excluded from the kingdom of God." When the Emperor Theodosius heard this
he praised the Lord for not permitting His people to perish. But the men
again lay down on the ground and fell asleep. The Emperor Theodosius
wanted to make graves of gold for them, but in a vision he was prohibited
from doing this. And until this very day these men rest in the same
place, wrapped in fine linen mantles.

At the first glance there is nothing which betrays the Teutonic origin of
this legend. It may seemingly have had an independent origin anywhere in
the Christian world, and particularly in the vicinity of Ephesus.

Meanwhile the historian of the Franks, Bishop Gregorius of Tours (born
538 or 539), is the first one who presented in writing the legend
regarding the seven sleepers. In the form given above it appears through
him for the first time within the borders of the christianised western
Europe (see Gregorius' _Miraculorum Liber_, i., ch. 92). After him it
reappears in Greek records, and thence it travels on and finally gets to
Arabia and Abyssinia. His account is not written before the year 571 or
572. As the legend itself claims in its preserved form not to be older
than the first years of the reign of Theodosius, it must have originated
between the years 379-572.

The next time we learn anything about the seven sleepers in occidental
literature is in the Longobardian historian, Paulus Diaconus (born
about 723). What he relates has greatly surprised investigators;
for although he certainly was acquainted with the Christian version
in regard to the seven men who sleep for generations in a cave, and
although he entertained no doubt as to its truth, he nevertheless relates
another--and that a Teutonic--seven sleepers' legend, the scene of which
is the remotest part of Teutondom. He narrates (i. 4):

"As my pen is still occupied with Germany, I deem it proper, in
connection with some other miracles, to mention one which _there is on
the lips of everybody_. In the remotest western boundaries of Germany is
to be seen near the sea-strand under a high rock a cave where seven men
have been sleeping no one knows how long. They are in the deepest sleep
and uninfluenced by time, not only as to their bodies but also as to
their garments, so that they are held in great honour by the savage and
ignorant people, since time for so many years has left no trace either
on their bodies or on their clothes. To judge from their dress they must
be Romans. When a man from curiosity tried to undress one of them, it
is said that his arm at once withered, and this punishment spread such
a terror that nobody has since then dared to touch them. Doubtless it
will some day be apparent why Divine Providence has so long preserved
them. Perhaps by their preaching--for they are believed to be none other
than Christians--this people shall once more be called to salvation. In
the vicinity of this place dwell the race of the Skritobinians ('the

In chapter 6 Paulus makes the following additions, which will be found
to be of importance to our theme: "Not far from that sea-strand which I
mentioned as lying far to the west (in the most remote Germany), where
the boundless ocean extends, is found the unfathomably deep eddy which
we traditionally call the navel of the sea. Twice a-day it swallows the
waves, and twice it vomits them forth again. Often, we are assured, ships
are drawn into this eddy so violently that they look like arrows flying
through the air, and frequently they perish in this abyss. But sometimes,
when they are on the point of being swallowed up, they are driven back
with the same terrible swiftness."

From what Paulus Diaconus here relates we learn that in the eighth
century the common belief prevailed among the heathen Teutons that in
the neighbourhood of that ocean-maelstrom, caused by Hvergelmer ("the
roaring kettle"), seven men slept from time immemorial under a rock.
How far the heathen Teutons believed that these men were Romans and
Christians, or whether this feature is to be attributed to a conjecture
by Christian Teutons, and came through influence from the Christian
version of the legend of the seven sleepers, is a question which it is
not necessary to discuss at present. That they are some day to awake to
preach Christianity to "the stubborn," still heathen Teutonic tribes is
manifestly a supposition on the part of Paulus himself, and he does not
present it as anything else. It has nothing to do with the saga in its
heathen form.

The first question now is: Has the heathen tradition in regard to the
seven sleepers, which, according to the testimony of the Longobardian
historian, was common among the heathen Teutons of the eighth century,
since then disappeared without leaving any traces in our mythic records?

The answer is: Traces of it reappear in Saxo, in Adam of Bremen, in Norse
and German popular belief, and in Völuspa. When compared with one another
these traces are sufficient to determine the character and original place
of the tradition in the epic of the Teutonic mythology.

I have already given above (No. 46) the main features of Saxo's account
of King Gorm's and Thorkil's journey to and in the lower world. With
their companions they are permitted to visit the abodes of torture
of the damned and the fields of bliss, together with the gold-clad
world-fountains, and to see the treasures preserved in their vicinity.
In the same realm where these fountains are found there is, says Saxo, a
_tabernaculum_ within which still more precious treasures are preserved.
It is an _uberioris thesauri secretarium_. The Danish adventurers also
entered here. The treasury was also an armoury, and contained weapons
suited to be borne by warriors of superhuman size. The owners and makers
of these arms were also there, but they were perfectly quiet and as
immovable as lifeless figures. Still they were not dead, but made the
impression of being half-dead (_semineces_). By the enticing beauty
and value of the treasures, and partly, too, by the dormant condition
of the owners, the Danes were betrayed into an attempt to secure some
of these precious things. Even the usually cautious Thorkil set a bad
example and put his hand on a garment (_amiculo manum inserens_). We are
not told by Saxo whether the garment covered anyone of those sleeping
in the treasury, nor is it directly stated that the touching with the
hand produced any disagreeable consequences for Thorkil. But further on
Saxo relates that Thorkil became unrecognisable, because a withering or
emaciation (_marcor_) had changed his body and the features of his face.
With this account in Saxo we must compare what we read in Adam of Bremen
about the Frisian adventurers who tried to plunder treasures belonging
to giants who in the middle of the day lay concealed in subterranean
caves (_meridiano tempore latitantes antris subterraneis_). This account
must also have conceived the owners of the treasures as sleeping while
the plundering took place, for not before they were on their way back
were the Frisians pursued by the plundered party or by other lower-world
beings. Still, all but one succeeded in getting back to their ships.
Adam asserts that they were such beings _quos nostri cyclopes appellant_
("which among us are called cyclops"), that they, in other words, were
gigantic smiths, who, accordingly, themselves had made the untold amount
of golden treasures which the Frisians there saw. These northern
cyclops, he says, dwelt within solid walls, surrounded by a water, to
which, according to Adam of Bremen, one first comes after traversing the
land of frost (_provincia frigoris_), and after passing that _Euripus_,
"in which the water of the ocean flows back to its mysterious fountain"
(_ad initia quædam fontis sui arcani recurrens_), "this deep subterranean
abyss wherein the ebbing streams of the sea, according to report,
were swallowed up to return," and which "with most violent force drew
the unfortunate seamen down into the lower world" (_infelices nautos
vehementissimo impetu traxit ad Chaos_).

It is evident that what Paulus Diaconus, Adam of Bremen, and Saxo here
relate must be referred to the same tradition. All three refer the scene
of these strange things and events to the "most remote part of Germany"
(cp. Nos. 45, 46, 48, 49). According to all three reports the boundless
ocean washes the shores of this saga-land which has to be traversed in
order to get to "the sleepers," to "the men half-dead and resembling
lifeless images," to "those concealed in the middle of the day in
subterranean caves." Paulus assures us that they are in a cave under a
rock in the neighbourhood of the famous maelstrom which sucks the billows
of the sea into itself and spews them out again. Adam makes his Frisian
adventurers come near being swallowed up by this maelstrom before they
reach the caves of treasures where the cyclops in question dwell; and
Saxo locates their tabernacle, filled with weapons and treasures, to a
region which we have already recognised (see Nos. 45-51) as belonging
to Mimer's lower-world realm, and situated in the neighbourhood of the
sacred subterranean fountains.

In the northern part of Mimer's domain, consequently in the vicinity of
the Hvergelmer fountain (see Nos. 59, 93), from and to which all waters
find their way, and which is the source of the famous maelstrom (see Nos.
79, 80, 81), there stands, according to Völuspa, a golden hall in which
Sindre's kinsmen have their home. Sindre is, as we know, like his brother
Brok and others of his kinsmen, an artist of antiquity, a cyclops, to
use the language of Adam of Bremen. The Northern records and the Latin
chronicles thus correspond in the statement that in the neighbourhood of
the maelstrom or of its subterranean fountain, beneath a rock and in a
golden hall, or in subterranean caves filled with gold, certain men who
are subterranean artisans dwell. Paulus Diaconus makes a "curious" person
who had penetrated into this abode disrobe one of the sleepers clad in
"Roman" clothes, and for this he is punished with a withered arm. Saxo
makes Thorkil put his hand on a splendid garment which he sees there, and
Thorkil returns from his journey with an emaciated body, and is so lean
and lank as not to be recognised.

There are reasons for assuming that the ancient artisan _Sindre_ is
identical with _Dvalinn_, the ancient artisan created by Mimer. I base
this assumption on the following circumstances:

_Dvalinn_ is mentioned by the side of _Dáinn_ both in Havamál (43) and
in Grimnersmal (33); also in the sagas, where they make treasures in
company. Both the names are clearly epithets which point to the mythic
destiny of the ancient artists in question. _Dáinn_ means "the dead one,"
and in analogy herewith we must interpret _Dvalinn_ as "the dormant one,"
"the one slumbering." (cp. the Old Swedish _dvale_, sleep, unconscious
condition). Their fates have made them the representatives of death
and sleep, a sort of equivalents of Thanatos and Hypnos. As such they
appear in the allegorical strophes incorporated in Grimnersmal, which,
describing how the world-tree suffers and grows old, make _Dáinn_ and
_Dvalinn_, "death" and "slumber," get their food from its branches, while
Nidhog and other serpents wound its roots.

In Hyndluljod (6) the artists who made Frey's golden boar are called
_Dáinn_ and _Nabbi_. In the Younger Edda (i. 340-342) they are called
_Brokkr_ and _Sindri_. Strange to say, on account of mythological
circumstances not known to us, the skalds have been able to use _Dáinn_
as a paraphrase for a rooting four-footed animal, and _Brokkr_ too has
a similar signification (cp. the Younger Edda, ii. 490, and Vigfusson,
Dict., under _Brokkr_). This points to an original identity of these
epithets. Thus we arrive at the following parallels:

  Dáinn (-Brokkr) and Dvalinn made treasures together;
  (Dáinn-) Brokkr and Sindri made Frey's golden boar;
  Dáinn and Nabbi made Frey's golden boar;

and the conclusion we draw herefrom is that in our mythology, in which
there is such a plurality of names, _Dvalinn_, _Sindri_, and _Nabbi_ are
the same person, and that _Dáinn_ and _Brokkr_ are identical. I may have
an opportunity later to present further evidence of this identity.

The primeval artist Sindre, who with his kinsmen inhabits a golden hall
in Mimer's realm under the Hvergelmer mountains, near the subterranean
fountain of the maelstrom, has therefore borne the epithet _Dvalinn_,
"the one wrapped in slumber." "The slumberer" thus rests with his
kinsmen, where Paulus Diaconus has heard that seven men sleep from time
out of mind, and where Adam of Bremen makes smithying giants, rich in
treasures, keep themselves concealed in lower-world caves within walls
surrounded by water.

It has already been demonstrated that _Dvalinn_ is a son of Mimer (see
No. 53). Sindre-Dvalin and his kinsmen are therefore Mimer's offspring
(_Mims synir_). The golden citadel situated near the fountain of the
maelstrom is therefore inhabited by the sons of Mimer.

It has also been shown that, according to Solarljod, the sons of
_Mimer-Nidi_ come from this region (from the north in Mimer's domain),
and that they are in all seven:

  Nordan sá ek rida
  Nidja sonu
  ok váru sjau saman;

that is to say, that they are the same number as the "economical months,"
or the changes of the year (see No. 87).

In the same region Mimer's daughter Nat has her hall, where she takes
her rest after her journey across the heavens is accomplished (see No.
93). The "chateau dormant" of Teutonic mythology is therefore situated
in Nat's udal territory, and Dvalin, "the slumberer," is Nat's brother.
Perhaps her citadel is identical with the one in which Dvalin and his
brothers sleep. According to Saxo, voices of women are heard in the
_tabernaculum_ belonging to the sleeping men, and glittering with weapons
and treasures, when Thorkil and his men come to plunder the treasures
there. Nat has her court and her attendant sisters in the Teutonic
mythology, as in Rigveda (_Ushas_). _Simmara_ (see Nos. 97, 98) is one of
the dises of the night. According to the middle-age sagas, these dises
and daughters of Mimer are said to be twelve in number (see Nos. 45, 46).

Mimer, as we know, was the ward of the middle root of the world-tree.
His seven sons, representing the changes experienced by the world-tree
and nature annually, have with him guarded and tended the holy tree
and watered its root with _aurgom forsi_ from the subterranean horn,
"Valfather's pledge." When the god-clans became foes, and the Vans seized
weapons against the Asas, Mimer was slain, and the world-tree, losing
its wise guardian, became subject to the influence of time. It suffers
in crown and root (Grimnersmal), and as it is ideally identical with
creation itself, both the natural and the moral, so toward the close of
the period of this world it will betray the same dilapidated condition as
nature and the moral world then are to reveal.

Logic demanded that when the world-tree lost its chief ward, the lord
of the well of wisdom, it should also lose that care which under his
direction was bestowed upon it by his seven sons. These, voluntarily or
involuntarily, retired, and the story of the seven men who sleep in the
citadel full of treasures informs us how they thenceforth spend their
time until Ragnarok. The details of the myth telling how they entered
into this condition cannot now be found; but it may be in order to point
out, as a possible connection with this matter, that one of the older
Vanagods, Njord's father, and possibly the same as Mundilfore, had the
epithet _Svafr_, _Svafrthorinn_ (Fjölsvinnsmal). _Svafr_ means _sopitor_,
the sleeper, and _Svafrthorinn_ seems to refer to _svefnthorn_,
"sleep-thorn." According to the traditions, a person could be put to
sleep by laying a "sleep-thorn" in his ear, and he then slept until it
was taken out or fell out.

Popular traditions scattered over Sweden, Denmark, and Germany have to
this very day been preserved, on the lips of the common people, of the
men sleeping among weapons and treasures in underground chambers or
in rocky halls. A Swedish tradition makes them equipped not only with
weapons, but also with horses which in their stalls abide the day when
their masters are to awake and sally forth. Common to the most of these
traditions, both the Northern and the German, is the feature that this
is to happen when the greatest distress is at hand, or when the end of
the world approaches and the day of judgment comes. With regard to the
German sagas on this point I refer to Jacob Grimm's _Mythology_. I simply
wish to point out here certain features which are of special importance
to the subject under discussion, and which the popular memory in certain
parts of Germany has preserved from the heathen myths. When the heroes
who have slept through centuries sally forth, the trumpets of the last
day sound, a great battle with the powers of evil (Antichrist) is to be
fought, _an immensely old tree, which has withered, is to grow green
again_, and a happier age is to begin.

This immensely old tree, which is withered at the close of the present
period of the world, and which is to become green again in a happier age
after a decisive conflict between the good and evil, can be no other than
the world-tree of Teutonic mythology, the Ygdrasil of our Eddas. The
angel trumpets, at whose blasts the men who sleep within the mountains
sally forth, have their prototype in Heimdal's horn, which proclaims the
destruction of the world; and the battle to be fought with Antichrist is
the Ragnarok conflict, clad in Christian robes, between the gods and the
destroyers of the world. Here Mimer's seven sons also have their task to
perform. The last great struggle also concerns the lower world, whose
regions of bliss demand protection against the thurs-clans of Nifelhel,
the more so since these very regions of bliss constitute the new earth,
which after Ragnarok rises from the sea to become the abode of a better
race of men (see No. 55). The "wall rock" of the Hvergelmer mountain and
its "stone gates" (Völuspa; cp. Nos. 46, 75) require defenders able to
wield those immensely large swords which are kept in the sleeping castle
on Nat's udal fields, and Sindre-Dvalin is remembered not only as the
artist of antiquity, spreader of Mimer's runic wisdom, enemy of Loke,
and father of the man-loving dises (see No. 53), but also as a hero.
The name of the horse he rode, and probably is to ride in the Ragnarok
conflict, is according to a strophe cited in the Younger Edda, _Modinn_;
the middle-age sagas have connected his name to a certain viking,
_Sindri_, and to Sintram of the German heroic poetry.

I now come back to the Völuspa strophe, which was the starting-point in
the investigation contained in this chapter:

  Leika Mims synir
  en mjotudr kyndisk
  at hinu gamla
  hátt blæss Heimdallr,
  horn er á lothi.

"Mimer's sons spring up, for the fate of the world is proclaimed by the
old gjallar-horn. Loud blows Heimdal--the horn is raised."

In regard to _leika_, it is to be remembered that its old meaning,
"to jump," "to leap," "to fly up," reappears not only in Ulfilas, who
translates _skirtan_ of the New Testament with _laikan_ (Luke i. 41, 44,
and vi. 23; in the former passage in reference to the child slumbering in
Elizabeth's womb; the child "leaps" at her meeting with Mary), but also
in another passage in Völuspa, where it is said in regard to Ragnarok,
_leikr hár hiti vid himin sjalfan_--"high leaps" (plays) "the fire
against heaven itself." Further, we must point out the preterit form
_kyndisk_ (from _kynna_, to make known) by the side of the present form
_leika_. This juxtaposition indicates that the sons of Mimer "rush up,"
while the fate of the world, the final destiny of creation _in advance_
and immediately beforehand, was proclaimed "by the old gjallarhorn." The
bounding up of Mimer's sons is the effect of the first powerful blast.
One or more of these follow: "Loud blows Heimdal--the horn is raised;
and Odin speaks with Mimer's head." Thus we have found the meaning of
_leika Mims synir_. Their waking and appearance is one of the signs best
remembered in the chronicles in popular traditions of Ragnarok's approach
and the return of the dead, and in this strophe Völuspa has preserved the
memory of the "chateau dormant" of Teutonic mythology.

Thus a comparison of the mythic fragments extant with the popular
traditions gives us the following outline of the Teutonic myth concerning
the seven sleepers:

The world-tree--the representative of the physical and moral laws of the
world--grew in time's morning gloriously out of the fields of the three
world-fountains, and during the first epochs of the mythological events
(_ár alda_) it stood fresh and green, cared for by the subterranean
guardians of these fountains. But the times became worse. The feminine
counterpart of Loke, Gulveig-Heid, spreads evil runes in Asgard and
Midgard, and he and she cause disputes and war between those god-clans
whose task it is to watch over and sustain the order of the world in
harmony. In the feud between the Asas and Vans, the middle and most
important world-fountain--the fountain of wisdom, the one from which
the good runes were fetched--became robbed of its watchman. Mimer was
slain, and his seven sons, the superintendents of the seven seasons,
who saw to it that these season-changes followed each other within the
limits prescribed by the world-laws, were put to sleep, and fell into a
stupor, which continues throughout the historical time until Ragnarok.
Consequently the world-tree cannot help withering and growing old during
the historical age. Still it is not to perish. Neither fire nor sword can
harm it; and when evil has reached its climax, and when the present world
is ended in the Ragnarok conflict and in Surt's flames, then it is to
regain that freshness and splendour which it had in time's morning.

Until that time Sindre-Dvalin and Mimer's six other sons slumber in that
golden hall which stands toward the north in the lower world, on Mimer's
fields. Nat, their sister, dwells in the same region, and shrouds the
chambers of those slumbering in darkness. Standing toward the north
beneath the Nida mountains, the hall is near Hvergelmer's fountain,
which causes the famous maelstrom. As sons of Mimer, the great smith of
antiquity, the seven brothers were themselves great smiths of antiquity,
who, during the first happy epoch, gave to the gods and to nature the
most beautiful treasures (Mjolner, Brisingamen, Slidrugtanne, Draupner).
The hall where they now rest is also a treasure-chamber, which preserves
a number of splendid products of their skill as smiths, and among these
are weapons, too large to be wielded by human hands, but intended to be
employed by the brothers themselves when Ragnarok is at hand and the
great decisive conflict comes between the powers of good and of evil.
The seven sleepers are there clad in splendid mantles of another cut than
those common among men. Certain mortals have had the privilege of seeing
the realms of the lower world and of inspecting the hall where the seven
brothers have their abode. But whoever ventured to touch their treasures,
or was allured by the splendour of their mantles to attempt to secure any
of them, was punished by the drooping and withering of his limbs.

When Ragnarok is at hand, the aged and abused world-tree trembles, and
Heimdal's trumpet, until then kept in the deepest shade of the tree, is
once more in the hand of the god, and at a world-piercing blast from this
trumpet Mimer's seven sons start up from their sleep and arm themselves
to take part in the last conflict. This is to end with the victory of
the good; the world-tree will grow green again and flourish under the
care of its former keepers; "all evil shall then cease, and Balder shall
come back." The Teutonic myth in regard to the seven sleepers is thus
most intimately connected with the myth concerning the return of the dead
Balder and of the other dead men from the lower world, with the idea of
resurrection and the regeneration of the world. It forms an integral
part of the great epic of Teutonic mythology, and could not be spared.
If the world-tree is to age during the historical epoch, and if the
present period of time is to progress toward ruin, then this must have
its epic cause in the fact that the keepers of the chief root of the tree
were severed by the course of events from their important occupation.
Therefore Mimer dies; therefore his sons sink into the sleep of ages.
But it is necessary that they should wake and resume their occupation,
for there is to be a regeneration, and the world-tree is to bloom with
new freshness.

Both in Germany and in Sweden there still prevails a popular belief which
puts "the seven sleepers" in connection with the weather. If it rains on
the day of the seven sleepers, then, according to this popular belief,
it is to rain for seven weeks thereafter. People have wondered how a
weather prophecy could be connected with the sleeping saints, and the
matter would also, in reality, be utterly incomprehensible if the legend
were of Christian origin; but it is satisfactorily explained by the
heathen-Teutonic mythology, where the seven sleepers represent those very
seven so-called economic months--the seven changes of the weather--which
gave rise to the division of the year into the months--_gormánudr_,
_frerm._, _hrútm._, _einm._, _sólm._, _selm._, and _kornskurdarmánudr_.
Navigation was also believed to be under the protection of the seven
sleepers, and this we can understand when we remember that the hall of
Mimer's sons was thought to stand near the Hvergelmer fountain and the
Grotte of the skerry, "dangerous to seamen," and that they, like their
father, were lovers of men. Thorkil, the great navigator of the saga,
therefore praises Gudmund-Mimer as a protector in dangers.

The legend has preserved the connection found in the myth between the
above meaning and the idea of a resurrection of the dead. But in the myth
concerning Mimer's seven sons this idea is most intimately connected
with the myth itself, and is, with epic logic, united with the whole
mythological system. In the legend, on the other hand, the resurrection
idea is put on as a trade-mark. The seven men in Ephesus are lulled into
their long sleep, and are waked again to appear before Theodosius, the
emperor, to preach a sermon illustrated by their own fate against the
false doctrine which tries to deny the resurrection of the dead.

Gregorius says that he is the first who recorded in the Latin language
this miracle, not before known to the Church of Western Europe. As his
authority he quotes "a certain Syrian" who had interpreted the story
for him. There was also need of a man from the Orient as an authority
when a hitherto unknown miracle was to be presented--a miracle that
had transpired in a cave near Ephesus. But there is no absolute reason
for assuming that Gregorius presents a story of his own invention.
The reference of the legend to Ephesus is explained by the antique
saga-variation concerning Endymion, according to which the latter was
sentenced to confinement and eternal sleep in a cave in the mountain
Latmos. Latmos is south of Ephesus, and not very far from there. This
saga is the antique root-thread of the legend, out of which rose its
localisation, but not its contents and its details. The contents are
borrowed from the Teutonic mythology. That Syria or Asia Minor was the
scene of its transformation into a Christian legend is possible, and
is not surprising. During and immediately after the time to which the
legend itself refers the resurrection of the seven sleepers, the time
of Theodosius, the Roman Orient, Asia Minor, Syria, and Egypt were
full of Teutonic warriors who had permanent quarters there. A _Notitia
dignitatum_ from this age speaks of hosts of Goths, Alamannians,
Franks, Chamavians, and Vandals, who there had fixed military quarters.
There then stood an _ala Francorum_, a _cohors Alamannorum_, a _cohors
Chamavorum_, an _ala Vandilorum_, a _cohors Gothorum_, and no doubt
there, as elsewhere in the Roman Empire, great provinces were colonised
by Teutonic veterans and other immigrants. Nor must we neglect to remark
that the legend refers the falling asleep of the seven men to the time of
Decius. Decius fell in battle against the Goths, who, a few years later,
invaded Asia Minor and captured among other places also Ephesus.

[1] For "brothers" the text, perhaps purposely, used the ambiguous word
_germani_. This would, then, not be the only instance where the word is
used in both senses at the same time. Cp. Quintil, 8, 3, 29.



The account now given of the myths concerning the lower world shows
that the hierologists and skalds of our heathendom had developed the
doctrine in a perspicuous manner even down to the minutest details.
The lower world and its kingdom of death were the chief subjects with
which their fancy was occupied. The many sagas and traditions which
flowed from heathen sources and which described Svipdag's, Hadding's,
Gorm's, Thorkil's, and other journeys down there are proof of this, and
the complete agreement of statements from totally different sources in
regard to the topography of the lower world and the life there below
shows that the ideas were reduced to a systematised and perspicuous
whole. Svipdag's and Hadding's journeys in the lower world have been
incorporated as episodes in the great epic concerning the Teutonic
patriarchs, the chief outlines of which I have presented in the preceding
pages. This is done in the same manner as the visits of Ulysses and Æneas
in the lower world have become a part of the great Greek and Roman epic

Under such circumstances it may seem surprising that Icelandic records
from the middle ages concerning the heathen belief in regard to the
abodes after death should give us statements which seems utterly
irreconcilable with one another. For there are many proofs that the dead
were believed to live in hills and rocks, or in grave-mounds where their
bodies were buried. How can this be reconciled with the doctrine that
the dead descended to the lower world, and were there judged either to
receive abodes in Asgard or in the realms of bliss in Hades, or in the
world of torture?

The question has been answered too hastily to the effect that
the statements cannot be harmonised, and that consequently the
heathen-Teutonic views in regard to the day of judgment were in this most
important part of the religious doctrine unsupported.

The reason for the obscurity is not, however, in the matter itself, which
has never been thoroughly studied, but in the false premises from which
the conclusions have been drawn. Mythologists have simply assumed that
the popular view of the Christian Church in regard to terrestrial man,
conceiving him to consist of two factors, the perishable body and the
imperishable soul, was the necessary condition for every belief in a life
hereafter, and that the heathen Teutons accordingly also cherished this

But this duality did not enter into the belief of our heathen fathers.
Nor is it of such a kind that a man, having conceived a life hereafter,
in this connection necessarily must conceive the soul as the simple,
indissoluble spiritual factor of human nature. The division into two
parts, _lif ok sála_, _líkamr ok sála_, body and soul, came with
Christianity, and there is every reason for assuming, so far as the
Scandinavian peoples are concerned, that the very word soul, _sála_,
_sál_, is, like the idea it represents, an imported word. In Old Norse
literature the word occurs for the first time in Olaf Trygveson's
contemporary Halfred, after he had been converted to Christianity. Still
the word is of Teutonic root. Ulfilas translates the New Testament
_psyche_ with _saiwala_, but this he does with his mind on the Platonic
New Testament view of man as consisting of _three_ factors: spirit
(_pneuma_), soul (_psyche_), and body (_soma_). Spirit (_pneuma_) Ulfilas
translates with _ahma_.

Another assumption, likewise incorrect in estimating the
anthropological-eschatological belief of the Teutons, is that they are
supposed to have distinguished between matter and mind, which is a result
reached by the philosophers of the Occident in their abstract studies.
It is, on the contrary, certain that such a distinction never entered
the system of heathen Teutonic views. In it all things were _material_,
an _efni_ of course or fine grain, tangible or intangible, visible or
invisible. The imperishable factors of man were, like the perishable,
_material_, and a force could not be conceived which was not bound to
matter, or expressed itself in matter, or _was_ matter.

The heathen Teutonic conception of human nature, and of the factors
composing it, is most like the Aryan-Asiatic as we find the latter
preserved in the traditions of Buddhism, which assume more than three
factors in a human being, and deny the existence of a soul, if this is to
mean that all that is not corporal in man consists of a single simple,
and therefore indissoluble, element, the soul.

The anthropological conception presented in Völuspa is as follows: Man
consists of six elements, namely, to begin with the lower and coarser and
to end with the highest and noblest:

  (1) The earthly matter of which the body is formed.
  (2) A formative vegetative force.
  (3) and (4) Loder's gifts.
  (5) Honer's gifts.
  (6) Odin's gifts.

Völuspa's words are these: The gods

  fundu á landi             found on the land
  litt megandi              with little power,
  Ask ok Embla              Ask and Embla
  orlauglausa.              without destiny.
  Aund thau ne átto,        Spirit they had not,
  óth thau ne haufdo,       "ódr" they had not,
  la ne læti,               neither "lá" nor "læti,"
  ne lito goda.             nor the form of the gods.

  Aund gaf Odin,            Spirit gave Odin,
  oth gaf Henir,            "ódr" gave Honer,
  la gaf Lodur              "lá" gave Loder
  ok lito goda.             and the form of the gods.

The two lowest factors, the earthly material and the vegetative force,
were already united in Ask and Embla when the three gods found them
"growing as trees." These elements were able to unite themselves simply
by the course of nature without any divine interference. When the sun
for the first time shone from the south on "the stones of the hall," the
vegetative force united with the matter of the primeval giant Ymer, who
was filled with the seed of life from Audhumbla's milk, and then the
"ground was overgrown with green herbs."

Thus man was not created directly from the crude earthly matter, but had
already been organised and formed when the gods came and from the trees
made persons with blood, motion, and spiritual qualities. The vegetative
force must not be conceived in accordance with modern ideas, as an
activity separated from the matter by abstraction and at the same time
inseparably joined with it, but as an _active matter_ joined with the
earthly matter.

Loder's first gift _lá_ with _læti_ makes Ask and Embla animal beings.
Egilsson's view that _lá_ means blood is confirmed by the connection
in which we find the word used. The _læti_ united with _lá_ (compare
the related Swedish word "_later_," manners) means the way in which a
conscious being moves and acts. The blood and the power of a motion which
is voluntary were to the Teutons, as to all other people, the marks
distinguishing animal from vegetable life. And thus we are already
within the domain of psychical elements. The inherited features, growth,
gait, and pose, which were observed as forming race- and family-types,
were regarded as having the blood as _efni_ and as being concealed
therein. The blood which produced the family-type also produced the
family-tie, even though it was not acquired by the natural process of
generation. A person not at all related to the family of another man
could become his _blódi_, his blood-kinsman, if they resolved _at blanda
blódi saman_. They thereby entered into the same relations to each other
as if they had the same mother and father.

Loder also gave at the same time another gift, _litr goda_. To understand
this expression (hitherto translated with "good complexion"), we must
bear in mind that the Teutons, like the Hellenes and Romans, conceived
the gods in human form, and that the image which characterises man was
borne by the gods alone before man's creation, and originally belonged to
the gods. To the hierologists and the skalds of the Teutons, as to those
of the Greeks and Romans, man was created _in effigiem deorum_ and had in
his nature a divine image in the real sense of this word, a _litr goda_.
Nor was this _litr goda_ a mere abstraction to the Teutons, or an empty
form, but a created _efni_ dwelling in man and giving shape and character
to the earthly body which is visible to the eye. The common meaning
of the word _litr_ is something presenting itself to the eye without
being actually tangible to the hands. The Gothic form of the word is
_wlits_, which Ulfilas uses in translating the Greek _prosopon_--look,
appearance, expression. Certain persons were regarded as able to separate
their _litr_ from its union with the other factors of their being, and
to lend it, at least for a short time, to some other person in exchange
for his. This was called to _skipta litum_, _vixla litum_. It was done
by Sigurd and Gunnar in the song of Sigurd Fafnersbane (i. 37-42). That
factor in Gunnar's being which causes his earthly body to present itself
in a peculiar individual manner to the eyes of others is transmitted to
Sigurd, whose exterior, affected by Gunnar's _litr_, accommodates itself
to the latter, while the spiritual kernel in Sigurd's personality suffers
no change.

  Lit hefir thu Gunnars
  oc læti hans,
  mælsco thina
  oc meginhyggior (Sig., i. 39).

Thus man has within him an inner body made in the image of the gods and
consisting of a finer material, a body which is his _litr_, by virtue of
which his coarser tabernacle, formed from the earth, receives that form
by which it impresses itself on the minds of others. The recollection
of the belief in this inner body has been preserved in a more or less
distorted form in traditions handed down even to our days (see for
example, Hyltén-Cavallius, _Värend och Virdarne_, i. 343-360; Rääf in
Småland, _Beskr. öfver Ydre_, p. 84).

The appearance of the outer body therefore depends on the condition of
the _litr_, that is, of the inner being. Beautiful women have a "joyous
fair _litr_" (Havamál, 93). An emotion has influence upon the _litr_,
and through it on the blood and the appearance of the outward body. A
sudden blushing, a sudden paleness, are among the results thereof, and
can give rise to the question, _Hefir thu lit brugdit?_--Have you changed
your _litr_? (Fornald., i. 426). To translate this with, Have you changed
colour? is absurd. The questioner sees the change of colour, and does not
need to ask the other one who cannot see it.

On account of its mythological signification and application, it is very
natural that the word _litr_ should in every-day life acquire on the one
hand the meaning of complexion in general, and on the other hand the
signification of _hamr_, guise, an earthly garb which persons skilled
in magic could put on and off. _Skipta litum_, _vixla litum_, have in
Christian times been used as synonymous with _skipta hömum_, _vixla

In physical death the coarser elements of an earthly person's nature are
separated from the other constituent parts. The tabernacle formed of
earth and the vegetative material united therewith are eliminated like
the animal element and remain on earth. But this does not imply that the
deceased descend without form to Hades. The form in which they travel
in "deep dales," traverse the thornfields, wade across the subterranean
rivers, or ride over the gold-clad Gjallar-bridge, is not a new creation,
but was worn by them in their earthly career. It can be none other than
their _litr_, their _umbra et imago_. It also shows distinctly what the
dead man has been in his earthly life, and what care has been bestowed
on his dust. The washing, combing, dressing, ornamenting, and supplying
with Hel-shoes of the dead body has influence upon one's looks in Hades,
on one's looks when he is to appear before his judge.

Separated from the earthly element, from the vegetative material, and
from the blood, the _lit_ is almost imponderable, and does not possess
the qualities for an intensive life, either in bliss or in torture. Five
fylkes of dead men who rode over the Gjallar-bridge produced no greater
din than Hermod alone riding on Sleipner; and the woman watching the
bridge saw that Hermod's exterior was not that of one separated from the
earthly element. It was not _litr daudra manna_ (Gylfaginning). But the
_litr_ of the dead is compensated for what it has lost. Those who in the
judgment on _daudan hvern_ are pronounced worthy of bliss are permitted
to drink from the horn decorated with the serpent-symbol of eternity, the
liquids of the three world-fountains which give life to all the world,
and thereby their _litr_ gets a higher grade of body and nobler blood
(see Nos. 72, 73). Those sentenced to torture must also drink, but it is
a drink _eitri blandinn miok_, "much mixed with venom," and it is _illu
heilli_, that is, a warning of evil. This drink also restores their
bodies, but only to make them feel the burden of torture. The liquid
of life which they imbibe in this drink is the same as that which was
thought to flow in the veins of the demons of torture. When Hadding with
his sword wounds the demon-hand which grasps after Hardgrep and tears her
into pieces (see No. 41), there flows from the wound "more venom than
blood" (_plus tabi quam cruoris_--Saxo, _Hist._, 40).

When Loder had given Ask and Embla _litr goda_, an inner body formed in
the image of the gods, a body which gives to their earthly tabernacle
a human-divine type, they received from Honer the gift which is called
_ódr_. In signification this word corresponds most closely to the Latin
_mens_, the Greek _nous_ (cp. Vigfusson's Lexicon), and means that
material which forms the kernel of a human personality, its ego, and
whose manifestations are understanding, memory, fancy, and will.

Vigfusson has called attention to the fact that the epithet _langifótr_
and _aurkonungr_, "Longleg" and "Mire-king," applied to Honer, is
applicable to the stork, and that this cannot be an accident, as the very
name _Hænir_ suggests a bird, and is related to the Greek _kuknos_, and
the Sanscrit _sakunas_ (_Corpus Poet. Bor._, i. p. cii.).[2] It should
be borne in mind in this connection that the stork even to this day is
regarded as a sacred and protected bird, and that among Scandinavians
and Germans there still exists a nursery tale telling how the stork
takes from some saga-pond the little fruits of man and brings them to
their mothers. The tale which now belongs to the nursery has its root
in the myth, where Honer gives our first parents that very gift which
in a spiritual sense makes them human beings and contains the personal
ego. It is both possible and probable that the conditions essential to
the existence of every person were conceived as being analogous with the
conditions attending the creation of the first human pair, and that the
gifts which were then given by the gods to Ask and Embla were thought
to be repeated in the case of each one of their descendants--that Honer
consequently was believed to be continually active in the same manner as
when the first human pair was created, giving to the mother-fruit the ego
that is to be. The fruit itself out of which the child is developed was
conceived as grown on the world-tree, which therefore is called _manna
mjötudr_ (Fjölsvinnsmal, 22). Every fruit of this kind (_aldin_) that
matured (and fell from the branches of the world-tree into the mythic
pond [?]) is fetched by the winged servants of the gods, and is born _á
eld_ into the maternal lap, after being mentally fructified by Honer.

  Ut af hans (Mimameids) aldni
  skal á eld bera
  fyr kelisjúkar konur;
  utar hverfa
  thaz thær innar skyli,
  sá er hann med mönnum mjötudr.

Above, in No. 83, it has been shown that _Lodurr_ is identical with
_Mundilföri_, the one producing fire by friction, and that _Hœnir_
and _Lodurr_ are Odin's brothers, also called _Vei_ and _Vili_. With
regard to the last name it should be remarked that its meaning of "will"
developed out of the meaning "desire," "longing," and that the word
preserved this older meaning also in the secondary sense of _cupido_,
_libido_, sexual desire. This epithet of _Lodurr_ corresponds both
with the nature of the gifts he bestows on the human child which is to
be--that is, the blood and the human, originally divine, form--and also
with his quality of fire-producer, if, as is probable, the friction-fire
had the same symbolic meaning in the Teutonic mythology as in the
Rigveda. Like Honer, Loder causes the knitting together of the human
generations. While the former fructifies the embryo developing on the
world-tree with _ódr_, it receives from Loder the warmth of the blood and
human organism. The expression _Vilja byrdr_, "_Vili's_ burden," "that
which _Vili_ has produced," is from this point of view a well-chosen and
at the same time an ambiguous paraphrase for a human body. The paraphrase
occurs in Ynglingatal (Ynglingasaga, 17). When Visbur loses his life in
the flames it is there said of him that the fire consumed his _Vilja
byrdi_, his corporal life.

To Loder's and Honer's gifts the highest Asa-god adds the best element
in human nature, _önd_, spirit, that by which a human being becomes
participator in the divine also in an inner sense, and not only as to
form. The divine must here, of course, be understood in the sense (far
different from the ecclesiastical) in which it was used by our heathen
ancestors, to whom the divine, as it can reveal itself in men, chiefly
consisted in power of thought, courage, honesty, veracity, and mercy,
but who knew no other humility than that of patiently bearing such
misfortunes as cannot be averted by human ingenuity.

These six elements, united into one in human nature, were of course
constantly in reciprocal activity. The personal kernel _ódr_ is on the
one hand influenced by _önd_, the spirit, and on the other hand by the
animal, vegetative, and corporal elements, and the personality being
endowed with will, it is responsible for the result of this reciprocal
activity. If the spirit becomes superior to the other elements then it
penetrates and sanctifies not only the personal kernel, but also the
animal, vegetative, and corporal elements. Then human nature becomes a
being that may be called divine, and deserves divine honour. When such
a person dies the lower elements which are abandoned and consigned to
the grave have been permeated by, and have become participators in, the
personality which they have served, and may thereafter in a wonderful
manner diffuse happiness and blessings around them. When Halfdan the
Black died different places competed for the keeping of his remains,
and the dispute was settled by dividing the corpse between Hadaland,
Ringerike, and Vestfold (Fagerskinna, Heimskringla). The vegetative force
in the remains of certain persons might also manifest itself in a strange
manner. Thorgrim's grave-mound in Gisle's saga was always green on one
side, and Laugarbrekku-Einar's grave-mound was entirely green both winter
and summer (Landn., ii. 7).

The elements of the dead buried in the grave continued for more or less
time their reciprocal activity, and formed a sort of unity which, if
permeated by his _ódr_ and _önd_, preserved some of his personality and
qualities. The grave-mound might in this manner contain an _alter ego_
of him who had descended to the realm of death. This _alter ego_, called
after his dwelling _haugbúi_, hill-dweller, was characterised by his
nature as a _draugr_, a branch which, though cut off from its life-root,
still maintains its consistency, but gradually, though slowly, pays
tribute to corruption and progresses toward its dissolution. In Christian
times the word _draugr_ acquired a bad, demoniacal meaning, which did not
belong to it exclusively in heathen times, to judge from the compounds
in which it is found: _eldraugr_, _herdraugr_, _hirdidraugr_, which were
used in paraphrases for "warriors;" _ódaldraugr_, "rightful owner,"
&c. The _alter ego_ of the deceased, his representative dwelling in
the grave, retained his character: was good and kind if the deceased
had been so in life; in the opposite case, evil and dangerous. As a
rule he was believed to sleep in his grave, especially in the daytime,
but might wake up in the night, or could be waked by the influence
of prayer or the powers of conjuration. Ghosts of the good kind were
_hollar vættir_, of the evil kind _úvættir_. Respect for the fathers and
the idea that the men of the past were more pious and more noble than
those of the present time caused the _alter egos_ of the fathers to be
regarded as beneficent and working for the good of the race, and for this
reason family grave-mounds where the bones of the ancestors rested were
generally near the home. If there was no grave-mound in the vicinity, but
a rock or hill, the _alter egos_ in question were believed to congregate
there when something of importance to the family was impending. It
might also happen that the lower elements, when abandoned by _ódr_ and
_önd_, became an _alter ego_ in whom the vegetative and animal elements
exclusively asserted themselves. Such an one was always tormented by
animal desire of food, and did not seem to have any feeling for or memory
of bonds tied in life. Saxo (_Hist._, 244) gives a horrible account of
one of this sort. Two foster-brothers, Asmund and Asvid, had agreed that
if the one died before the other the survivor should confine himself
in the foster-brother's grave-chamber and remain there. Asvid died and
was buried with horse and dog. Asmund kept his agreement, and ordered
himself to be confined in the large, roomy grave, but discovered to his
horror that his foster-brother had become a _haugbúi_ of the last-named
kind, who, after eating horse and dog, attacked Asmund to make him a
victim of his hunger. Asmund conquered the _haugbúi_, cut off his head,
and pierced his heart with a pole to prevent his coming to life again.
Swedish adventurers who opened the grave to plunder it freed Asmund from
his prison. In such instances as this it must have been assumed that the
lower elements of the deceased consigned to the grave were never in his
lifetime sufficiently permeated by his _ódr_ and _önd_ to enable these
qualities to give the corpse an impression of the rational personality
and human character of the deceased. The same idea is the basis of belief
of the Slavic people in the vampire. In one of this sort the vegetative
element united with his dust still asserts itself, so that hair and
nails continue to grow as on a living being, and the animal element,
which likewise continues to operate in the one buried, visits him with
hunger and drives him in the night out of the grave to suck the blood of
surviving kinsmen.

The real personality of the dead, the one endowed with _litr_, _ódr_,
and _önd_, was and remained in the death kingdom, although circumstances
might take place that would call him back for a short time. The drink
which the happy dead person received in Hades was intended not only to
strengthen his _litr_, but also to soothe that longing which the earthly
life and its memories might cause him to feel. If a dearly-beloved
kinsman or friend mourned the deceased too violently, this sorrow
disturbed his happiness in the death kingdom, and was able to bring
him back to earth. Then he would visit his grave-mound, and he and his
_alter ego_, the _haugbúi_, would become one. This was the case with
Helge Hundingsbane (Helge Hund., ii. 40, &c.). The sorrow of Sigrun, his
beloved, caused him to return from Valhal to earth and to ride to his
grave, where Sigrun came to him and wanted to rest in his arms during the
night. But when Helge had told her that her tears pierced his breast with
pain, and had assured her that she was exceedingly dear to him, and had
predicted that they together should drink the sorrow-allaying liquids of
the lower world, he rode his way again, in order that, before the crowing
of the cock, he might be back among the departed heroes. Prayer was
another means of calling the dead back. At the entrance of his deceased
mother's grave-chamber Svipdag beseeches her to awake. Her ashes kept in
the grave-chamber (_er til moldar er komin_) and her real personality
from the realm of death (_er ór ljodheimum er lidin_) then unite, and
Groa speaks out of the grave to her son (Grogaldr., i. 2). A third means
of revoking the dead to earth lay in conjuration. But such a use of
conjuration was a great sin, which relegated the sinner to the demons.
(Cp. Saxo's account of Hardgrep.)

Thus we understand why the dead descended to Hades and still inhabited
the grave-mounds. One died "to Hel" and "to the grave" at the same time.
That of which earthly man consisted, in addition to his corporal garb,
was not the simple being, "the soul," which cannot be divided, but there
was a combination of factors, which in death could be separated, and of
which those remaining on earth, while they had long been the covering of
a personal kernel (_ódr_), could themselves in a new combination form
another ego of the person who had descended to Hades.

But that too consisted of several factors, _litr_, _ódr_, and _önd_, and
they were not inseparably united. We have already seen that the sinner,
sentenced to torture, dies a second death in the lower world before he
passes through the Na-gates, the death from Hel to Nifelhel, so that he
becomes a _nár_, a corpse in a still deeper sense than that which _nár_
has in a physical sense. The second death, like the first (physical),
must consist in the separation of one or more of the factors from the
being that dies. And in the second death, that which separates itself
from the damned one and changes his remains into a lower-world _nár_,
must be those factors that have no blame in connection with his sins,
and consequently should not suffer his punishment, and which in their
origin are too noble to become the objects of the practice of demons
in the art of torturing. The venom drink which the damned person has to
empty deprives him of that image of the gods in which he was made, and
of the spirit which was the noble gift of the Asa-father. Changed into a
_monster_, he goes to his destiny fraught with misfortunes.

The idea of a regeneration was not foreign to the faith of the Teutonic
heathens. To judge from the very few statements we have on this point,
it would seem that it was only the very best and the very worst who
were thought to be born anew in the present world. Gulveig was born
again several times by the force of her own evil will. But it is only
ideal persons of whom it is said that they are born again--_e.g._, Helge
Hjorvardson, Helge Hundingsbane, and Olaf Geirstadaralf, of whom the
last was believed to have risen again in Saint Olaf. With the exception
of Gulveig, the statements in regard to the others from Christian times
are an echo from the heathen Teutonic doctrine which it would be most
interesting to become better acquainted with--also from the standpoint
of comparative Aryan mythology, since this same doctrine appears in a
highly-developed form in the Asiatic-Aryan group of myths.

[2] There is a story of the creation of man by three wandering gods, who
become in mediæval stories Jesus and SS. Peter and Paul walking among
men, as in Champfleury's pretty apologue of the _bonhomme misére_, so
beautifully illustrated by Legros. In the eddic legend one of these
gods is called _Hœne_; he is the _speech-giver_ of Wolospa, and is
described in praises taken from lost poems as "the long-legged one"
[_langifotr_], "the lord of the ooze" [_aurkonungr_]. Strange epithets,
but easily explainable when one gets at the etymology of Hœne = _hohni_
= Sansc. _sakunas_ = Gr. _kuknos_ = the white bird, swan, or stork,
that stalks along in the mud, lord of the marsh; and it is now easy to
see that this bird is the Creator walking in chaos, brooding over the
primitive mish-mash or tohu-bohu, and finally hatching the egg of the
world. Hohni is also, one would fancy, to be identified with Heimdal,
_the walker_, who is also a creator-god, who sleeps _more lightly than a
bird_, who is also the "_fair Anse_," and _the "whitest of the Anses,"_
the "waker of the gods," a celestial chanticleer as it were (Vigfusson,
_Corpus Poeticum Boreale_, vol. i., Introduction, p. cii., quoted by the





Groa's son Svipdag is mentioned by this name in two Old Norse songs,
Grogalder and Fjölsvinnsmal, which as Bugge has shown, are mutually
connected, and describe episodes from the same chain of events.

The contents of Grogalder are as follows:

Groa is dead when the event described in the song takes place. Svipdag is
still quite young. Before her death she has told him that he is to go to
her grave and call her if he needs her help. The grave is a grave-chamber
made of large flat stones raised over a stone floor, and forming when
seen from the outside a mound which is furnished with a door (str. 1, 15).

Svipdag's father has married a second time. The stepmother commands her
stepson to go abroad and find _Menglödum_, "those fond of ornaments."
From Fjölsvinnsmal we learn that one of those called by this name is a
young maid who becomes Svipdag's wife. Her real name is not given: she
is continually designated as _Menglöd_, Menglad, one of "those fond of
ornaments," whom Svipdag has been commanded to find.

This task seems to Svipdag to exceed his powers. It must have been one of
great adventures and great dangers, for he now considers it the proper
time to ask his deceased mother for help. He has become suspicious of
his stepmother's intentions; he considers her _lævis_ (cunning), and her
proposition is "a cruel play which she has put before him" (str. 3).

He goes to Groa's grave-chamber, probably in the night (_verda auflgari
allir a nottum dauthir_--Helge Hund., ii. 51), bids her wake, and reminds
her of her promise. That of Groa which had become dust (_er til moldar
er komin_), and that of her which had left this world of man and gone to
the lower world (_er ór ljódheimum lidin_), become again united under the
influence of maternal love and of the son's prayer, and Svipdag hears out
of the grave-chamber his mother's voice asking him why he has come. He
speaks of the errand on which he has been sent by his stepmother (str. 3,

The voice from the grave declares that long journeys lie before Svipdag
if he is to reach the goal indicated. It does not, however, advise him to
disobey the command of his stepmother, but assures him that if he will
but patiently look for a good outcome of the matter, then the norn will
guide the events into their right course (str. 4).

The son then requests his mother to sing protecting incantations over
him. She is celebrated in mythology as one mighty in incantations of the
good kind. It was Groa that sang healing incantations over Thor when with
a wounded forehead he returned from the conflict with the giant Hrungner

Groa hears his prayer, and sings from the grave an incantation of
protection against the dangers which her prophetic vision has discovered
on those journeys that now lie before Svipdag: first, the incantation
that can inspire the despondent youth who lacks confidence in himself
with courage and reliance in his own powers. It is, Groa says, the same
incantation as another mother before her sang over a son whose strength
had not yet been developed, and who had a similar perilous task to
perform. It is an incantation, says Groa, which Rind, Vale's mother,
sang over _Ránr_. This synonym of Vale is of saga-historical interest.
Saxo calls Vale _Bous_, the Latinised form for Beowulf, and Beowulf's
grave-mound, according to the Old English poem which bears his name, is
situated on _Hrones næss_, _Ránr's_ ness. Here too a connection between
Vale and the name _Ránr_ is indicated.

Groa's second incantation contains a prayer that when her son, joyless,
travels his paths and sees scorn and evil before his eyes, he may always
be protected by Urd's _lokur_ (an ambiguous expression, which may on the
one hand refer to the bonds and locks of the goddess of fate, on the
other hand to Groa's own phrophetic magic song: _lokur_ means both songs
of a certain kind and locks and prisons).

On his journey Svipdag is to cross rivers, which with swelling floods
threaten his life; but Groa's third incantation commands these rivers
to flow down to Hel and to fall for her son. The rivers which have
their course to Hel (_falla til Heljar hedan_--Grimnersmal, 28) are
subterranean rivers rising on the Hvergelmer mountain (59, 93).

Groa's fourth and fifth incantations indicate that Svipdag is to
encounter enemies and be put in chains. Her songs are then to operate
in such a manner that the hearts of the foes are softened into
reconciliation, and that the chains fall from the limbs of her son. For
this purpose she gives him that power which is called "_Leifnir's_ fires"
(see No. 38), which loosens fetters from enchanted limbs (str. 9, 10).

Groa's sixth incantation is to save Svipdag from perishing in a gale on
the sea. In the great world-mill (_ludr_) which produces the maelstrom,
ocean currents, ebb and flood tide (see Nos. 79-82), calm and war are to
"gang thegither" in harmony, be at Svipdag's service and prepare him a
safe voyage.

The seventh incantation that comes from the grave-chamber speaks of a
journey which Svipdag is to make over a mountain where terrible cold
reigns. The song is to save him from becoming a victim of the frost there.

The last two incantations, the eighth and the ninth, show what was
already suggested by the third, namely, that Svipdag's adventurous
journeys are to be crowned with a visit in the lower world. He is to
meet Nat _á Niflvegi_, "on the Nifel-way," "in Nifel-land." The word
_nifl_ does not occur in the Old Norse literature except in reference to
the northern part of the Teutonic Hades, the forecourt to the worlds of
torture there. _Niflhel_ and _Niflheim_ are, as we know, the names of
that forecourt. _Niflfarinn_ is the designation, as heretofore mentioned,
of a deceased whose soul has descended to Nifelhel; _Niflgódr_ is a
nithing, one deserving to be damned to the tortures of the lower world.
Groa's eighth incantation is to protect her son against the perilous
consequences of encountering a "dead woman" (_daud kona_) on his journey
through Nifelhel. The ninth incantation shows that Svipdag, on having
traversed the way to the northern part of the lower world, crosses
the Hvergelmer mountain and comes to the realm of Mimer; for he is to
meet and talk with "the weapon-honoured giant," Mimer himself, under
circumstances which demand "tongue and brains" on the part of Groa's son:

  ef thú vid inn náddgöfga
  ordum skiptir jötun:
  máls ok mannvits
  sé ther á Mimis hjarta
  gnóga of getit.

In the poem Fjölsvinnsmal, which I am now to discuss, we read with regard
to Svipdag's adventures in the lower world that on his journey in Mimer's
domain he had occasion to see the _ásmegir's_ citadel and the splendid
things within its walls (str. 33; cp. No. 53).



In the first stanzas of Fjölsvinnsmal we see Svipdag making his way to a
citadel which is furnished with _forgördum_--that is to say, ramparts in
front of the gate in the wall which surrounds the place. On one of these
ramparts stands a watchman who calls himself _Fjölsvinnr_, which is an
epithet of Odin (Grimnersmal, 47).

The first strophe of the poem calls Svipdag _thursa thjódar sjólr_
(_sjóli_), "the leader of the Thurs people." The reason why he could be
designated thus has already been given (see Nos. 24, 33): During the
conflicts between the powers of winter and the sons of Ivalde, and the
race connected with them, on the one side, and the Teutonic patriarch
Halfdan, favoured by the Asa-gods, on the other side, Svipdag opposed the
latter and finally defeated him (see No. 93).

From the manner in which Fjölsvin receives the traveller it appears that
a "leader of the Thurs people" need not look for a welcome outside of
such a citadel as this. Fjölsvin calls him a _flagd_, a _vargr_, and
advises him to go back by "moist ways," for within this wall such a being
can never come. Meanwhile these severe words do not on this occasion
appear to be spoken in absolute earnest, for the watchman at the same
time encourages conversation, by asking Svipdag what his errand is. The
latter corrects the watchman for his rough manner of receiving him,
and explains that he is not able to return, for the burgh he sees is a
beautiful sight, and there he would be able to pass a happy life.

When the watchman now asks him about his parents and family he answers in
riddles. Himself "the leader of the Thurs people," the former ally of the
powers of frost, he calls Windcold, his father he calls Springcold, and
his grandfather Verycold (_Fjölkaldr_). This answer gives the key to the
character of the whole following conversation, in which Svipdag is the
questioner, whose interrogations the watchman answers in such a manner
that he gives persons and things names which seldom are their usual ones,
but which refer to their qualities.

What castle is this, then, before which Svipdag stopped, and within whose
walls he is soon to find Menglad, whom he seeks?

A correct answer to this question is of the greatest importance to a
proper understanding of the events of mythology and their connection.
Strange to say, it has hitherto been assumed that the castle is the
citadel of a giant, a resort of thurses, and that Menglad is a giantess.

Svipdag has before him a scene that enchants his gaze and fills him
with a longing to remain there for ever. It is a pleasure to the eyes,
he says, which no one willingly renounces who once has seen a thing so
charming. Several "halls," that is to say, large residences or palaces,
with their "open courts," are situated on these grounds. The halls
glitter with gold, which casts a reflection over the plains in front
of them (_gardar gloa mer thykkja af gullna sali_--str. 5). One of the
palaces, a most magnificent one (an audrann), is surrounded by "wise
Vaferflame," and Fjölsvin says of it that from time immemorial there has
been a report among men in regard to this dwelling. He calls it _Hýrr_,
"the gladdening one," "the laughing one," "the soul-stirring one." Within
the castle wall there rises a hill or rock, which the author of the song
conceived as decorated with flowers or in some other ravishing way, for
he calls it _a joyous rock_. There the fair Menglad is seen sitting
like an image (_thruma_), surrounded by lovely dises. Svipdag here sees
the world-tree, invisible on earth, spreading its branches loaded with
fruits (_aldin_) over all lands. In the tree sits the cock _Vidofnir_,
whose whole plumage glitters like gold (str. 19, 22, 23, 31, 32, 35, 49).

The whole place is surrounded by a wall, "so solid that it shall stand
as long as the world" (str. 12). It is built of Lerbrimer's (Ymer's)
limbs, and is called _Gastrofnir_, "the same one as refuses admittance
to uninvited guests." In the wall is inserted the gate skilfully made
by Solblinde's sons, the one which I have already mentioned in No. 36.
Svipdag, who had been in the lower world and had there seen the halls
of the gods and the well-fortified castle of the _ásmegir_ (see No.
53), admires the wall and the gate, and remarks that no more dangerous
contrivances (for uninvited guests) than these were seen among the gods
(str. 9-12).

The gate is guarded by two "garms," wolf-dogs. Fjölsvin explains that
their names are _Gifr_ and _Geri_, that they are to live and perform
their duty as watch-dogs to the end of the world (_unz rjúfask regin_),
and that they are the watchers of watchers, whose number is eleven
(_vardir ellifu, er their varda_--str. 14).

Just as the mythic personality that Svipdag met outside of the castle
is named by the Odin-epithet _Fjölsvidr_, so we here find one of the
watching dogs called after one of Odin's wolf-dogs, _Geri_ (Grimnersmal,
19). Their duty of watching, which does not cease before Ragnarok,
they perform in connection with eleven mythic persons dwelling within
the citadel, who are themselves called _vardir_, an epithet for
world-protecting divinities. Heimdal is _vördr goda_, Balder is _vördr
Hálfdanar jarda_. The number of the Asas is eleven after Balder descended
to the lower world. Hyndluljod says: _Voru ellifu æsir taldir, Balldr er
hne vid banathufu_.

These wolf-dogs are foes of giants and trolls. If a _vættr_ came there he
would not be able to get past them (str. 16--_ok kemt thá vættr, ef thá
kom_). The troll-beings that are called _gifr_ and _kveldridur_ (Völuspa,
50; Helge Hjorv., 15), and that fly about in the air with _lim_ (bundles
of sticks) in their hands, have been made to fall by these dogs. They
have made _gifr-lim_ into a "land-wreck" (_er gjordu gífrlim reka fyrir
löndin_--str. 13). As one of the dogs is himself called _Gifr_, his
ability, like that of those chased by him, to fly in the air seems to be
indicated. The old tradition about Odin, who with his dogs flies through
the air above the earth, has its root in the myth concerning the duty
devolving upon the Asa-father, in his capacity of lord of the heavens,
to keep space free from _gifr_, _kveddridur_, _tunridur_, who "_leika á
lopti_," do their mischief in the air (cp. Havamál, 155).

The hall in which Menglad lives, and that part of the wall-surrounded
domain which belongs to her, seems to be situated directly in front of
the gate, for Svipdag, standing before it, asks who is the ruler of
the domain which he sees before him, and Fjölsvin answers that it is
Menglad who there holds sway, owns the land, and is mistress of the

The poem tells us in the most unmistakable manner that Menglad is an
asynje, and that one of the very noblest ones. "What are the names,"
asks Svipdag, "of the young women who sit so pleasantly together at
Menglad's feet?" Fjölsvin answers by naming nine, among whom are the
goddess of healing, _Eir_ (Prose Edda, i. 114), and the dises _Hlif_,
"the protectress," _Björt_, "the shining," _Blid_, "the blithe," and
_Frid_, "the fair." Their place at Menglad's feet indicates that they
are subordinate to her and belong to her attendants. Nevertheless they
are, Fjölsvin assures us, higher beings, who have sanctuaries and altars
(str. 40), and have both power and inclination quickly to help men who
offer sacrifices to them. Nay, "no so severe evil can happen to the sons
of men that these maids are not able to help them out of their distress."
It follows with certainty that their mistress Menglad, "the one fond of
ornaments," must be one of the highest and most worshipped goddesses
in the mythology. And to none of the asynjes is the epithet "fond of
ornaments" (Menglad) more applicable than to the fair owner of the first
among female ornaments, Brisingamen--to Freyja, whose daughters _Hnoss_
and _Gersami_ are called by names that mean "ornaments," and of whose
fondness for beautiful jewels even Christian saga authors speak. To the
court of no other goddess are such dises as _Björt_, _Blid_, and _Frid_
so well suited as to hers. And all that Fjölsvinnsmal tells about Menglad
is in harmony with this.

Freyja was the goddess of love, of matrimony, and of fertility, and for
this reason she was regarded as the divine ruler and helper, to whom
loving maids, wives who are to bear children, and sick women were to
address themselves with prayers and offerings. Figuratively this is
expressed in Fjölsvinnsmal with the words that every sick woman who
walks up the mountain on which Menglad sits regains her health. "That
mountain has long been the joy of the sick and wounded" (str. 36). The
great tree whose foliage spreads over Menglad's palace bears the fruits
that help _kélisjúkar konur_, so that _utar hverva that thær innar
skyli_ (str. 22). In the midst of the fair dises who attend Menglad the
poem also mentions _Aurboda_, the giantess, who afterwards becomes the
mother-in-law of Freyja's brother, and whose appearance in Asgard as a
maid-servant of Freyja, and as one of those that bring fruits from the
world-tree to _kélisjúkar konur_, has already been mentioned in No.
35. If we now add that Menglad, though a mighty goddess, is married to
Svipdag, who is not one of the gods, and that Freyja, despite her high
rank among the goddesses, does not have a god for her husband, but, as
Gylfaginning expresses it, _giptist theim manni er Ódr heitir_, and,
finally that Menglad's father is characterised by a name which refers
to Freyja's father, Njord,[3] then these circumstances alone, without
the additional and decisive proofs which are to be presented as this
investigation progresses, are sufficient to form a solid basis for the
identity of Menglad and Freyja, and as a necessary consequence for the
identity of Svipdag and _Ódr_, also called _Óttarr_.

The glorious castle to which Svipdag travelled "up" is therefore Asgard,
as is plain from its very description--with its gold-glittering palace,
with its wall standing until Ragnarok, with its artistic gate, with its
eleven watchers, with its Fjölsvin-Odin, with its asynje _Eir_, with its
benevolent and lovely dises worshipped by men, with its two wolf-dogs who
are to keep watch so long as the world stands, and which clear the air of
_tunridur_, with its shady arbour formed by the overhanging branches of
the world-tree, and with its gold-feathered cock _Vidofnir_ (Völuspa's

Svipdag comes as a stranger to Asgard's gate, and what he there sees he
has never before seen. His conversation with Fjölsvin is a series of
curious questions in regard to the strange things that he now witnesses
for the first time. His designation as _thursa thjodar sjólr_ indicates
not only that he is a stranger in Asgard, but also that he has been the
foe of the Asgards. That he under such circumstances was able to secure
admittance to the only way that leads to Asgard, the bridge Bifrost;
that he was allowed unhindered to travel up this bridge and approach
the gate unpunished, and without encountering any other annoyances than
a few repelling words from Fjölsvin, who soon changes his tone and
gives him such information as he desires--all this presupposes that the
mythology must have had strong and satisfactory reasons for permitting a
thing so unusual to take place. In several passages in Grogalder and in
Fjölsvinnsmal it is hinted that the powers of fate had selected Svipdag
to perform extraordinary things and gain an end the attaining of which
seemed impossible. That the norns have some special purpose with him, and
that Urd is to protect him and direct his course with invisible bonds,
however erratic it may seem, all this gleams forth from the words of his
mother Groa in the grave-chamber. And when Svipdag finally sees Menglad
hasten to throw herself into his arms, he says himself that it is Urd's
irresistible decree that has shaped things thus: _Urdar ordi kvedr engi
madr_. But Urd's resolve alone cannot be a sufficient reason in the epic
for Svipdag's adoption in Asgard, and for his gaining, though he is not
of Asa-birth, the extraordinary honour and good luck of becoming the
husband of the fairest of the asynjes and of one of the foremost of the
goddesses. Urd must have arranged the chain of events in such a manner
that Menglad _desires_ to possess him, that Svipdag has deserved her
love, and that the Asa-gods deem it best for themselves to secure this
opponent of theirs by bonds of kinship.

[3] In strophe 8 Fjolsvin says of Menglad:

  _Menglöd of heitir,
  en hana módir of gat
  vid Svafrthorins syni._

_Svafr_ alone, or as a part of a compound, indicates a Vana-god.
According to an account narrated as history in Fornaldersaga (i. 415), a
daughter of Thjasse was married to "king" _Svafrlami_. In the mythology
it is Freyja's father, the Vana-god Njord, who gets Thjasse's daughter
for his wife. The Sun-song (str. 79, 80) mentions Njord's daughters
together with _Svafr_ and _Svafrlogi_. The daughters are nine, like
Menglad and her dises.



The most important question put to Fjölsvin by Svipdag is, of course,
the one whether a stranger can enter. Fjölsvin's answer is to the effect
that this is, and remains, impossible, unless the stranger brings with
him a certain sword. The wall repels an uninvited comer; the gate holds
him fast if he ventures to lay hands on it; of the two wolf-dogs one is
always watching while the other sleeps, and no one can pass them without

To this assurance on the part of Fjölsvin are added a series of questions
and answers, which the author of the poem has planned with uncommon
acumen. Svipdag asks if it is not, after all, possible to get past the
watching dogs. There must be something in the world delicate enough to
satisfy their appetite and thus turn away their attention. Fjölsvin
admits that there are two delicacies that might produce this effect,
but they are pieces of flesh that lie in the limbs of the cock Vidofner
(str. 17, 18). He who can procure these can steal past the dogs. But the
cock Vidofner sits high in the top of the world-tree and seems to be
inaccessible. Is there, then, asks Svipdag, any weapon that can bring
him down dead? Yes, says Fjölsvin, there is such a weapon. It was made
outside of Na-gate (_nagrindr_). The smith was one _Loptr_. He was robbed
(_rúinn_) of this weapon so dangerous to the gold-glittering cock, and
now it is in the possession of _Sinmara_, who has laid it in a chest of
tough iron beneath nine _njard_-locks (str. 25, 26).

It must have been most difficult and dangerous to go to the place where
_Sinmara_ has her abode and try to secure the weapon so well kept.
Svipdag asks if anyone who is willing to attempt it has any hope of
returning. Fjölsvin answers that in Vidofner's ankle-bones (_völum_) lies
a bright, hook-shaped bone. If one can secure this, bring it to _Ludr_
(the place of the lower-world mill), and give it to _Sinmara_, then she
can be induced to part with the weapon in question (str. 27-30).

It appears from this that the condition on which Svipdag can get into the
castle where Menglad dwells is that he shall be in possession of a weapon
which was smithied by an enemy of the gods, here called _Loptr_, and thus
to be compared with Loke, who actually bears this epithet. If he does
not possess this weapon, which doubtless is fraught with danger to the
gods, and is the only one that can kill the gold-glittering cock of the
world-tree, then the gate of the citadel is not opened to him, and the
watching wolf-dogs will not let him pass through it.

But Fjölsvin also indicates that under ordinary circumstances, and for
one who is not particularly chosen for this purpose by Fate, it is
utterly impossible to secure possession of the sword in question. Before
Sinmara can be induced to lend it, it is necessary to bring Vidofner dead
down from the branches of the world-tree. But to kill the cock that very
weapon is needed which Sinmara cannot otherwise be induced to part with.

Meanwhile the continuation of the poem shows that what was impossible
for everybody else has already been accomplished by Svipdag. When he
stands at the gate of the castle in conversation with Fjölsvin he has
the sword by his side, and knows perfectly well that the gate is to be
opened so soon as it pleases him to put an end to the talk with Fjölsvin
and pronounce his own name. The very moment he does this the gate swings
on its hinges, the mighty wolf-dogs welcome (_fagna_) him, and Menglad,
informed by Fjölsvin of his arrival, hastens eagerly to meet him (str.
42, &c.). Fjölsvinnsmal, so far as acumen in plot and in execution is
concerned, is the finest old poem that has been handed down to our time,
but it would be reduced to the most absurd nonsense if the sword were not
in Svipdag's possession, as the gate is never to be opened to anyone else
than to him who brings to Menglad's castle the sword in question.

So far as the sword is concerned we have now learned:

That it was made by an artist who must have been a foe of the gods, for
Fjölsvin designates him by the Loke-epithet _Loptr_;

That the place where the artist dwelt when he made the weapon was
situated _fyr nágrindr nedan_;

That while he dwelt there, and after he had finished the sword, he was
robbed of it (_Loptr rúinn fyr nágrindr nedan_);

That he or they who robbed him of it must have been closely related to
Nat and the night dises, for the sword was thereafter in the keeping of
the night-being _Sinmara_;

That she regarded it as exceedingly precious, and also dangerous if it
came into improper hands, since she keeps it in a "tough iron chest"
beneath nine magical locks;

That the eleven guards that dwell in the same castle with Menglad regard
it as of the greatest importance to get the sword within their castle

That it has qualities like no other weapon in the world: this sword, and
it alone, can kill the golden cock on the world-tree--a quality which
seems to indicate that it threatens the existence of the world and the

It is evident that the artist who made this incomparable and terrible
weapon was one of the most celebrated smiths in mythology. The question
now is, whether the information given us by Fjölsvinnsmal in regard to
him is sufficient to enable us to determine with certainty who he is.

The poem does not name him by any of his names, but calls him by the
Loke-epithet _Loptr_, "the airy." Among the ancient smiths mentioned in
our mythic fragments there is one who refers to himself with the epithet
_Byrr_, "Wind," suggesting to us the same person--this one is Volund.
After he in his sleep had been made prisoner by Mimer-_Nidadr_ and his
Njarians (see No. 87), he says when he awakes:

  Hverir 'ro iofrar
  their er a laugdo
  besti Byr síma
  oc mic bundo?

"Who are the mighty, who with bonds (_besti_, dative of _böstr_) bound
the wind (_laugdo sima a Byr_) and fettered me?" The expression implies
that it is as easy to bind the wind as Volund. He was also able to secure
his liberty again in spite of all precautions.

According to the Norse version of the Volund saga, one of the precautions
resorted to is to sever the sinews of his knees (str. 17 and the prose).
It is _Nidadr's_ queen who causes this cruel treatment. In Fjölsvinnsmal
the nameless mythic personality who deprived the "airy one" of his
weapon has left it to be kept by a feminine person, _Sinmara_. The
name is composed of _sin_, which means "sinew," and _mara_, which
means "the one that maims." (_Mara_ is related to the verb _merja_, "to
maim"--see Vigfusson's Dict.) Thus _Sinmara_ means "the one who maims
by doing violence to the sinews." The one designated by this epithet in
Fjölsvinnsmal has therefore acted the same part as Mimer-_Nidadr's_ queen
in the Volundarkvida.

Mimer-_Nidadr_, who imprisons Volund and robs him of his sword and
the incomparable arm-ring, is the father of Nat and her sisters (see
No. 85). He who robs "the airy one" of his treasures must also have
been intimately related to the dises of night, else he would not have
selected as keeper of the weapon Sinmara, whose quality as a being of
night is manifested by the meaning _incubus nocturnes_ which is the name
_Mara_ acquired. In Fjölsvinnsmal (str. 29) Sinmara is called _hin fölva
gygr_, "the ashes-coloured giantess"--a designation pointing in the same

She is also called _Eir aurglasis_ (str. 28), an expression which, as
I believe, has been correctly interpreted as "the dis of the shining
arm-ring" (cp. Bugge Edda, p. 348). In Volundarkvida the daughter of
Mimer-_Nidadr_ receives Volund's incomparable arm-ring to wear.

According to Fjölsvinnsmal "the airy one" makes his weapon _fyr nágrindr
nedan_. The meaning of this expression has already been discussed in
No. 60. The smith has his abode in the frost-cold and foggy Nifelheim,
while he is at work on the sword. Nifelheim, the land _fyr nágrindr
nedan_, as we already know, is the northern subterranean border-land of
Mimer's domain. The two realms are separated by Mount Hvergelmer, on
which the Na-gates are set, and where the world-mill, called _Eylúdr_
and _Lúdr_ have their foundation-structure (see Nos. 59, 60, 79, 80). In
its vicinity below the southern slope of the Hvergelmer mountain Nat has
her hall (Nos. 84, 93). According to Fjölsvinnsmal Sinmara also dwells
here. For Fjölsvin says that if Svipdag is to borrow the sword which she
keeps, he must carry the above-mentioned hooked bone "to _Lúdr_ and give
it to Sinmara" (_ljósan ljá skaltu i Lúdr bera Sinmöra at selja_--str.
30). Lúdr, the subterranean world-mill, which stands on the Nida mountain
above Nat's hall, has given its name to the region where it stands.
In Volundarkvida Mimer-_Nidadr_ suddenly appears with his wife and
daughter and armed Njarians in the remote cold Wolfdales, where Volund
thinks himself secure, and no one knows whence these foes of his come.
The explanation is that the "Wolfdales" of the heroic saga were in the
mythology situated in Nifelheim, the border-land of Mimer's realm. Like
"the airy one," Volund made his sword _fyr nágrindr nedan_; the latter,
like the former, was robbed of the weapon as soon as it was finished by
a lower-world ruler, whose kinswomen are dises of the night; and in the
saga of the one, as of the other, one of these night dises has caused a
maiming by injuring the sinews.

Thus we can also understand why Svipdag must traverse Nifelheim, "meet
Nat on Nifelway," visit the world-mill, wade across Hel-rivers, and
encounter Mimer himself, "the weapon-honoured." If Svipdag wants the
sword made by _Loptr_, he must risk these adventures, since the sword is
kept in the lower world by a kinswoman of Mimer.

The heroic saga about Volund is therefore identical with the myth
concerning the maker of the sword which opens Asgard for Svipdag. The
former, produced in Christian times, is only a new version of the latter.
Volund is a foe of the gods, an elf-prince who was deeply insulted by
beings more powerful than himself (No. 87). "The airy one" must likewise
be a foe of the gods, since the weapon he has made is dangerous to the
golden cock of the world-tree, and is bought by "the eleven wards"
with the opening of Asgard's gate and the giving of Menglad as wife
to Svipdag. Its danger to Asgard must also be suggested by Fjölsvin's
statement, that the splendid hall, called _Hýrr_, "the gladdener," "the
soul-stirring," that hall which is situated within the castle wall,
which is encircled by vaferflames, and which from time out of mind has
been celebrated among men--that this hall has already long trembled _á
brodds oddi_, "on the point of the sword" (str. 32). No other weapon can
here be meant than one which was fraught with the greatest danger to the
safety of the gods, and which filled them with anxiety; and unless we
wish to deny that there is sense and connection in the poem, this sword
can be no other than that which Svipdag now has with him, and which,
having been brought to Asgard, relieves the gods of their anxiety. And to
repeat the points of similarity, Volund, like "Loptr," makes his weapon
in the northern border-land of Mimer's domain; and when the sword is
finished he is surprised by subterranean powers. In Loptr's saga, as in
Volund's, a magnificent arm-ring is mentioned, and in both a dis of night
received this ring to wear. In Loptr's saga, as in Volund's, a night-dis
is mentioned who injures sinews. And Volund himself calls himself _Byrr_,
"the wind," which is a synonym of _Loptr_.

Thus Svipdag has made a journey to the lower world to get possession of
the sword of Volund, and he has been successful.



The conversation between Fjölsvin and Svipdag ends when the latter gives
his name, and requests the former to ask Menglad if she wishes to possess
his love. Menglad then hastens to meet him, but before she shows what she
feels for him, he must confirm with his own name and that of his father's
that he really is the one he pretends to be--the one she has long been
longing for. The young hero then says: _Svipdagr ek heitir, Sólbjartr hét
minn fadir_ (str. 47).

When Fjölsvin asked Svipdag what the name of his father was, he
answered: Springcold, _Várkaldr_ (str. 6); and I have already stated
the reason why he was so called. Now he gives another name of his
father--_Sólbjartr_--which also is a mere epithet, but still, as Svipdag
must here speak plainly, it has to be such a name as can refer to his
father in a distinct and definite manner.

Svipdag's mother, Groa, was married to _Örvandill hinn frækni_ (Younger
Edda, 276-278). The epithet _Sólbjartr_, "he who has a brightness like
that of the sun," if it really refers to Orvandel, must be justified
and explained by something that the mythology had to report of him. Of
Orvandel, we know from the Younger Edda that he and Groa had at least
for a time been good friends of Thor; that on one of his expeditions in
Jotunheim, north of the Elivagar rivers, the latter had met Orvandel and
had carried him in his provision-basket across the water to his home;
that Orvandel there froze his toe; that Thor broke this off, and, in
honour of Orvandel, threw it up into the heavens, where it became that
star which is called _Orvandel's toe_. Of ancient Teutonic star-names
but very few have been handed down to our time, and it is natural that
those now extant must be those of constellations or separate stars, which
attracted attention on account of their appearance, or particularly on
account of the strength of their light. One of them was "Orvandel's toe."
By the name Orvandel (_Earendel_) a star was also known among the Teutons
in Great Britain. After being converted to Christianity they regarded the
_Earendel_ star as a symbol of Christ. The Church had already sanctified
such a view by applying to Christ the second epistle of Peter i. 19: "We
have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take
heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn,
and the day-star arise in your hearts." The morning star became, as we
read in a Latin hymn, "typus Christi."

But it would be a too hasty conclusion to assume that Orvandel's star and
the morning star were identical in heathen times. All that we can assert
with certainty is that the former must have been one of the brightest,
for the very name _Earendel_ gradually became in the Old English an
abstract word meaning "splendour."

Codex Exoniensis has preserved a hymn to Christ, the introductory stanzas
of which appear to be borrowed from the memory of the heathen hymn to
Orvandel, and to have been adapted to Christ with a slight change:

  Eala Earendel           O Orvandel,
  engla beorhtast,        brightest shining of angels,
  ofer Middangeard        thou who over Midgard
  monnum sended           art sent to men,
  and sodiästa            thou true
  sunnan leoma,           beam of the sun
  tohrt ofer tunglas      shining above
  thu tida gehvane        the lights of heaven,
  of sylfum the           thou who always
  symle inlihtes.         of thyself
                          givest light.

From this Old English song it appears as if the Orvandel epithet
_Sólbjartr_ was in vogue among the Saxon tribes in England. We there
find an apparent interpretation of the epithet in the phrases adapted to
Earendel, "brightest (_beorhtast_) of angels" and "true beam of the sun."
That Svipdag's name was well known in England, and that a Saxon royal
dynasty counted him among their mythical forefathers, can be demonstrated
by the genealogy of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. That Svipdag with
sufficient distinctness might characterise his father as _Sólbjartr_ is
accordingly explained by the fact that Orvandel is a star-hero, and that
the star bearing his name was one of the "brightest" in the heavens, and
in brilliancy was like "a beam from the sun."



When Menglad requests Svipdag to name his race and his name, she does
so because she wants _jartegn_ (legal evidence; compare the expression
_med vitnum ok jartegnum_) that he is the one as whose wife she had been
designated by the norns (_ef ek var ther kván of kvedin_--str. 46), and
that her eyes had not deceived her. She also wishes to know something
about his past life that may confirm that he is Svipdag. When Svipdag had
given as a _jartegn_ his own name and an epithet of his father, he makes
only a brief statement in regard to his past life, but to Menglad it is
an entirely sufficient proof of his identity with her intended husband.
He says that the winds drove him on cold paths from his father's house
to frosty regions of the world (str. 47). That word used by him, "drove"
(_reka_), implies that he did not spontaneously leave his home, a fact
which we also learn in Grogalder. On the command of his stepmother, and
contrary to his own will, he departs to find Menglads, "the women fond of
ornaments." His answer further shows that after he had left his father's
house he had made journeys in frost-cold regions of the world. Such
regions are Jotunheim and Nifelheim, which was in fact regarded as a
subterranean part of Jotunheim (see Nos. 59, 63).

Menglad has eagerly longed for the day when Svipdag should come. Her
mood, when Svipdag sees her within the castle wall sitting on "the
joyous mount" surrounded by asynjes and dises, is described in the poem
by the verb _thruma_, "to be sunk into a lethargic, dreamy condition."
When Fjölsvin approaches her and bids her "look at a stranger who may be
Svipdag" (str. 43), she awakes in great agony, and for a moment she can
scarcely control herself. When she is persuaded that she has not been
deceived either by Fjölsvin's words or by her own eyes, she at once seals
the arrival of the youth with a kiss. The words which the poem makes her
lips utter testify, like her conduct, that it is not the first time she
and Svipdag have met, but that it is a "meeting again," and that she long
ere this knew that she possessed Svipdag's love. She speaks not only of
her own longing for him, but also of his longing and love for her (str.
48-50), and is happy that "he has come again to her halls" (_at thu est
aptr komin, mögr, til minna sala_--str. 49). This "again" (back), which
indicates a previous meeting between Menglad and Svipdag, is found in all
the manuscripts of Fjölsvinnsmal, and that it has not been added by any
"betterer" trying to mend the metres of the text is demonstrated by the
fact that the metre would be improved by the absence of the word _aptr_.

Meanwhile it appears with certainty from Fjölsvinnsmal that Svipdag
never before had seen the castle within whose walls Menglad has _ríki,
eign ok audsölum_ (str. 7, 8). He stands before its gate as a wondering
stranger, and puts question after question to Fjölsvin in regard to the
remarkable sights before his eyes. It follows that Menglad did not have
her halls within this citadel, but dwelt somewhere else, at the time when
she on a previous occasion met Svipdag and became assured that he loved

In this other place she must have resided when Svipdag's stepmother
commanded him to find _Menglödum_, that is to say, Menglad, but also
some one else to whom the epithet "ornament-glad" might apply. This is
confirmed by the fact that this other person to whom Grogalder's words
refer is not at all mentioned in Fjölsvinnsmal. It is manifest that many
things had happened, and that Svipdag had encountered many adventures,
between the episode described in Grogalder, when he had just been
commanded by his stepmother to find "those loving ornaments," and the
episode in Fjölsvinnsmal, when he seeks Menglad again in Asgard itself.

Where can he have met her before? Was there any time when Freyja did
not dwell in Asgard? Völuspa answers this question, as we know, in the
affirmative. The event threatening to the gods and to the existence of
the world once happened that the goddess of fertility and love came into
the power of the giants. Then all the high-holy powers assembled to
consider "who had mixed the air with corruption and given Od's maid to
the race of giants." But none of our Icelandic mythic records mentions
how and by whom Freyja was liberated from the hands of the powers of
frost. Under the name Svipdag our hero is mentioned only in Grogalder
and Fjölsvinnsmal; all we learn of him under the name _Ódr_ and _Óttarr_
is that he was Freyja's lover and husband (Völuspa, Hyndluljod); that
he went far, far away; that Freyja then wept for him, that her tears
became gold, that she sought him among unknown peoples, and that she in
her search assumed many names: _Mardöll_, _Hörn_, _Gefn_, _Syr_ (Younger
Edda, 114). To get further contributions to the Svipdag myth we must turn
to Saxo, where the name Svipdag should be found as Svipdagerus, _Óttar_
as Otharus or Hotharus, and _Ódr_ as Otherus or Hotherus.[4]

There cannot be the least doubt that Saxo's Otharus is a figure borrowed
from the mythology and from the heroic sagas therewith connected, since
in the first eight books of his _History_ not a single person can be
shown who is not originally found in the mythology. But the mythic
records that have come down to our time know only one _Ottarr_, and he
is the one who wins Freyja's heart. This alone makes it the duty of the
mythologist to follow this hint here given and see whether that which
Saxo relates about his Otharus confirms his identity with Svipdag-Ottar.

The Danish king Syvaldus had, says Saxo, an uncommonly beautiful
daughter, Syritha, who fell into the hands of a giant. The way this
happened was as follows: A woman who had a secret understanding with the
giant succeeded in nestling herself in Syritha's confidence, in being
adopted as her maidservant, and in enticing her to a place where the
giant lay in ambush. The latter hastened away with Syritha and concealed
her in a wild mountain district. When Otharus learned this he started out
in search of the young maiden. He visited every recess in the mountains,
found the maiden and slew the giant. Syritha was in a strange condition
when Otharus liberated her. The giant had twisted and pressed her locks
together so that they formed on her head one hard mass which hardly could
be combed out except with the aid of an iron tool. Her eyes stared in an
apathetic manner, and she never raised them to look at her liberator. It
was Otharus' determination to bring a pure virgin back to her kinsmen.
But the coldness and indifference she seemed to manifest toward him was
more than he could endure, and so he abandoned her on the way. While
she now wandered alone through the wilderness she came to the abode of
a giantess. The latter made the maiden tend her goats. Still, Otharus
must have regretted that he abandoned Syritha, for he went in search of
her and liberated her a second time. The mythic poem from which Saxo
borrowed his story must have contained a song, reproduced by him in Latin
paraphrases, and in which Otharus explained to Syritha his love, and
requested her, "whom he had suffered so much in seeking and finding," to
give him a look from her eyes as a token that under his protection she
was willing to be brought back to her father and mother. But her eyes
continually stared on the ground, and apparently she remained as cold
and indifferent as before. Otharus then abandoned her for the second
time. From the thread of the story it appears that they were then not
far from that border which separates Jotunheim from the other realms
of the world. Otharus crossed that water, which in the old records is
probably called the Elivagar rivers, on the opposite side of which was
his father's home. Of Syritha Saxo, on the other hand, says cautiously
and obscurely that "she in a manner that sometimes happened in antiquity
hastened far away down the rocks"--_more pristino decursis late scopulis_
(_Hist._, 333)--an expression which leads us to suppose that in the
mythic account she had flown away in the guise of a bird. Meanwhile fate
brought her to the home of Otharus' parents. Here she represented herself
to be a poor traveller, born of parents who had nothing. But her refined
manners contradicted her statement, and the mother of Otharus received
her as a noble guest. Otharus himself had already come home. She thought
she could remain unknown to him by never raising the veil with which
she covered her face. But Otharus well knew who she was. To find out
whether she really had so little feeling for him as her manners seemed
to indicate, a pretended wedding between Otharus and a young maiden was
arranged, whose name and position Saxo does not mention. When Otharus
went to the bridal bed, Syritha was probably near him as bridesmaid, and
carried the candle. The light or the flame burnt down, so that the fire
came in contact with her hand, but she felt no pain, for there was in
her heart a still more burning pain. When Otharus then requested her
to take care of her hand, she finally raised her gaze from the ground,
and their eyes met. Therewith the spell resting on Syritha was broken:
it was plain that they loved each other and the pretended wedding was
changed into a real one between Syritha and Otharus. When her father
learned this he became exceedingly wroth; but after his daughter had made
a full explanation to him, his anger was transformed into kindness and
graciousness, and he himself thereupon married a sister of Otharus.

In regard to the person who enticed Syritha into the snare laid by the
giant, Saxo is not quite certain that it was a woman. Others think, he
says, that it was a man in the guise of a woman.

It has long since attracted the attention of mythologists that in this
narrative there are found two names, Otharus and Syritha, which seem to
refer to the myth concerning Freyja. Otharus is no doubt a Latinised
form of Ottar, and, as is well known, the only one who had this name in
the mythology is, as stated, Freyja's lover and husband. Syritha, on the
other hand, may be a Latinised form of Freyja's epithet Syr, in which
Saxo presumably supposed he had found an abbreviated form of Syri (Siri,
Sigrid). In Saxo's narrative Syritha is abducted by a giant (_gigas_),
with the aid of an ally whom he had procured among Freyja's attendants.
In the mythology Freyja is abducted by a giant, and, as it appears from
Völuspa's words, likewise by the aid of some ally who was in Freyja's
service, for it is there said that the gods hold council as to who it
could have been who "gave," delivered Freyja to the race of the giants
(_hverr hefdi ætt jötuns Óds mey gefna_). In Saxo Otharus is of lower
descent than Syritha. Saxo has not made him a son of a king, but a youth
of humble birth as compared with his bride; and his courage to look up to
Syritha, Saxo remarks, can only be explained by the great deeds he had
performed or by his reliance on his agreeable manners and his eloquence
(_sive gestarum rerum magnitudine sive comitatis et facundiæ fiducia
accensus_). In the mythology _Ódr_ was of lower birth than Freyja: he did
not by birth belong to the number of higher gods; and Svipdag had, as we
know, never seen Asgard before he arrived there under the circumstances
described in Fjölsvinnsmal. That the most beautiful of all the goddesses,
and the one second in rank to Frigg alone, she who is particularly
desired by all powers, the sister of the harvest god Frey, the daughter
of Njord, the god of wealth, she who with Odin shares the privilege of
choosing heroes on the battlefield--that she does not become the wife of
an Asa-god, but "is married to the man called _Odr_," would long since
have been selected by the mythologist as a question both interesting and
worthy of investigation had they cared to devote any attention to epic
coherence and to premises and _dénouement_ in the mythology in connection
with the speculations on the signification of the myths as symbols of
nature or on their ethical meaning. The view would then certainly have
been reached that this _Odr_ in the epic of the mythology must have
been the author of exploits which balanced his humbler descent, and the
mythologists would thus have been driven to direct the investigation
first of all to the question whether Freyja, who we know was for some
time in the power of the giants, but was rescued therefrom, did not find
as her liberator this very _Odr_, who afterwards became her husband,
and whether _Odr_ did not by this very act gain her love and become
entitled to obtain her hand. The adventure which Saxo relates actually
dovetails itself into and fills a gap in that chain of events which are
the result of the analysis of Grogalder and Fjölsvinnsmal. We understand
that the young Svipdag is alarmed, and considers the task imposed on him
by the stepmother to find Menglad far too great for his strength, if
it is necessary to seek Menglad in Jotunheim and rescue her thence. We
understand why on his arrival at Asgard he is so kindly received, after
he has gone through the formality of giving his name, when we know that
he comes not only as the feared possessor of the Volund sword, but also
as the one who has restored to Asgard the most lovely and most beautiful
asynje. We can then understand why the gate, which holds fast every
uninvited guest, opens as of itself for him, and why the savage wolf-dogs
lick him. That his words: _thadan_ (from his paternal home) _rákumk vinda
kalda vegu_, are to Menglad a sufficient answer to her question in regard
to his previous journeys can be understood if Svipdag has, as Ottar,
searched through the frost-cold Jotunheim's eastern mountain districts to
find Menglad; and we can then see that Menglad in Fjölsvinnsmal can speak
of her meeting with Svipdag at the gate of Asgard as a "meeting again,"
although Svipdag never before had been in Asgard. And that Menglad
receives him as a husband to whom she is already married, with whom she
is now to be "united for ever" (Fjölsvinnsmal, 58), is likewise explained
by the improvised wedding which Otharus celebrated with Syritha before
she returns to her father.

The identity of Otharus with the _Ottarr-Odr-Svipdagr_ of the mythology
further appears from the fact that Saxo gives him as father an Ebbo,
which a comparative investigation proves to be identical with Svipdag's
father Orvandel. Of the name Ebbo and the person to whom it belongs I
shall have something to say in Nos. 108 and 109. Here it must be remarked
that if Otharus is identical with Svipdag, then his father Ebbo, like
Svipdag's father, should appear in the history of the mythic patriarch
Halfdan and be the enemy of the latter (see Nos. 24, 33). Such is also
the case. Saxo produces Ebbo on the scene as an enemy of Halfdan Berggram
(_Hist._, 329, 330). A woman, Groa, is the cause of the enmity between
Halfdan and Orvandel. A woman, Sygrutha, is the cause of the enmity
between Halfdan and Ebbo. In the one passage Halfdan robs Orvandel of
his betrothed Groa; in the other passage Halfdan robs Ebbo of his bride
Sygrutha. In a third passage in his _History_ (p. 138) Saxo has recorded
the tradition that Horvendillus (Orvandel) is slain by a rival, who takes
his wife, there called Gerutha. Halfdan kills Ebbo. Thus it is plain that
the same story is told about Svipdag's father Orvandel and about Ebbo
the father of Otharus and that Groa, Sygrutha, and Gerutha are different
versions of the same dis of vegetation.

According to Saxo, Syritha's father was afterwards married to a sister of
Otharus. In the mythology Freyja's father Njord marries Skade, who is the
foster-sister and _systrunga_ (sister's child) of Ottar-Svipdag (see Nos.
108, 113, 114, 115).

Freyja's surname _Hörn_ (also _Horn_) may possibly be explained by what
Saxo relates about the giant's manner of treating her hair, which he
pressed into one snarled, stiff, and hard mass. With the myth concerning
Freyja's locks, we must compare that about Sif's hair. The hair of both
these goddesses is subject to the violence of the hands of giants, and it
may be presumed that both myths symbolised some feature of nature. Loke's
act of violence on Sif's hair is made good by the skill and goodwill of
the ancient artists Sindre and Brok (Younger Edda, i. 340). In regard to
Freyja's locks, the skill of a "dwarf" may have been resorted to, since
Saxo relates that an iron instrument was necessary to separate and comb
out the horn-hard braids. In Völuspa's list of ancient artists there is a
smith by name _Hornbori_, which possibly has some reference to this.

Reasons have already been given in No. 35 for the theory that it was
Gulveig-Heid who betrayed Freyja and delivered her into the hands of the
giants. When Saxo says that this treachery was committed by a woman, but
also suggests the possibility that it was a man in the guise of a woman,
then this too is explained by the mythology, in which Gulveig-Heid,
like her fellow culprit, has an androgynous nature. Loke becomes "the
possessor of the evil woman" (_kvidugr af konu illri_). In Fjölsvinnsmal
we meet again with Gulveig-Heid, born again and called Aurboda, as one of
Freyja's attendants, into whose graces she is nestled for a second time.

[4] In Saxo, as in other sources of about the same time, aspirated
names do not usually occur with aspiration. I have already referred to
the examples Handuuanus, Andvani, Helias, Elias, Hersbernus, Esbjörn,
Hevindus, Eyvindr, Horvendillus, Orvandill, Hestia, Estland, Holandia,



From the parallel name Otharus, we must turn to the other parallel name
Hotherus. It has already been shown that if the Svipdag synonym _Odr_
occurs in Saxo, it must have been Latinised into Otherus or Hotherus.
The latter form is actually found, but under circumstances making an
elaborate investigation necessary, for in what Saxo narrates concerning
this Hotherus, he has to the best of his ability united sketches and
episodes of two different mythic persons, and it is therefore necessary
to separate these different elements borrowed from different sources.
One of these mythic persons is _Hödr_ the Asa-god, and the other is
_Odr_-Svipdag. The investigation will therefore at the same time contain
a contribution to the researches concerning the original records of the
myth of Balder.

Saxo's account of Hotherus (_Hist._, 110, &c.), is as follows:

Hotherus, son of Hothbrodus (Hödbrodd), was fostered in the home of
Nanna's father, King Gevarus (Gevarr; see Nos. 90-92), and he grew up to
be a stately youth, distinguished as a man of accomplishments among the
contemporaries of his age. He could swim, was an excellent archer and
boxer, and his skill on various musical instruments was so great that he
had the human passions under his control, and could produce, at pleasure,
gladness, sorrow, sympathy, or hate. Nanna, the daughter of Gevarus, fell
in love with the highly gifted youth and he with her.

Meanwhile, fate brought it to come to pass that Balder, the son of the
idol Odin, also fell in love with Nanna. He had once seen her bathing,
and had been dazzled by the splendour of her limbs. In order to remove
the most dangerous obstacle between himself and her, he resolved to slay

As Hotherus on a foggy day was hunting in the woods he got lost and came
to a house, where there sat three wood-nymphs. They greeted him by name,
and in answer to his question they said they were the maids who determine
the events of the battle, and give defeat or success in war. Invisible
they come to the battlefield, and secretly give help to those whom they
wish to favour. From them Hotherus learned that Balder was in love with
Nanna, but they advised him not to resort to weapons against him, for he
was a demigod born of supernatural seed. When they had said this, they
and the house in which Hotherus had found them disappeared, and to his
joy he found himself standing on a field under the open sky.

When he arrived home, he mentioned to Gevarus what he had seen and heard,
and at once demanded the hand of his daughter. Gevarus answered that it
would have been a pleasure to him to see Hotherus and Nanna united, but
Balder had already made a similar request, and he did not dare to draw
the wrath of the latter down upon himself, since not even iron could harm
the conjured body of the demigod.

But Gevarus said he knew of a sword with which Balder could be slain, but
it lies locked up behind the strongest bars, and the place where it is
found is scarcely accessible to mortals. The way thither--if we may use
the expression where no road has been made--is filled with obstacles, and
leads for the greater part through exceedingly cold regions. But behind
a span of swift stags one ought to be able to get safe across the icy
mountain ridges. He who keeps the sword is the forest-being Mimingus, who
also has a wonderful wealth-producing arm-ring. If Hotherus gets there,
he should place his tent in such a manner that its shadow does not fall
into the cave where Mimingus dwells, for at the sight of this strange
eclipse the latter would withdraw farther into the mountain. Observing
these rules of caution, the sword and arm-ring might possibly be secured.
The sword is of such a kind that victory never fails to attend it, and
its value is quite inestimable.

Hotherus, who carefully followed the advice of Gevarus, succeeded in
securing the sword and the ring, which Mimingus, surprised and bound by
Hotherus, delivered as a ransom for his life.

When Gelder, the king of Saxony, learned that the treasure of Mimingus
had been robbed, he resolved to make war against Hotherus. The
foreknowing Gevarus saw this in advance, and advised Hotherus to receive
the rain of javelins from the enemy patiently in the battle, and not
to throw his own javelins before the enemy's supply of weapons was
exhausted. Gelder was conquered, and had to pray for peace. Hotherus
received him in the most friendly manner, and now he conquered him with
his kindness as he had before done with his cunning as a warrior.

Hotherus also had a friend in Helgo, the king of Halogaland. The
chieftain of the Finns and of the Bjarmians, Cuso (Guse), was the father
of Thora, whose hand Helgo sought through messengers. But Helgo had so
ugly a blemish on his mouth that he was ashamed to converse, not only
with strangers, but also with his own household and friends. Cuso had
already refused his offer of marriage, but as he now addressed himself to
Hotherus asking for assistance, the latter was able to secure a hearing
from the Finnish chieftain, so that Helgo secured the wife he so greatly

While this happened in Halogaland, Balder had invaded the territory of
Gevarus with an armed force, to demand Nanna's hand. Gevarus referred him
to his daughter, who was herself permitted to determine her fate. Nanna
answered that she was of too humble birth to be the wife of a husband
of divine descent. Gevarus informed Hotherus of what had happened, and
the latter took counsel with Helgo as to what was now to be done. After
having considered various things, they finally resolved on making war.

And it was a war in which one should think men fought with gods. For
Odin, Thor, and the hosts sanctified by the gods fought on Balder's side.
Thor had a heavy club, with which he smashed shields and coats-of-mail,
and slew all before him. Hotherus would have seen his retreating army
defeated had he not himself succeeded in checking Thor's progress. Clad
in an impenetrable coat-of-mail, he went against Thor, and with a blow
of his sword he severed the handle from Thor's club and made it unfit
for use. Then the gods fled. Thereupon the warriors of Hotherus rushed
upon Balder's fleet and destroyed and sank it. In the same war Gelder
fell and his body was laid in his ship on a pile of his fallen warriors
and burned, but his ashes were afterwards deposited with great solemnity
in a magnificent grave-mound by Hotherus who then returned to Gevarus,
celebrated his wedding with Nanna, and made great presents to Helgo and

But Balder had no peace. Another war was declared, and this time Balder
was the victor. The defeated Hotherus took refuge with Gevarus. In this
war a water-famine occurred in Balder's army, but the latter dug deep
wells and opened new fountains for his thirsty men. Meanwhile Balder was
afflicted in his dreams by ghosts which had assumed Nanna's form. His
love and longing so consumed him that he at last was unable to walk, but
had to ride in a chariot on his journeys.

Hotherus had fled to Sweden, where he retained the royal authority;
but Balder took possession of Seeland, and soon acquired the devotion
of the Danes, for he was regarded as having martial merits, and was a
man of great dignity. Hotherus again declared war against Balder, but
was defeated in Jutland, and was obliged to return to Sweden alone and
abandoned. Despondent on account of his defeats, weary of life and the
light of day, he went into the wilderness and traversed most desolate
forests, where the fall of mortal feet is seldom heard. Then he came to
a cave in which sat three strange women. From such women he had once
received the impenetrable coat-of-mail, and he recognised them as those
very persons. They asked him why he had come to these regions, and he
told them how unsuccessful he had been in his last battle. He reproached
them, saying that they had deceived him, for they had promised him
victory, but he had a totally different fate. The women responded that
he nevertheless had done his enemies great harm, and assured him that
victory would yet perch on his banners if he should succeed in finding
the wonderful nourishment which was invented for the increasing of
Balder's strength. This was sufficient to encourage him to make another
war, although there were those among his friends who dissuaded him
therefrom. From different sides men were gathered, and a bloody battle
was fought, which was not decided at the fall of night. The uneasiness
of Hotherus hindered him from sleeping, and he went out in the darkness
of the night to reconnoitre the condition and position of the enemy.
When he had reached the camp of the enemy he perceived that three dises,
who were wont to prepare Balder's mysterious food, had just left. He
followed their footprints in the bedewed grass and reached their abode.
Asked by them who he was, he said he was a player on the cithern. One of
them then handed him a cithern, and he played for them magnificently.
They had three serpents, with whose venom Balder's food was mixed. They
were now engaged in preparing this food. One of them had the goodness
to offer Hotherus some of the food; but the eldest said: "It would be
treason to Balder to increase the strength of his foe." The stranger said
that he was one of the men of Hotherus, and not Hotherus himself. He was
then permitted to taste the food.[5] The women also presented him with a
beautiful girdle of victory.

On his way home Hotherus met his foe and thrust a weapon into his side,
so that he fell half-dead to the ground. This produced joy in the camp
of Hotherus, but sorrow in the Danish camp. Balder, who knew that he was
going to die, but was unwilling to abide death in his tent, renewed the
battle the following day, and had himself carried on a stretcher into the
thickest of the fight. The following night Proserpina (the goddess of
death) came to him and announced to him that he should be her guest the
next day. He died from his wound at the time predicted, and was buried in
a mound with royal splendour. Hotherus took the sceptre in Denmark after

Meanwhile it had happened that King Gevarus had been attacked and burned
in his house by a jarl under him, by name Gunno. Hotherus avenged the
death of Gevarus, and burnt Gunno alive on a funeral pyre as a punishment
for his crime.

Rinda and Odin had a son by name Bous. The latter, to avenge the death
of his brother Balder, attacked Hotherus, who fell in the conflict. But
Bous himself was severely wounded and died the following day from his
wounds. Hotherus was followed on the Danish throne by his son Röricus.

In the examination of this narrative in Saxo there is no hope of arriving
at absolutely positive results unless the student lays aside all current
presuppositions and, in fact, all notions concerning the origin and age
of the Balder-myth, concerning a special Danish myth in opposition to a
special Norse-Icelandic, &c. If the latter conjecture based on Saxo is
correct, then this is to appear as a result of the investigation; but the
conjecture is not to be used as a presupposition.

That which first strikes the reader is that the story is not homogeneous.
It is composed of elements that could not be blended into one harmonious
whole. It suffers from intrinsic contradictions. The origin of these
contradictions must first of all be explained.

The most persistent contradiction concerns the sword of victory of which
Hotherus secured possession.[6] We are assured that it is of immense
value (_ingens præmium_), and is attended with the success of victory
(_belli fortuna comitaretur_), and Hotherus is, in fact, able with the
help of this sword to accomplish a great exploit: put Thor and other gods
to flight. But then Hotherus is conquered again and again by Balder,
and finally also defeated by Bous and slain, in spite of the fact that
Gevarus had assured him that this sword should always be victorious. To
be sure, Hotherus succeeds after several defeats in giving Balder his
death-wound, but this is not done in a battle, and can hardly be counted
as a victory; and Hotherus is not able to commit this secret murder by
aid of this sword alone, but is obliged to own a belt of victory and to
eat a wonderful food, which gives Balder his strength, before he can
accomplish this deed.

There must be some reason why Saxo fell into this contradiction,
which is so striking, and is maintained throughout the narrative. If
Hotherus-_Hödr_ in the mythology possessed a sword which always gives
victory and is able to conquer the gods themselves, then the mythology
can _not_ have contained anything about defeats suffered by him after he
got possession of this sword, nor can he then have fallen in conflict
with Odin's and Rind's son. The only way in which this could happen
would be that Hotherus-_Hödr_, after getting possession of the sword of
victory, and after once having used it to advantage, in some manner was
robbed of it again. But Saxo has read nothing of the sort in his sources,
otherwise he would have mentioned it, if for no other reason than for
the purpose of giving a cause for the defeat suffered by his hero, and
it is doubtless his opinion that the sword with which Balder is mortally
wounded is the same as the one Hotherus took from Mimingus. Hence, either
_Hödr_ has neither suffered the defeats mentioned by Saxo nor fallen by
the sword of the brother-avenging son of Odin and Rind, or he has never
possessed the sword of victory here mentioned. It is not necessary to
point out in which of these alternatives we have the mythological fact.
_Hödr_ has never possessed the irresistible sword.

But Saxo has not himself invented the episode concerning the sword of
victory, nor has he introduced this episode in his narrative about
Hotherus without thinking he had good reason therefor.

It follows with certainty that the episode belongs to the saga of another
hero, and that things were found in that saga which made it possible for
Saxo to confound him with _Hödr_.

The question then arises who this hero was. The first thread the
investigation finds, and has to follow, is the name itself, Hotherus,
within which Latin form Oder can lie concealed as well as _Hödr_.

In the mythology _Odr_, like _Hödr_, was an inhabitant of Asgard, but
nevertheless, like _Hödr_, he has had hostile relations to Asgard, and in
this connection he has fought with Thor (see No. 103). The similarity of
the names and the similarity of the mythological situation are sufficient
to explain the confusion on the part of Saxo. But there are several
other reasons, of which I will give one. The weapon with which Hoder
slew Balder in the mythology was a young twig, _Mistelteinn_. The sword
of victory made by Volund, with hostile intentions against the gods,
could, for the very reason that it was dangerous to Asgard, be compared
by skalds with the mistletoe, and be so called in a poetic-rhetorical
figure. The fact is, that both in Skirnersmal and in Fjölsvinnsmal
the Volund sword is designated as a _teinn_; that the _mistletoe_ is
included in the list of sword-names in the Younger Edda; and that in the
later Icelandic saga-literature _mistelteinn_ is a sword which is owned
in succession by Saming, _Thráinn_, and Romund Greipson; and finally,
that all that is there said about this sword _mistelteinn_ is a faithful
echo of the sword of victory made by Volund, though the facts are more
or less confused. Thus we find, for example, that it is _Máni Karl_ who
informs Romund where the sword is to be sought, while in Saxo it is the
moon-god Gevar, Nanna's father, who tells Hotherus where it lies hid.
That the god _Máni_ and Gevar are identical has already been proved
(see Nos. 90, 91, 92). Already before Saxo's time the _mistelteinn_ and
the sword of victory of the mythology had been confounded with each
other, and Hoder's and Oder's weapons had received the same name. This
was another reason for Saxo to confound Hoder and Oder and unite them
in Hotherus. And when he found in some of his sources that a sword
_mistelteinn_ was used by Oder, and in others that a _mistelteinn_ was
wielded by Hoder, it was natural that he as a historian should prefer the
sword to the fabulous mistletoe (see more below).

The circumstance that two mythical persons are united into one in
Hotherus has given Saxo free choice of making his Hotherus the son of
the father of the one or of the other. In the mythology Hoder is the
son of Odin; Oder-Svipdag is the son of Orvandel. Saxo has made him a
son of Hoddbrodd, who is identical with Orvandel. It has already been
demonstrated (see No. 29) that Helge Hundingsbane is a copy of the
Teutonic patriarch Halfdan. The series of parallels by which this
demonstration was made clear at the same time makes it manifest that
Helge's rival Hoddbrodd is Halfdan's rival Orvandel. The same place as is
occupied in the Halfdan myth by Orvandel, Hoddbrodd occupies in the songs
concerning Helge Hundingsbane. What we had a right to expect, namely,
that Saxo, when he did not make Hotherus the son of Hoder's father,
should make him a son of Oder's, has actually been done, whence there can
be no doubt that Hoder and Oder were united into one in Saxo's Hotherus.

With this point perfectly established, it is possible to analyse Saxo's
narrative point by point, resolve it into its constituent parts, and
refer them to the one of the two myths concerning Hoder and Oder to
which they belong.[7] It has already been noted that Saxo was unable to
unite organically with his narration of Hoder's adventure the episode
concerning the sword of victory taken from Mimingus. The introduction of
this episode has made the story of Hotherus a chain of contradictions.
On the other hand, the same episode naturally adapts itself to the
Svipdag-Oder story, which we already know. We have seen that Svipdag
descends to the lower world and there gets into possession of the Volund
sword. Hence it is Svipdag-Oder, not Hoder, who is instructed by the
moon-god Gevar as to where the sword is to be found. It is he who crosses
the frost-mountains, penetrates into the _specus_ guarded by Mimingus,
and there captures the Volund sword and the Volund ring. It is Svipdag,
not Hoder, who, thanks to this sword, is able as _thursar thjódar sjóli_
to conquer the otherwise indomitable Halfdan--nay, even more, compel
Halfdan's co-father and protector, the Asa-god Thor, to yield.

Thus Saxo's accounts about Otharus and Hotherus fill two important gaps
in the records preserved to our time in the Icelandic sources concerning
the Svipdag-myth. To this is also to be added what Saxo tells us about
Svipdag under this very name (see Nos. 24, 33): that he carries on an
implacable war with Halfdan after the latter had first secured and then
rejected Groa; that after various fortunes of war he conquers him and
gives him a mortal wound; that he takes Halfdan's and Groa's son Gudhorm
into his good graces and gives him a kingdom, but that he pursues and
wars against Halfdan's and Alveig-Signe's son Hadding, and finally falls
by his hand.

Hotherus-Svipdag's perilous journey across the frosty mountains,
mentioned by Saxo, is predicted by Groa in her seventh incantation of
protection over her son:

  thann gel ek thér in sjaunda,
  ef thik sækja kemr
  frost á fjalli há
  hávetrar kuldi
  megit thinu holdi fara,
  ok haldisk æ lik at lidum.

[5] According to Gheysmer's synopsis. Saxo himself says nothing of the
kind. The present reading of the passage in Saxo is distinctly mutilated.

[6] This Bugge, too, has observed, and he rightly assumes that the
episode concerning the sword has been interpolated from some other source.

[7] This analysis will be given in the second part of this work in the
treatise on the Balder-myth.



We have not yet exhausted Saxo's contributions to the myth concerning
Svipdag. In two other passages in his _Historia Danica_ Svipdag
reappears, namely, in the accounts of the reigns of Frode III. and of
Halfdan Berggram, in both under the name Ericus (_Eirekr_), a name
applied to Svipdag in the mythology also (see No. 108).

The first reference showing that Svipdag and Erik are identical appears
in the following analogies:

Halfdan (Gram), who kills a Swedish king, is attacked in war by Svipdag.

Halfdan (Berggram), who kills a Swedish king, is attacked in war by Erik.

Svipdag is the son of the slain Swedish king's daughter.

Erik is the son of the slain Swedish king's daughter.

Saxo's account of King Frode is for the greater part the myth about Frey
told as history. We might then expect to find that Svipdag, who becomes
Frey's brother-in-law, should appear in some _rôle_ in Frode's history.
The question, then, is whether any brother-in-law of Frode plays a part
therein. This is actually the case. Frode's brother-in-law is a young
hero who is his general and factotum, and is called Ericus, with the
surname _Disertus_, the eloquent. The Ericus who appears as Halfdan's
enemy accordingly resembles Svipdag, Halfdan's enemy, in the fact that he
is a son of the daughter of the Swedish king slain by Halfdan. The Ericus
who is Frode-Frey's general, again, resembles Svipdag in the fact that
he marries Frode-Frey's sister. This is another indication that Erik and
Svipdag were identical in Saxo's mythic sources.

Let us now pursue these indications and see whether they are confirmed
by the stories which Saxo tells of Halfdan's enemy Erik and Frode-Frey's
brother-in-law, Erik the eloquent.

Saxo first brings us to the paternal home of Erik the eloquent. In the
beginning of the narrative Erik's mother is already dead and his father
is married a second time (_Hist._, 192). Compare with this the beginning
of Svipdag's history, where his mother, according to Grogalder, is dead,
and his father is married again.

The stepmother has a son, by name Rollerus, whose position in the
myth I shall consider hereafter. Erik and Roller leave their paternal
home to find Frode-Frey and his sister Gunvara, a maiden of the most
extraordinary beauty. Before they proceed on this adventurous journey
Erik's stepmother, Roller's mother, has given them a wisdom-inspiring
food to eat, in which one of the constituent parts was the fat of three
serpents. Of this food the cunning Erik knew how to secure the better
part, really intended for Roller. But the half-brothers were faithful

From Saxo's narrative it appears that Erik had no desire at all to make
this journey. It was Roller who first made the promise to go in search
for Frode and his sister, and it was doubtless Erik's stepmother who
brought about that Erik should assist his brother in the accomplishment
of the task. Erik himself regarded the resolve taken by Roller as
surpassing his strength (_Hist._, 193).

This corresponds with what Grogalder tells us about Svipdag's
disinclination to perform the task imposed on him by his stepmother. This
also gives us the key to Grogalder's words, that Svipdag was commanded
to go and find not only "the one fond of ornaments," but "_those_ fond
of ornaments" (_koma móti Menglödum_). The plural indicates that there
is more than one "fond of ornaments" to be sought. It is necessary to
bring back to Asgard not only Freyja, but also Frey her brother, the god
of the harvests, for whom the ancient artists made ornaments, and who
as a symbol of nature is the one under whose supremacy the forces of
vegetation in nature decorate the meadows with grass and the fields with
grain. He, too, with his sister, was in the power of the giant-world in
the great fimbul-winter (see below).

The food to which serpents must contribute one of the constituent parts
reappears in Saxo's account of Hotherus (_Hist._, 123; No. 101), and
is there described with about the same words. In both passages three
serpents are required for the purpose. That Balder should be nourished
with this sort of food is highly improbable. The serpent food in the
stories about Hotherus and Ericus has been borrowed from the Svipdag-myth.

The land in which Frode and his beautiful sister live is difficult of
access, and magic powers have hitherto made futile every effort to get
there. The attendants of the brother and sister there are described as
the most savage, the most impudent, and the most disagreeable that can be
conceived. They are beings of the most disgusting kind, whose manners are
as unrestrained as their words. To get to this country it is necessary to
cross an ocean, where storms, conjured up by witchcraft, threaten every
sailor with destruction.

Groa has predicted this journey, and has sung a magic song of protection
over her son against the dangers which he is to meet on the magic sea:

  thann gel ek thér inn sétta
  ef thú á sjó kemr
  meira en menn viti:
  logn ok lögr
  gangi thér i lúdr saman
  ok ljái thér æ friddrjúgrar farar.

When Erik and Roller, defying the storms, had crossed this sea and
conquered the magic power which hindered the approach to the country,
they entered a harbour, near which Frode and Gunvara are to be sought.
On the strand they meet people who belong to the attendants of the
brother and sister. Among them are three brothers, all named Grep, and
of whom one is Gunvara's pressing and persistent suitor. This Grep,
who is a poet and orator of the sort to be found in that land, at once
enters into a discussion with Erik. At the end of the discussion Grep
retires defeated and angry. Then Erik and Roller proceed up to the abode
where they are to find those whom they seek. Frode and Gunvara are met
amid attendants who treat them as princely persons, and look upon them
as their court-circle. But the royal household is of a very strange
kind, and receives visitors with great hooting, barking of dogs, and
insulting manners. Frode occupies the high-seat in the hall, where a
great fire is burning as a protection against the bitter cold. It is
manifest from Saxo's description that Frode and Gunvara, possibly by
virtue of the sorcery of the giants, are in a spiritual condition in
which they have almost forgotten the past, but without being happy in
their present circumstances. Frode feels unhappy and degraded. Gunvara
loathes her suitor Grep. The days here spent by Erik and Roller, before
they get an opportunity to take flight with Gunvara, form a series of
drinking-bouts, vulgar songs, assaults, fights, and murders. The jealous
Grep tries to assassinate Erik, but in this attempt he is slain by
Roller's sword. Frode cannot be persuaded to accompany Erik, Roller, and
Gunvara on this flight. He feels that his life is stained with a spot
that cannot be removed, and he is unwilling to appear with it among other
men. In the mythology it is left to Njord himself to liberate his son.
In another passage (_Hist._, 266, 267) Saxo says that King Fridlevus
(Njord) liberated a princely youth who had been robbed by a giant. In the
mythology this youth can hardly be anyone else than the young Frey, the
son of the liberator. Erik afterwards marries Gunvara.

Among the poetical paraphrases from heathen times are found some which
refer to Frey's and Freyja's captivity among the giants. In a song of
the skald Kormak the mead of poetry is called _jastrin fontanna Sýrar
Greppa_, "the seething flood of the sea ranks (of the skerry) of Syr
(of Freyja) of the Greps." This paraphrase evidently owes its existence
to an association of ideas based on the same myth as Saxo has told in
his way. _Sýr_, as we know, is one of Freyja's surnames, and as to
its meaning, one which she must have acquired during her sojourn in
Jotunheim, for it is scarcely applicable to her outside of Jotunheim.
_Greppr_, the poet there, as we have already seen, is Freyja's suitor. He
has had brothers also called _Greppr_, whence the plural expression _Sýrs
Greppa_ ("Syr's Greps"), wherein Freyja's surname is joined with more
than one Grep, receives its mythological explanation. The giant abode
where Frode and Gunvara sojourn, is according to Saxo, situated not far
from the harbour where Erik and Roller entered (_portum a quo Frotho non
longe deversabatur_--_Hist._, 198). The expression "the Greps of Syr's
skerries" thus agrees with Saxo.

A northern land uninhabited by man is by Eyvind Skaldaspiller called
_utröst Belja dolgs_, "the most remotely situated abode of Bele's enemy
(Frey)." This paraphrase is also explained by the myth concerning Frey's
and Freyja's visit in Jotunheim. _Beli_ is a giant-name, and means "the
howler." Erik and Roller, according to Saxo, are received with a horrible
howl by the giants who attend Frey. "They produced horrible sounds like
those of howling animals" (_ululantium more horrisonas dedere voces_). To
the myth about how Frey fell into the power of the giants I shall come
later (see Nos. 109, 111, 112).

Erik is in Saxo called _disertus_, the eloquent. The Svipdag epithet
_Ódr_ originally had a meaning very near to this. The impersonal _ódr_
means partly the reflecting element in man, partly song and poetry, the
ability of expressing one's self skilfully and of joining the words
in an agreeable and persuasive manner (cp. the Gothic _weit-wodan_,
to convince). Erik demonstrates the propriety of his name. Saxo makes
him speak in proverbs and sentences, certainly for the reason that his
Northern source has put them on the lips of the young hero. The same
quality characterises Svipdag. In Grogalder his mother sings over him:
"Eloquence and social talents be abundantly bestowed upon you;" and the
description of him in Fjölsvinnsmal places before our eyes a nimble and
vivacious youth who well understands the watchman's veiled words, and
on whose lips the speech develops into proverbs which fasten themselves
on the mind. Compare _augna gamans_, &c. (str. 5), and the often quoted
_Urdar ordi kvedr engi madr_ (str. 47).

Toward Gunvara Erik observes the same chaste and chivalrous conduct as
Otharus toward Syritha (_intacta illi pudicitia manet_--p. 216). As to
birth, he occupies the same subordinate position to her as _Ódr_ to
Freyja, Otharus to Syritha, Svipdag to Menglad.

The adventures related in the mythology from Svipdag's journey, when he
went in search of Freyja-Menglad, are by Saxo so divided between Ericus
Disertus and Otharus that of the former is told the most of what happened
to Svipdag during his visit in the giant abode, of the latter the most of
what happened to him on his way thence to his home.

Concerning Erik's family relations, Saxo gives some facts which, from
a mythological point of view, are of great value. It has already been
stated that Erik's mother, like Svipdag's, is dead, and that his father,
like Svipdag's, is married a second time where his saga begins. The
father begets with his second wife a son, whom Saxo calls Rollerus.
When Erik's father also is dead, Roller's mother, according to Saxo,
marries again, and this time a powerful champion called Brac (_Hist._,
217), who in the continuation of the story (p. 217, &c.) proves himself
to be _Asa-Brage_, the god Thor (cp. No. 105), to whom she brings her
son Roller. In our mythological records we learn that Thor's wife was
Sif, the goddess of vegetation, and that Sif had been married and had
had a son, by name _Ullr_, before she became the wife of the Asa-god,
and that she brought with her to Asgard this son, who became adopted
among the gods. Thus the mythic records and Saxo correspond in these
points, and it follows that Rollerus is the same as Uller, whom Saxo
elsewhere (_Hist._, 130, 131; cp. No. 36) mentions as Ollerus. The forms
Ollerus and Rollerus are to each other as _Olfr_ to _Hrólfr_. _Hrólfr_
is a contraction of _Hród-úlfr_; Rollerus indicates a contraction of
_Hród-Ullr_, _Hríd-Ullr_. The latter form occurs in the paraphrase
_Hrídullr hrotta_, "the sword's storm-Ull," a designation of a warrior
(Grett., 20, 1). It has already been pointed out that in the great war
between Odin's clan and the Vans, Ull, although Thor's stepson, takes the
side of the Vans and identifies his cause with that of Frey and Svipdag.
Saxo also describes the half-brothers as faithfully united, and, in
regard to Roller's reliable fraternity, makes Erik utter a sentence which
very nearly corresponds to the Danish:

  "End svige de Sorne
  og ikke de Baarne"

(_Hist._, 207--_optima est affinium opera opis indigo_). Saxo's account
of Erik and Roller thus gives us the key to the mythological statements,
not otherwise intelligible, that though Ull has in Thor a friendly
stepfather (cp. the expression _gulli Ullar_--Younger Edda, i. 302),
and in Odin a clan-chief who distinguishes him (cp. _Ullar hylli_,
&c.--Grimnersmal, 42), nevertheless he contends in this feud on the same
side as Erik-Svipdag, with whom he once set out to rescue Frey from the
power of the giants. The mythology was not willing to sever those bonds
of fidelity which youthful adventurers shared in common had established
between Frey, Ull, and Svipdag. Both the last two therefore associate
themselves with Frey when the war breaks out between the Asas and Vans.

It follows that Sif was the second wife of Orvandel the brave before
she became Thor's and that Ull is Orvandel's son. The intimate relation
between Orvandel on the one side and Thor on the other has already been
shown above. When Orvandel was out on adventures in Jotunheim his first
wife Groa visited Thor's halls as his guest, where the dis of vegetation
might have a safe place of refuge during her husband's absence.
This feature preserved in the Younger Edda is of great mythological
importance, and, as I shall show further on, of ancient Aryan origin.
Orvandel, the great archer and star-hero, reappears in Rigveda and also
in the Greek mythology--in the latter under the name Orion, as Vigfusson
has already assumed. The correctness of the assumption is corroborated by
reasons, which I shall present later on.



We now pass to that Erik whom Saxo mentions in his narrative concerning
Halfdan-Berggram, and who, like Svipdag, is the son of a Swedish king's
daughter. This king had been slain by Halfdan. Just as Svipdag undertakes
an irreconcilable war of revenge against Halfdan-Gram, so does Erik
against Halfdan-Berggram. In one of their battles Halfdan was obliged
to take flight, despite his superhuman strength and martial luck. More
than this, he has by his side the "champion Thoro," and Saxo himself
informs us that the latter is no less a personage than the Asa-god Thor,
but he too must yield to Erik. Thor's Mjolner and Halfdan's club availed
nothing against Erik. In conflict with him their weapons seemed edgeless
(_Hist._, 323, 324).

Thus not only Halfdan, but even Thor himself, Odin's mighty son, he
who alone outweighs in strength all the other descendants and clansmen
of Odin, was obliged to retreat before a mythical hero; and that his
lightning hammer, at other times irresistible, Sindre's wonderful work,
is powerless in this conflict, must in the mythology have had particular
reasons. The mythology has scarcely permitted its favourite, "Hlodyn's
celebrated son," to be subjected to such a humiliation more than once,
and this fact must have had such a motive, that the event might be
regarded as a solitary exception. It must therefore be borne in mind
that, in his narrative concerning Hotherus, Saxo states, that after the
latter had acquired the sword of victory guarded by Mimingus, he meets
the Asa-god Thor in a battle and forces him to yield, after the former
has severed the hammer from its handle with a blow of the sword (_Hist._,
118; see No. 101). It has already been shown that _Ódr_-Svipdag,
not _Hödr_, is the Hotherus who captured the sword of victory and
accomplished this deed (see No. 101). Erik accordingly has, in common
with Svipdag, not only those features that he is the daughter-son of a
Swedish king whom Halfdan had slain, and that he persists in making war
on the latter, but also that he accomplished the unique deed of putting
Thor to flight.

Thus the hammer Mjolner is found to have been a weapon which, in spite of
its extraordinary qualities, is inferior to the sword of victory forged
by Volund (see Nos. 87, 98). Accordingly the mythology has contained two
famous judgments on products of the ancient artists. The first judgment
is passed by the Asa-gods in solemn consultation, and in reference to
this very hammer, Mjolner, explains that Sindre's products are superior
to those of Ivalde's sons. The other judgment is passed on the field of
battle, and confirms the former judgment of the gods. Mjolner proves
itself useless in conflict with the sword of victory. If now the Volund
of the heroic traditions were one of the Ivalde sons who fails to get the
prize in the mythology, then an epic connection could be found between
the former and the latter judgment: the insulted Ivalde son has then
avenged himself on the gods and re-established his reputation injured by
them. I shall recur to the question whether Volund was a son of Ivalde or

The wars between Erik and Halfdan were, according to Saxo, carried on
with changing fortunes. In one of these conflicts, which must have taken
place before Erik secured the irresistible sword, Halfdan is victorious
and takes Erik prisoner; but the heart of the victor is turned into
reconciliation toward the inexorable foe, and he offers Erik his life
and friendship if the latter will serve his cause. But when Erik refuses
the offered conciliation, Halfdan binds him fast to a tree in order to
make him the prey of the wild beasts of the forest and abandons him to
his fate. Halfdan's desire to become reconciled with Erik, and also the
circumstance that he binds him, is predicted, in Grogalder (strs. 9, 10),
by Svipdag's mother among the fortunes that await her son:

  thann gel ek thér inn fjórda
  ef thik fjándr standa
  görvir á galgvegi:
  hugr theim hverfi
  til handa ther mætti,
  ok snuisk theim til sátta sefi.

  thann gel ek pér inn fimta
  ef thér fjöturr verdr
  borinn at boglimum:
  Leifnis elda læt ek thér
  fyr legg of kvedinn,
  ok stökkr thá láss af limum,
  en af fótum fjöturr.

The Svipdag synonyms so far met with are: Ódr (Hotherus), Óttarr
(Otharus), and Eirekr (Ericus).


(_From an etching by Lorenz Frölich._)

In pursuance of a promise made by Loke to secure his release, he beguiled
Idun out of Asgard and into the power of giant Thjasse. Idun was keeper
of the apples upon which the gods fed to renew their youth and her
disappearance from Asgard was, therefore, followed by rapid ageing, into
decrepitude, of the gods. They discovered that Loke was the scoundrel who
had caused Idun's betrayal and threatened him with death if he failed to
bring her back. Accordingly Loke borrowed Freyja's falcon plumage and
flew to Jotunheim--home of the giants. Thjasse was at sea fishing, so
Loke quickly found Idun, whom he transformed into a nut and hastened with
her to Asgard. Thjasse soon learned what had happened and on eagle wings
he pursued the fleeing Loke but his coming was seen by Heimdal, warder of
Asgard's gate, and by his orders a fire was quickly made on the walls,
which scorched Thjasse's wings as he flew over and he fell into the power
of the gods who promptly slew him.

See pages 899, 959, 909, 960.]

It is remarkable, but, as we shall find later, easy to explain that this
saga-hero, whom the mythology made Freyja's husband, and whose career
was adorned with such strange adventures, was not before the ninth
century, and that in Sweden, accorded the same rank as the Asa-gods, and
this in spite of the fact that he was adopted in Asgard, and despite
the fact that his half-brother Ull was clothed with the same dignity as
that of the Asa-gods. There is no trace to show that he who is Freyja's
husband and Frey's brother-in-law was generally honoured with a divine
title, with a temple, and with sacrifices. He remained to the devotees
of the mythology what he was--a brilliant hero, but nothing more; and
while the saga on the remote antiquity of the Teutons made him a ruler
of North Teutonic tribes, whose leader he is in the war against Halfdan
and Hadding (see Nos. 33, 38), he was honoured as one of the oldest
kings of the Scandinavian peoples, but was not worshipped as a god. As
an ancient king he has received his place in the middle-age chronicles
and genealogies of rulers now under the name Svipdag, now under the name
Erik. But, at the same time, his position in the epic was such that,
if the Teutonic Olympus was ever to be increased with a divinity of
Asa-rank, no one would have a greater right than he to be clothed with
this dignity. From this point of view light is shed on a passage in ch.
26 of _Vita Ansgarii_. It is there related, that before Ansgarius arrived
in Birka, where his impending arrival was not unknown, there came thither
a man (doubtless a heathen priest or skald) who insisted that he had a
mission from the gods to the king and the people. According to the man's
statement, the gods had held a meeting, at which he himself had been
present, and in which they unanimously had resolved to adopt in their
council that King Erik who in antiquity had ruled over the Swedes, so
that he henceforth should be one of the gods (_Ericum, quondam regem
vestrum, nos unanimes in collegium nostrum ascisimus, ut sit unus de
numero deorum_); this was done because they had perceived that the Swedes
were about to increase the number of their present gods by adopting a
stranger (Christ) whose doctrine could not be reconciled with theirs,
and who accordingly did not deserve to be worshipped. If the Swedes
wished to add another god to the old ones, under whose protection the
country had so long enjoyed happiness, peace, and plenty, they ought to
accord to Erik, and not to the strange god, that honour which belongs
to the divinities of the land. What the man who came to Birka with this
mission reported was made public, and created much stir and agitation.
When Ansgarius landed, a temple had already been built to Erik, in which
supplications and sacrifices were offered to him. This event took place
at a time foreboding a crisis for the ancient Odinic religion. Its last
bulwarks on the Teutonic continent had recently been levelled with the
ground by Charlemagne's victory over the Saxons. The report of the
cruelties practised by the advocates of the doctrine, which invaded the
country from the south and the west for the purpose of breaking the faith
of the Saxon Odin worshippers towards their religion, had certainly found
its way to Scandinavia, and doubtless had its influence in encouraging
that mighty effort made by the northern peoples in the ninth century to
visit and conquer on their own territory their Teutonic kinsmen who had
been converted to Christianity. It is of no slight mythological interest
to learn that zealous men among the Swedes hoped to be able to inspire
the old doctrine with new life by adopting among the gods Freyja's
husband, the most brilliant of the ancient mythic heroes and the one most
celebrated by the skalds. I do not deem it impossible that this very
attempt made Erik's name hated among some of the Christians, and was the
reason why "Old Erik" became a name of the devil. _Vita Ansgarii_ says
that it was the devil's own work that Erik was adopted among the gods.

The Svipdag synonym Erik reappears in the Christian saga about Erik
Vidforle (the far-travelled), who succeeded in finding and entering
_Odainsakr_ (see No. 44). This is a reminiscence of Svipdag's visit in
Mimer's realm. The surname _Vidförli_ has become connected with two names
of Svipdag: we have _Eirikr hinn vidförli_ and _Ódr_ (_Oddr_) _hinn
vidförli_ in the later Icelandic sagas.



I have now given a review of the manner in which I have found the
fragments of the myth concerning Svipdag up to the point where he obtains
Freyja as his wife. The fragments dove-tail into each other and form a
consecutive whole. Now, a few words in regard to the part afterwards
played by the Volund sword, secured by Svipdag in the lower world, in the
mythology, and in the saga. The sword, as we have seen, is the prize for
which Asgard opens its gate and receives Svipdag as Freyja's husband. We
subsequently find it in Frey's possession. Once more the sword becomes
the price of a bride, and passes into the hands of the giant Gymer and
his wife. It has already been demonstrated that Gymer's wife is the same
Angerboda who, in historical times and until Ragnarok, dwells in the
Ironwood (see No. 35). Her shepherd, who in the woods watches her monster
flocks, also keeps the sword until the fire-giant Fjalar shall appear in
his abode in the guise of the red cock and bring it to his own father
Surt, in whose hand it shall cause Frey's death, and contribute to the
destruction of the world of gods.

A historian, Priscus, who was Attila's contemporary, relates that the
Hun king got possession of a divine sword that a shepherd had dug out of
the ground and presented to him as a gift. The king of the Huns, it is
added, rejoiced in the find; for, as the possessor of the sword that had
belonged to the god "Mars," he considered himself as armed with authority
to undertake and carry on successfully any war he pleased (see Jordanes,
who quotes Priscus).

On the Teutonic peoples the report of this pretended event must have
made a mighty impression. It may be that the story was invented for
this purpose; for their myths told of a sword of victory which was
owned by that god who, since the death of Balder, and since Tyr became
one-handed, was, together with Thor, looked upon as the bravest of the
warlike gods, which sword had been carried away from Asgard to the
unknown wildernesses of the East, where it had been buried, not to be
produced again before the approach of Ragnarok, when it was to be exhumed
and delivered by a shepherd to a foe of mankind. Already, before this
time, the Teutons had connected the appearance of the Huns with this
myth. According to Jordanes, they believed that evil troll-women, whom
the Gothic king Filimer had banished from his people, had taken refuge
in the wildernesses of the East, and there given birth to children with
forest giants ("satyres"), which children became the progenitors of
the Huns. This is to say, in other words, that they believed the Huns
were descended from Angerboda's progeny in the Ironwood, which, in the
fulness of time, were to break into Midgard with the monster Hate as
their leader. The sword which the god Frey had possessed, and which was
concealed in the Ironwood, becomes in Jordanes a sword which the god
"Mars" had owned, and which, thereafter, had been concealed in the earth.
Out of Angerboda's shepherd, who again brings the sword into daylight and
gives it to the world-hostile Fjalar, becomes a shepherd who exhumes the
sword and gives it to Attila, the foe of the Teutonic race.

The memory of the sword survived the victory of Christianity, and was
handed down through the centuries in many variations. That Surt at the
end of the world was to possess the sword of course fell away, and
instead now one and then another was selected as the hero who was to
find and take it; that it was watched by a woman and by a man (in the
mythology Angerboda and Eggther); and that the woman was an even more
disgusting being than the man, were features that the saga retained both
on the Continent and in England.

The Beowulf poem makes a monster, by name Grendel ("the destroyer"),
dwell with his mother under a marsh in a forest, which, though referred
to Denmark and to the vicinity of the splendid castle of a Danish
king, is described in a manner which makes it highly probable that the
prototype used by the Christian poet was a heathen skald's description of
the Ironwood. There is, says he, the mysterious land in which the wolf
conceals himself, full of narrow valleys, precipices, and abysses, full
of dark and deep forests, marshes shrouded in gloom, lakes shaded with
trees, nesses lashed by the sea, mountain torrents and bogs, which in the
night shine as of fire, and shelter demoniac beings and dragons in their
turbid waves. The hunted game prefers being torn into pieces by dogs to
seeking its refuge on this unholy ground, from which raging storms chase
black clouds until the heavens are darkened and the rain pours down in
torrents. The English poet may honestly have located the mythological
Ironwood in Denmark. The same old border-land, which to this very day is
called "Dänische wold," was still in the thirteenth century called by the
Danes Jarnwith, the Ironwood. From his abode in this wilderness Grendel
makes nightly excursions to the Danish royal castle, breaks in there,
kills sleeping champions with his iron hands, sucks out their blood, and
carries their corpses to the enchanted marsh in order to eat them there.
The hero, Beowulf, who has heard of this, proceeds to Denmark, penetrates
into the awful forest, dives, armed with Denmark's best sword, down into
the magic marsh to Grendel's and his mother's hall, and kills them after
a conflict in which the above-mentioned sword was found useless. But down
there he finds another which Grendel and his mother kept concealed, gets
possession of it, and conquers with its aid.

Of this remarkable sword it is said that it was "rich in victory," that
it hailed from the past, that "it was a good and excellent work of a
smith," and that the golden hilt was the work of the "wonder-smith." On
the blade was risted (engraved) "that ancient war" when "the billows
of the raging sea washed over the race of giants," and on a plate made
of the purest gold was written in runes "the name of him for whom this
weapon was first made." The Christian poet found it most convenient
for his purpose not to name this name for his readers or hearers. But
all that is here stated is applicable to the mythological sword of
victory. "The Wonder-smith" in the Old English tale is Volund (Weland).
The coat of mail borne by Beowulf is "Welandes geweorc." "Deor the
Scald's Complaint" sings of Weland, and King Alfred in his translation
of Boethius speaks of "the wise Weland, the goldsmith, who, in ancient
times, was the most celebrated." That the Weland sword was "the work of a
giant" corresponds with the Volund myth (see below); and as we here learn
that the blade was engraved with pictures representing the destructions
of the ancient giant-artists in the waves of the sea (the blood of the
primeval giant Ymer), then this illustrates a passage in Skirnersmal
where it is likewise stated that the sword was risted with images and
"that it fights of itself against the giant race" (Skirnersmal, 8, 23,
25; see No. 60). This expression is purposely ambiguous. One meaning
is emphasised by Frey's words in Skirnersmal, that it fights of itself
"if it is a wise man who owns it" (_ef sá er horscr er hefir_). The
other meaning of the expression appears from the Beowulf poem. The sword
itself fights against the giant race in the sense that the "wonder-smith"
(Weland), by the aid of pictures on the blade of the sword itself,
represented that battle which Odin and his brothers fought against the
primeval giants, when the former drowned the latter in the blood of their
progenitor, the giant Ymer.

Grendel is the son of the troll-woman living in the marsh, just as Hate
is Angerboda's. The author identifies Grendel with Cain banished from the
sight of his Creator, and makes giants, thurses, and "elves" the progeny
of the banished one. Grendel's mother is a "she-wolf of the deep" and a
mermaid (_merewif_). Angerboda is the mother of the wolf progeny in the
Ironwood and "drives the ships into Ægir's jaws." What "Beowulf" tells
about Grendel reminds us in some of the details so strongly of Völuspa's
words concerning Hate that the question may be raised whether the English
author did not have in mind a strophe resembling the one in Völuspa which
treats of him. Völuspa's Hate _fyllisk fjörvi feigra manna_, "satiates
himself with the vital force of men selected for death." Beowulf's
Grendel sucks the blood of his chosen victims until life ebbs out of
them. Völuspa's Hate _rydr ragna sjöt raudum dreyra_, "colours the
princely abode with red blood from the wounds." Grendel steals into the
royal castle and stains it with blood. The expression here reappears
almost literally. Völuspa's _ragna sjöt_ and _dreyri_ correspond
perfectly to "Beowulf's" _driht-sele_ and _dreor_.

In Vilkinasaga we read that Nagelring, the best sword in the world was
concealed in a forest, and was there watched by a woman and a man. The
man had the strength of twelve men, but the woman was still stronger.
King Thidrek and his friend Hildebrand succeeded after a terrible combat
in slaying the monster. The woman had to be slain thrice in order that
she should not come to life again. This feature is also borrowed from the
myth about Angerboda, the thrice slain.

_Historia Pontificum_ (from the middle of the twelfth century) informs
us that Duke Wilhelm of Angoulême (second half of the tenth century)
possessed an extraordinary sword made by Volund. But this was not the
real sword of victory. From Jordane's history it was known in the middle
age that this sword had fallen into Attila's hands, and the question
was naturally asked what afterwards became of it. Sagas answered the
question. The sword remained with the descendants of the Huns, the
Hungarians. The mother of the Hungarian king Solomon gave it to one Otto
of Bavaria. He lent it to the margrave of Lausitz, Dedi the younger.
After the murder of Dedi it came into the hands of Emperor Henry IV., who
gave it to his favourite, Leopold of Merseburg. By a fall from his horse
Leopold was wounded by the point of the sword, and died from the wound.
Even in later times the sword was believed to exist, and there were those
who believed that the Duke of Alba bore it at his side.



After Svipdag's marriage with Freyja the saga of his life may be divided
into two parts--the time before his visit in Asgard as Freyja's happy
husband and Frey's best friend, and the time of his absence from Asgard
and his change and destruction.

To the former of these divisions belongs his journey, celebrated in song,
to the abode of the giant Gymer, whither he proceeds to ask, on Frey's
behalf, for the hand of Gerd, Gymer's and Aurboda's fair daughter. It has
already been pointed out that after his marriage with Gunvara-Freyja,
Erik-Svipdag appears in Saxo as Frotho-Frey's right hand, ready to help
and a trusted man in all things. Among other things the task is also
imposed on him to ask, on behalf of Frotho, for the hand of a young maid
whose father in the mythology doubtless was a giant. He is described as
a deceitful, treacherous being, hostile to the gods, as a person who had
laid a plan with his daughter as a bait to deceive Frotho and win Gunvara
for himself. The plan is frustrated by Svipdag (Ericus), Ull (Rollerus),
and Thor (Bracus), the last of whom here appears in his usual _rôle_
as the conqueror of giants. At the very point when Frotho's intended
father-in-law thinks he has won the game Thor rushes into his halls, and
the schemer is compelled to save himself by flight (_Hist._, 221, &c.).
In the excellent poem Skirnersmal, the Icelandic mythic fragments have
preserved the memory of Frey's courtship to a giant-maid, daughter of
Aurboda's terrible husband, the giant-chief Gymer. Here, as in Saxo, the
Vana-god does not himself go to do the courting, but sends a messenger,
who in the poem is named by the epithet _Skirner_. All that is there
told about this Skirner finds its explanation in Svipdag's saga. The
very epithet Skirnir, "the shining one," is justified by the fact that
Solbjart-Orvandel, the star-hero, is his father. Skirner dwells in
Asgard, but is not one of the ruling gods. The one of the gods with whom
he is most intimately united is Frey. Thus his position in Asgard is the
same as Svipdag's. Skirner's influence with Freyja's brother is so great
that when neither Njord nor Skade can induce the son to reveal the cause
of the sorrow which afflicts him, they hope that Skirner may be able to
do so. Who, if not Svipdag, who tried to rescue Frey from the power of
the giants, and who is his brother-in-law, and in Saxo his all in all,
would be the one to possess such influence over him? Skirner also appeals
to the fact that Frey and he have in days past had adventures together
of such a kind that they ought to have faith in each other, and that
Frey ought not to have any secret which he may not safely confide to so
faithful a friend (str. 5). Skirner is wise and poetic, and has proverbs
on his lips like Svipdag-Erik (cp. str. 13 in Skirnersmal with str. 47
in Fjölsvinnsmal). But the conclusive proof of their identity is the fact
that Skirner, like Svipdag, had made a journey to the lower world, had
been in Mimer's realm at the foot of Ygdrasil, and there had fetched a
sword called Gambantein, which is the same sword as the one Frey lays in
his hand when he is to go on his errand of courtship--the same sword as
Frey afterwards parts with as the price paid to Gymer and Aurboda for the
bride. When Gerd refuses to accept the courtship-presents that Skirner
brings with him, he draws his sword, shows its blade to Gerd, threatens
to send her with its edge to Nifelhel, the region below the Na-gates, the
Hades-dwelling of Hrimner, Hrimgrimner, and of other giants of antiquity,
the abode of the furies of physical sicknesses (see No. 60), and tells
her how this terrible weapon originally came into his possession:

  Til holtz ec gecc
  oc til hrás vidar
  gambantein at geta,
  gambantein ec gat.

  "I went to Holt
  And to the juicy tree
  Gambantein to get,
  Gambantein I got."

The word _teinn_, a branch, a twig, has the meaning of sword in all
the compounds where it occurs: _benteinn_, _bifteinn_, _eggteinar_,
_hævateinn_ (_homateinn_), _hjörteinn_, _hræteinn_, _sárteinn_,
_valteinn_. _Mistelteinn_ has also become the name of a sword (Younger
Edda, i. 564; Fornald., i, 416, 515; ii. 371; cp. No. 101), and the
same weapon as is here called _gambanteinn_ is called _hævateinn_,
_homateinn_ (see further No. 116) in Fjölsvinnsmal.

In the mythology there is only one single place which is called Holt.
It is _Mimis holt_, _Hoddmimis holt_, the subterranean grove, where the
children who are to be the parents of the future race of man have their
secure abode until the regeneration of the world (see Nos. 52, 53),
living on the morning-dew which falls from the world-tree, _hrár vidr_,
"the tree rich in sap" (see No. 89). Mimer-Nidhad also comes from Holt
when he imprisons Volund (Volund., 14). It has already been proved above
that, on his journey in the lower world, Svipdag also came to _Mimis
holt_, and saw the citadel within which the _ásmegir_ have their asylum.

Saxo has known either the above-cited strophe or another resembling
it, and when his Erik-Svipdag speaks of his journey in ambiguous words
(_obscura umbage_), Saxo makes him say: _Ad trunca sylvarum robora
penetravi ... ibi cuspis a robore regis excussa est_ (_Hist._, 206). With
the expression _ad robora sylvarum penetravi_ we must compare _til holtz
ec gecc_. The words _robur regis_ refer to the tree of the lower world
king, Mimer _Mimameidr_, the world-tree. Erik-Svipdag's purpose with
his journey to this tree is to secure a weapon. Saxo calls this weapon
_cuspis_. Fjölsvinnsmal calls it, with a paraphrase, _broddr_. _Cuspis_
is a translation of _broddr_.

Thus there can be no doubt concerning the identity of Skirner with



When the war between the Asas and the Vans had broken out, Svipdag, as we
have learned, espouses the cause of the Vans (see Nos. 33, 38), to whom
he naturally belongs as the husband of the Vana-dis Freyja and Frey's
most intimate friend. The happy issue of the war for the Vans gives
Svipdag free hands in regard to Halfdan's hated son Hadding, the son of
the woman for whose sake Svipdag's mother Groa was rejected. Meanwhile
Svipdag offers Hadding reconciliation, peace, and a throne among the
Teutons (see No. 38). When Hadding refuses to accept gifts of mercy from
the slayer of his father, Svipdag persecutes him with irreconcilable
hate. This hatred finally produces a turning-point in Svipdag's fortunes
and darkens the career of the brilliant hero. After the Asas and Vans had
become reconciled again, one of their first thoughts must have been to
put an end to the feud between the Teutonic tribes, since a continuation
of the latter was not in harmony with the peace restored among the gods
(see No. 41), nevertheless the war was continued in Midgard (see No.
41), and the cause is Svipdag. He has become a rebel against both Asas
and Vans, and herein we must look for the reason why, as we read in the
Younger Edda, he disappeared from Asgard (Younger Edda, 114). But he
disappears not only from the world of the gods, but finally also from the
terrestrial seat of war, and that god or those gods who were to blame for
this conceal his unhappy and humiliating fate from Freyja. It is at this
time that the faithful and devoted Vana-dis goes forth to seek her lover
in all worlds _med ukunnum thjódum_.

Saxo gives us two accounts of Svipdag's death--the one clearly converted
into history, the other corresponding faithfully with the mythology. The
former reports that Hadding conquered and slew Svipdag in a naval battle
(_Hist._, 42). The latter gives us the following account (_Hist._, 48):

While Hadding lived in exile in a northern wilderness, after his great
defeat in conflict with the Swedes, it happened, on a sunny, warm day,
that he went to the sea to bathe. While he was washing himself in the
cold water he saw an animal of a most peculiar kind (_bellua inauditi
generis_), and came into combat with it. Hadding slew it with quick blows
and dragged it on shore. But while he rejoiced over this deed a woman put
herself in his way and sang a song, in which she let him know that the
deed he had now perpetrated should bring fearful consequences until he
succeeded in reconciling the divine wrath which this murder had called
down upon his head. All the forces of nature, wind and wave, heaven and
earth, were to be his enemies unless he could propitiate the angry gods,
for the being whose life he had taken was a celestial being concealed in
the guise of an animal, one of the super-terrestrial:

  Quippe unum e superis alieno corpore tectum
  Sacrilegæ necuere manus: sic numinis almi
  Interfector ades.

It appears, however, from the continuation of the narrative, that Hadding
was unwilling to repent what he had done, although he was told that the
one he had slain was a supernatural being, and that he long refused to
propitiate those gods whose sorrow and wrath he had awakened by the
murder. Not until the predictions of the woman were confirmed by terrible
visitations does Hadding make up his mind to reconcile the powers in
question. And this he does by instituting the sacrificial feast, which is
called Frey's offering, and thenceforth was celebrated in honour of Frey
(_Fro deo rem divinam furvis hostiis fecit_).

Hadding's refusal to repent what he had done, and the defiance he
showed the divine powers, whom he had insulted by the murder he had
committed, can only be explained by the fact that these powers were the
Vana-gods who long gave succour to his enemies (see No. 39), and that the
supernatural being itself, which, concealed in the guise of an animal,
was slain by him, was some one whose defeat gave him pleasure, and whose
death he considered himself bound and entitled to cause. This explanation
is fully corroborated by the fact that when he learns that Odin and the
Asas, whose favourite he was, no longer hold their protecting hands
over him, and that the propitiation advised by the prophetess becomes
a necessity to him, he institutes the great annual offering to Frey,
Svipdag's brother-in-law. That this god especially must be propitiated
can, again, have no other reason than the fact that Frey was a nearer
kinsman than any of the Asa-gods to the supernatural being, from whose
slayer he (Frey) demanded a ransom. And as Saxo has already informed us
that Svipdag perished in a naval engagement with Hadding, all points to
the conclusion that in the celestial person who was concealed in the
guise of an animal and was slain in the water we must discover Svipdag
Freyja's husband.

Saxo does not tell us what animal guise it was. It must certainly have
been a purely fabulous kind, since Saxo designates it as _bellua inauditi
generis_. An Anglo-Saxon record, which is to be cited below, designates
it as _uyrm_ and _draca_. That Svipdag, sentenced to wear this guise,
kept himself in the water near the shore of a sea, follows from the fact
that Hadding meets and kills him in the sea where he goes to bathe.
Freyja, who sought her lost lover everywhere, also went in search for
him to the realms of _Ægir_ and _Rán_. There are reasons for assuming
that she found him again, and, in spite of his transformation and the
repulsive exterior he thereby got, she remained with him and sought
to soothe his misery with her faithful love. One of Freyja's surnames
shows that she at one time dwelt in the bosom of the sea. The name is
_Mardöll_. Another proof of this is the fragment preserved to our time
of the myth concerning the conflict between Heimdal and Loke in regard
to Brisingamen. This neck- and breast-ornament, celebrated in song both
among the Teutonic tribes of England and those of Scandinavia, one of
the most splendid works of the ancient artists, belonged to Freyja
(Thrymskvida, Younger Edda). She wore it when she was seeking Svipdag
and found him beneath the waves of the sea; and the splendour which her
Brisingamen diffused from the deep over the surface of the sea is the
epic interpretation of the name _Mardöll_ from _marr_, "sea," and _döll_,
feminine of _dallr_ (old English _deall_), "glittering" (compare the
names Heimdallr and Delling). _Mardöll_ thus means "the one diffusing
a glimmering in the sea." The fact that Brisingamen, together with its
possessor, actually was for a time in Æger's realm is proved by its
epithet _fagrt hafnýra_, "the fair kidney of the sea," which occurs in
a strophe of Ulf Uggeson (Younger Edda, 268). There was also a skerry,
_Vágasker, Singasteinn_, on which Brisingamen lay and glittered, when
Loke, clad in the guise of a seal tried to steal it. But before he
accomplished his purpose, there crept upon the skerry another seal, in
whose looks--persons in disguise were not able to change their eyes--the
evil and cunning descendant of Farbaute must quickly have recognised his
old opponent Heimdal. A conflict arose in regard to the possession of the
ornament, and the brave son of the nine mothers became the victor and
preserved the treasure for Asgard.

To the Svipdag synonyms _Ódr_ (Hotharus), _Óttar_ (Otharus), _Eirekr_
(Ericus), and _Skirnir_, we must finally add one more, which is, perhaps,
of Anglo-Saxon origin: _Hermodr_, _Heremod_.

From the Norse mythic records we learn the following in regard to Hermod:

(_a_) He dwelt in Asgard, but did not belong to the number of ruling
gods. He is called Odin's _sveinn_ (Younger Edda, 174), and he was
the Asa-father's favourite, and received from him helmet and cuirass
(Hyndluljod, 2).

(_b_) He is called _enn hvati_ (Younger Edda, 174), the rapid. When Frigg
asks if anyone desires to earn her favour and gratitude by riding to
the realm of death and offering Hel a ransom for Balder, Hermod offers
to take upon himself this task. He gets Odin's horse Sleipner to ride,
proceeds on his way to Hel, comes safely to that citadel in the lower
world, where Balder and Nanna abide the regeneration of the earth, spurs
Sleipner over the castle wall, and returns to Asgard with Hel's answer,
and with the ring Draupner, and with presents from Nanna to Frigg and
Fulla (Younger Edda, 180).

From this it appears that Hermod has a position in Asgard resembling
Skirner's: that he, like Skirner, is employed by the gods as a messenger
when important or venturesome errands are to be undertaken; and that
he, like Skirner, then gets that steed to ride, which is able to leap
over vaferflames and castle-walls. We should also bear in mind that
Skirner-Svipdag had made celebrated journeys in the same world to which
Hermod is now sent to find Balder. As we know, Svipdag had before his
arrival in Asgard travelled all over the lower world, and had there
fetched the sword of victory. After his adoption in Asgard, he is sent by
the gods to the lower world to get the chain Gleipner.

(_c_) In historical times Hermod dwells in Valhal, and is one of the
chief einherjes there. When Hakon the Good was on the way to the hall of
the Asa-father, the latter sent Brage and Hermod to meet him:

  Hermódr ok Bragi
  kvad Hroptatýr
  gangit i gegn grami
  thvi at konungr ferr
  sá er kappi thykkir,
  til hallar hinnig (Hakonarmal).

This is all there is in the Norse sources about Hermod.

Further information concerning him is found in the Beowulf poem, which in
two passages (str. 1747, &c., and 3419, &c.) compares him with its own
unselfish and blameless hero, Beowulf, in order to make it clear that the
latter was in moral respects superior to the famous hero of antiquity.
Beowulf was related by marriage to the royal dynasty then reigning in his
land, and was reared in the king's halls as an older brother of his sons.
The comparisons make these circumstances, common to Beowulf and Hermod,
the starting-point, and show that while Beowulf became the most faithful
guardian of his young foster-brothers, and in all things maintained their
rights, Hermod conducted himself in a wholly different manner. Of Hermod
the poem tells us:

(_a_) He was reared at the court of a Danish king (str. 1818, &c., 3421,

(_b_) He set out on long journeys, and became the most celebrated
traveller that man ever heard of (_se wæs wreccena wide mærost ofer
wer-theóde_--str. 1800-1802).

(_c_) He performed great exploits (str. 1804).

(_d_) He was endowed with powers beyond all other men (str. 3438-39).

(_e_) God gave him a higher position of power than that accorded to
mortals (str. 3436, &c.).

(_f_) But although he was reared at the court of the Danish king, this
did not turn out to the advantage of the Skjoldungs, but was a damage to
them (str. 3422, &c.), for there grew a bloodthirsty heart in his breast.

(_g_) When the Danish king died (the poem does not say how) he left young

(_h_) Hermod, betrayed by evil passions that got the better of him, was
the cause of the ruin of the Skjoldungs, and of a terrible plague among
the Danes, whose fallen warriors for his sake covered the battlefields.
His table-companions at the Danish court he consigned to death in a fit
of anger (str. 3426, &c.).

(_i_) The war continues a very long time (str. 1815, &c., str. 3447).

(_k_) At last there came a change, which was unfavourable to Hermod,
whose superiority in martial power decreased (str. 1806).

(_l_) Then he quite unexpectedly disappeared (str. 3432) from the sight
of men.

(_m_) This happened against his will. He had suddenly been banished and
delivered to the world of giants, where "waves of sorrow" long oppressed
him (str. 1809, &c.).

(_n_) He had become changed to a dragon (_wyrm_, _draca_).

(_o_) The dragon dwelt near a rocky island in the sea _under harne stan_
(beneath a grey rock).

(_p_) There he slew a hero of the Volsung race (in the Beowulf poem
Sigemund--str. 1747, &c.).

All these points harmonise completely with Svipdag's saga, as we
have found it in other sources. Svipdag is the stepson of Halfdan the
Skjoldung, and has been reared in his halls, and dwells there until his
mother Groa is turned out and returns to Orvandel. He sets out like
Hermod on long journeys, and is doubtless the most famous traveller
mentioned in the mythology; witness his journey across the Elivagar,
and his visit to Jotunheim while seeking Frey and Freyja; his journey
across the frosty mountains, and his descent to the lower world,
where he traverses Nifelheim, sees the Eylud mill, comes into Mimer's
realm, procures the sword of victory, and sees the glorious castle of
the _ásmegir_; witness his journey over Bifrost to Asgard, and his
warlike expedition to the remote East (see also Younger Edda, i. 108,
where Skirner is sent to _Svartalfaheim_ to fetch the chain Glitner).
He is, like Hermod, endowed with extraordinary strength, partly on
account of his own inherited character, partly on account of the songs
of incantation sung over him by Groa, on account of the nourishment
of wisdom obtained from his stepmother and finally on account of the
possession of the indomitable sword of victory. By being adopted in
Asgard as Freyja's husband, he is, like Hermod, elevated to a position of
power greater than that which mortals may expect. But all this does not
turn out to be a blessing to the Skjoldungs, but is a misfortune to them.
The hatred he had cherished toward the Skjoldung Halfdan is transferred
to the son of the latter, Hadding, and he persecutes him and all those
who are faithful to Hadding, makes war against him, and is unwilling
to end the long war, although the gods demand it. Then he suddenly
disappears, the divine wrath having clothed him with the guise of a
strange animal, and relegated him to the world of water-giants, where
he is slain by Hadding (who in the Norse heroic saga becomes a Volsung,
after Halfdan, under the name Helge Hundingsbane, was made a son of the
Volsung Sigmund).

Hermod is killed on a rocky island _under harne stan_. Svipdag is
killed in the water, probably in the vicinity of the _Vágasker_ and the
_Singasteinn_, where the Brisingamen ornament of his faithful Mardol is
discovered by Loke and Heimdal.

Freyja's love and sorrow may in the mythology have caused the gods
to look upon Svipdag's last sad fate and death as a propitiation of
his faults. The tears which the Vana-dis wept over her lover were
transformed, according to the mythology, into gold, and this gold, the
gold of a woman's faithfulness, may have been regarded as a sufficient
compensation for the sins of her dear one, and doubtless opened to
Svipdag the same Asgard-gate which he had seen opened to him during his
life. This explains that Hermod is in Asgard in the historical time, and
that, according to a revelation to the Swedes in the ninth century, the
ancient King Erik was unanimously elevated by the gods as a member of
their council.

Finally, it should be pointed out that the Svipdag synonym _Odr_ has
the same meaning as _môd_ in Heremôd, and as _ferhd_ in Svidferhd, the
epithet with which Hermod is designated in the Beowulf strophe 1820.
_Odr_ means "the one endowed with spirit," _Heremôd_ "the one endowed
with martial spirit," _Svidferhd_, "the one endowed with mighty spirit."

Heimdal's and Loke's conflict in regard to Brisingamen has undoubtedly
been an episode in the mythic account of Svipdag's last fortunes and
Freyja's abode with him in the sea. There are many reasons for this
assumption. We should bear in mind that Svipdag's closing career
constituted a part of the great epic of the first world war, and that
both Heimdal and Loke take part in this war, the former on Hadding's,
the latter on Gudhorm-Jormunrek's and Svipdag's side (see Nos. 38, 39,
40). It should further be remembered that, according to Saxo, at the
time when he slays the monster, Hadding is wandering about as an exile
in the wildernesses, and that it is about this time that Odin gives him
a companion and protector in Liserus-Heimdal (see No. 40). The unnamed
woman, who after the murder had taken place puts herself in Hadding's
way, informs him whom he has slain, and calls the wrath of the gods and
the elements down upon him, must be Freyja herself, since she witnessed
the deed and knew who was concealed in the guise of the dragon. So long
as the latter lived Brisingamen surely had a faithful watcher, for it is
the nature of a dragon to brood over the treasures he finds. After being
slain and dragged on shore by Hadding, his "bed," the gold, lies exposed
to view on Vagasker, and the glimmer of Brisingamen reaches Loke's
eyes. While the woman, in despair on account of Svipdag's death, stands
before Hadding and speaks to him, the ornament has no guardian, and Loke
finds the occasion convenient for stealing it. But Heimdal, Hadding's
protector, who in the mythology always keeps his eye on the acts of
Loke and on his kinsmen hostile to the gods, is also present, and he
too has seen Brisingamen. Loke has assumed the guise of a seal, while
the ornament lies on a rock in the sea, _Vágasker_, and it can cause
no suspicion that a seal tries to find a resting-place there. Heimdal
assumes the same guise, the seals fight on the rock, and Loke must retire
with his errand unperformed. The rock is also called Singastein (Younger
Edda, i. 264, 268), a name in which I see the Anglo-Saxon _Sincastân_,
"the ornament rock." An echo of the combat about Brisingamen reappears in
the Beowulf poem, where Heimdal (not Hamdir) appears under the name Hâma,
and where it is said that "Hâma has brought to the weapon-glittering
citadel (Asgard) _Brosingamene_," which was "the best ornament under
heaven;" whereupon it is said that Hâma fell "into Eormenric's snares,"
with which we should compare Saxo's account of the snares laid by Loke,
Jormenrek's adviser, for Liserus-Heimdal and Hadding.[8]



The mythic story about Svipdag and Freyja has been handed down in popular
tales and songs, even to our time, of course in an ever varying and
corrupted form. Among the popular tales there is one about _Mærthöll_,
put in writing by Konrad Maurer, and published in _Modern Icelandic
Popular Tales_.

The wondrous fair heroine in this tale bears Freyja's well-known surname,
Mardol, but little changed. And as she, like Freyja, weeps tears that
change into gold, it is plain that she is originally identical with the
Vana-dis, a fact which Maurer also points out.

Like Freyja, she is destined by the norn to be the wife of a princely
youth. But when he courted her, difficulties arose which remind us of
what Saxo relates about Otharus and Syritha.

As Saxo represents her, Syritha is bound as it were by an enchantment,
not daring to look up at her lover or to answer his declarations of love.
She flies over the mountains _more pristino_, "in the manner usual in
antiquity," consequently in all probability in the guise of a bird. In
the Icelandic popular tale Marthol shudders at the approaching wedding
night, since she is then destined to be changed into a sparrow. She is
about to renounce the embrace of her lover, so that he may not know
anything about the enchantment in which she is fettered.

In Saxo the spell resting on Syritha is broken when the candle of the
wedding night burns her hand. In the popular tale Marthol is to wear the
sparrow guise for ever if it is not burnt on the wedding night or on one
of the two following nights.

Both in Saxo and in the popular tale another maiden takes Mardol's place
in the bridal bed on the wedding night. But the spell is broken by fire,
after which both the lovers actually get each other.

The original identity of the mythological Freyja-Mardol, Saxo's Syritha,
and the _Mærthöll_ of the Icelandic popular tale is therefore evident.

In Danish and Swedish versions of a ballad (in Syv, Nyerup, Arwidsson,
Geijer and Afzelius, Grundtvig, Dybeck, Hofberg; compare Bugge's Edda,
p. 352, &c.) a young Sveidal (Svedal, Svendal, Svedendal, Silfverdal)
is celebrated, who is none other than Svipdag of the mythology. Svend
Grundtvig and Bugge have called attention to the conspicuous similarity
between this ballad on the one hand, and Grogalder and Fjölsvinnsmal on
the other. From the various versions of the ballad it is necessary to
mention here only those features which best preserve the most striking
resemblance to the mythic prototype. Sveidal is commanded by his
stepmother to find a maiden "whose sad heart had long been longing." He
then goes first to the grave of his deceased mother to get advice from
her. The mother speaks to him from the grave and promises him a horse,
which can bear him over sea and land, and a sword hardened in the blood
of a dragon and resembling fire. The narrow limits of the ballad forbade
telling how Sveidal came into possession of the treasures promised by
the mother or giving an account of the exploits he performed with the
sword. This plays no part in the ballad; it is only indicated that events
not recorded took place before Sveidal finds the longing maid. Riding
through forests and over seas, he comes to the country where she has her
castle. Outside of this he meets a shepherd, with whom he enters into
conversation. The shepherd informs him that within is found a young
maiden who has long been longing for a young man by name Sveidal, and
that none other than he can enter there, for the timbers of the castle
are of iron, its gilt gate of steel, and within the gate a lion and a
white bear keep watch. Sveidal approaches the gate; the locks fall away
spontaneously; and when he enters the open court the wild beasts crouch
at his feet, a linden-tree with golden leaves bends to the ground before
him, and the young maiden whom he seeks welcomes him as her husband.

One of the versions makes him spur his horse over the castle wall;
another speaks of seven young men guarding the wall, who show him the way
to the castle, and who in reality are "god's angels under the heaven, the

The horse who bears his rider over the salt sea is a reminiscence of
Sleipner, which Svipdag rode on more than one occasion; and when it is
stated that Sveidal on this horse galloped over the castle wall, this
reminds us of Skirner-Svipdag when he leaps over the fence around Gymer's
abode, and of Hermod-Svipdag when he spurs Sleipner over the wall to
Balder's lower-world castle. The shepherds, who are "god's angels,"
refers to the watchmen mentioned in Fjölsvinnsmal, who are gods; the wild
beasts in the open court to the two wolf-dogs who guard Asgard's gate;
the shepherd whom Sveidal meets outside of the wall to Fjölsvin; the
linden-tree with the golden leaves to _Mimameidr_ and to the golden grove
growing in Asgard. One of the versions makes two years pass while Sveidal
seeks the one he is destined to marry.

In Germany, too, we have fragments preserved of the myth about Svipdag
and Freyja. These remnants are, we admit, parts of a structure built, so
to speak, in the style of the monks, but they nevertheless show in the
most positive manner that they are borrowed from the fallen and crumbled
arcades of the heathen mythology. We rediscover in them the old medieval
poem about "Christ's unsewed grey coat."

The hero of the poem is Svipdag, here called by his father's name
Orendel, Orentel--that is, Orvandel. The father himself, who is said
to be a king in Trier, has received another name, which already in the
most ancient heathen times was a synonym of Orvandel, and which I shall
consider below. This in connection with the circumstance that the younger
Orentel's (Svipdag's) patron saint is called "the holy Wieland," and thus
he has the name of a person who, in the mythology, as shall be shown
below, was Svipdag's uncle (father's brother) and helper, and whose sword
is Svipdag's protection and pledge of victory, proves that at least in
solitary instances not only the events of the myth but also its names and
family relations have been preserved in a most remarkable and faithful
manner through centuries in the minds of the German people.

In the very nature of things it cannot in the monkish poem be the task
of the young Svipdag-Orentel to go in search of the heathen goddess
Freyja and rescue her from the power of the giants. In her stead appears
a "Frau Breyde," who is the fairest of all women, and the only one
worthy to be the young Orentel's wife. In the heathen poem the goddess
of fate Urd, in the German medieval poem God Himself, resolves that
Orentel is to have the fairest woman as his bride. In the heathen poem
Freyja is in the power of giants, and concealed somewhere in Jotunheim
at the time when Svipdag is commanded to find her, and it is of the
greatest moment for the preservation of the world that the goddess of
love and fertility should be freed from the hands of the powers of frost.
In the German poem, written under the influence of the efforts of the
Christian world to reconquer the Holy Land, Frau Breyde is a princess who
is for the time being in Jerusalem, surrounded and watched by giants,
heathens, and knights templar, the last of whom, at the time when the
poem received its present form, were looked upon as worshippers of the
devil, and as persons to be shunned by the faithful. To Svipdag's task
of liberating the goddess of love corresponds, in the monkish poem,
Orentel's task of liberating Frau Breyde from her surrounding of giants,
heathens, and knights templar, and restoring to Christendom the holy
grave in Jerusalem. Orentel proceeds thither with a fleet. But although
the journey accordingly is southward, the mythic saga, which makes
Svipdag journey across the frost-cold Elivagar, asserts itself; and as
his fleet could not well be hindered by pieces of ice on the coast of
the Holy Land, it is made to stick fast in "dense water," and remain
there for three years, until, on the supplication of the Virgin Mary,
it is liberated therefrom by a storm. The Virgin Mary's prayers have
assumed the same place in the Christian poems as Groa's incantations
in the heathen. The fleet, made free from the "dense water," sails to
a land which is governed by one Belian, who is conquered by Orentel
in a naval engagement. This Belian is the mythological _Beli_, one of
those "howlers" who surrounded Frey and Freyja during their sojourn in
Jotunheim and threatened Svipdag's life. In the Christian poem Bele
was made a king in Great Babylonia, doubtless for the reason that his
name suggested the biblical "Bel in Babel." Saxo also speaks of a naval
battle in which Svipdag-Ericus conquers the mythic person, doubtless a
storm-giant, who by means of witchcraft prepares the ruin of sailors
approaching the land where Frotho and Gunvara are concealed. After
various other adventures Orentel arrives in the Holy Land, and the angel
Gabriel shows him the way to Frau Breyde, just as "the seven angels of
God" in one of the Scandinavian ballads guide Sveidal to the castle where
his chosen bride abides. Lady Breyde is found to be surrounded by none
but foes of Christianity--knights templar, heathens, and giants--who,
like Gunvara's giant surroundings in Saxo, spend their time in fighting,
but still wait upon their fair lady as their princess. The giants and
knights templar strive to take Orentel's life, and, like Svipdag, he must
constantly be prepared to defend it. One of the giants slain by Orentel
is a "banner-bearer." One of the giants, who in the mythology tries
to take Svipdag's life, is Grep, who, according to Saxo, meets him in
derision with a banner on the top of whose staff is fixed the head of an

Meanwhile Lady Breyde is attentive to Orentel. As Menglad receives
Svipdag, so Lady Breyde receives Orentel with a kiss and a greeting,
knowing that he is destined to be her husband.

When Orentel has conquered the giants he celebrates a sort of wedding
with Lady Breyde, but between them lies a two-edged sword, and they sleep
as brother and sister by each other's side. A wedding of a similar kind
was mentioned in the mythology in regard to Svipdag and Menglad before
they met in Asgard and were finally united. The chaste chivalry with
which Freyja is met in the mythology by her rescuer is emphasised by Saxo
both in his account of Ericus-Svipdag and Gunvara and in his story about
Otharus and Syritha. He makes Ericus say of Gunvara to Frotha: _Intacta
illi pudicitia manet_ (_Hist._, 126). And of Otharus he declares: _Neque
puellam stupro violare sustinuit, nec splendido loco natam obscuro
concubitus genere macularet_ (_Hist._, 331). The first wedding of Orentel
and Breyde is therefore as if it had not been, and the German narrative
makes Orentel, after completing other warlike adventures, sue for the
hand of Breyde for the second time. In the mythology the second and real
wedding between Svipdag and Freyja must certainly have taken place,
inasmuch as he became reunited with her in Asgard.

The sword which plays so conspicuous a part in Svipdag's fortunes has
not been forgotten in the German medieval tale. It is mentioned as being
concealed deep down in the earth, and as a sword that is always attended
by victory.

On one occasion Lady Breyde appears, weapon in hand, and fights by the
side of Orentel, under circumstances which remind us of the above-cited
story from Saxo (see No. 102), when Ericus-Svipdag, Gunvara-Freyja,
and Rollerus-Ull are in the abode of a treacherous giant, who tries
to persuade Svipdag to deliver Gunvara to him, and when Bracus-Thor
breaks into the giant abode, and either slays the inmates or puts them
to flight. Gunvara then fights by the side of Ericus-Svipdag, _muliebri
corpore virilem animum æquans_ (_Hist._, 222).

In the German Orentel saga appears a "fisherman," who is called master
Yse. Orentel has at one time been wrecked, and comes floating on a plank
to his island, where Yse picks him up. Yse is not a common fisherman. He
has a castle with seven towers, and eight hundred fishermen serve under
him. There is good reason for assuming that this mighty chieftain of
fishermen originally was the Asa-god Thor, who in the northern ocean once
had the Midgard-serpent on his hook, and that the episode of the picking
up of the wrecked Orentel by Yse has its root in a tradition concerning
the mythical adventure, when the real Orvandel, Svipdag's father, feeble
and cold, was met by Thor and carried by him across the Elivagar. In the
mythology, as shall be shown hereafter, Orvendel the brave was Thor's
"sworn" man, and fought with him against giants before the hostility
sprang up between Ivalde's sons and the Asa-gods. In the Orentel saga Yse
also regards Orentel as his "thrall." The latter emancipates himself from
his thraldom with gold. Perhaps this ransom is a reference to the gold
which Freyja's tears gave as a ransom for Svipdag.

Orentel's father is called Eigel, king in Trier. In Vilkinasaga we
find the archer Egil, Volund's brother, mentioned by the name-variation
Eigill. The German Orentel's patron saint is Wieland, that is, Volund.
Thus in the Orentel saga as in the Volundarkvida and in Vilkinasaga we
find both these names Egil and Volund combined, and we have all the
more reason for regarding King Eigel in Trier as identical with the
mythological Egil, since the latter, like Orvandel, is a famous archer.
Below, I shall demonstrate that the archer Orvandel and the archer Egil
actually were identical in the mythology.

But first it may be in order to point out the following circumstances.
Tacitus tells us in his _Germania_ (3): "Some people think, however, that
Ulysses, too, on his long adventurous journeys was carried into this
ocean (the Germanic), and visited the countries of Germany, and that he
founded and gave name to Asciburgium, which is situated on the Rhine, and
is still an inhabited city; nay, an altar consecrated to Ulysses, with
the name of his father Laertes added, is said to have been found there."
To determine the precise location of this Asciburgium is not possible.
Ptolemy (ii. 11, 28), and after him Marcianus Heracleota (_Peripl._, 2,
36), inform us that an Askiburgon was situated on the Rhine, south of and
above the delta of the river. _Tabula Peutingeriana_ locates Asceburgia
between Gelduba (Gelb) and Vetera (Xanten). But from the history of
Tacitus it appears (iv. 33) that Asciburgium was situated between
Neuss and Mainz (Mayence). Read the passage: _Aliis a Novæsio, aliis a
Mogontiaco universas copias advenisse credentibus_.

The passage refers to the Roman troops sent to Asciburgium and there
attacked--those troops which expected to be relieved from the nearest
Roman quarters in the north or south. Its location should accordingly be
looked for either on or near that part of the Rhine, which on the east
bordered the old archbishopric Trier.

Thus the German Orentel saga locates King Eigel's realm and Orentel's
native country in the same regions, where, according to Tacitus'
reporter, Ulysses was said to have settled for some time and to have
founded a citadel. As is well known, the Romans believed they found
traces of the wandering Ulysses in well-nigh all lands, and it was
only necessary to hear a strange people mention a far-travelled mythic
hero, and he was at once identified either as Ulysses or Hercules. The
Teutonic mythology had a hero _à la_ Ulysses in the younger Orentel,
Odr-Svipdag-Heremod, whom the Beowulf poem calls "incomparably the
most celebrated traveller among mankind" (_wreccena wide mærost ofer
wer-theóde_). Mannhardt has already pointed out an episode (Orentel's
shipwreck and arrival in Yse's land) which calls to mind the shipwreck of
Odysseus and his arrival in the land of the Pheaces. Within the limits
which the Svipdag-myth, according to my own investigations, proves itself
to have had, other and more conspicuous features common to both, but
certainly not borrowed from either, can be pointed out, for instance
Svipdag's and Odysseus' descent to the lower world, and the combat in
the guise of seals between Heimdal and Loke, which reminds us of the
conflict of Menelaos clad in seal-skin with the seal-watcher Proteus
(_Odyss._, iv., 404, &c.). Just as there are words in the Aryan languages
that in their very form point to a common origin, but not to a borrowing,
so there are also myths in the Aryan religions which in their very form
reveal their growth from an ancient common Aryan root, but produce no
suspicion of their being borrowed. Among these are to be classed those
features of the Odysseus and Svipdag myths which resemble each other.

It has already been demonstrated above, that _Germania's_ Mannus is
identical with Halfdan of the Norse sources, and that Yngve-Svipdag
has his counterpart in Ingævo (see No. 24). That informer of Tacitus
who was able to interpret Teutonic songs about Mannus and his sons,
the three original race heroes of the Teutons, must also in those very
songs have heard accounts of Orvandel's and Svipdag's exploits and
adventures, since Orvandel and Svipdag play a most decisive part in the
fortunes of Mannus-Halfdan. If the myth about Svipdag was composed in
a later time, then Mannus-Halfdan's saga must have undergone a change
equal to a complete transformation after the day of Tacitus, and for
such an assumption there is not the slightest reason. Orvandel is not a
mythic character of later make. As already pointed out, and as shall be
demonstrated below, he has ancient Aryan ancestry. The centuries between
Tacitus and Paulus Diaconus are unfortunately almost wholly lacking in
evidence concerning the condition of the Teutonic myths and sagas; but
where, as in Jordanes, proofs still gleam forth from the prevailing
darkness, we find mention of _Arpantala_, _Amala_, _Fridigernus_,
_Vidigoia_ (Jord., v.). Jordanes says that in the most ancient times
they were celebrated in song and described as heroes who scarcely had
their equals (_quales vix heroas fuisse miranda jactat antiquitas_).
Previous investigators have already recognized in Arpantala Orvandel,
in Amala Hamal, in Vidigoia Wittiche, Wieland's son (Vidga Volundson),
who in the mythology are cousins of Svipdag (see No. 108). Fridigernus,
_Fridgjarn_, means "he who strives to get the beautiful one," an epithet
to which Svipdag has the first claim among ancient Teutonic heroes, as
Freyja herself has the first claim to the name _Frid_ (beautiful). In
Fjölsvinnsmal it belongs to a dis, who sits at Freyja's feet, and belongs
to her royal household. This is in analogy with the fact that the name
_Hlin_ belongs at the same time to Frigg herself (Völuspa), and to a
goddess belonging to her royal household (Younger Edda, i. 196).

What Tacitus tells about the stone found at Asciburgium, with the names
of Ulysses and Laertes inscribed thereon, can of course be nothing but
a conjecture, based on the idea that the famous Teutonic traveller was
identical with Odysseus. Doubtless this idea has been strengthened by
the similarity between the names _Odr_, Goth., _Vods_, and Odysseus, and
by the fact that the name Laertes (acc. Laerten) has sounds in common
with the name of Svipdag's father. If, as Tacitus seems to indicate,
Asciburgium was named after its founder, we would find in _Asc-_ an
epithet of Orvandel's son, common in the first century after Christ and
later. In that case it lies nearest at hand to think of _aiska_ (Fick.
iii. 5), the English "ask," the Anglo-Saxon _ascian_, the Swedish
_äska_, "to seek," "search for," "to try to secure," which easily adapted
itself to Svipdag, who goes on long and perilous journeys to look for
Freyja and the sword of victory. I call attention to these possibilities
because they appear to suggest an ancient connection, but not for the
purpose of building hypotheses thereon. Under all circumstances it is of
interest to note that the Christian medieval Orentel saga locates the
Teutonic migration hero's home to the same part of Germany where Tacitus
in his time assumed that he had founded a citadel. The tradition, as
heard by Tacitus, did not however make the regions about the Rhine the
native land of the celebrated traveller. He came thither, it is said in
_Germania_, from the North after having navigated in the Northern Ocean.
And this corresponds with the mythology, which makes Svipdag an Inguæon,
and Svion, a member of the race of the Skilfing-Ynglings, makes him in
the beginning fight on the side of the powers of frost against Halfdan,
and afterwards lead not only the north Teutonic (Inguæonian) but also the
west Teutonic tribes (the Hermiones) against the east Teutonic war forces
of Hadding (see Nos. 38-40).

Memories of the Svipdag-myth have also been preserved in the story about
Hamlet, Saxo's Amlethus (Snæbjorn's _Amlodi_), son of Horvendillus
(Orvandel). In the medieval story Hamlet's father, like Svipdag's father
in the mythology, was slain by the same man, who marries the wife of
the slain man, and, like Svipdag in the myth, Hamlet of the medieval
saga becomes the avenger of his father Horvendillus and the slayer of
his stepfather. On more than one occasion the idea occurs in the Norse
sagas that a lad whose stepfather has slain his father broods over
his duty of avenging the latter, and then plays insane or half idiot
to avoid the suspicion that he may become dangerous to the murderer.
Svipdag, Orvandel's son, is reared in his stepfather's house amid all
the circumstances that might justify or explain such a hypocrisy.
Therefore he has as a lad received the epithet _Amlodi_, the meaning of
which is "insane," and the myth having at the same time described him
as highly-gifted, clever, and sharp-witted, we have in the words which
the mythology has attributed to his lips the key to the ambiguous words
which make the cleverness, which is veiled under a stupid exterior,
gleam forth. These features of the mythic account of Svipdag have been
transferred to the middle-age saga anent Hamlet--a saga which already
in Saxo's time had been developed into an independent narrative. I
shall return to this theme in a treatise on the heroic sagas. Other
reminiscences of the Svipdag-myth reappear in Danish, Swedish, and
Norwegian ballads. The Danish ballads, which, with surprising fidelity,
have preserved certain fundamental traits and details of the Svipdag-myth
even down to our days, I have already discussed. The Norwegian ballad
about "Hermod the Young" (_Landstad Norske Folkeviser_, p. 28), and its
Swedish version, "Bergtrollet," which corresponds still more faithfully
with the myth (Arvidson, i. 123), have this peculiar interest in
reference to mythological synonymics and the connection of the mythic
fragments preserved, that Svipdag appears in the former as in the Beowulf
poem and in the Younger Edda under the name Hermod, and that both
versions have for their theme a story, which Saxo tells about his Otharus
when he describes the flight of the latter through Jotunheim with the
rediscovered Syritha. It has already been stated above (No. 100) that
after Otharus had found Syritha and slain a giant in whose power she was,
he was separated from her on their way home, but found her once more and
liberated her from a captivity into which she had fallen in the abode of
a giantess. This is the episode which forms the theme of the ballad about
"Hermod the Young," and of the Swedish version of it. Brought together,
the two ballads give us the following contents:

The young Hermod secured as his wife a beautiful maiden whom he liberated
from the hands of a giantess. She had fallen into the hands of giants
through a witch, "gigare," originally _gýgr_, a troll-woman, Aurboda,
who in a great crowd of people had stolen her out of a church (the
divine citadel Asgard is changed into a "house of God"). Hermod hastens
on skees "through woods and caverns and recesses," comes to "the wild
sea-strand" (Elivagar) and to the "mountain the blue," where the giantess
resides who conceals the young maiden in her abode. It is Christmas Eve.
Hermod asks for lodgings for the night in the mountain dwelling of the
giantess and gets it. Resorting to cunning, he persuades the giantess
the following morning to visit her neighbours, liberates the fair maiden
during her absence, and flies on his skees with her "over the high
mountains and down the low ones." When the old giantess on her return
home finds that they have gone she hastens (according to the Norwegian
version accompanied by eighteen giants) after those who have taken flight
through dark forests with a speed which makes every tree bend itself
to the ground. When Hermod with his young maiden had come to the salt
fjord (Elivagar), the giantess is quite near them, but in the decisive
moment she is changed to a stone, according to the Norse version, by the
influence of the sun, which just at that time rose; according to the
Swedish version, by the influence of a cross which stood near the fjord
and its "long bridge."

The Swedish version states, in addition to this, that Hermod had a
brother; in the mythology, Ull the skilful skee-runner. In both the
versions, Hermod is himself an excellent skee-man. The refrains in
both read: "He could so well on the skees run." Below, I shall prove
that Orvandel, Svipdag's and Ull's father, is identical with Egil, the
foremost skee-runner in the mythology, and that Svipdag is a cousin of
Skade, "the dis of the skees." Svipdag-Hermod belongs to the celebrated
skee-race of the mythology, and in this respect, too, these ballads have
preserved a genuine trait of the mythology.

In their way, these ballads, therefore, give evidence of Svipdag's
identity with Hermod, and of the latter's identity with Saxo's Otherus.

Finally, a few words about the Svipdag synonyms. Of these, _Odr_ and
_Hermodr_ (and in the Beowulf poem _Svidferhd_) form a group which, as
has already been pointed out above, refer to the qualities of his mind.
Svipdag ("the glimmering day") and Skirner ("the shining one") form
another group, which refers to his birth as the son of the star-hero
Orvandel, who is "the brightest of stars," and "a true beam from the sun"
(see above). Again, anent the synonym _Eirekr_, we should bear in mind
that Svipdag's half-brother Gudhorm had the epithet _Jormunrekr_, and the
half-brother of the latter, Hadding, the epithet _thódrekr_. They are the
three half-brothers who, after the patriarch Mannus-Halfdan, assume the
government of the Teutons, and as each one of them has large domains,
and rules over many Teutonic tribes, they are, in contradistinction to
the princes of the separate tribes, great kings or emperors. It is the
dignity of a great king which is indicated, each in its own way, by all
these parallel names--_Eirekr_, _Jormunrekr_, and _thódrekr_.

[8] As Jordanes confounded the mythological Gudhorm-Jormunrek with the
historical Ermanarek, and connected with the history of the latter the
heroic saga of Ammius-Hamdir, it lay close at hand to confound Hamdir
with Heimdal, who, like Hamdir, is the foe of the mythical Jormunrek.



Svipdag's father, Orvandel, must have been a mortal enemy of Halfdan, who
abducted his wife Groa. But hitherto it is his son Svipdag whom we have
seen carry out the feud of revenge against Halfdan. Still, it must seem
incredible that the brave archer himself should remain inactive and leave
it to his young untried son to fight against Thor's favourite, the mighty
son of Borgar. The epic connection demands that Orvandel also should take
part in this war, and it is necessary to investigate whether our mythic
records have preserved traces of the satisfaction of this demand in
regard to the mythological epic.

As his name indicates, Orvandel was a celebrated archer. That _Ör-_
in Orvandel, in heathen times, was conceived to be the word _ör_,
"arrow"--though this meaning does not therefore need to be the most
original one--is made perfectly certain by Saxo, according to whom
_Örvandill's_ father was named _Geirvandill_ (Gervandillus, _Hist._,
135). Thus the father is the one "busy with the spear," the son "the one
busy with the arrow."

Taking this as the starting point, we must at the very threshold of our
investigation present the question: Is there among Halfdan's enemies
mentioned by Saxo anyone who bears the name of a well-known archer?

This is actually the fact. Halfdan Berggram has to contend with two
mythic persons, Toko and Anundus, who with united forces appear against
him (_Hist._, 325). Toko, _Toki_, is the well-known name of an archer. In
another passage in Saxo (_Hist._, 265, &c.) one Anundus, with the help of
Avo (or Ano) _sagittarius_, fights against one Halfdan. Thus we have the

The archer Orvandel is an enemy of Halfdan.

The man called archer Toko and Anundus are enemies of Halfdan.

The archer Avo and Anundus are enemies of Halfdan.

What at once strikes us is the fact that both the one called Toko (an
archer's name) and the archer Avo have as comrade one Anundus in the war
against Halfdan. Whence did Saxo get this Anundus? We are now in the
domain of mythology related as history, and the name Anund must have been
borrowed thence. Can any other source throw light on any mythic person by
this name?

There was actually an Anund who held a conspicuous place in mythology,
and he is none other than Volund. Volundarkvida informs us that Volund
was also called Anund. When the three swan-maids came to the Wolfdales,
where the three brothers, Volund, Egil, and Slagfin, had their abode,
one of them presses Egil "in her white embrace," the other is Slagfin's
beloved, and the third "lays her arms around Anund's white neck."

  enn in thrithia
  theirra systir
  varthi hvitan
  hals Onondar.

Volund is the only person by name Anund found in our mythic records. If
we now eliminate--of course only for the present and with the expectation
of confirmatory evidence--the name Anund and substitute Volund, we get
the following parallels:

Volund and Toko (the name of an archer) are enemies of Halfdan.

Volund and the archer named Avo are enemies of Halfdan.

The archer Orvandel is an enemy of Halfdan.

From this it would appear that Volund was very intimately associated with
one of the archers of the mythology, and that both had some reason for
being enemies of Halfdan. Can this be corroborated by any other source?

Volund's brothers are called _Egill_ and _Slagfidr_ (_Slagfinnr_)
in Volundarkvida. The Icelandic-Norwegian poems from heathen times
contain paraphrases which prove that the mythological Egil was famous
as an archer and skee-runner. The bow is "Egil's weapon," the arrows
are "Egil's weapon-hail" (Younger Edda, 422), and "the swift herring
of Egil's hands" (_Har. Gr._, p. 18). A ship is called Egil's skees,
originally because he could use his skees also on the water. In
Volundarkvida he makes hunting expeditions with his brothers on skees.
Vilkinasaga also (29, 30) knows Egil as Volund's brother, and speaks of
him as a wonderfully skilful archer.

The same Volund, who in Saxo under the name Anund has Toko (the name of
an archer) or the archer Avo by his side in the conflict with Halfdan,
also has the archer Egil as a brother in other sources.

Of an archer Toko, who is mentioned in _Hist._, 487-490, Saxo tells the
same exploit as Vilkinasaga attributes to Volund's brother Egil. In Saxo
it is Toko who performs the celebrated masterpiece which was afterwards
attributed to William Tell. In Vilkinasaga it is Egil. The one like the
other, amid similar secondary circumstances, shoots an apple from his
son's head. Egil's skill as a skee-runner and the serviceableness of his
skees on the water have not been forgotten in Saxo's account of Toko. He
runs on skees down the mountain, sloping precipitously down to the sea,
Kullen in Scania, and is said to have saved himself on board a ship.
Saxo's Toko was therefore without doubt identical with Volund's brother
Egil, and Saxo's Anund is the same Volund of whom the Volundarkvida
testifies that he also had this name in the mythology.

Thus we have demonstrated the fact that Volund and Egil appeared in the
saga of the Teutonic patriarch Halfdan as the enemies of the latter,
and that the famous archer Egil occupied the position in which we
would expect to find the celebrated archer Orvandel, Svipdag's father.
Orvandel is therefore either identical with Egil, and then it is easy
to understand why the latter is an enemy of Halfdan, who we know had
robbed his wife Groa; or he is not identical with Egil, and then we know
no motive for the appearance of the latter on the same side as Svipdag,
and we, moreover, are confronted by the improbability that Orvandel does
nothing to avenge the insult done to him.

Orvandel's identity with Egil is completely confirmed by the following

Orvandel has the Elivagar and the coasts of Jotunheim as the scene of
his exploits during the time in which he is the friend of the gods and
the opponent of the giants. To this time we must refer Horvendillus'
victories over Collerus (Kollr) and his sister Sela (cp. the name of
a monster _Selkolla_--Bisk S., i. 605) mentioned by Saxo (_Hist._,
135-138). His surname _inn frækni_, the brave, alone is proof that the
myth refers to important exploits carried out by him, and that these
were performed against the powers of frost in particular--that is to
say, in the service of the gods and for the good of Midgard--is plain
from the narrative in the Younger Edda (276, 277). This shows, as is
also demanded by the epic connection, that the Asa-god Thor and the
archer Orvandel were at least for a time confidential friends, and that
they had met each other on their expeditions for similar purposes in
Jotunheim. When Thor, wounded in his forehead, returns from his combat
with the giant _Hrungnir_ to his home, _thrúdvángr_ (_thrúdvángar_,
_thrudheimr_,) Orvandel's wife Groa was there and tried to help him with
healing sorcery, wherein she would also have succeeded if Thor could have
made himself hold his tongue for a while concerning a report he brought
with him about her husband, and which he expected would please her. And
Groa did become so glad that she forgot to continue the magic song and
was unable to complete the healing. The report was, as we know, that, on
the expedition to Jotunheim from which he had now come home, Thor had met
Orvandel, carried him in his basket across the Elivagar, and thrown a toe
which the intrepid adventurer had frozen up to heaven and made a star
thereof. Thor added that before long Orvandel would come "home;" that is
to say, doubtless, "home to Thor," to fetch his wife Groa. It follows
that, when he had carried Orvandel across the Elivagar, Thor had parted
with him somewhere on the way, in all probability in Orvandel's own home,
and that while Orvandel wandered about in Jotunheim, Groa, the dis of
growth, had a safe place of refuge in the Asa-God's own citadel. A close
relation between Thor and Orvandel also appears from the fact that Thor
afterwards marries Orvandel's second wife Sif, and adopts his son Ull,
Svipdag's half-brother (see No. 102), in Asgard.

Consequently Orvandel's abode was situated south of the Elivagar
(Thor carried him _nordan_ or _Jötunheimum_--Younger Edda, 276), in
the direction Thor had to travel when going to and from the land of
the giants, and presumably quite near or on the strand of that mythic
water-course over which Thor on this occasion carried him. When Thor
goes from Asgard to visit the giants he rides the most of the way in his
chariot drawn by the two goats _Tanngnjóstr_ and _Tanngrisnir_. In the
poem Haustlaung there is a particularly vivid description of his journey
in his thunder chariot through space when he proceeded to the meeting
agreed upon with the giant Hrungner, on the return from which he met and
helped Orvandel across Elivagar (Younger Edda, 276). But across this
water and through Jotunheim itself Thor never travels in his car. He
wades across the Elivagar, he travels on foot in the wildernesses of the
giants, and encounters his foe face to face, breast to breast, instead
of striking from above with lightning. In this all accounts of Thor's
journeys to Jotunheim agree. Hence south of the Elivagar and somewhere
near them there must have been a place where Thor left his chariot and
his goats in safety before he proceeded farther on his journey. And as
we already know that the archer Orvandel, Thor's friend, and like him
hostile to the giants, dwelt on the road traveled by the Asa-god, and
south of the Elivagar, it lies nearest at hand to assume that Orvandel's
castle was the stopping place on his journey, and the place where he left
his goats and car.

Now in Hymerskvida (7, 37, 38) we actually read that Thor, on his way
to Jotunheim, had a stopping-place, where his precious car and goats
were housed and taken care of by the host, who accordingly had a very
important task, and must have been a friend of Thor and the Asa-gods in
the mythology. The host bears the archer name Egil. From Asgard to Egil's
abode, says Hymerskvida, it is about one day's journey for Thor when he
rides behind his goats on his way to Jotunheim. After this day's journey
he leaves the draught-animals, decorated with horns, with Egil, who takes
care of them, and the god continues his journey on foot. Thor and Tyr
being about to visit the giant Hymer--

  Foro drivgom
  dag thann fram
  Asgardi fra,
  unz til Egils quomo;
  hirdi hann hafra
  hurfo at haullo
  er Hymir átti.

("Nearly all the day they proceeded their way from Asgard until they
came to Egil's. He gave the horn-strong goats care. They (Thor and Tyr)
continued to the great hall which Hymer owned.")

From Egil's abode both the gods accordingly go on foot. From what is
afterwards stated about adventures on their way home, it appears that
there is a long distance between Egil's house and Hymer's (cp. str.
35--_foro lengi_, _adr._, &c.). It is necessary to journey across the
Elivagar first--_byr fyr austan, Elivága hundviss Hymir_ (str. 5). In
the Elivagar Hymer has his fishing-grounds, and there he is wont to
catch whales on hooks (cp. str. 17--_a vâg roa_); but still he does not
venture far out upon the water (see str. 20), presumably because he has
enemies on the southern strand where Egil dwells. Between the Elivagar
and Hymer's abode there is a considerable distance through woody mountain
recesses (_holtrid_--str. 27) and past rocks in whose caverns dwell
monsters belonging to Hymer's giant-clan (str. 35). Thor resorts to
cunning in order to secure a safe retreat. After he has been out fishing
with the giant, instead of making his boat fast in its proper place on
the strand, as Hymer requests him to do, he carries the boat with its
belongings all the difficult way up to Hymer's hall. He is also attacked
on his way home by Hymer and all his giant-clan, and, in order to be able
to wield Mjolner freely, he must put down the precious kettle which he
has captured from the frost-giant and was carrying on his broad shoulders
(str. 35, 36). But the undisturbed retreat across the Elivagar he has
secured by the above-mentioned cunning.

Egil is called _hraunbúi_ (str. 38), an epithet the ambiguous meaning
of which should not be unobserved. It is usually translated with
rock-dweller, but it here means "he who lives near or at _Hraunn_"
(_Hrönn_). _Hraunn_ is one of the names of the Elivagar (see Nos. 59, 93;
cp. Younger Edda, 258, with Grimnersmal, 38).

After their return to Egil's, Thor and Tyr again seat themselves in the
thunder-chariot and proceed to Asgard with the captured kettle. But they
had not driven far before the strength of one of the horn-decorated
draught animals failed, and it was found that the goat was lame (str.
37). A misfortune had happened to it while in Egil's keeping, and this
had been caused by the cunning Loke (str. 37). The poem does not state
the kind of misfortune--the Younger Edda gives us information on this
point--but if it was Loke's purpose to make enmity between Thor and his
friend Egil he did not succeed this time. Thor, to be sure, demanded a
ransom for what had happened, and the ransom was, as Hymerskvida informs
us, two children who were reared in Egil's house. But Thor became
their excellent foster-father and protector, and the punishment was
therefore of such a kind that it was calculated to strengthen the bond of
friendship instead of breaking it.

Gylfaginning also (Younger Edda, i. 142, &c.) has preserved traditions
showing that when Thor is to make a journey from Asgard to Jotunheim it
requires more than one day, and that he therefore puts up in an inn at
the end of the first day's travel, where he eats his supper and stops
over night. There he leaves his goats and travels the next day eastward
(north), "across the deep sea" (_hafit that hit djúpa_), on whose
other side his giant foes have their abode. The sea in question is the
Elivagar, and the tradition correctly states that the inn is situated on
its southern (western) side.

But Gylfaginning has forgotten the name of the host in this inn. Instead
of giving his name it simply calls him a _buandi_ (peasant); but it knows
and states on the other hand the names of the two children there reared,
Thjalfe and Roskva; and it relates how it happened that one of Thor's
goats became lame, but without giving Loke the blame for the misfortune.
According to Gylfaginning the event occurred when Thor was on his way
to Utgard-Loke. In Gylfaginning, too, Thor takes the two children as a
ransom, and makes Thjalfe (_thjálfi_) a hero, who takes an honourable
part in the exploits of the god.

As shall be shown below, this inn on the road from Asgard to Jotunheim
is presupposed as well known in Eilif Gudrunson's Thorsdrapa, which
describes the adventures Thor met with on his journey to the giant
Geirrod. Thorsdrapa gives facts of great mythological importance in
regard to the inhabitants of the place. They are the "sworn" helpers
of the Asa-gods, and when it is necessary Thor can thence secure brave
warriors, who accompany him across Elivagar into Jotunheim. Among them an
archer plays the chief part in connection with Thjalfe (see No. 114).

On the north side of Elivagar dwell accordingly giants hostile to gods
and men; on the south side, on the other hand, beings friendly to the
gods and bound in their friendship by oaths. The circumstance that they
are bound by oaths to the gods (see Thorsdrapa) implies that a treaty has
been made with them and that they owe obedience. Manifestly the uttermost
picket guard to the north against the frost-giants is entrusted to them.

This also gives us an explanation of the position of the star-hero
Orvandel, the great archer, in the mythological Epic. We can understand
why he is engaged to the dis of growth, Groa, as it is his duty to
defend Midgard against the destructions of frost; and why he fights on
the Elivagar and in Jotunheim against the same enemies as Thor; and why
the mythology has made him and the lord of thunder friends who visit
each other. With the tenderness of a father, and with the devotion of a
fellow-warrior, the mighty son of Odin bears on his shoulders the weary
and cold star-hero over the foggy Elivagar, filled with magic terrors, to
place him safe by his own hearth south of this sea after he has honoured
him with a token which shall for ever shine on the heavens as a monument
of Orvandel's exploits and Thor's friendship for him. In the meantime
Groa, Orvandel's wife, stays in Thor's halls.

But we discover the same bond of hospitality between Thor and Egil.
According to Hymerskvida it is in Egil's house, according to Gylfaginning
in the house in which Thjalfe is fostered, where the accident to one
of Thor's goats happens. In one of the sources the youth whom Thor
takes as a ransom is called simply Egil's child; in the other he is
called Thjalfe. Two different mythic sources show that Thjalfe was a
waif, adopted in Egil's house, and consequently not a real brother but
a foster-brother of Svipdag and Ull. One source is Fornaldersaga (iii.
241), where it is stated that Groa in a _flædarmál_ found a little boy
and reared him together with her own son. _Flædarmál_ is a place which a
part of the time is flooded with water and a part of the time lies dry.
The other source is the Longobard saga, in which the mythological Egil
reappears as Agelmund, the first king of the Longobardians who emigrated
from Scandinavia (_Origo Longob._, Paulus Diac., 14, 15; cp. No. 112).
Agelmund, it is said, had a foster-son, Lamicho (_Origo Longob._), or
Lamissio (Paulus Diac.), whom he found in a dam and took home out of
pity. Thus in the one place it is a woman who bears the name of the
archer Orvandel's wife, in the other it is the archer Egil himself, who
adopts as foster-son a child found in a dam or in a place filled with
water. Paulus Diaconus says that the lad received the name Lamissio to
commemorate this circumstance, "since he was fished up out of a dam or
dyke," which in their (the Longobardian) language is called _lama_ (cp.
_lehm_, mud.) The name Thjalfe (_thjálfi_) thus suggests a similar idea.
As Vigfusson has already pointed out, it is connected with the English
delve, a dyke; with the Anglo-Saxon _delfan_; the Dutch _delven_, to work
the ground with a spade, to dig. The circumstances under which the lad
was found presaged his future. In the mythology he fells the clay-giant,
_Mökkr-kalfi_ (Younger Edda, i. 272-274). In the migration saga he is the
discoverer of land and circumnavigates islands (Korm., 19, 3; Younger
Edda, i. 496), and there he conquers giants (Harbards-ljod, 39) in order
to make the lands inhabitable for immigrants. In the appendix to the
Gotland law he appears as Thjelvar, who lands in Gotland, liberates
the island from trolls by carrying fire, colonises it and becomes the
progenitor of a host of emigrants, who settle in southern countries.
In Paulus Diaconus he grows up to be a powerful hero; in the mythology
he develops into the Asa-god Thor's brave helper, who participates in
his and the great archer's adventures on the Elivagar and in Jotunheim.
Paulus (ch. 15) says that when Agelmund once came with his Longobardians
to a river, "amazons" wanted to hinder him from crossing it. Then
Lamissio fought, swimming in the river, with the bravest one of the
amazons, and killed her. In the mythology Egil himself fights with the
giantess Sela, mentioned in Saxo as an amazon; _piraticis exercita rebus
ac bellici perita muneris_ (_Hist._, 138), while Thjalfe combats with
giantesses on Hlessey (Harbardslj., 39), and at the side of Thor and the
archer he fights his way through the river waves, in which giantesses try
to drown him (Thorsdrapa). It is evident that Paulus Diaconus' accounts
of Agelmund and Lamissio are nothing but echoes related as history of the
myths concerning Egil and Thjalfe, of which the Norse records fortunately
have preserved valuable fragments.

Thus Thjalfe is the archer Egil's and Groa's foster-son, as is apparent
from a bringing together of the sources cited. From other sources we have
found that Groa is the archer Orvandel's wife. Orvandel dwells near the
Elivagar and Thor is his friend, and visits him on his way to and from
Jotunheim. These are the evidences of Orvandel's and Egil's identity
which lie nearest at hand.

It has already been pointed out that Svipdag's father Orvandel appears in
Saxo by the name Ebbo (see Nos. 23, 100). It is Otharus-Svipdag's father
whom he calls Ebbo (_Hist._, 329-333). Halfdan slays Orvandel-Ebbo, while
the latter celebrates his wedding with a princess Sygrutha (see No.
23). In the mythology Egil had the same fate: an enemy and rival kills
him for the sake of a woman. "Franks Casket," an old work of sculpture
now preserved in England, and reproduced in George Stephens' great work
on the runes,[9] represents Egil defending his house against a host of
assailants who storm it. Within the house a woman is seen, and she is the
cause of the conflict. Like Saxo's Halfdan, one of the assailants carries
a tree or a branched club as his weapon. Egil has already hastened out,
bow in hand, and his three famous arrows have been shot. Above him
is written in runes his name, wherefore there can be no doubt about
his identity. The attack, according to Saxo, took place, in the night
(_noctuque nuptiis superveniens_--_Hist._, p. 330).

In a similar manner Paulus Diaconus relates the story concerning Egil
Agelmund's death (ch. 16). He is attacked, so it is stated, in the night
time by Bulgarians, who slew him and carried away his only daughter.
During a part of their history the Longobardians had the Bulgarians as
neighbors, with whom they were on a war-footing. In the mythology it was
"Borgarians," that is to say, Borgar's son Halfdan and his men, who slew
Orvandel. In history the "Borgarians" have been changed into Bulgarians
for the natural reason that accounts of wars fought with Bulgarians were
preserved in the traditions of the Longobardians.

The very name Ebbo reappears also in the saga of the Longobardians. The
brothers, under whose leadership the Longobardians are said to have
emigrated from Scandinavia, are in Saxo (_Hist._, 418) called Aggo and
Ebbo; in _Origo Longobardorum_, Ajo and Ybor; in Paulus (ch. 7), Ajo
and Ibor. Thus the name Ebbo is another form for Ibor, the German Ebur,
the Norse _Jöfurr_, "a wild boar." The Ibor of the Longobard saga, the
emigration leader, and Agelmund, the first king of the emigrants, in the
mythology, and also in Saxo's authorities, are one and the same person.
The Longobardian emigration story, narrated in the form of history,
thus has its root in the universal Teutonic emigration myth, which
was connected with the enmity caused by Loke between the gods and the
primeval artists--an enmity in which the latter allied themselves with
the powers of frost, and, at the head of the Skilfing-Yngling tribes,
gave the impetus to that migration southward which resulted in the
populating of the Teutonic continent with tribes from South Scandia and
Denmark (see Nos. 28, 32).

Nor is the mythic hero Ibor forgotten in the German sagas. He is
mentioned in Notker (about the year 1000) and in the Vilkinasaga. Notker
simply mentions him in passing as a saga-hero well known at that time.
He distinguishes between the real wild boar (Eber) roaming in the woods,
and the Eber (Ebur) who "wears the swan-ring." This is all he has to say
of him. But, according to Volundarkvida, the mythological Ebur-Egil is
married to a swan-maid, and, like his brother Volund, he wore a ring.
The signification of the swan-rings was originally the same as that of
Draupner: they were symbols of fertility, and were made and owned for
this reason by the primeval artists of mythology, who, as we have seen,
were the personified forces of growth in nature, and by their beloved
or wives, the swan-maids, who represented the saps of vegetation, the
bestowers of the mythic "mead" or "ale." The swan-maid who loves Egil is,
therefore, in Volundarvida called Olrun, a parallel to the name Olgefion,
as Groa, Orvandel's wife, is called in Haustlaung (Younger Edda, i. 282).
Saxo, too, has heard of the swan-rings, and says that from three swans
singing in the air fell a _cingulum_ inscribed with names down to King
Fridlevus (Njord), which informed him where he was to find a youth who
had been robbed by a giant, and whose liberation was a matter of great
importance to Fridlevus. The context shows that the unnamed youth was
in the mythology Fridlevus-Njord's own son Frey, the lord of harvests,
who had been robbed by the powers of frost. Accordingly, a swan-ring has
co-operated in the mythology in restoring the fertility of the earth.

In Vilkinasaga appears Villifer. The author of the saga says himself
that this name is identical with Wild-Ebur, wild boar. Villifer, a
splendid and noble-minded youth, wears on his arm a gold ring, and is the
elder friend, protector, and saviour of Vidga Volundson. Of his family
relations Vilkinasaga gives us no information, but the part it gives him
to play finds its explanation in the myth, where Ebur is Volund's brother
Egil, and hence the uncle of his favourite Vidga.

If we now take into consideration that in the German Orentel saga, which
is based on the Svipdag-myth, the father of the hero is called Eigel
(Egil), and his patron saint Wieland (Volund), and that in the archer,
who in Saxo fights by the side of Anund-Volund against Halfdan, we
have re-discovered Egil where we expected Orvandel; then we here find
a whole chain of evidence that Ebur, Egil, and Orvandel are identical,
and at the same time the links in this chain of evidence, taken as they
are from the Icelandic poetry, and from Saxo, from England, Germany, and
Italy, have demonstrated how widely spread among the Teutonic peoples
was the myth about Orvandel-Egil, his famous brother Volund, and his no
less celebrated son Svipdag. The result gained by the investigation is
of the greatest importance for the restoration of the epic connection of
the mythology. Hitherto the Volundarkvida with its hero has stood in the
gallery of myths as an isolated torso with no trace of connection with
the other myths and mythic sagas. Now, on the other hand, it appears, and
as the investigation progresses it shall become more and more evident,
that the Volund-myth belongs to the central timbers of the great epic of
Teutonic mythology, and extends branches through it in all directions.

In regard to Svipdag's saga, the first result gained is that the
mythology was not inclined to allow Volund's sword, concealed in the
lower world, to fall into the hands of a hero who was a stranger to the
great artist and his plans. If Volund forged the sword for a purpose
hostile to the gods, in order to avenge a wrong done him, or to elevate
himself and his circle of kinsmen among the elves at the expense of
the ruling gods, then his work was not done in vain. If Volund and
his brothers are those Ivalde sons who, after having given the gods
beautiful treasures, became offended on account of the decision which
placed Sindre's work, particularly Mjolner, higher than their own, then
the mythology has also completely indemnified them in regard to this
insult. Mjolner is broken by the sword of victory wielded by Volund's
nephew; Asgard trembles before the young elf after he had received the
incomparable weapon of his uncle; its gate is opened for him and other
kinsmen of Volund, and the most beautiful woman of the world of gods
becomes his wife.

[9] _Runic Monuments_, by George Stephens.



The mythology has handed down several names of the coast region near the
Elivagar, where Orvandel-Egil and his kinsmen dwelt, while they still
were the friends of the gods, and were an outpost active in the service
against the frost-powers. That this coast region was a part of Alfheim,
and the most northern part of this mythic land, appears already from
the fact that Volund and his brothers are in Volundarkvida elf-princes,
sons of a mythic "king." The rule of the elf-princes must be referred to
Alfheim for the same reason as we refer that of the Vans to Vanheim, and
that of the Asa-gods to Asgard. The part of Alfheim here in question,
where Orvandel-Egil's citadel was situated, was in the mythology called
_Ýdalir_, _Ýsetr_ (Grimnersmal, 5; Olaf Trygveson's saga, ch. 21). This
is also suggested by the fact that _Ullr_, elevated to the dignity of
an Asa-god, he who is the son of Orvandel-Egil, and Svipdag's brother
(see No. 102), according to Grimnersmal, has his halls built in _Ýdalir_.
Divine beings who did not originally belong to Asgard, but were adopted
in Odin's clan, and thus became full citizens within the bulwarks of
the Asa-citadel, still retain possession of the land, realm, and halls,
which is their udal and where they were reared. After he became a denizen
in Asgard, Njord continued to own and to reside occasionally in the
Vana-citadel Noatun beyond the western ocean (see Nos. 20, 93). Skade, as
an asynje, continues to inhabit her father Thjasse's halls in Thrymheim
(Grimnersmal, 11). Vidar's grass and brush-grown realm is not a part of
Asgard, but is the large plain on which, in Ragnarok, Odin is to fall in
combat with Fenrer (Grimnersmal, 17; see No. 39). When Ull is said to
have his halls in Ydaler, this must be based on a similar reason, and
Ydaler must be the land where he was reared and which he inherited after
his father, the great archer. When Grimnersmal enumerates the homes of
the gods, the series of them begins with Thrudheim, Thor's realm, and
next thereafter, and in connection with Alfheim, is mentioned Ydaler,
presumably for the reason that Thor's land and Orvandel-Egil's were, as
we have seen, most intimately connected in mythology.

  Land er heilact,
  er ec liggia se
  asom oc olfom nær;
  en i thrudheimi
  scal thórr vera,
  unz um rivfaz regin.

  Ydalir heita.
  thar er Ullr hefir
  ser úm gorva sali;
  Alfheim Frey
  gáfo i árdaga
  tivar at tannfæ.

_Ýdalir_ means the "dales of the bow" or "of the bows." _Ýsetr_ is
"the chalet of the bow" or "of the bows." That the first part of these
compound words is _ýr_, "a bow," is proved by the way in which the
local name _Ýsetr_ can be applied in poetical paraphrases, where the
bow-holding hand is called Ysetr. The names refer to the mythical
rulers of the region, namely, the archer Ull and his father the archer
Orvandel-Egil. The place has also been called _Geirvadills setr_,
_Geirvandills setr_, which is explained by the fact that Orvandel's
father bore the epithet Geirvandel (Saxo, _Hist._, 135). Hakon Jarl,
the ruler of northern Norway, is called (Fagrsk., 37, 4) _Geirvadills
setrs Ullr_, "the Ull of Geirvandel's chalet," a paraphrase in which we
find the mythological association of Ull with the chalet which was owned
by his father Orvandel and his grandfather Geirvandel. The Ydales were
described as rich in gold. _Ysetrs eldr_ is a paraphrase for gold. With
this we must compare what Volund says (Volundarkvida, 14) of the wealth
of gold in his and his kinsmen's home. (See further, in regard to the
same passage, Nos. 114 and 115.)

In connection with its mention of the Ydales, Grimnersmal states that
the gods gave Frey Alfheim as a tooth-gift. _Tannfé_ (tooth-gift) was
the name of a gift which was given (and in Iceland is still given) to a
child when it gets its first tooth. The tender Frey is thus appointed by
the gods as king over Alfheim, and chief of the elf-princes there, among
whom Volund and Orvandel-Egil, judging from the mythic events themselves,
must have been the foremost and most celebrated. It is also logically
correct, from the standpoint of nature symbolism, that the god of growth
and harvests receives the government of elves and primeval artists, the
personified powers of culture. Through this arrangement of the gods,
Volund and Orvandel become vassals under Njord and his son.

In two passages in Saxo we read mythic accounts told as history, from
which it appears that Njord selected a foster-father for his son, or
let him be reared in a home under the care of two fosterers. In the
one passage (_Hist._, 272) it is Fridlevus-Njord who selects Avo the
archer as his son's foster-father; in the other passage (_Hist._, 181)
it is the tender Frotho, son of Fridlevus and future brother-in-law of
Ericus-Svipdag, who receives Isulfus and Aggo as guardians.

So far as the archer Avo is concerned, we have already met him above (see
No. 108) in combat by the side of Anundus-Volund against one Halfdan. He
is a parallel figure to the archer Toko, who likewise fights by the side
of Anundus-Volund against Halfdan, and, as has already been shown, he is
identical with the archer Orvandel-Egil.

The name Aggo is borne by one of the leaders of the emigration of the
Longobardians, brother of Ebbo-Ibor, in whom we have already discovered

The name Isolfr, in the Old Norse poetic language, designates the bear
(Younger Edda, i. 589; ii. 484). Vilkinasaga makes Ebbo (Wild-Ebur)
appear in the guise of a bear when he is about to rescue Volund's son
Vidga from the captivity into which he had fallen. In his shield Ebbo has
images of a wild boar and of a bear. As the wild boar refers to one of
his names (Ebur), the image of the bear should refer to another (Isolfr).

Under such circumstances there can be no doubt that Orvandel-Egil and
one of his brothers, the one designated by the name Aggo (Ajo), be this
Volund or Slagfin, were entrusted in the mythology with the duty of
fostering the young Frey. Orvandel also assumes, as vassal under Njord,
the place which foster-fathers held in relation to the natural fathers of
their protégés.

Frey, accordingly, is reared in Alfheim, and in the Ydales he is fostered
by elf-princes belonging to a circle of brothers, among whom one,
namely, Volund, is the most famous artist of mythology. His masterpiece,
the sword of victory, in time proves to be superior to Sindre's chief
work, the hammer Mjolner. And as it is always Volund whom Saxo mentions
by Orvandel-Egil's side among his brothers (see No. 108), it is most
reasonable to suppose that it is Volund, not Slagfin, who appears here
under the name Aggo along with the great archer, and, like the latter,
is entrusted with the fostering of Frey. It follows that Svipdag and Ull
were Frey's foster-brothers. Thus it is the duty of a foster-brother they
perform when they go to rescue Frey from the power of giants, and when
they, later, in the war between the Asas and Vans, take Frey's side.
This also throws additional light on Svipdag-Skirner's words to Frey in
Skirnersmal, 5:

  ungir saman
  varom i árdaga,
  vel mættim tvæir truasc.



In the mythology we read that elves smithied splendid treasures for Frey
(Grimnersmal, 42; Younger Edda, i. 140, 340). Among these treasures
were the remarkable ship _Skidbladnir_ and the gold-glittering boar
_Slidrugtanni_, also called Gullinbursti (Younger Edda, i. 176, 264,
340-344), both clearly symbols of vegetation. The elves that smithied
these treasures are called Ivalde's sons, and constitute the same group
of brothers whose gifts to the gods, at the instigation of Loke, are
subjected to a public examination by the Asas and by them found wanting
as compared with Sindre's products. It would be most surprising, nay,
quite incredible, if, when other artists made useful presents to Frey,
the elf-prince Volund and his brothers did not do likewise, inasmuch as
he is the chief smith of them all, and inasmuch as he, with his brother
Orvandel-Egil, has taken upon himself the duties of a foster-father
toward the young harvest-god, among which duties one was certainly to
care for his good and enable him to perform the important task devolving
on him in the administration of the world.

From this standpoint already it is more than probable that the same
artist who in the heroic saga of the Teutonic tribes, under the name
Volund, Wieland, Weland, by the side of Mimer, plays the part of the
foremost smith that antiquity knew is the same one as in the mythology
was the most excellent smith; that is, the most skilful one among
Ivalde's sons. This view is perfectly confirmed as to its correctness by
the proofs which I shall now present.

Of Ivalde, Fornspjallsljod says that he had two groups of children, and
that Idun, the goddess of vegetation, belonged to one of these groups:

  Álfa ættar
  Ithunni heto
  Ivallds ellri
  ýngsta barna.

Idun is, therefore, a sister of the celebrated artists, the sons
of Ivalde. In Volundarkvida, Volund and Slagfin are brothers or
half-brothers of the dises of vegetation, who are together with them
in the Wolfdales (see str. 2). According to Fornspjallsljod, Idun was
for a time absent from Asgard, and stayed in a winter-cold land near
Narfe-Mimer's daughter Nat, and in company with persons whose names and
epithets indicate that they were smiths, primeval artists (_Rögnir_
and _Regin_; see Nos. 113, 115, and the epithet _viggiar_, a synonym
of _smidar_--Younger Edda, i. 587). Thus we read precisely the same of
Idun as of the swan-maids and vegetation-dises who dwelt for a time in
the Wolfdales with Volund and his brothers. Further on it shall be
demonstrated that the name of Volund's father in the introduction of
Volundarkvida and the name given to the father of Volund's and Slagfin's
swan-maids are synonyms, and refer to one and the same person. But if
we for the present leave this proof out, and confine ourselves to the
evidences already presented, then the question concerning the identity
of the Ivalde sons with the group of brothers Volund, Egil, and Slagfin
assumes the following form:

1. (_a_) There is in the mythology a group of brothers, the Ivalde sons,
from whose hands the most wonderful works proceeded, works which were
presented to the gods, and by the latter were compared with those of the
primeval artist Sindre.

(_b_) In the heroic saga there is a group of brothers, to whom Volund
belongs, the most celebrated of the smiths handed down from the mythology.

2. (_a_) Ivalde is an elf and his sons elves.

(_b_) Volund, Egil, and Slagfin are elves (Volundarkvida, 32).

3. (_a_) Ivalde's sons are brothers or half-brothers of the goddess of
vegetation, Idun.

(_b_) Volund, Egil, and Slagfin are brothers or half-brothers of
swan-maids and dises of vegetation.

4. (_a_) Of Idun, the sister of Ivalde's sons, it is stated that she was
for a time absent from the gods, and dwelt with the primeval artists in a
winter-cold land, near Nat, the daughter of _Narfi_-Mimer.

(_b_) Volund and his brothers' swan-maids dwell for a time in a
winter-cold land, which, as my researches have already shown, is
situated _fyr nágrindr nedan_, consequently in the lower world, near the
realm of Nat.

5. (_a_) Ivalde's sons were intimately associated with Frey and gave him
precious treasures.

(_b_) Volund and Egil were intimately associated with Frey, and were his
fosterers and wards.

6. (_a_) Ivalde's sons were most deeply insulted by the gods.

(_b_) Volund has been most deeply insulted by the Asas. He and Egil
become their foes, and ally themselves with the powers of frost.

7. (_a_) The insult given to Ivalde's sons consisted in the fact that
their works were judged inferior as compared with the hammer Mjolner made
by Sindre.

(_b_) The best smith-work produced by Volund is a sword of such a quality
that it is to prove itself superior to Mjolner in battle.

These circumstances alone force us to assume the identity of Ivalde's
sons with Volund and his brothers. We must either admit the identity, or
we are obliged to assume that the epic of the mythology contained two
such groups of brothers, and made them identical in descent, functions,
and fortunes. Besides, it must then have made the one group avenge not an
insult offered to itself, but an insult to the other. I have abstained
from the latter assumption, because it is in conflict with the best
rules for a logical investigation--_causæ non sunt præter necessitatem
multiplicandæ_. And the identity gains confirmation from all sides as the
investigation progresses.



In the Younger Edda, which speaks of the judgment passed by the gods
on the art works of the Ivalde sons (p. 340, &c.), there is nothing
said about the consequences of the judgment; and the mythologists
seem therefore to have assumed that no results followed, although it
was prepared by the "father of misfortunes," the far-calculating and
evil-scheming Loke. The judgment would in that case be an isolated event,
without any influence on the future, and without any connection with the
other mythic events. On the other hand, no possible explanation was found
of Volund's words (Volundarkvida, 28), which he utters after he has taken
his terrible vengeance on Nidad and is prepared to fly away in eagle
guise from his prison: _Nu hefi ec hefnt harma minna allra nema einna
ivithgjarnra_--"Now I have avenged all the wrongs done to me, excepting
one, which demands a more terrible vengeance." The wrong here referred
to by him is not done to him by Nidad, and did not happen to him while
he lived as an exile in the wilderness of the Wolfdales, but belongs to
an earlier time, when he and his brothers and their kinsmen dwelt in the
realm rich in gold, where, according to Volundarkvida (14), they lived
a happy life. This wrong was not avenged when he and his brothers left
their home abounding in gold, in order that far from his enemies he might
perfect his plan of revenge by making the sword of victory. Volund's
words refer to the judgment passed on the art work of the Ivalde sons,
and thus the mythic events unite themselves into a continuous chain.

This judgment was in its consequences too important not to be referred
to in Völuspa, which makes all the danger-boding events of the mythology
pass one by one before our eyes in the order in which they happened, in
order to show how this world from an innocent and happy beginning sank
deeper and deeper into the misery which attains its maturity in Ragnarok.
That is the plan and purpose of the poem. As I shall show fully and in
detail in another part of this work, its purpose is not to speak of
Valfather's "art work," but of the treacherous deeds of Loke, "the father
of evil" (_Vafodrs vel_--Cod. Hauk.); not to speak of "the traditions
of the past," but of "the past events full of danger" (_forn spjöll
fira_). The happy time during which the Asas _tefldu i túni_ and _teitir
váru_ passes away for ever, and is followed by an epoch in which three
dangerous thurs-maidens came from Jotunheim. These thurs-maidens are not
the norns, as has usually been assumed. Of the relation of the norns
to the gods I have given a full account already. The three thurs-maids
are the one who in her unity is triple and is thrice born of different
parents. Her name is Heid-Gulveig-Angerboda, and, in connection with
Loke, she constitutes the evil principle of Teutonic mythology, like
Angra Mainyu, and Jahi in the Iranian mythology (Bundehesh, 3). The
misfortune-boding event which happens after the first hypostasis of "the
three times born" came from Jotunheim is mentioned in connection with
its consequences in Völuspa (str. 8.) The Asas had not hitherto suffered
from want of works of gold, but now came a time when such as might be of
use or pleasure to the gods were no longer to be had. Of the gold-metal
itself the gods have never been in want. Their halls glitter with this
metal, and it grows in the bright wood _Glasir_, outside of Valhal
(Younger Edda, i. 340). The poem, as the very words show, means golden
works of art, things made of gold, such as _Gungnir_, _Draupnir_, Sif's
hair, Brisingamen, and _Slidrugtanni_, things the possession of which
increased the power of the gods and the wealth of Midgard. Such ceased
to flow into the hands of the gods. The epoch in which Sindre's and the
Ivalde son's gifts increased Asgard's collection of world-protecting
weapons and fertility-producing ornaments was at an end, when Loke,
through Heid's arrival, found his other ego and when the evil principle,
hitherto barren, could as man and woman give birth to evil deeds. The
consequence of the first deceitful act was, as we see, that hands skilful
in art--hands which hitherto had made and given such treasures--refused
to serve the gods any longer. The arrangement whereby Loke gained this
end Völuspa does not mention, but it can be no other than the judgment
brought about by him, which insulted the sons of Ivalde, and, at the
same time, cheated the victorious Sindre out of the prize agreed on,
Loke's head. Both the groups of artists must have left the divine court
angry at the gods. When we remember that the primeval artists are the
creative forces of vegetation personified, then we can also understand
the significance of the conflict between them and the gods, whom they
hitherto had served. The first part of Völuspa is interpolated partly
with strophes from an old song of creation of great mythological
importance, partly with its lists of names for the use of young poets.
If we remove these interpolations, there remains a chain of primeval
mythological mishaps, the first link of which is the event which marks
the end of the first epoch during which the primeval artists, amicably
united with the gods, made splendid weapons, means of locomotion, and
ornaments for the latter. On this conflict followed the blending of the
air with harmful elements--in other words, it was the beginning of the
great winter. Freyja was betrayed into the hands of the giants; the
black art, sown by Heid, was disseminated among mankind; the murder was
committed against the one thrice born contrary to promise and oath; there
is war between the Asas and Vans; the first great war in the world breaks
out, when Asgard is stormed and Midgard is covered with battlefields,
on which brothers slay each other; Balder is killed by the mistletoe;
the host of monsters are born who, in the Ironwood, await Ragnarok; on
account of the sins of men, it became necessary to make places of torture
in the lower world. All these terrible events, which happened in time's
morning, are the cunning work of the father of misfortunes and of his
feminine counterpart. The seeress in Völuspa relates all these events and
deeds to show the necessity of the coming destruction and regeneration of
the world.

Above (see No. 54), it has already been shown that the fragments of
old Aryan mythology, which Avesta, Zend, and Bundehesh have preserved,
speak of a terrible winter, which visited the world. To rescue that
which is noblest and best among plants, animals, and men from the coming
destruction, Jima arranged in the lower world a separate enclosed domain,
within which selected organisms live an uncontaminated life undisturbed
by the events of this world, so that they may people a more beautiful
and a happier earth in the regenerated world. I have shown that the same
myth in all important details reappears in the Teutonic doctrine anent
Mimer's grove and the _ásmegir_ living there. In the Iranian records, we
read that the great winter was the work of the evil spirit, but they do
not tell the details or the epic causes of the destruction by the cold.
Of these causes we get information in Rigveda, the Indian sister of the
Iranian mythology.

Clothed with divine rank, there lives among Rigveda's gods an
extraordinary artist, Tvashtar (Tvashtri), often mentioned and
addressed in Rigveda's hymns. The word means "the master-workman," "the
handi-workman" (Bergaigne, _Relig. Ved._, iii. 45; Darmesteter, Ormazd,
63, 100). He is the one who forms the organisms in the maternal wombs,
the one who prepares and first possesses as his secret the strength-
and inspiration-giving soma-drink (Rigv., ii. 53, &c.); it is he that
supports the races of men (Rigv., iii. 55, 19). Among the wonderful
things made by his hands are mentioned a goblet, which the gods drink
from, and which fills itself with blessings (Rigv., iii. 55, 20; x. 53,
9), and Indra's the Hindooic Thor's, thunderbolt, corresponding to Thor's

But among mortals brothers have been reared, themselves mortals, and not
of divine rank, but who have educated themselves into artists, whose
skill fills the world with astonishment. They are three in number,
usually called the _Ribhus_, but also _Anus_ and _Ayus_, names which
possibly may have some original connection with the Volund names Anund
and Ajo. Most clever and enterprising in successful artistic efforts is
the youngest of the three (Rigv., iv. 34). They are also soma-brewers,
skalds, and heroes (Rigv., iv. 36, 5, 7), and one of them, like Volund's
brother Orvandel-Egil, is an unsurpassed archer (Rigv., iv. 36, 6).
On account of their handiwork, these mortal artists come in contact
with the gods (Rigv., iv. 35), and as Volund and Orvandel-Egil become
Thor's friends, allies, war-comrades, and servants, so the Ribhus become
Indra's (Rigv., i. 51, 2; vii. 37, 7); "with Indra, the helpful, allied
themselves the helpers; with Indra, the nimble, the Ribhus." They make
weapons, coats-of-mail, and means of locomotion, and make wonderful
treasures for the gods. On earth they produce vegetation in the deserts,
and hew out ways for the fertilising streams (Rigv., v. 42, 12; iv. 33,
7). With Ivalde's sons, they, therefore, share the qualities of being
at the same time creators of vegetation, and smiths at the hearth, and
bestowers of precious treasures to the gods.

But some evil tongue persuaded the gods that the Ribhus had said
something derogatory of the goblet made by Tvashtar. This made Tvashtar
angry, and he demanded their death. The gods then sent the fire-god Agni
to the Ribhus. The Ribhus asked: "Why has the most excellent, the most
youthful one come to us? On what errand does he come?" Agni told them
that it was reported that they had found fault with Tvashtar's goblet;
they declared that they had not said anything derogatory, but only
talked about the material of which it was made. Agni meanwhile stated
the resolution of the gods, to the effect that they were to make from
Tvashtar's goblet four others of the same kind. If they were unable to do
this, then the gods would doubtless satisfy Tvashtar's request and take
their lives; but if they were able to make the goblets, then they should
share with the gods the right to receive offerings. Moreover, they were
to give the following proof of mastership. They were to smithy a living
horse, a living chariot, a living cow, and they were to create a means
of rejuvenation and demonstrate its efficacy on two aged and enfeebled
beings. The Ribhus informed the gods that they would do what was demanded
of them. So they made the wonderful chariot or the chariot-ship, which
they gave to the Asvinians--the beautiful twin-gods--on which they
ride through the air and on the sea (cp. Skidbladner, Frey's ship, and
Hringhorne, Balder's, and probably also Hoder's means of locomotion
through the air and on the sea). Of one horse they made two, and
presented them to Indra. Out of an empty cow's hide they smithied a
cow (cp. Sindre's work of art when he made the boar Slidringtanne out
of an empty pig's skin). They made the remedy of rejuvenation, and
tested it successfully on their aged parents. Finally, they do the
great master-work of producing four goblets of equal excellence from
Tvashtar's. Thereupon they appear before the gods who, "with insight,"
test their works. Tvashtar himself could not help being astounded when he
saw the goblets. But the result of the test by the gods, and the judgment
passed on the art-works of the Ribhus, were fraught with danger for
the future. Both Tvashtar and the Ribhus became dissatisfied. Tvashtar
abandoned the gods and betook himself to the mountains with the dises of
vegetation, in whose company he is often mentioned. The Ribhus refused to
accept from the gods the proffered share in morning and noon sacrifices,
and went away cursing their adversaries. They proceeded on long journeys,
and the gods knew not where to find them (Rigv., i. 161, 1-13; iv. 33,
1-11, &c.).

The result of this trouble between the primeval artists themselves, and
between them and the gods, becomes clear from the significance which
Tvashtar, he who nourishes the world, and the Ribhus, they who deck the
deserts with vegetation, and irrigate the valleys, have as symbols of
nature. The beneficent powers of nature, who hitherto had operated in the
service of the gods, abandon their work, and over the world are spread
that winter of which the Iranian mythology speaks, that darkness, and
that reign of giant-monsters which, according to Rigveda, once prevailed,
and during which time Indra, at the head of the gods, fought valiantly to
restore order and to bring back the sun.

Here we find remarkable points of contact, or rather contact surfaces,
between the Asiatic-Aryan groups of myths and the Teutonic. The question
is not as to similarity in special details. That kind of similarities
may be pointed out in nearly all mythic groups in the world, and, as a
rule, altogether too bold hypotheses are built on the feeble foundations
they offer. The question here is in regard to identity in great,
central, connected collections of myths. Such are: The myths concerning
an original harmony between a divine clan on the one hand, and artists
subordinate to, and in the service of, the divine clan on the other hand.
Artists who produce fertility, ornaments, and weapons for the gods, know
how to brew the strength- and inspiration-giving mead, and are closely
connected with dises of vegetation, who, as we shall show, appear as
swan-maids, not only in the Teutonic mythology but also in the Hindooic;
the myths telling how this harmony was frustrated by a judgment in a
competition, the contending parties being on the one hand he who in the
Hindooic mythology made Indra's thunderbolt, and in the Teutonic Thor's
thundering Mjolner; and on the other hand three brothers, of whom one
is an excellent archer; the myths concerning the consequences of the
judgment, the destruction of nature by frost-powers and giant-monsters;
the myths (in the Iranian and Teutonic records of antiquity) concerning
the subterranean paradise, in which a selection of the best beings
of creation are protected against annihilation, and continue to live
uncorrupted through centuries; the myths (in the Iranian and Teutonic
records of antiquity) of the destiny of these beings, connected with the
myths likewise common to the Iranian and Teutonic mythologies concerning
the destruction and regeneration of the world. Common to the Hindooic
and Teutonic mythology is also the idea that a cunning, spying, being,
in Rigveda Dadhyak (Dadhyank), in the Icelandic sources Loke, has lost
his head to an artist who smithied the bolt for Indra and the hammer for
Thor, but saves his wager through cunning.

An important observation should here be pointed out. A comparison
between different passages in Rigveda shows, that of all the remarkable
works of art which were exhibited to the gods for their examination,
there was originally not one of metal. Tvashtar's goblet was not made
of gold, but of fire and water and a third element. Indra's thunderbolt
was made of the bones of the head of Dadhyak's horse, and it is in a
later tradition that it becomes bronze. Common to the Aryan-Asiatic and
the Teutonic mythology is the ability of the primeval artists to make
animals from empty skins of beasts, and of making from _one_ work of art
several similar ones (the goblet of the Ribhus, Sindre's Draupner). In
the Teutonic mythology, Thor's hammer was not originally of metal, but of
stone, and the other works produced by Sindre and Ivalde's sons may in
the course of centuries have undergone similar changes. It should also be
noted that not a trace is to be found in the Asiatic groups of myths of
a single one to be compared with that concerning Svipdag and the sword
of victory. In the Teutonic heroic saga, Geirvandel, the spear-hero,
is the father of Orvandel, the archer, and of him is born Svipdag, the
sword-hero (cp. No. 123). The myth concerning the sword of victory seems
to be purely Teutonic, and to have sprung into existence during one of
the bronze or iron ages, while the myths concerning the judgment passed
on the primeval artists, and concerning the fimbul-winter following,
must hail from a time when metals were not yet used by the Aryans. In
the other event it would be most incredible to suppose that the judgment
should concern works of art, of which not a single one originally
suggested a product of metal.



It has already been stated that Fridlevus-Njord rescues a princely youth
from the power of the giants. According to Saxo, the event was an episode
in the feud between Fridlevus-Njord and Anundus (Volund), and Avo, the
archer (Orvandel-Egil). This corroborates the theory that the rescued
youth was Frey, Volund's and Egil's foster-son. The first one of the gods
to be seized by fears on account of the judgment passed on Ivalde's sons,
ought, naturally, to be Njord, whose son Frey was at that time in the
care and power of Volund and Egil (see No. 109). We also learn from Saxo
that Fridlevus took measures to propitiate the two brothers. He first
sends messengers, who on his behalf woo the daughter of Anund-Volund,
but the messengers do not return. Anund had slain them. Thereupon
Fridlevus goes himself, accompanied by others, and among the latter was a
"mediator." The name of the mediator was Bjorno, and he was one of those
champions who constituted the defence of that citadel, which Fridlevus
afterwards captured, and which we have recognised as Asgard (see No.
36). Thus Bjorno is one of the Asas, and there are reasons, which I
shall discuss later, for assuming him to be Balder's brother _Hödr_. The
context shows that Fridlevus' journey to Ivalde's sons and meeting with
them takes place while there was yet hope of reconciliation, and before
the latter arrived in the inaccessible Wolfdales, which are situated
below the Na-gates in the subterranean Jotunheim. On the way thither they
must have been overtaken by Fridlevus, and doubtless the event occurred
there which Saxo relates, and of which an account in historical form is
preserved in the Longobardian migration saga.

The meeting did not lead to reconciliation, but to war. Avo, the
archer (Orvandel-Egil; see Nos. 108, 109) appeared on the one side and
challenged Fridlevus-Njord to a duel. Bjorno became angry that a person
of so humble descent as this Avo dared to challenge the noble-born
Fridlevus, and in his wrath he drew his bow to fell "the plebeian" with
an arrow. Thus Bjorno also was an archer. But Avo anticipated him, and an
arrow from him severed Bjorno's bow-string from the bow. While Bjorno was
tying the string again, there came from Avo a second arrow, which passed
between his fingers without hurting him, and then there came a third
arrow, which shot away Bjorno's arrow just as he was placing it on the
string. Then the Ivalde sons continued their departure. Bjorno let loose
a _molossus_ he had with him to pursue them, probably the same giant-dog
or giant wolf-dog which Saxo describes in a preceding chapter (_Hist._,
260) as being in Bjorno's possession, and which before had guarded the
giant Offote's herds. But this _molossus_ was not able to prevent those
fleeing from reaching their destination in safety. In all probability
Frey had already been delivered by his wards to the giants when this
happened. This must have occurred on the way between the abode abounding
in gold, where Ivalde's sons had formerly lived in happiness, and the
Wolfdales, and so within Jotunheim, where the gods were surrounded by

The story of this adventure on the journey of the emigrating Ivalde sons
reappears in a form easily recognised in Paulus Diaconus, where he tells
of the emigration of the Longobardians under Ibor (Orvandel-Egil; see
No. 108) and Ajo (Volund). In Saxo Avo-Egil, who belongs to the race of
elves, becomes a low-born champion, while the Vana-god Njord becomes King
Fridlevus. In Paulus the saga is not content with making the great archer
of the emigrants a plebeian, but he is made a thrall who challenges a
chosen free-born warrior among the foes of the Longobardians. In the
mythology and in Saxo the duel was fought with bows and arrows, and the
plebeian was found to be far superior to his opponent. Paulus does not
name the kind of weapons used, but when it had ended with the victory of
"the thrall," an oath was taken on an _arrow_ that the thralls were to be
freed from their chains by the Longobardians. Consequently the arrow must
have been the thrall's weapon of victory. In the mythology, the journey
of the Ivalde sons to the Wolfdales was down to the lower world Jotunheim
and northward through Nifelhel, inhabited by thurses and monsters.
Both in Saxo and Paulus this sort of beings take part in the adventures
described. In Saxo, Fridlevus' war-comrade Bjorno sends a monster in the
guise of a dog against the sons of Ivalde. In Paulus, according to the
belief of their enemies, the emigrants had as their allies "men with

Bjorno is an Asa-god; and he is described as an archer who had confidence
in his weapon, though he proved to be inferior to Avo in the use of it.
Among the gods of Asgard only two archers are mentioned--_Hödr_ and
_Ullr_. At the time when this event occurred Ull had not yet been adopted
in Asgard. As has been shown above (see No. 102), he is the son of
Orvandel-Egil and Sif. His abode is still with his parents when Svipdag,
his half-brother, receives instructions from Sif to seek Frey and Freyja
in Jotunheim (see No. 102), and he faithfully accompanies Svipdag through
his adventures on this journey. Thus Ull is out of the question--the more
so as he would in that case be opposing his own father. Hoder (_Hödr_)
is mentioned as an archer both in the Beowulf poem, where he, under the
name Hædcyn, shoots Balder-Herebeald accidentally with his "horn-bow,"
and in Saxo (_arcus peritia pollebat_--_Hist._, 111), and in Christian
tales based on myths, where he appears by the name _Hedinn_. That Bjorno,
mentioned by Saxo as a beautiful youth, is Hoder is confirmed by another
circumstance. He is said to be _sequestris ordinis vir_ (_Hist._, 270),
an expression so difficult to interpret that scholars have proposed to
change it into _sequioris_ or _equestris ordinis vir_. The word shows
that Bjorno in Saxo's mythological authorities belonged to a group of
persons whose functions were such that they together might be designated
as a _sequestris ordo_. _Sequester_ means a mediator in general, and
in the law language of Rome it meant an impartial arbitrator to whom
a dispute might be referred. The Norse word which Saxo, accordingly,
translated with _sequestris ordo_, "the mediators," "the arbitrators,"
can have been none other than the plural _ljónar_, a mythological word,
and also an old legal term, of which it is said in the Younger Edda:
_Ljónar heita their menn, er ganga um sættir manna_, "_ljónar_ are called
those men whose business it is to settle disputes." That this word
_ljónar_ originally designated a certain group of Asa-gods whose special
duty it was to act as arbitrators is manifest from the phrase _ljóna
kindir_, "the children of the peacemakers," an expression inherited from
heathendom and applied to mankind far down in Christian times; it is an
expression to be compared with the phrase _megir Heimdallar_, "Heimdal's
sons," which also was used to designate mankind. In Christian times the
phrase "children of men" was translated with the heathen expression
_ljóna kindir_; and when the recollection of the original meaning of
_ljónar_ was obliterated, the word, on account of this usage, came to
mean men in general (_viri_, _homines_), a signification which it never
had in the days of heathendom.

Three Asa-gods are mentioned in our mythological records as
peacemakers--Balder, Hoder, and Balder's son, Forsete. Balder
is mentioned as judge in the Younger Edda (90). As such he is
_liksamastr_--that is, "the most influential peacemaker." Of Forsete,
who inherits his father's qualities as judge, it is said in Grimnersmal
(15) that he _svefer allar sacir_, "settles all disputes." Hoder, who
both in name and character appears to be a most violent and thoughtless
person, seems to be the one least qualified for this calling.
Nevertheless he performed the duties of an arbitrator by the side of
Balder and probably under his influence. Saxo (_Hist._, 122) speaks
of him as a judge to whom men referred their disputes--_consueverat
consulenti populo plebiscita depromere_--and describes him as gifted
with great talents of persuasion. He had _eloquentiæ suavitatem_, and
was able to subdue stubborn minds with _benignissimo sermone_ (_Hist._,
116, 117). In Völuspa (60) the human race which peoples the renewed
earth is called _burir brodra tvegia_, "the sons of the two brothers,"
and the two brothers mentioned in the preceding strophe are Balder and
Hoder. Herewith is to be compared _ljóna kindir_ in Völuspa (14). In
Harbardsljod (42) the insolent mocker of the gods, Harbard, refers to the
miserable issue of an effort made by _jafnendr_, "the arbitrator," to
reconcile gods with certain ones of their foes. I think it both possible
and probable that the passage refers to the mythic event above described,
and that it contains an allusion to the fact that the effort to make
peace concerned the recovery of Frey and Freyja, who were delivered
as "brides" to naughty giants, and for which "brides" the peacemakers
received arrows and blows as compensation. Compare the expression _bæta
mundi baugi_ and Thor's astonishment, expressed in the next strophe, at
the insulting words, the worst of the kind he ever heard. Saxo describes
the giant in whose power Frey is, when he is rescued by his father, as a
cowardly and enervated monster whose enormous body is a _moles destituta
rubore_ (_Hist._, 268). In this manner ended the effort of the gods
to make peace. The three sons of Ivalde continue their journey to the
Wolfdales, inaccessible to the gods, in order that they thence might send
ruin upon the world.



Observations made in the course of my investigations anent Ivalde and his
sons have time and again led me to the unexpected result that Ivalde's
sons, Slagfin, Egil, and Volund, are identical with Olvalde-Alvalde's
sons, who, in the Grotte-song, are called _Idi_, _Urnir_ or _Aurnir_
(_Ornir_), and _thjazi_, and in the Younger Edda (p. 214) _thjazi_,
_Idi_, and _Gángr_. This result was unexpected and, as it seemed to
me in the beginning, improbable, for the reason that where Thjasse is
mentioned in the Elder Edda, he is usually styled a giant, while Volund
is called a prince or chief of elves in Volundarkvida. In Grimnersmal
(11) Thjasse is designated as _inn amátki iotunn_; in Harbardsljod
(19) as _enn thrudmothgi iotunn_; in Hyndluljod (30) as a kinsman of
Gymer and Aurboda. The Grotte-song (9) says that Thjasse, Ide, and
Aurnir were brothers of those mountain giants who were the fathers of
Menja and Fenja. In the Younger Edda he is also called a _jötunn_. In
the beginning of my researches, and before Volund's position in the
mythology was clear to me, it appeared to me highly improbable that a
prince among the elves and one of the chief artists in the mythology
could be characterised as a giant. Indeed I was already then aware
that the clan-names occurring in the mythology--_áss_, _vanr_, _álfr_,
_dvergr_, and _jötunn_--did not exclusively designate the descent of
the beings, but could also be applied to them on account of qualities
developed or positions acquired, regardless of the clan to which they
actually belonged by their birth. In Thrymskvida (15), so to speak in the
same breath, Heimdal is called both _áss_ and _vanr_--"_thá quath that
Heimdallr, hvitastr ása, vissi han vel fram sem vanir áthrir_." And Loke
is designated both as _áss_ and _jötunn_, although the Asas and giants
represent the two extremes. Neither Heimdal nor Loke are of the Asa-clan
by birth; but they are adopted in Asgard, that is, they are adopted Asas,
and this explains the appellation. Elves and dwarfs are doubtless by
descent different classes of beings, but the word dwarf, which in the
earliest Christian times became the synonym of a being of diminutive
stature, also meant an artist, a smith, whence both Vans and elves, nay,
even Fjalar, could be incorporated in the Völuspa dwarf-list. When,
during the progress of my investigations, it appeared that Volund and
his brothers in the epic of the mythology were the most dangerous foes
of the gods and led the powers of frost in their efforts to destroy the
world, it could no longer surprise me that Volund, though an elf prince,
was characterised as _inn ámátki iotunn, enn thrudmothgi iotunn_. But
there was another difficulty in the way: according to Hyndluljod and the
Grotte-song, Thjasse and his brothers were kinsmen of giants, and must
therefore undoubtedly have had giant-blood in their veins. But there are
kinsmen of the giants among the Asas too; and when in the progress of the
investigation it appears that Thjasse's mother is a giantess, but his
father a _hapt_, a god of lower rank, then his maternal descent, and his
position as an ally and chief of the giants, and as the most powerful
foe of Asgard and Midgard, are sufficient to explain the apparent
contradiction that he is at the same time a giant and a kinsman of the
giants, and still identical with the elf-prince, Volund. It should also
be observed that, as shall be shown below, the tradition has preserved
the memory of the fact that Volund too was called a giant and had kinsmen
among the giants.

The reasons which, taken collectively, prove conclusively at least to me,
that Ivalde's sons and Olvalde's are identical are the following:

(1) In regard to the names themselves, we note in the first place that,
as has already been pointed out, the name of the father of Ide, as
Aurnir-Gang, and of Thjasse appears with the variations _Allvaldi_,
_Ölvaldi_, and _Audvaldi_. To persons speaking a language in which the
prefixes _I-_, _Id-_, and _All-_ are equivalents and are substituted for
one another, and accustomed to poetics, in which it was the most common
thing to substitute equivalent nouns and names (for example, _Grjótbjörn_
for _Arinbjörn_, _Fjallgyldir_ for _Ásólfr_, &c.), it was impossible to
see in _Ivaldi_ and _Allvaldi_ anything but names designating the same

(2) Anent the variation Olvalde we have already seen that its equivalents
Olmodr and Sumbl (Finnakonungr, _phinnorum rex_) allude to Slagfin's,
Orvandel-Egil's, and Volund's father, while Olvalde himself is said to be
the father of Ide, Aurnir, and Thjasse.

(3) Ajo's and Ibor's mother is called _Gambara_ in _Origo Longobardorum_
and in Paulus Diaconus. Aggo's and Ebbo's mother is called _Gambaruc_ in
Saxo. In Ibor-Ebbo and Ajo-Aggo we have re-discovered Egil and Volund.
The Teutonic stem of which the Latinised Gambara was formed is in all
probability _gambr_, _gammr_, a synonym of _gripr_ (Younger Edda, ii.
572), the German _Greif_. According to the Younger Edda (i. 314),
Thjasse's mother is the giantess _Greip_, daughter of _Geirrödr_. The
forms _grip_, neuter, and _greip_, feminine, are synonyms in the Old
Norse language, and they surely grew out of the same root. While Gambara
thus is Volund's mother, Thjasse's mother bears a name to which Gambara

(4) The variation _Audvaldi_ means "the one presiding over riches,"
and the epithet finds its explanation in the Younger Edda's account of
the gold treasure left by Thjasse's father, and of its division among
his sons (p. 214.) It is there stated that Thjasse's father was _mjök
gullaudigr_. Ivalde's sons, who gave the gods golden treasures, were
likewise rich in gold, and in Volundarkvida Volund speaks of his and his
kinsmen's golden wealth in their common home.

(5) Of the manner in which Thjasse and his brothers divided the
golden treasure the Younger Edda contains, in the above passage, the
following statement: "When Olvalde died and his sons were to divide the
inheritance, they agreed in the division to measure the gold by taking
their mouths full of gold an equal number of times. Hence gold is called
in poetry the words or speech of these giants."

It is both possible and assumable that in the mythology the brothers
divided the gold in silence and in harmony. But that it should have
been done in the manner here related may be doubted. There is reason
to suspect that the story of the division of the gold in the manner
above described was invented in Christian times in order to furnish
an explanation of the phrase _thingskil thjaza_ in Bjarkamal, of
_Idja glysmál_ in the same source, and of _idja ord_, quoted in
_Malskrudsfrædi_. More than one pseudo-mythic story, created in the same
manner and stamped by the same taste, is to be found in the Younger
Edda. It should not be forgotten that all these phrases have one thing
in common, and that is, a public deliberation, a judicial act. _Mál_
and _ord_ do not necessarily imply such an allusion, for in addition to
the legal meaning, they have the more common one of speech and verbal
statements in general; but to get at their actual significance in the
paraphrases quoted we must compare them with _thingskil_, since in these
paraphrases all the expressions, _thingskil_, _glysmál_, and _ord_,
must be founded on one and the same mythic event. With _thingskil_ is
meant that which can be produced before a court by the defendant in a
dispute to clear up his case; and as gold ornaments are called Thjasse's
_thingskil_ in Bjarkamal, it should follow that some judicial act was
mentioned in the mythology, in which gold treasures made or possessed by
Thjasse were produced to clear up a dispute which, in some way or other,
touched him. From the same point of view Ide's _glysmál_ and Ide's _ord_
are to be interpreted. Ide's _glysmál_ are Ide's "glittering pleadings;"
his _ord_ are the evidence or explanation presented in court by the
ornaments made by or belonging to him. Now, we know from the mythology a
court act in which precious works of the smiths, "glittering pleadings,"
were produced in reference to the decision of a case. The case or dispute
was the one caused by Loke, and the question was whether he had forfeited
his head to Sindre or not. As we know, the decision of the dispute
depended on a comparison between Brok's and Sindre's works on the one
hand, and those of the Ivalde sons on the other. Brok had appeared before
the high tribunal, and was able to plead his and his brother's cause.
Ivalde's sons, on the other hand, were not present, but the works done
by them had to speak in their behalf, or rather for themselves. From
this we have, as it seems to me, a simple and striking explanation of
the paraphrases _thjaza thingskil_, _Idja glysmál_, _Idja ord_. Their
works of art were the glittering but mute pleadings which were presented,
on their part, for the decision of the case. That gold carried in the
mouth and never laid before the tribunal should be called _thingskil_
I regard as highly improbable. From heathen poems we cannot produce a
single positive proof that a paraphrase of so distorted and inadequate a
character was ever used.

(6) Saxo relates that the same Fridlevus-Njord who fought with
Anund-Volund and Avo-Egil wooed Anund's daughter and was refused, but was
married to her after Anund's death. Thus it would seem that Njord married
a daughter of Volund. In the mythology he marries Thjasse's daughter
Skade. Thus Volund and Thjasse act the same part as father-in-law of

(7) Saxo further relates that Freyja-Syritha's father was married to the
_soror_ of Svipdag-Otharus. _Soror_ means sister, but also foster-sister
and playmate. If the word is to be taken in its strictest sense, Njord
marries a daughter of Volund's brother; if in its modified sense,
Volund's daughter.

(8) In a third passage (_Hist._, 50, 53), Skade's father appears under
the name Haquinus. The same name belongs to a champion (_Hist._, 323)
who assists Svipdag-Ericus in his combat with the Asa-god Thor and
his favourite Halfdan, and is the cause that Thor's and Halfdan's
weapons prove themselves worthless against the Volund sword wielded
by Svipdag-Ericus. There is, therefore, every reason for regarding
Haquinus as one of Saxo's epithets for Volund. The name _Hákon_, of which
Haquinus has been supposed to be the Latinised form, never occurs in the
Norse mythic records, but Haquinus is in this case to be explained as
a Latinisation with the aspirate usual in Saxo of the Old German Aki,
the Middle German Ecke, which occurs in the compositions Eckenbrecht,
Eckehard, and Eckesachs. In "Rosengarten," Eckenbrecht is a celebrated
weapon-smith. In Vilkinasaga, Eckehard is, like Volund, a smith who
works for Mimer; and Eckesachs is a sword made by the three dwarfs, of
which in part the same story is told as of Volund's sword of victory.
Thus while Haquinus and what is narrated of Haquinus refers to the smith
Volund, a person who in Saxo is called Haquinus assumes the place which
belongs to Thjasse in his capacity of Skade's father.

(9) In Lokasenna (17), Loke reproaches Idun that she has embraced the
slayer of her own brother:

  thic queth ec allra quenna
  vergjarnasta vera,
  sitztu arma thina
  lagdir itrthvegna
  um thinn brothurbana.

Idun is a daughter of Ivalde (Forspjallsljod), and hence a sister or
half-sister of the famous smiths, Ivalde's sons. From the passage it thus
appears that one of Ivalde's sons was slain, and Loke insists that Idun
had given herself to the man who was the cause of his death.

There is not the slightest reason to doubt that in this instance, as in
so many other cases, Loke boasts of the evil deeds he has committed,
and of the successes he has had among the asynjes, according to his own
assurances. With the reproaches cast on Idun we should compare what
he affirms in regard to Freyja, in regard to Tyr's wife, in regard to
Skade and Sif, in reference to all of whom he claims that they have
secretly been his mistresses. Against Idun he could more easily and more
truthfully bring this charge, for the reason that she was at one time
wholly in his power, namely, when he stole into Thjasse's halls and
carried her away thence to Asgard (Younger Edda, i. 210-214). Under such
circumstances, that slayer of Idun's brother, whom she is charged with
embracing, can be none other than Loke himself. As a further allusion to
this, the author of the poem makes Loke speak of a circumstance connected
with the adventure--namely, that Idun, to sweeten the pleasure of the
critical hour, washed her arms shining white--a circumstance of which
none other than herself and her secret lover could know. Thus Loke is the
cause of the slaying of one of the famous artists, Ivalde's sons. The
murders of which Loke boasts in the poem are two only, that of Balder
and that of Thjasse. He says that he advised the killing of Balder, and
that he was the first and foremost in the killing of Thjasse (_fyrstr oc
ofstr_). Balder was not Idun's brother. So far as we can make out from
the mythic records extant, the Ivalde son slain must have been identical
with Thjasse, the son of Alvalde. There is no other choice.

(10) It has already been shown above that Volund and the swan-maid
who came to him in the Wolfdales were either brother and sister or
half-brother and half-sister. From what has been stated above, it follows
that Thjasse and Idun were related to each other in the same manner.

(11) Thjasse's house is called _Brunn-akr_ (Younger Edda, i. 312). In
Volundarkvida (9) Volund is called _Brunni_.

(12) Idun has the epithet _Snót_ (Younger Edda, 306), "the wise one,"
"the intelligent one." Volund's swan-maid has the epithet _Alvitr_,
"the much-knowing one," "the very intelligent one" (Volundarkvida, 1).
Volund has the epithet _Ásólfr_ (Hyndluljod; cp. No. 109). Thjasse has
the epithet _Fjallgylder_ (Younger Edda, 308), which is a paraphrase of
_Ásólfr_ (_áss = fjöll_, _olfr = gyldir_).

(13) One of Volund's brothers, namely Orvandel-Egil, had the epithet
"Wild boar" (Ibor, Ebur). One of Thjasse's brothers is called _Urnir_,
_Aurnir_. This name means "wild boar." Compare the Swedish and Norwegian
peasant word _orne_, and the Icelandic word _runi_ (a boar), in which the
letters are transposed.

(14) At least one of Alvalde's sons was a star-hero, viz., Thjasse, whose
eyes Odin and Thor fastened on the heavens (Harbardsljod, 18; Younger
Edda, i. 318, 214). At least one of Ivalde's sons was a star-hero, viz.,
Orvandel-Egil (Younger Edda, i. 276, &c.). No star-hero is mentioned
who is not called a son of Alvalde or is a son of Ivalde, and not a
single name of a star or of a group of stars can with certainty be
pointed out which does not refer to Alvalde's or Ivalde's sons. From the
Norse sources we have the names _Örvandilstá thjaza augu Lokabrenna_
and _Reid Rögnis_. Lokabrenna, the Icelandic name of Sirius, can only
refer to the _brenna_ (fire) caused by Loke when Thjasse fell into the
vaferflames kindled around Asgard. In _Reid Rögnis_, Rogner's car, Rogner
is, as shall be shown below, the epithet of a mythic person, in whom we
rediscover both Volund and Thjasse. In Old English writings the Milky
Way is called Vætlingastræt, Watlingestræt. The Watlings or Vætlings can
only be explained as a patronymic meaning Vate's sons. Vate is one of the
names of the father of Volund and his brothers (see No. 110). Another
old English name of star-group is Eburthrung, Eburthring. Here Egil's
surname Ebur, "wild boar," reappears. The name Ide, borne by a brother of
Thjasse, also seems to have designated a star-hero in England.

At least two of these figures and names are very old and of ancient Aryan
origin. I do not know the reasons why Vigfusson assumes that Orvandel is
identical with Orion, but the assumption is corroborated by mythological
facts. Orion is the most celebrated archer and hunter of Greek mythology,
just as Orvandel is that of the Teutonic. Like Orvandel-Egil, he has two
brothers of whom the one Lykos (wolf) has a Telchin name, and doubtless
was originally identical with the Telchin Lykos, who, like Volund, is a
great artist and is also endowed with powers to influence the weather.
Orion could, so it is said, walk on the sea as well as on the land.
Orvandel-Egil has skees, with which he travels on the sea as well as on
the snow-fields, whence small ships are called _Egil's andrar_, Egil's
skees (Kormak, 5). Orion wooes a daughter of Oinopion. The first part of
the word is _oinos_ (wine); and as Oinopion is the son of Bacchus, there
is no room for doubt that he originally had a place in the Aryan myth in
regard to the mead. Orvandel-Egil woos a daughter of Sumbl (Olvalde),
the king of the Finns, who in the Teutonic mythology is Oinopion's
counterpart. Orion is described as a giant, a tall and exceedingly
handsome man, and is said to be a brother of the Titans. His first wife,
the beautiful Sida, he soon lost by death; just as Orvandel lost Groa.
Sida, _Sida_ with its Dorian variation Rhoa, _Roa_, means fruit. The
name Groa refers, like Sida, Rhoa, to vegetation, growth. After Sida's
decease, Orion woos Oinopion's daughter just as Orvandel-Egil woos the
daughter of the Finnish king Sumbl after Groa's death. He has a third
erotic alliance with Eos. According to one record he is said to have
been killed because, in his love of the chase, he had said that he would
exterminate all game on earth. This statement may have its origin in
the myth preserved by the Teutons about Volund's and Orvandel-Egil's
effort to destroy all life on the earth by the aid of the powers of
frost. Hesiod says that the Pleiades (which set when Orion rises above
the horizon) save themselves from Orion in the stream of the ocean. The
above-mentioned Old English name of a constellation Eburthrung may refer
to the Pleiades, since the part _thrung_, _drying_, refers to a dense
cluster of stars. The first part of the word, Ebur, as already stated,
is a surname of Orvandel-Egil. It should be added that the points of
similarity between the Orion and Orvandel myths are of such a nature that
they exclude all idea of being borrowed one from the other. Like the most
of the Greek myths in the form in which they have been handed down to us,
the Orion myth is without any organic connection with any epic whole.
The Orvandel myth, on the other hand, dovetails itself as a part into a
mythological epic which, in grand and original outlines, represents the
struggle between gods, patriarchs, ancient artists, and frost-giants for
the control of the world.

The name Thjasse, _thjazi_, in an older and uncorrupted form _thizi_,
I regard to be most ancient like the person that bears it. According
to my opinion, Thjasse is identical with the star-hero mentioned in
Rigveda, _Tishya_, the _Tistrya_ of the Iranians, who in Rigveda (x.
64, 8) is worshipped together with an archer, who presumably was his
brother. The German middle-age poetry has preserved the name Thjasse
in the form _Desen_ (which is related to _thjazi_ as _Delven_ is to
_thialfi_). In "Dieterichs Flucht" Desen is a king, whose daughter
marries Dieterich-Hadding's father. In the Norse sources a sister of
Thjasse (Alveig-Signe, daughter of Sumbl, the king of the Finns) marries
Hadding's father, Halfdan. Common to the German and Norse traditions is,
therefore, that Hadding's father marries a near kinswoman of Thjasse.

(15) In the poem Haustlaung Thjasse's adventure is mentioned, when he
captured Loke with the magic rail. Here we get remarkable, hitherto
misunderstood, facts in regard to Thjasse's personality.

That they have been misunderstood is not owing to lack of attention or
acumen on the part of the interpreters. On the contrary, acumen has
been lavished thereon.[10] In some cases the scholars have resorted to
text-changes in order to make the contents intelligible, and this was
necessary on account of the form in which our mythology hitherto has been
presented, and that for good reasons, since important studies of another
kind, especially of accurate editions of the Teutonic mythological
texts, have claimed the time of scholars and compelled them to neglect
the study of the epic connection of the myths and of their exceedingly
rich and abundant synonymics. As a matter of course, an examination of
the synonymics and of the epic connection could not fail to shed another
light than that which could be gained without this study upon a number of
passages in the old mythological poems, and upon the paraphrases based on
the myths and occurring in the historical songs.

In Haustlaung Thjasse is called _fadir mörna_, "the father of the
swords." Without the least reason it has been doubted that a mythic
person, that is so frequently called a giant, and whose connection
with the giant world and whose giant nature are so distinctly held
forth in our mythic sources, could be an artist and a maker of swords.
Consequently the text has been changed to _fadir mornar_ or _fadir
morna_, the father of consumption or of the strength-consuming diseases,
or of the feminine thurses representing these diseases. But so far
as our mythic records give us any information, Thjasse had no other
daughter than Skade, described as a proud, bold, powerful maid, devoted
to achievements, who was elevated to the rank of an asynje, became the
wife of the god of wealth, the tender stepmother of the lord of harvests
(Skirnersmal), Frigg's _elja_, and in this capacity the progenitress
of northern rulers, who boasted their descent from her. That Thjasse
had more daughters is indeed possible, but they are not mentioned, and
it must remain a conjecture on which nothing can be built; and even if
such were the case, it must be admitted that as Skade was the foremost
and most celebrated among them, she is the first one to be thought of
when there is mention of a daughter or of daughters of Thjasse. But that
Skade should be spoken of as a _morn_, a consumption-witch, and that
Hakon Jarl should be regarded as descended from a demon of consumption,
and be celebrated in song as the scion of such a person, I do not deem
possible. The text, as we have it, tells us that Thjasse was the father
of swords (_mörnir_ = sword; see Younger Edda, i. 567; ii. 560, 620). We
must confine ourselves to this reading and remember that this is not the
only passage which we have hitherto met with where his name is put in
connection with works of a smith. Such a passage we have already met with
in _thjaza thingskil_.

(16) In the same poem, Haustlaung, Thjasse is called _hapta snytrir_,
"the one who decorated the gods," furnished them with treasures. This
epithet, too, appeared unintelligible, so long as none of the artists
of antiquity was recognised in Thjasse; hence text-changes were also
resorted to in this case in order to make sense out of the passage.

The situation described is as follows: Odin and _Hænir_, accompanied by
Loke are out on a journey. They have traversed mountains and wildernesses
(Bragarædur, 2), and are now in a region which, to judge from the
context, is situated within Thjasse's domain, Thrymheim. The latter,
who is _margspakr_ and _lómhugadr_ (Haustl., 3, 12), has planned an
ambush for Loke in the very place which they have now reached: a valley
(Bragarædur, 2) overgrown with oak-trees (Haustl., 6), and the more
inviting as a place of refreshment and rest, inasmuch as the Asas are
hungry after their long journey (Bragarædur, 21), and see a herd of
"yoke-bears" pasturing in the grass near by. Thjasse has calculated on
this and makes one of the bears act the part of a decoy (_tálhreinn_
= a decoy reindeer--Haustlaung, 3; see Vigfusson's Dict., 626), which
permits itself to be caught by the travellers. That the animal belongs
to Thjasse's herds follows from the fact that it (str. 6) is said to
belong to the "dis of the bow-string," Skade, his daughter. The animal
is slaughtered and a fire is kindled, over which it is to be roasted.
Near the place selected for the eating of the meal there lies, as it were
accidentally, a rail or stake. It resembles a common rail, but is in fact
one of Thjasse's smith-works, having magic qualities. When the animal is
to be carved, it appears that the "decoy reindeer was quite hard between
the bones for the gods to cut" (_tálhreinn var medal beina tormidladr
tífum_--str. 3). At the same time the Asas had seen a great eagle flying
toward them (str. 2), and alighting near the place where they prepared
their feast (str. 3). From the context it follows that they took it for
granted that the eagle guise concealed Thjasse, the ruler of the region.
The animal being found to be so hard to carve, the Asas at once guess
that Thjasse, skilled in magic arts, is the cause, and they immediately
turn to him with a question, which at the same time tells him that they
know who he is:

  Hvat, quotho, hapta snytrir
  hjálmfaldinn, thvi valda?

"They (the gods) said (_quotho_): Why cause this (_hvat thvi valda_) thou
ornament-giver of the gods (_hjálmfaldinn hapta snytrir_), concealed in
a guise (eagle guise)?" He at once answers that he desires his share of
the sacred meal of the gods, and to this Odin gives his consent. Nothing
indicates that Odin sees a foe in Thjasse. There is then no difficulty
in regard to the roast; and when it is ready and divided into four
parts Thjasse flies down, but, to plague Loke, he takes so much that
the latter, angry, and doubtless also depending on Odin's protection if
needed, seizes the rail lying near at hand and strikes the eagle a blow
across the back. But Loke could not let go his hold of the rail; his hand
stuck fast to one end while the other end clung to the eagle, and Thjasse
flew with him and did not let go of him before he had forced him to swear
an oath that he would bring Idun into Thjasse's hands.

So long as it was impossible to assume that Thjasse had been the friend
of the gods before this event happened, and in the capacity of ancient
artist had given them valuable products of his skill, and thus become
a _hapta snytrir_, it was also impossible to see in him, though he was
concealed in the guise of an eagle, the _hjálmfaldinn_ here in question,
since _hjálmfaldinn_ manifestly is in apposition to _hapta snytrir_,
"the decorator of the gods." (The common meaning of _hjálmr_, as is
well known, is a covering, a garb, or which _hjálmr_ in the sense of a
helmet is a specification.) It therefore became necessary to assume that
Odin was meant by _hjálmfaldinn_ and _hapta snytrir_. This led to the
changing of _quotho_ to _quad_, and to the insertion in the manuscripts
of a _mun_ not found there, and to the exclusion of a _thvi_ found there.
The result was, moreover, that no notice was taken of the use made of
the expressions _hjálmfaldinn_ and _snytrir_ in a poem closely related
to Haustlaung, and evidently referring to its description of Thjasse.
This poem is Einar Skalaglam's "Vellekla," which celebrates Hakon Jarl,
the Great. Hakon Jarl regarded himself as descended from Thjasse through
the latter's daughter, Skade (Háleygjatal), and on this account Vellekla
contains a number of allusions to the mythic progenitor. The task (from
a poetic and rhetorical point of view) which Einar has undertaken is in
fact that of taking, so far as possible, the kernel of those paraphrases
with which he celebrates Hakon Jarl (see below) from the myth concerning
Thjasse, and the task is performed with force and acumen. In the
execution of his poem Einar has had before him that part of Thjodulf's
Haustlaung which concerned Thjasse. In str. 6 he calls Thjasse's
descendant _thjódar snytrir_, taking his cue from Haustlaung, which calls
Thjasse _hapta snytrir_. In str. 8 he gives Hakon the epithet _hjálmi
faldinn_, having reference to Haustlaung, which makes Thjasse appear
_hjálm faldinn_. In str. 10 Hakon is a _gard-Rögnir_, just as Thjasse is
a _ving-Rögnir_ in Haustlaung. In str. 11 Hakon is a _midjungr_, just as
Thjasse is a _midjungr_ in Haustlaung. In str. 16 an allusion is made
in the phrase _vildi Yggsnidr fridar bildja_ to Haustlaung's _málunautr
hváts mátti fridar bidja_. In str. 21 Hakon is called _hlym-Narfi_, just
as Thjasse in Haustlaung is called _grjót Nidadr_ (_Narfi_ and _Nidadr_
are epithets of Mimer; see Nos. 85, 87). In str. 22 Hakon is called
_fangsæll_, and Thjasse has the same epithet in Haustlaung. Some of the
paraphrases in Vellekla, to which the myth about Thjasse furnishes the
kernel, I shall discuss below. There can, therefore, be no doubt whatever
that Einar in Haustlaung's _hjálmfaldinn_ and _hapta snytrir_ saw
epithets of Thjasse, and we arrive at the same result if we interpret the
text in its original reading and make no emendations.

Thus we have already found three paraphrases which inform us that Thjasse
was an ancient artist, one of the great smiths of mythology: (1) _thiaza
thingskil_, golden treasures produced as evidence in court owned or made
by Thjasse; (2) _hapta snytrir_, he who gave ornaments to the gods; (3)
_fadir mörna_, the father of the swords.

Thjasse's claim to become a table-companion of the gods and to eat
with them, _af helgu skutli_, points in all probability to an ancient
mythological fact of which we find a counterpart in the Iranian
records. This fact is that, as a compensation for the services he had
rendered the gods, Thjasse was anxious to be elevated to their rank
and to receive sacrifices from their worshippers. This demand from the
Teutonic star-hero Thjasse is also made by the Iranian star-hero Tistrya,
Rigveda's Tishya. Tistrya complains in Avesta that he has not sufficient
strength to oppose the foe of growth, Apaosha, since men do not worship
him, Tistrya, do not offer sacrifices to him. If they did so, it is said,
then he would be strong enough to conquer. Tishya-Tistrya does not appear
to have obtained complete rank as a god; but still he is worshipped in
Rigveda, though very seldom, and in cases of severe dry weather the
Iranians were commanded to offer sacrifices to him.

(17) In Haustlaung Thjasse is called _ving-Rögnir vagna_, "the Rogner of
the winged cars," and _fjardarblads leik-Regin_, "the Regin of the motion
of the feather-leaf (the wing)." In the mythology Thjasse, like Volund,
wears an eagle guise. In an eagle guise Volund flies away from his prison
at Mimer-_Nidadr's_. When Thjasse, through Loke's deceit, is robbed of
Idun, he hastens in wild despair, with the aid of his eagle guise, after
the robber, gets his wings burned in the vaferflames kindled around
Asgard, falls pierced by the javelins of the gods, and is slain by Thor.
The original meaning of _Regin_ is maker, creator, arranger, worker. The
meaning has been preserved through the ages, so that the word _regin_,
though applied to all the creative powers (Völsupa), still retained even
in Christian times the signification of artist, smith, and reappears in
the heroic traditions in the name of the smith _Reginn_. When, therefore,
Thjasse is called "the Regin of the motion of the feather-leaf," there
is no reason to doubt that the phrase alludes not only to the fact
that he possessed a feather guise, but also to the idea that he was
its "smith;" the less so as we have already seen him characterised as
an ancient artist in the phrases _thiaza thingskil_, _hapta snytrir_,
and _fadir mörna_. Thus we here have a fourth proof of the same kind.
The phrase "the Rognir of the winged cars" connects him not only with a
single vehicle, but with several. "Wing-car" is a paraphrase for a guise
furnished with wings, and enabling its owner to fly through the air. The
expression "wing-car" may be applied to several of the strange means used
by the powers for locomotion through the air and over the sea, as, for
instance, the cars of Thor and Frey, Balder's ship Ringhorn, Frey's ship
Skidbladner, and the feather garbs of the swan-maids. The mythology which
knew from whose hands Skidbladner proceeded certainly also had something
to say of the masters who produced Ringhorn and the above-mentioned cars
and feather garbs. That they were made by ancient artists and not by the
highest gods is an idea of ancient Aryan birth. In Rigveda it was the
Ribhus, the counterparts of the Ivalde sons, who smithied the wonderful
car-ship of the Asvinians and Indra's horses.

The appellations _Rögnir_ and _Regin_ also occur outside of Haustlaung in
connection with each other, and this even as late as in the _Skida-Rima_,
composed between 1400 and 1450, where Regin is represented as a smith
(_Rögnir kallar Regin til sín: rammliga skaltu smida_--str. 102). In
Forspjallsljod (10) we read: _Galdr gólo, gaundom ritho Rögnir ok Regin
at ranni heimis_--"Rogner and Regin sang magic songs at the edge of the
earth and constructed magic implements." They who do this are artists,
smiths. In strophe 8 they are called _viggiar_, and _viggi_ is a synonym
of _smidr_ (Younger Edda, i. 587). While they do this Idun is absent from
Asgard (Forspjallsljod, str. 6), and a terrible cold threatens to destroy
the earth. The words in Völuspa, with which the terrible fimbul-winter
of antiquity is characterised, _loptr lævi blandinn_, are adopted by
Forspjallsljod (str. 6--_lopti med lævi_), thus showing that the same
mythic event is there described. The existence of the order of the world
is threatened, the earth and the source of light are attacked by evil
influences, the life of nature is dying, from the north (east), from the
Elivagar rivers come piercing, rime-cold arrows of frost, which kill men
and destroy the vegetation of the earth. The southern source of the lower
world, whose function it is to furnish warming saps to the world-tree,
was not able to prevent the devastations of the frost. "It was so
ordained," it is said in Forspjallsljod, str. 2, "that Urd's _Odrærir_
(Urd's fountain) did not have sufficient power to supply protection
against the terrible cold."[11] The destruction is caused by Rogner
and Regin. Their magic songs are heard even in Asgard. Odin listens in
Lidskjalf and perceives that the song comes from the uttermost end of
the world. The gods are seized by the thought that the end of the world
is approaching, and send their messengers to the lower world in order to
obtain there from the wise norn a solution of the problem of the world
and to get the impending fate of the world proclaimed.

In the dictionaries and in the mythological text-books _Rögnir_ is said
to be one of Odin's epithets. In his excellent commentary on Vellekla,
Freudenthal has expressed a doubt as to the correctness of this view. I
have myself made a list of all the passages in the Old Norse literature
where the name occurs, and I have thereby reached the conclusion that
the statement in the dictionaries and in the text-books has no other
foundation than the name-list in _Eddubrott_ and the above-cited
_Skidarima_, composed in the fifteenth century. The conceptions of
the latter in regard to heathen mythology are of such a nature that
it should never in earnest be regarded as an authority anent this
question. In the Old Norse records there cannot be found a single passage
where _Rögnir_ is used as an epithet of Odin. It is everywhere used in
reference to a mythic being who was a smith and a singer of magic songs,
and regularly, and without exception, refers to Thjasse. While Thjodolf
designates Thjasse as the Rogner of the wing-cars, his descendant Hakon
Jarl gets the same epithet in Einar Skalaglam's paraphrases. He is _hjörs
brak-Rögnir_, "the Rogner of the sword-din," and _Geirrásargard-Rögnir_,
"the Rogner of the wall of the sword-flight (the shield)." The Thjasse
descendant, Sigurd Hladejarl, is, in harmony herewith, called _fens
furs Rögnir_. _Thrym-Rögnir_ (Eg., 58) alludes to Thjasse as ruler in
Thrymheim. A parallel phrase to _thrym-Rögnir_ is _thrym-Regin_ (Younger
Edda, i. 436). Thus, while Thjasse is characterised as _Rögnir_, Saxo
has preserved the fact that Volund's brother, Orvandel-Egil, bore the
epithet Regin. Saxo Latinises Regin into Regnerus, and gives this name
to Ericus-Svipdag's father (_Hist._, 192). The epithet _Rögnir_ confines
itself exclusively to a certain group--to Thjasse and his supposed
descendants. Among them it is, as it were, an inheritance.

The paraphrases in Vellekla are of great mythological importance. While
other mythic records relate that Thjasse carried away Idun, the goddess
of vegetation, the goddess who controls the regenerating forces in
nature, and that he thus assisted in bringing about the great winter of
antiquity, we learn from Vellekla that it was he who directly, and by
separate magic acts, produced this winter, and that he, accordingly,
acted the same part in this respect as Rogner and Regin do in

Thus, for example, the poem on Hakon Jarl, when the latter fought against
the sons of Gunhild, says: _Hjörs brak-Rögnir skók bogna hagl or Hlakkar
seglum_, "the Rogner of the sword-din shook the hail of the bows from the
sails of the valkyrie." The mythic kernel of the paraphrase is: _Rögnir
skók hagl ur seglum_, "Rogner shook hails from the sails." The idea is
still to be found in the sagas that men endowed with magic powers could
produce a hailstorm by shaking napkins or bags, filling the air with
ashes, or by untying knots. And in Christian records it is particularly
stated of Hakon Jarl that he held in honour two mythic beings--Thorgerd
and Irpa--who, when requested, could produce storms, rain, and hail. No
doubt this tradition is connected with Hakon's supposed descent from
Thjasse, the cause of hailstorms and of the fimbul-winter. By making
Rogner the "Rogner of the sword-din," and the hail sent by him "the hail
of the bows," and the sails or napkins shook by him "the sails of the
valkyrie"--that is to say, the shields--the skald makes the mythological
kernel pointed out develop into figures applicable to the warrior to the

In other paraphrases Vellekla says that the descendant of Thjasse, Hakon,
made "the death-cold sword-storm grow against the life of udal men in
Odin's storm," and that he was "an elf of the earth of the wood-land"
coming from the north, who, with "murder-frost," received the warriors of
the south (Emperor Otto's army) at Dannevirke. Upon the whole Vellekla
chooses the figures used in describing the achievements of Hakon from
the domain of cold and storm, and there can be no doubt that it does so
in imitation of the Thjasse-myth.

In another poem to Hakon Jarl, of which poem there is only a fragment
extant, the skald Einar speaks of Hakon's generosity, and says: _Verk
Rögnis mer hogna_, "Rogner's works please me." We know that Hakon
Jarl once gave Einar two gilt silver goblets, to which belonged two
scales in the form of statuettes, the one of gold, the other of silver,
which scales were thought to possess magic qualities, and that Hakon
on another occasion gave him an exceedingly precious engraved shield,
inlaid between the engraved parts with gold and studded with precious
stones. It was customary for the skalds to make songs on such gifts. It
follows, therefore, that the "works of Rogner," with which Einar says
he was pleased, are the presents which Hakon, the supposed descendant
of Rogner-Thjasse, gave him; and I find this interpretation the more
necessary for the reason that we have already found several unanimous
evidences of Thjasse's position in the mythology as an artist of the
olden time.

Forspjallsljod's Rogner "sings magic songs" and "concocts witchcraft" in
order to encourage and strengthen by these means of magic the attack of
the powers of frost on the world protected by the gods. Haustlaung calls
Thjasse _ramman reimud Jötunheima_, "the powerful _reimud_ of Jotunheim."
The word _reimud_ occurs nowhere else. It is thought to be connected with
_reimt_ and _reimleikar_, words which in the writings of Christian times
refer to ghosts, supernatural phenomena, and _reimudr_. _Jötunheima_ has
therefore been interpreted as "the one who made Jotunheim the scene of
his magic arts and ghost-like appearances." From what has been stated
above, it is manifest that this interpretation is correct.


(_From an etching by Lorenz Frölich._)

Hymir, a giant and ruler of the winter sea, was the owner of a great
kettle that brewed any quantity desired of the finest ale. The gods,
eager to posses the kettle, sent Thor to obtain it. Proceeding to the
borders of heaven, where Hymir lived, Thor assumed the form of a young
man and appearing before the giant, asked permission to accompany him
on a fishing excursion. The giant objected that so small a youth could
not endure the hardships of such a journey, but finally consented. Thor
secured necessary bait by tearing the head from a bull, and the two then
set off to row far out to sea. Thor insisted upon going further until
they came near the borders of the world, and the two began to fish. Hymir
soon hooked and drew up two whales, which he boastfully showed as proof
of his strength, but soon after Thor hooked the Midgard Serpent, which
rose spouting floods of venom that greatly terrified Hymir. Thor pulled
with so much strength on the line that he broke through the bottom of the
boat, but his feet stood upon the bottom of the sea and he raised his
hammer to strike the serpent; Hymir was so alarmed, however, that he cut
the line and let the serpent escape. Thor then rowed back with Hymir to
his castle, where he slew Hymir and several other giants and secured the

See page 855.]

A passage in Thorsdrapa (str. 3), to which I shall recur below, informs
us that at the time when Thor made his famous journey to the fire-giant
Geirrod, Rogner had not yet come to an agreement with Loke in regard to
the plan of bringing ruin on the gods. Rogner was, therefore, during a
certain period of his life, the foe of the gods, but during a preceding
period he was not an enemy. The same is true of Thjasse. He was for a
time _hapta snytrir_, "the one giving the gods treasures." At another
time he carried away Idun, and appeared as one changed into _dólgr
ballastr vallar_, "the most powerful foe of the earth" (Haustl., 6), an
expression which characterises him as the cause of the fimbul-winter.

There still remain one or two important passages in regard to the correct
interpretation of the epithet Rogner. In Atlakvida (33) it is said of
Gudrun when she goes to meet her husband Atle, who has returned home,
carrying in her hand a golden goblet, that she goes to _reifa gjöld
Rögnis_, "to present that requital or that revenge which Rogner gave."
To avenge her brothers, Gudrun slew in Atle's absence the two young sons
she had with him and made goblets of their skulls. Into one of these
she poured the drink of welcome for Atle. A similar revenge is told
about Volund. The latter secretly kills _Nidadr's_ two young sons and
makes goblets out of their skulls for their father. In the passage it
is stated that the revenge of Gudrun against Atle was of the same kind
as Rogner's revenge against some one whom he owed a grudge. So far as
our records contain any information, Volund is the only one to whom the
epithet Rogner is applicable in this case. Of no one else is it reported
that he took a revenge of such a kind that Gudrun's could be compared
therewith. In all other passages the epithet Rogner refers to "the father
of the swords," to the ancient artist Thjasse, the son of Alvalde. Here
it refers to the father of the most excellent sword, to the ancient
artist Volund, the son of Ivalde.

The strophe in Vellekla, which compares the Thjasse descendant Hakon
Jarl with the hail-producing Rogner, also alludes to another point in
the myth concerning him by a paraphrase the kernel of which is: _Varat
svanglýjadi at frýja ofbyrjar nè drifu_, "it was impossible to defy the
swan-pleaser in the matter of storm and bad weather." The paraphrase is
made applicable to Hakon by making the "swan-pleaser" into the "pleaser
of the swan of the sword's high-billowing fjord"--that is to say, the
one who pleases the bird of the battlefield, that is, the raven. The
storm is changed into "the storm of arrows," and the bad weather into
the "bad weather of the goddess of the battle." The mythological kernel
of this paraphrase, and that which sheds light on our theme, is the fact
that Rogner in the mythology was "one who pleased the swans." In the
heroic poem three swan-maids are devoted in their love to Volund and his
brothers. Volundarkvida says that the third one lays her arms around
Volund-Anund's white neck.

We will now combine the results of this investigation concerning Rogner,
and in so doing we will first consider what is said of him when the name
occurs independently, and not connected with paraphrases, and then what
is said of him in paraphrases in which his name constitutes the kernel.

Forspjallsljod describes Rogner as dwelling on the northern-most edge
of the earth at the time when Idun was absent from Asgard. There he
sings magic songs and concocts witchcraft, by which means he sends a
destructive winter out upon the world. He is a "smith," and in his
company is found one or more than one mythic person called Regin. (Regin
may be singular or plural.)

Einar Skalaglam, who received costly treasures from Hakon Jarl, speaks in
his song of praise to the latter of the "works of Rogner," which please
him, and which must be the treasures he received from the Jarl.

In Thorsdrapa, Eilif Gudrunson relates that Rogner had not yet
"associated himself" with Loke when Thor made his expedition to Geirrod.

Atlakvida states that he revenged himself on some one, with which revenge
the song compares Gudrun's when she hands to Atle the goblets made of the
skulls of the two young sons of the latter.

All the facts presented in these passages are rediscovered in the myth
concerning Ivalde's sons--Volund, Egil, and Slagfin. There was a time
when they were the friends of the gods and smithied for them costly
treasures, and there was another time when they had the same plans as
Loke tried to carry out in a secret manner--that is, to dethrone the
gods and destroy what they had created. They deliver their foster-son
Frey, the young god of harvests, to the giants (see Nos. 109, 112)--an
event which, like Idun's disappearance from Asgard, refers to the coming
of the fimbul-winter--and they depart to the most northern edge of the
lower world where they dwell with swan-maids, dises of growth, who, like
Idun in Forspjallsljod (str. 8), must have changed character and joined
the world-hostile plots of their lovers. (Of Idun it is said, in the
strophe mentioned, that she clothed herself in a wolf-skin given her
by the smiths, and _lyndi breytti, lek at lævisi, litom skipti_.) The
revenge which Volund, during his imprisonment by Nidad, takes against
the latter explains why Atlakvida characterises Gudrun's terrible deed
as "Rogner's revenge." In regard to the witchcraft (_gand_) concocted
by Rogner and Regin, it is to be said that the sword of victory made by
Volund is a _gandr_ in the original sense of this word--an implement
endowed with magic powers, and it was made during his sojourn in the

One passage in Volundarkvida (str. 5), which hitherto has defied every
effort at interpretation, shows that his skill was occupied with other
magic things while he dwelt there. The passage reads: _Lucthi hann alla
lindbauga vel_. The "lind"-rings in question, smithied of "red gold"
(see the preceding lines in strophe 5), are, according to the prefix,
_lind, linnr_, serpent-formed rings, which again are gand- (witchcraft)
rings on account of the mysterious qualities ascribed to the serpent.
_Lindbaugi_ is another form for _linnbaugi_, just as _lindból_ is
another form for _linnból_. The part played by the serpent in the
magic arts made it, when under the influence or in the possession of
the magician, a _gand_, whence _linnr_, a serpent, could be used as
a paraphrase of _gandr_, and _gandr_ could in turn, in the compound
_Jörmungandr_, be used as an epithet for the Midgard-serpent. The rings
which Volund "closed well together" are gand-rings. The very rope (_bast,
böstr_--Volundarkvida, 7, 12) on which he hangs the seven hundred
gand-rings he has finished seems to be a gand, an object of witchcraft,
with which Volund can bind and from which he can release the wind.
When Nidad's men surprised Volund in his sleep and bound him with this
rope, he asks ambiguously who "had bound the wind" with it (str. 12).
In two passages in Volundarkvida (str. 4, 8) he is called _vedreygr_,
"the storm-observer," or "the storm-terrible." The word may have either
meaning. That Volund for his purposes, like Rogner, made use of magic
songs is manifest from Saxo (_Hist._, 323, 324). According to Saxo it was
by means of Volund-Haquinus' magic song that the Volund-sword, wielded by
Svipdag-Ericus, was able to conquer Thor's hammer and Halfdan's club.

Passing now to the passages where the name Rogner occurs in paraphrases,
I would particularly emphasize what I have already demonstrated: that
Haustlaung with this name refers to Thjasse; that poems of a more recent
date than Haustlaung, and connected with the same celebrated song, apply
it to the supposed descendants of Thjasse, Hakon Jarl and his kinsmen;
that all of these paraphrases represent Rogner as a producer of storm,
snow, and hail; and that Rogner made "wind-cars," was a "Regin of the
motion of the feather-leaf" (the wing), and "one who pleased the swans."
Therefore (_a_) Rogner is an epithet of Thjasse, and at the same time it
designates Volund; (_b_) all that is said of Rogner, when the name in the
paraphrases is a Thjasse-epithet, applies to Volund; (_c_) all that is
said of Rogner, independently of paraphrases, applies to Volund.

(18) A usage in the Old Norse poetry is to designate a person by the name
of his opponent, when, by means of an additional characterisation, it
can be made evident that the former and not the latter is meant. Thus,
a giant can be called _berg-thórr_ or _grjót-Módi_, because he once had
Thor or Thor's son Mode as an opponent, and these epithets particularly
apply to giants who actually fought with Thor or Mode in the mythology.
In contrast with their successors in Christian times, the heathen skalds
took great pains to give their paraphrases special justification and
support in some mythological event. For the same reason that a giant
who had fought with Mode could be called _grjót-Módi_, Volund, as
Nidad's foe, could be called _grjót-Nidudr_. This epithet also occurs a
single time in the Old Norse poetry, namely, in Haustlaung, and there
it is applied to Thjasse. The paraphrase shows that the skald had in
his mind a corresponding (antithetic) circumstance between Thjasse and
_Nidadr_ (_Nidudr_). What we are able to gather from our sources is, that
Volund and _Nidadr_ had had an encounter, and that one of so decisive
a character, that the epithet _grjót-Nidudr_ naturally would make the
hearers think of Volund.

(19) When Loke had struck Thjasse, who was in eagle guise, with the magic
pole, Thjasse flew up; and as Loke's hand was glued fast to one end of
the pole and the eagle held fast to the other end, Loke had to accompany
the eagle on its flight. Haustlaung says that Thjasse, pleased with
his prey, bore him a long distance (_of veg lángan_) through the air.
He directed his course in such a manner that Loke's body fared badly,
probably being dragged over trees and rocks (_svá at slitna sundr úlfs
födor mundi_). Then follows in the poem the lines given below, which I
quote from Codex Regius, with the exception of a single word (_midjungs_,
instead of _mildings_), which I cite from Codex Wormianus. Here, as
elsewhere, I base nothing on text emendations, because even such, for
which the best of reasons may be given, do not furnish sufficient
foundation for mythological investigation, when the changes are not
supported by some manuscript, or are in and of themselves absolutely

  thá vard thórs ofrunni,
  thúngr var Loptr, of sprúnginn;
  málunautr hvats mátti
  midjungs fridar bidja.

The contents of these lines, in the light of what has now been stated,
are as follows:

Thjasse's pleasure in dragging Loke with him, and making his limbs come
in disagreeable contact with objects on their way, was so great that
he did not abstain therefrom, before he felt that he had over-exerted
himself. Strong as he was, this could not but happen, for he had been
flying with his burden very far from the place where he captured Loke in
the ambush he had laid; and, besides, Loke was heavy. The badly-hurt Loke
had during the whole time desired to beg for mercy, but during the flight
he was unable to do so. When Thjasse finally sank to the ground, Loke
obtained a breathing space, so that he could sue for mercy.

In the four lines there are four paraphrases. Thjasse is called _thórs
ofrunni_ or _thórs ofrúni_, "he who made Thor run," or "he who was
Thor's friend," and "_midjungr_," a word the meaning of which it is
of no importance to investigate in connection with the question under
consideration. Loke is called _Loptr_, a surname which is applied to
him many times, and _málunautr hvats midjungs_, "he who had journeyed
with the female companion of the powerful Midjung (Thjasse)." The female
companion (_mála_) of Thjasse is Idun, and the paraphrase refers to the
myth telling how Loke carried Idun away from Thjasse's halls, and flew
with her to Asgard.

With these preparatory remarks I am ready to present a literal
translation of the passage:

(Thjasse flew a long way with Loke, so that the latter came near being
torn into pieces), "... thereupon (_thá_ = _deinde_) became he who
caused Thor to run (_vard Ihórs ofrunni_)--or who became Thor's friend
(_Ihórs ofrúni_)--tired out (_ofsprúnginn_), (for) Lopt was heavy
(_thúngr var Loptr_). He (Loke) who had made a journey with the powerful
Midjung's (Thjasse's) female companion (_málunautr hvats midjungs_) could
(now finally) sue for peace (_mátti fridar bidja_)."

In the lines--

  thá vard thórs ofrunni
  thúngr var Loptr, ofsprúnginn--

_thúngr var Loptr_ clearly stands as an intermediate sentence, which, in
connection with what has been stated above, namely, that Thjasse had been
flying a long way with his burden, will justify and explain why Thjasse,
though exceedingly strong, stronger than _Hrungnir_ (the Grotte-song),
still was at the point of succumbing from over-exertion. The skald has
thus given the reason why Thjasse, "rejoicing in what he had caught,"
sank to the earth with his victim, before Loke became more used up than
was the case. To understand the connection, the word _mátti_ in the
third line is of importance. Hitherto the words _málunautr hvats mátti
midjungs fridar bidja_ have been interpreted as if they meant that Loke
"was compelled" to ask Thjasse for peace. _Mátti_ has been understood to
mean _coactus est_. Finnur Jonsson (_Krit. Stud._, p. 48) has pointed
out that not a single passage can with certainty or probability be found
where the verb _mega, mátti_, means "to be compelled." Everywhere it can
be translated "to be able." Thus the words _mátti fridar bidja_ mean
that Loke _could_, was able to, ask Thjasse for peace. The reason why
he was able is stated above, where it is said that Thjasse got tired of
flying with his heavy burden. Before that, and during the flight and the
disagreeable collisions between Loke's body and objects with which he
came in contact, he was not able to treat with his capturer; but when
the latter had settled on the ground, Loke got a breathing space, and
could beg to be spared. The half strophe thus interpreted gives the
most logical connection, and gives three causes and three results: (1)
Loke was able to use his eloquent tongue in speaking to Thjasse, since
the latter ceased to fly before Loke was torn into pieces; (2) Thor's
_ofrunni_ or _ofrúni_ ended his air-journey, because he, though a very
powerful person, felt that he had over-exerted himself; (3) he felt
wearied because Loke, with whom he had been flying, was heavy. But from
this it follows with absolute certainty that the skald, with Thor's
_ofrunni_ or _ofrúni_, meant Thjasse and not Loke, as has hitherto been
supposed. The epithet Thor's _ofrunni_, "he who made Thor run," must
accordingly be explained by some mythic event, which shows that Thor at
one time had to take flight on account of Thjasse. A single circumstance
has come to our knowledge, where Thor retreats before an opponent, and
it is hardly credible that the mythology should allow its favourite to
retreat conquered more than once. On that occasion it is Volund's sword,
wielded by Svipdag, which cleaves Thor's hammer and compels him to
retire. Thus Volund was at one time Thor's _ofrunni_. In Haustlaung it is
Thjasse. Here, too, we therefore meet the fact which has so frequently
come to the surface in these investigations, namely, that the same thing
is told of Volund and of Thjasse.

But by the side of _ofrunni_ we have another reading which must be
considered. Codex Wormianus has _ofrúni_ instead of _ofrunni_, and, as
Wisén has pointed out, this runni must, for the sake of the metre, be
read _rúni_. According to this reading Thjasse must at some time have
been Thor's _ofrúni_, that is, Thor's confidential friend. This reading
also finds its support in the mythology, as shall be demonstrated further
on. I may here be allowed to repeat what I have remarked before, that
of two readings only the one can be the original, while both may be
justified by the mythology.

(20) In the mythology are found characters that form a group by
themselves, and whose characteristic peculiarity is that they practise
skee-running in connection with the use of the bow and arrow. This group
consists of the brothers Volund, Egil, Slagfin, Egil's son Ull, and
Thjasse's daughter Skade. In the introduction to Volundarkvida it is
said of the three brothers that they ran on skees in the Wolfdales and
hunted. We have already referred to Egil's wonderful skees, that could be
used on the water as well as on the snow. Of Ull we read in Gylfaginning
(Younger Edda, i. 102): "He is so excellent an archer and skee-runner
that no one is his equal;" and Saxo tells about his Ollerus that he could
enchant a bone (the ice-shoe formed of a bone, the pendant of the skee),
so that it became changed into a ship. Ull's skees accordingly have the
same qualities as those of his father Egil, namely, that they can also be
used on the sea. Ull's skees seem furthermore to have had another very
remarkable character, namely, that when their possessor did not need them
for locomotion on land or on sea, they could be transformed into a shield
and be used in war. In this way we explain that the skalds could employ
_skip Ullar_, _Ullar far_, _knörr Örva áss_, as paraphrases for shields,
and that, according to one statement in the Edda Lovasina, _Ullr átti
skip that, er Skjöldr hét_. So far as his accomplishments are concerned,
Ull is in fact the counterpart of his father Egil, and the same may be
said of Skade. While Ull is called "the god of the skees," Skade is
called "the goddess of the skees," "the dis of the skees," and "the dis
of the sea-bone," _sævar beins dis_, a paraphrase which manifestly has
the same origin as Saxo's account of the bone enchanted by Ull. Thus
Thjasse's daughter has an attribute belonging to the circle of Volund's

The names also connect those whom we find to be kinsmen of Volund with
Thjasse's. Alvalde is Thjasse's father; Ivalde is Volund's. _Ívaldi_
is another form for _Idvaldi_. The long prefixed _Í_ in _Ívaldi_ is
explained by the disappearance of _d_ from _Idvaldi_. _Id_ reappears in
the name of Ivalde's daughter _Idunn_ and Thjasse's brother _Idi_, and
these are the only mythological names in which _Id_ appears. Furthermore,
it has already been pointed out, that of Alvalde's (_Ölvaldi's_) three
sons there is one who has the epithet Wildboar (_Aurnir, Urnir_); and
that among Ivalde's three sons there is one--namely, Orvandel-Egil--who
has the same epithet (_Ibor, Ebur, Ebbo_); and that among Alvalde's sons
one--namely, Thjasse--has the epithet _Fjallgyldir_, "mountain-wolf"
(Haustlaung); while among Ivalde-Olmod's sons there is one--namely,
Volund--who has the epithet _Ásólfr_, which also means "mountain-wolf."

In this connection it must not be forgotten that tradition has attached
the qualities of giants, not only to Thjasse, but also to Volund. That
this does not appear in the Elder Edda depends simply on the fact that
Volund is not mentioned by this name in the genuine mythic songs, but
only in the heroic fragment which we have in Volundarkvida. The memory
that Volund, though an elf-prince in the mythology, and certainly not
a full-blooded giant on his father's side, was regarded and celebrated
in song as an _iötunn_,--the memory of this not only survives in
Vilkinasaga, but appears there in an exaggeration fostered by later
traditions, to the effect that his father Vade (see No. 110) is there
called a giant, while his father's mother is said to have been a mermaid.
In another respect, too, there survives in Vilkinasaga the memory of a
relationship between Volund and the most famous giant-being. He and the
giants Etgeir (_Eggther_) and Vidolf are cousins, according to chapter
175. If we examine the Norse sources, we find Vidolf mentioned in
Hyndluljod (53) as progenitor of all the mythological valas, and Aurboda,
the most notorious of the valas of mythology, mentioned in strophe 30
as a kinswoman of Thjasse. Thus while Hyndluljod makes Thjasse, the
Vilkinasaga makes Volund, a kinsman of the giant Vidolf.

Though in a form greatly changed, the Vilkinasaga has also preserved the
memory of the manner in which Volund's father closed his career. With
some smiths ("dwarfs") who lived in a remote mountain, Vade had made an
agreement, according to which, in return for a certain compensation, his
son Volund should learn their wonderful art as smiths. When, toward the
close of the time agreed upon, Vade appeared outside of the mountain,
he was, before entering, killed by an avalanche in accordance with the
treacherous arrangement of these smiths.

In the mythology Thjasse's father is the great drink-champion who, among
his many names and epithets, as we have seen, also has some that refer to
his position in the mythology in regard to fermented beverage; _Svigdir_
(the great drinker) _Ölvaldi_, _Ölmódr_, _Sumbl Finnakonungr_. In regard
to _Svigdir's_ death, it has already been shown (see No. 89) that, on his
complete disappearance from the mythology, he is outside of a mountain
in which Suttung and Suttung's sons, descendants of Surt-Durinn, with
Mimer the most ancient smith (see No. 89), have their halls; that on his
arrival a treacherous dwarf, the doorkeeper of Suttung's sons, goes to
meet him, and that he is "betrayed" by the dwarf, never enters the rocky
halls, and consequently must have died outside.

Vilkinasaga's very late statements (probably taken from German
traditions), in regard to the death of Volund's father, thus correspond
in the main features with what is related in the Norse records as to how
Thjasse's father disappeared from the scene of mythology.

In regard to the birth and rank of Thjasse's father among the mythic
powers, the following statements in poems from the heathen time are to be
observed. When Haustlaung tells how Thjasse falls into the vaferflames
kindled around Asgard, it makes use of the words _Greipar bidils son
svidnar_, "the son of Greip's wooer is scorched." Thus Thjasse's mother
is the giantess Greip, who, according to a stanza cited in the Younger
Edda, i. 288, is a daughter of the giant _Geirrödr_ and a sister of
Gjalp. One of these sisters, and, so far as we can see, Greip, is, in
Thorsdrapa, called _meinsvarans hapts arma farmr_, "the embrace of the
arms of the perjurous _hapt_." _Höpt_, sing _hapt_, is like _bönd_,
meaning the same, an appellation of lower and higher powers, _numina_
of various ranks. If by the perjurous mistress of the _hapt_ Greip, and
not the sister Gjalp, is meant, then Thjasse's father is a being who
belonged to the number of the _numina_ of the mythology, and who, with a
giantess whose _bidill_ he had been, begat the son Thjasse, and probably
also the latter's brothers _Idi_ and _Gángr_ (_Aurnir_). What rank this
perjurous _hapt_ held among the powers is indicated in Vellekla, strophe
9, which, like the foregoing strophe 8, and the succeeding strophes
10, 11, treats of Hakon Jarl's conflicts at Dannevirke, whither he was
summoned, in the capacity of a vassal under the Danish king, Harald
Blue-tooth, to defend the heathen North against Emperor Otto II.'s effort
to convert Denmark to Christianity by arms. The strophe, which here, too,
in its paraphrases presents parallels between Hakon Jarl and his mythic
progenitor Thjasse, says that the Danish king (_fémildr konungr_) desired
that the Morkwood's Hlodyn's (Mork-wood's earth's, that is to say, the
woody Norway's) elf, he who came from the North (_myrkmarkar Hlodynjar
alfs, thess er kom nordan_), was to be tested in "murder-frost," that
is to say, in war (_vid mord-frost freista_), when he (Denmark's king)
angrily bade the cold-hard storm-watcher (_stirdan vedrhirdi_, Hakon
Jarl) of the Hordaland dwellers (of the Norsemen) defend Dannevirke
(_Virki varda_) against the southland Njords of the shield-din (_fyr
serkja-hlym-val-Njördum_, "the princes of the southland warriors").

Here, too, the myth about Thjasse and of the fimbul-winter forms the
kernel out of which the paraphrases adapted to Hakon Jarl have grown.
Hakon is clothed with the mask of the cold-hard storm-watcher who comes
from the North and can let loose the winter-winds. Emperor Otto and the
chiefs who led the southern troops under him are compared with Njord and
his kinsmen, who, in the mythology, fought with Volund and the powers of
frost, and the battle between the warriors of the South and the North
is compared with a "murder-frost," in which Hakon coming from the North
meets the Christian continental Teutons at Dannevirke.

Thus the mythical kernel of the strophe is as follows: The elf of the
Morkwood of Hlodyn, the cold-hard storm-watcher, tested his power with
frost-weather when he fought with Njord and his kinsmen.

The Hlodyn of the Morkwood--that is to say, the goddess of the Jotunheim
woods--is in this connection Thjasse's daughter Skade, who, in
Haleygjatal, is called _Járnvidja_ of _Járnvidr_, the Ironwood, which is
identical with the Morkwood (Darkwood). Thjasse himself, whose father
is called "a perjurous _hapt_" in Thorsdrapa, is here called an elf.
Alone, this passage would not be sufficient to decide the question as
to which class of mythical beings Thjasse and his father belonged, the
less so as _álfr_, applied in a paraphrase, might allude to any sort of
being according to the characterisation added. But "perjurous _hapt_"
cannot possibly be a paraphrase for a giant. Every divinity that has
violated its oath is "a perjurous _hapt_," and the mythology speaks of
such perjuries. If a god has committed perjury, this is no reason why
he should be called a giant. If a giant has committed perjury, this is
no reason why he should be called a _hapt_, for it is nothing specially
characteristic of the giant nature that it commits perjury or violates
its oath. In fact, it seems to me that there should be the gravest
doubts about Thjasse's being a giant in the strictest and completest
sense of the word, from the circumstances that he is a star-hero; that
distinguished persons considered it an honour to be descended from him;
that Hakon Jarl's skalds never tired of clothing him with the appearance
of his supposed progenitor, and of comparing the historical achievements
of the one with the mythical exploits of the other; and that he, Thjasse,
not only robbed Idun, which indeed a genuine giant might do, but that he
also lived with her many long years, and, so far as we can see, begat
with her the daughter Skade. It should be remembered, from the foregoing
pages, what pains the mythology takes to get the other asynje, Freyja,
who had fallen into the hands of giants, back pure and undefiled to
Asgard, and it is therefore difficult to believe that Idun should be
humiliated and made to live for many years in intimacy with a real giant.
It follows from this that when Thjasse, in the above-cited mythological
kernel of the strophe of Vellekla, is called an _álfr_, and when his
father in Thorsdrapa is called a _hapt_, a being of higher or lower
divine rank, then _álfr_ is a further definition of the idea _hapt_, and
informs us to which class of _numina_ Thjasse belonged--namely, the
lower class of gods called elves. Thus, on his father's side, Thjasse is
an elf. So is Volund. In Volundarkvida he is called a prince of elves.
Furthermore, it should be observed that, in the strophe-kernel presented
above, Thjasse is represented as one who has fought with Njord and his
allies. In Saxo it is Anund-Volund and his brother the archer who fight
with Njord-Fridlevus and his companions; and as Njord in Saxo marries
Anund-Volund's daughter, while in the mythology he marries Thjasse's
daughter, then this is another recurrence of the fact which continually
comes to the surface in this investigation, namely, that whatever is told
of Volund is also told of Thjasse.

[10] See for example Th. Wisén's investigations and Finnur Jonsson's
_Krit. Stud._ (Copenhagen, 1884).

[11] The editions have changed _Urdar_ to _Urdr_, and thereby converted
the above-cited passage into nonsense, for which in turn the author of
Forspjallsljod was blamed, and it was presented as an argument to prove
that the poem is spurious.



(21) We now come to a mythic record in which Thjasse's brothers _Idi_ and
_Gángr_, and he too, in a paraphrase, are mentioned under circumstances
well suited to throw light on the subject before us, which is very
important in regard to the epic connection of the mythology.

Of Thor's expedition to Geirrod, we have two very different accounts. One
is recorded by the author of Skaldskaparmal; the other is found in Eilif
Gundrunson's Thorsdrapa.

In Skaldskaparmal (Younger Edda, i. 284) we read:

Only for pleasure Loke made an expedition in Freyja's feather guise, and
was led by his curiosity to seat himself in an opening in the wall of
Geirrod's house and peep in. There he was captured by one of Geirrod's
servants, and the giant, who noticed from his eyes that it was not a
real falcon, did not release him before he had agreed so to arrange
matters that Thor should come to Geirrod's hall without bringing with
him his hammer and belt of strength. This Loke was able to bring about.
Thor went to Geirrod without taking any of these implements--not even
his steel gloves--with him. Loke accompanied him. On the way thither
Loke visited the giantess whose name was _Grídr_, and who was Vidar the
Silent's mother. From her Thor learned the facts about Geirrod--namely,
that the latter was a cunning giant and difficult to get on with. She
lent Thor her own belt of strength, her own iron gloves, and her staff,
_Grídarvölr_. Then Thor proceeded to the river which is called Vimur,
and which is the greatest of all rivers. There he buckled on his belt of
strength, and supported himself in the stream on the _Grídarvölr_. Loke
held himself fast to the belt of strength. When Thor reached the middle
of the stream, the water rose to his shoulders. Thor then perceived
that up in a mountain chasm below which the river flowed stood Gjalp,
Geirrod's daughter, with one foot on each side of the river, and it
was she who caused the rising of the tide. Then Thor picked up a stone
and threw it at the giantess, saying: "At its mouth the river is to be
stopped." He did not miss his mark. Having reached the other bank of
the river, he took hold of a rowan, and thus gained the land. Hence the
proverb: "Thor's salvation, the rowan." And when Thor came to Geirrod a
goat-house was first given to him and Loke (according to Codex Regius;
according to the Upsala Codex a guest-house) as their lodgings. Then are
related the adventures Thor had with Geirrod's daughters Gjalp and Greip,
and how he, invited to perform games in Geirrod's hall, was met by a
glowing iron which Geirrod threw against him with a pair of tongs, but
which he caught with the iron gloves and threw back with so great force
that the iron passed through a post, behind which Geirrod had concealed
himself, and through Geirrod himself and his house wall, and then
penetrated into the earth.

This narrative, composed freely from mythical and pseudo-mythical
elements, is related to Thorsdrapa, composed in heathen times, about in
the same manner as Bragarædur's account of Odin and Suttung is related
to that of Havamál. Just as in Bragarædur _punctum saliens_ lies in the
coarse jest about how poor poetry originated, so here a crude anecdote
built on the proverb, "A stream is to be stemmed at its mouth," seems
to be the basis of the story. In Christian times the mythology had to
furnish the theme not only for ancient history, heroic poems, and popular
traditions, but also for comic songs.

Now, a few words in regard to Thorsdrapa. This song, excellent from the
standpoint of poetry and important from a mythological point of view,
has, in my opinion, hitherto been entirely misunderstood, not so much
on account of the difficulties found in the text--for these disappear,
when they are considered without any preconceived opinion in regard to
the contents--as on account of the undeserved faith in Skaldskaparmal's
account of Thor's visit to Geirrod, and on account of the efforts
made under the influence of this misleading authority to rediscover
the statements of the latter in the heathen poem. In these efforts the
poetics of the Christian period in Iceland have been applied to the poem,
and in this way all mythological names, whose real meaning was forgotten
in later times, have received a general faded signification, which on a
more careful examination is proved to be incorrect. With a collection of
names as an armoury, in which the names of real or supposed "dwarfs,"
"giants," "sea-kings," &c., are brought together and arranged as
synonyms, this system of poetics teaches that from such lists we may take
whatever dwarf name, giant name, &c., we please to designate whichever
"dwarf," "giant," &c., we please. If, therefore, Thorsdrapa mentions
"_Idi's_ chalet" and "_Gángr's_ war-vans," then, according to this system
of poetics, _Idi_ and _Gángr's_--though they in heathen times designated
particular mythic persons who had their own history, their own personal
careers--have no other meaning than the general one of "a giant," for the
reason that _Idi_ and _Gángr_ are incorporated in the above-named lists
of giant names. Such a system of poetics could not arise before the most
of the mythological names had become mere empty sounds, the personalities
to whom they belonged being forgotten. The fact that they have been
adapted, and still continue to be adapted, to the poems of the heathen
skalds, is one of the reasons why the important contributions which names
and paraphrases in the heathen poetry are able to furnish in mythological
investigations have remained an unused treasure.

While Skaldskaparmal makes Loke and no one else accompany Thor to
Geirrod, and represents the whole matter as a visit to the giant by
Thor, we learn from Thorsdrapa that this journey to Jotunheim is an
expedition of war, which Thor makes at the head of his warriors against
the much-dreaded chief of giants, and that on the way thither he had
to fight a real battle with Geirrod's giants before he is able to
penetrate to the destination of his expedition, Geirrod's hall, where
the giants put to flight in the battle just mentioned gather, and where
another battle is fought. Thorsdrapa does not mention with a single
word that Loke accompanied Thor on this warlike expedition. Instead of
this, we learn that he had a secret understanding with one of Geirrod's
daughters, that he encouraged Thor to go, and gave him untruthful
accounts of the character of the road, so that, if not Thor himself,
then at least the allies who went with him, might perish by the ambush
laid in wait for them. That Loke, under such circumstances, should
accompany Thor is highly incredible, since his misrepresentations in
regard to the character of the way would be discovered on the journey,
and reveal him as a traitor. But since Skaldskaparmal states that Loke
was Thor's companion, the interpreters of Thorsdrapa have allowed him so
to remain, and have attributed to him--the traitor and secret ally of
the giants--and to Thjalfe (who is not mentioned in the Skaldskaparmal
account) the exploits which Thor's companions perform against the giants.
That the poem, for instance, in the expression _Thjáfi med ýta sinni_,
"Thjalfe with his companions," in the most distinct manner emphasises
the fact that a whole host of warriors had Thor as their leader on this
expedition, was passed over as one of the obscure passages in which the
poem was supposed to abound, and the obscurity of which simply consists
in their contradicting the story in Skaldskaparmal. Thorsdrapa does not
mention with a single word that Thor, on his journey to Geirrod, stopped
at the home of a giantess _Gridr_, and borrowed from her a staff, a belt
of strength, and iron gloves; and I regard it as probable that this
whole episode in Skaldskaparmal has no other foundation than that the
staff which Thor uses as his support on wading across the rapid stream
is in Thorsdrapa now called _grídarvölr_, "the safety staff," and again,
_brautar lids tollr_, "the way-helping tree." The name _grídarvölr_,
and such proverbs as _at ósi skall á stemma_ and _reynir er björg
thórs_, appear to be the staple wares by the aid of which the story in
Skaldskaparmal was framed. The explanation given in Skaldskaparmal of the
proverb _reynir er björg thórs_, that, by seizing hold of a rowan growing
on the river bank, Thor succeeded in getting out of the river, is, no
doubt, an invention by the author of the story. The statement cannot
possibly have had any support in the mythology. In it Thor is endowed
with ability to grow equal to any stream he may have to cross. The rowan
mentioned in the proverb is probably none other than the "way-helping
tree," the "safety staff," on which he supports himself while wading,
and which, according to Thorsdrapa (19), is a _brotningr skógar_, a tree
broken or pulled up in the woods.

I now pass to the consideration of the contents of Thorsdrapa:

_Strophe 1._ The deceitful Loke encourages Thor to go from home and visit
Geirrod, "the master of the temple of the steep altars." The great liar
assures him that green paths would take him to Geirrod's halls, that is
to say, they were accessible to travellers on foot, and not obstructed by

NOTE.--For Thor himself the condition of the roads might be of less
importance. He who wades across the Elivagar rivers and subterranean
streams did not need to be very anxious about finding water-courses
crossing his paths. But from the continuation of the poem we learn that
this expedition to Jotunheim was not a visit as a guest, or a meeting
to fight a duel, as when Thor went to find Hrungner, but this time he
is to press into Jotunheim with a whole army, and thus the character of
the road he was to travel was of some importance. The ambush laid in his
way does not concern Thor himself, but the giant-foes who constitute his
army. If the latter perish in the ambush, then Geirrod and his giants
will have Thor alone to fight against, and may then have some hope of

_Strophe 2._ Thor did not require much urging to undertake the
expedition. He leaves Asgard to visit Jotunheim. Of what happened on the
way between Asgard and the Elivagar rivers, before Thor penetrated into
Jotunheim, the strophe says:

  thá er gjardvenjodr                When the belt-wearer (Thor the
                                     possessor of the belt of strength)

  endr (= iterum, rursus)            now, as on former occasions,

  ríkri Idja Gandvikr-setrs skotum   strengthened by the men of Ide's
                                     chalet situated near Gandvik,

  gördist frá thridia til Ymsa       was on his way from Odin to
  kindar,                            Ymse's (Ymer's) race,

  fystust their (Cod. Worm.)         it was to them (to Thor and to
  fýrstuz (Cod. Reg.)                the men of Ide's chalet) a joy
                                     (or they rushed thither)

  at thrysta thorns nidjum           to conquer Thorn's (Bolthorn-Ymer's)

NOTE.--The common understanding of this passage is (1) that _endr_ has
nothing to do with the contents, but is a complementary word which may
be translated with "once upon a time," a part which _endr_ has to play
only too often in the interpretation of the old poems; (2) that Ide is
merely a general giant name, applicable, like every other giant name, in
a paraphrase _Idja setr_, which is supposed to mean Jotunheim; (3) that
_rikri Idja setrs skotum_ or _rikri Gandvikr skotum_ was to give the
hearers or readers of Thorsdrapa the (utterly unnecessary) information
that Thor was stronger than the giants; and (4) that they who longed to
subdue Ymer's kinsmen were Thor and Loke--the same Loke who, in secret
understanding with the giant-chief and with one of his daughters (see
below), has the purpose of enticing Thor and his companions in arms into
a trap!

_Rikri ... skotum_ is to be regarded as an elliptical sentence in which
the instrumental preposition, as is often the case, is to be understood.
When Thor came from Asgard to the chalet of Ide, situated near Gandvik,
he there gets companions in arms, and through them he becomes _rikri_,
through them he gets an addition to his own powers in the impending
conflicts. The fact that when Thor invades Jotunheim he is at the head of
an army is perfectly evident from certain expressions in the poem, and
from the poem as a whole. Whence could all these warriors come all of a
sudden? They are not dwellers in Asgard, and he has not brought them with
him in his lightning chariot. They live near Gandvik, which means "the
magic bay," the Elivagar. Gandvik was a purely mythological-geographical
name before it became the name of the White Sea in a late Christian
time, when the sea between Greenland and America got the mythic name
Ginungagap. Their being the inhabitants on the coast of a bay gives the
author of Thorsdrapa an occasion further on to designate them as vikings,
bayings. We have already seen that it is a day's journey between Asgard
and the Elivagar (see No. 108), and that on the southern coast Thor has
an inn, where he stops, and where his precious team and chariot are taken
care of while he makes expeditions into Jotunheim. The continuation of
the poem shows that this time, too, he stopped at this inn, and that he
got his warriors there. Now, as always before, he proceeds on foot, after
having reached Jotunheim.

_Strophe 3_ first makes a mythic chronological statement, namely, that
the daughter of Geirrod, "skilled in magic," had come to an understanding
with Loke, before Rogner became the ally of the latter. This mythic
chronological statement shows (1) that there was a time when Rogner did
not share Loke's plans, which were inimical to the gods; (2) that the
events recounted in Thorsdrapa took place before Rogner became a foe of
the gods. Why Thorsdrapa thinks it necessary to give this information
becomes apparent already in the fourth strophe.

Then the departure from Ide's chalet is mentioned. The host hostile to
the giants proceeds to Jotunheim, but before it gets thither it must
traverse an intermediate region which is called Endil's meadow.

We might expect that instead of speaking of a meadow as the boundary
territory which had to be traversed before getting into Jotunheim, the
poem would have spoken of the body of water behind which Jotunheim lies,
and mentioned it by one of its names--Elivagar, Gandvik, or Hraun. But
on a more careful examination it appears that Endil's meadow is only a
paraphrase for a body of water. The proof of this is found in the fact
that "Endil's skees," _Endils andrar_, _Endils itrskid_, is a common
paraphrase for ship. So is _Endils eykr_, "Endil's horse." The meadow
which Endil crosses on such skees and on such a horse must therefore be
a body of water. And no other water can be meant than that which lies
between Endil's chalet and Jotunheim, that is, Elivagar, Gandvik.

The name _Endill_ may be the same as _Vendill_, _Vandill_ (Younger Edda,
i. 548), and abbreviation of _Örvandill_. The initial _V_ was originally
a semi-vowel, and as such it alliterated with other semi-vowels and
with vowels (compare the rhymes on an Oland runic stone, _Vandils
jörmungrundar urgrandari_). This easily-disappearing semi-vowel may
have been thrown out in later times where it seemed to obscure the
alliteration, and thus the form Endil may have arisen from Vendil,
Vandil. "Örvandel's meadow" is accordingly in poetic language synonymous
with Elivagar, and the paraphrase is a fitting one, since Orvandel-Egil
had skees which bore him over land and sea, and since Elivagar was the
scene of his adventures.

_Strophe 4_ tells that after crossing "Endil's meadow" the host of
warriors invaded Jotunheim on foot, and that information about their
invasion into the land of the giants came to the witches there.

Two important facts are here given in regard to these warriors: they are
called _Gángs gunn-vanir_ and _Vargs fridar_, "Gang's warrior-vans,"
and "Varg's defenders of the land." Thus, in the first strophes of
Thorsdrapa, we meet with the names of Olvalde's three sons: _Rögnir_
(Thjasse), _Idi_, and _Gángr_. The poem mentions Rogner's name in
stating that the expedition occurred before Rogner became the foe of
the gods; it names Ide's name when it tells that it was at his (Ide's)
chalet near Gandvik that Thor gathered these warriors around him; and it
names _Gángr's_ name, and in connection therewith _Vargr's_ name, when
it is to state who the leaders were of those champions who accompanied
Thor against Geirrod. Under such circumstances it is manifest that
Thorsdrapa relates an episode in which Ide, Gang, and Thjasse appear
as friends of Thor and foes of the giants, and that the poem locates
their original country in the regions on the south coast of Elivagar,
and makes _Idja setr_ to be situated near the same strand, and play
in Thor's expeditions the same part as Orvandel-Egil's abode near
the Elivagar, which is also called chalet, _Geirvandil's setr_, and
_Ýsetr_. The _Vargr_ who is mentioned is, therefore, so far as can be
seen, Rogner-Thjasse himself, who in Haustlaung, as we know, is called
_fjallgyldir_, that is to say, wolf.

All the warriors accompanying Thor were eager to fight Ymer's
descendants, as we have seen in the second strophe. But the last lines
of strophe 4 represent one in particular as longing to contend with one
of the warlike and terrible giantesses of giant-land. This champion is
not mentioned by name, but he is characterised as _bragdmildr_, "quick
to conceive and quick to move;" as _brædivændr_, "he who is wont to
offer food to eat;" and as _bölkveitir_ or _bölkvetir Loka_, "he who
compensated Loke's evil deed." The characterisations fit Orvandel-Egil,
the nimble archer and skee-runner, who, at his chalet, receives Thor as
his guest, when the latter is on his way to Jotunheim, and who gave Thor
Thjalfe and Roskva as a compensation, when Loke had deceitfully induced
Thjalfe to break a bone belonging to one of Thor's slaughtered goats for
the purpose of getting at the marrow. If Thorsdrapa had added that the
champion thus designated also was the best archer of mythology, there
could be no doubt that Egil was meant. This addition is made further on
in the poem, and of itself confirms the fact that Egil took part in the

_Strophe 5_, compared with strophes 6 and 7, informs us that Thor, with
his troop of champions, in the course of his march came into one of the
wild mountain-regions of Jotunheim. The weather is bad and hail-showers
fall. And here Thor finds out that Loke has deceived him in the most
insolent manner. By his directions Thor has led his forces to the place
where they now are, and here rushes forth from between the mountains a
river into which great streams, swelling with hail-showers, roll down
from the mountains with seething ice-water. To find in such a river a
ford by which his companions can cross was for Thor a difficult matter.

_Strophe 6._ Meanwhile the men from Ide's chalet had confidently
descended into the river. A comparison with strophes 7 and 8 shows that
they cautiously kept near Thor, and waded a little farther up the river
than he. They used their spears as staffs, which they put down into the
stony bottom of the river. The din of the spears, when their metallic
points came in contact with the stones of the bottom blended with the
noise of the eddies roaring around the rocks of the river (_Knátti hreggi
höggvinn hlymthel vid möl glymja, enn fjalla fellihryn thaut med Fedju

_Strophe 7._ In the meantime the river constantly rises and increases in
violence, and its ocean-like billows are already breaking against Thor's
powerful shoulders. If this is to continue, Thor will have to resort to
the power inherent in him of rising equally with the increase of the

NOTE.--But the warriors from Ide's sæter, who do not possess this power,
what are they to do? The plan laid between Loke and the witches of
Jotunheim is manifestly to drown them. And the succeeding strophes show
that they are in the most imminent danger.

_Strophes 8_ and _9_. These bold warriors waded with firm steps; but the
billowing masses of water increased in swiftness every moment. While
Thor's powerful hands hold fast to the staff of safety, the current is
altogether too strong for the spears, which the Gandvik champions have
to support themselves on. On the mountains stood giantesses increasing
the strength of the current. Then it happened that "the god of the bow,
driven by the violence of the billows, rushed upon Thor's shoulders
(_kykva naudar áss, blasinn hrönnjardar skafls hvetvidri, thurdi haudrs
runn of herdi_), while Thjalfe with his comrades came, as if they
had been automatically lifted up, and seized hold of the belt of the
celestial prince" (Thor) (_unnz thjálfi med ýta sinni kom sjálflopta á
himinsjóla skaunar-seil_).

NOTE.--Thus the plan laid by Loke and the giantesses to drown the men
hostile to the giants, the men dwelling on the south coast of the
Elivagar, came near succeeding. They were saved by their prudence in
wading higher up the stream than Thor, so that, if they lost their
foothold, they could be hurled by the eddies against him. One of the
Gandvik champions, and, as the continuation of the poems shows, the
foremost one among them, here characterised as "the god of the bow,"
is tossed by a storm-billow against Thor's shoulders, and there saves
himself. Thjalfe and the whole remaining host of the warriors of Ide's
sæter have at the same time been carried by the waves down against
_Hlodyn's_ powerful son, and save themselves by seizing hold of his belt
of strength. With "the god of the bow" on his shoulders, and with a
whole host of warriors clinging to his waist, Thor continues his wading
across the stream.

In strophe 8, the Gandvik champions are designated by two paraphrases.
We have already seen them described as "Gang's warrior-vans" and as
"Varg's land-defenders." Here they are called "the clever warriors of
the viking-sæter" (_víkinga setrs snotrir gunnar runnar_) and "Odin's
land-defenders, bound by oaths" (_Gauta eidsvara fridar_). That Ide's
sæter is called "the vikings' sæter" is explained by the fact that it is
situated near Gand_vik_, and that these _bayings_ had the Elivagar as the
scene of their conflicts with the powers of frost. That they are Odin's
land-defenders, bound by oaths, means that they are mythical beings,
who in rank are lower than the Asas, and are pledged by oaths to serve
Odin and defend his territory against the giants. Their sæter (chalet)
near Gandvik is therefore an outpost against the powers of frost. It
follows that Ide, Gang, and Thjasse originally are _numina_, though of
a lower, serving rank; that their relation to the higher world of gods
was of such a character that they could not by their very nature be
regarded as foes of the giants, but are bound to the cause of the gods
by oaths; but on the other hand they could not be full-blooded giants
of the race produced from Ymer's feet (see No. 86). Their original
home is not Jotunheim itself, but a land bordering on the home of the
giants, and this mytho-geographical locality must correspond with their
mytho-genealogical position. The last strophe in Thorsdrapa calls the
giants slain by the Gandvik champions "Alfheim's calves," Alfheim's
cattle to be slaughtered, and this seems to indicate that these champions
belong to the third and lowest of those clans into which the divinities
of the Teutonic mythology are divided, that is, the elves.

The Gandvik champion who rescues himself on Thor's shoulders, while the
rest of them hold fast to his girdle, is a celebrated archer, and so well
known to the hearers of Thorsdrapa, that it was not necessary to mention
him by name in order to make it clear who he was. In fact, the epithet
applied to him, "the god of the bow" (_áss kykva naudar_, and in strophe
18, _tvívidar Týr_), is quite sufficient to designate him as the foremost
archer of mythology, that is, Orvandel-Egil, who is here carried on
Thor's shoulders through the raging waves, just as on another occasion he
was carried by Thor in his basket across the Elivagar. Already in strophe
4 he is referred to as the hero nimble in thought and body, who is known
for his hospitality, and who made compensation for Loke's evil deed.
The foremost one next after him among the Gandvik champions is Thjalfe,
Egil's foster-son. The others are designated as Thjalfe's _ýta sinni_,
his body of men.

Thus we find that the two foremost among "Gang's warrior-vans," who
with Thor marched forth from "Ide's sæter," before Rogner (Thjasse)
became Loke's ally, are Volund's and Slagfin's brother Egil and Egil's
foster-son Thjalfe. We find that Egil and Thjalfe belong to the
inhabitants of Ide's sæter, where Thor on this occasion had stopped, and
where he had left his chariot and goats, for now, as on other occasions,
he goes on foot to Jotunheim. And as in other sources Egil is mentioned
as the one who on such occasions gives lodgings to Thor and his goats,
and as Thorsdrapa also indicates that he is the hospitable host who had
received Thor in his house, and had paid him a ransom for the damage
caused by Loke to one of his goats, then this must be a most satisfactory
proof that Ide's sæter is the same place as the _Geirvadils_ setr
inhabited by Egil and his brothers, and that Orvandel-Egil is identical
either with Ide or Gang, from which it follows, again, that Alvalde's
(Olvalde's) sons, Ide, Gang, and Thjasse, are identical with Ivalde's
sons, Slagfin, Egil, and Volund.

That Egil is identical with Gang and not with Ide is apparent from a
comparison with the Grotte-song. There Olvalde's sons are called _Idi_,
_Aurnir_, and _Thjazi_, while in the Younger Edda they are called _Idi_,
_Gángr_, and _Thjazi_. Thus Aurnir is identical with _Gángr_, and as
_Aurnir_ means "wild boar," and as "wild boar" (Ebur, Ibor, Ebbo) is an
epithet of Egil, Orvandel-Egil must be identical with Gang.

In regard to the rest of Thorsdrapa I may be brief, since it is of less
interest to the subject under discussion.

_Strophe 10._ In spite of the perilous adventure described above, the
hearts of Thjalfe and the Gandvik champions were no more terrified than
Thor's. Here they are designated as _eids fiardar_, "the men pledged by
oath," with which is to be compared _eidsvara fridar_ in strophe 8.

_Strophes 11, 12_, show that Thor landed safely with his burden. Scarcely
had he and his companions got a firm foothold on the other strand before
Geirrod's giant-clan, "the world-tree-destroying folk of the sea-belt,"
came to the spot, and a conflict arose, in which the attacks of the
giants were firmly repulsed, and the latter were finally forced to

_Strophe 13._ After the victory Thor's terrible hosts pressed farther
into Jotunheim to open Geirrod's hall, and they arrived there amid the
din and noise of cave-dwellers.

The following strophes mention that Thor broke the backs of Geirrod's
daughters, and pressed with his warriors into Geirrod's hall, where he
was received with a piece of red-hot iron hurled by the latter, which,
hurled back by Thor, caused the death of the giant-chief. Thor had given
the glowing javelin such a force that some one who stood near him,
probably Egil, "drank so that he reeled in the air-current of the piece
of iron the air-drink of Hrimner's daughter" (_svalg hrapmunum á siu
lopti Hrimnis drósar lyptisylg_). Hrimner's daughter is Gulveig-Heid
(Hyndluljod, 32), and her "air-drink" is the fire, over which the gods
held her lifted on their spears (Völuspa, 21).

As we see from the context, Geirrod's halls were filled with the men who
had fled from the battle near the river, and within the mountain there
arose another conflict, which is described in the last three strophes
of the poem. Geirrod's hall shook with the din of battle. Thor swung
his bloody hammer. "The staff of safety," "the help-tree of the way,"
the staff on which Thor supported himself in crossing the river, fell
into Egil's hands (_kom at tvívidar Tývi brautar lids tollr_), who did
not here have room to use his bow, but who, with this "convenient tree
jerked (or broken) from the forest," gave death-blows to "the calves of
Alfheim." The arrows from his quiver could not be used in this crowded
place against the men of the mountain-chief.

The fact that the giants in Thorsdrapa use the sling is of interest to
the question concerning the position of the various weapons of mythology.
Geirrod is called _vegtaugar thrjótr_, "the industrious applier of the
sling" (str. 17), and _álmtaugar Ægir_, "the _Ægir_ of the sling made of

In the last strophe Egil is said to be _helblótinn_ and _hneitir_,
_undirfjálfs bliku_, expressions to which I shall recur further on.

Like the relation between Volund and his swan-maids in Volundarkvida,
the relation between Rogner-Thjasse and Idun in Forspjallsljod is not
that of the robber to his unwilling victim, but one of mutual harmony.
This is confirmed by a poem which I shall analyse when the investigation
reaches a point that demands it, and according to which Idun was from
her childhood tied by bonds of love and by oath to the highly-gifted but
unhappy son of Ivalde, to the great artist who, by his irreconcilable
thirst for revenge, became the Lucifer of Teutonic mythology, while
Loke is its Mefisto. I presume that the means of rejuvenation, the
divine remedy against age (_ellilyf ása_--Haustlaung), which Idun alone
in Asgard knows and possesses, was a product of Thjasse-Volund's art.
The middle age also remembered Volund (Wieland) as a physician, and
this trait seems to be from the oldest time, for in Rigveda, too, the
counterparts of the Ivalde sons, that is, the Ribhus, at the request
of the gods, invent means of rejuvenation. It may be presumed that the
mythology described his exterior personality in a clear manner. From
his mother he must have inherited his giant strength, which, according
to the Grotte-song, surpassed Hrungner's and that of the father of
the latter (_Hard var Hrungnir ok hans fadir, thó var Thjazi theim
auflgari_--str. 9). With his strength beauty was doubtless united.
Otherwise, Volundarkvida's author would scarcely have said that his
swan-maid laid her arms around Anund's (Volund's) "white" neck. That his
eyes were conceived as glittering may be concluded from the fact that
they distinguish him on the starry canopy as a star-hero, and that in
Volundarkvida Nidhad's queen speaks of the threatening glow in the gaze
of the fettered artist (_amon ero augu ormi theim enom frána_--str. 17).

Ivalde's sons--Thjasse-Volund, Aurnir-Egil, and Ide-Slagfin--are, as we
have seen, bastards of an elf and a giantess (Greip, Gambara). Ivalde's
daughters, on the other hand (see No. 113), have as mother a sun-dis,
daughter of the ruler of the atmosphere, Nokver. In other sources the
statement in Forspjallsljod (6) is confirmed, that Ivalde had two groups
of children, and that she who "among the races of elves was called
Idun" belonged to one of them. Thus, while Idun and her sisters are
half-sisters to Ivalde's sons, these are in turn half-brothers to pure
giants, sons of Greip, and these giants are, according to the Grotte-song
(str. 9), the fathers of Fenja and Menja. The relationship of the Ivalde
sons to the gods on the one hand and to the giants on the other may be
illustrated by the following scheme:

  Ivalde begets (1)      (2) with the giantess   Greip bears with a giant
  with a sun-dis                Greip--          ------------------------
    ---------                  -------                 |          |
        |                         |                  giant      giant
  Idun and her sisters.     Thjasse-Volund and         |          |
                              his brothers.          Fenja.     Menja.



The circumstances which first drew my attention to the necessity of
investigating whether Thjasse and Volund were not different names of
the same mythic personality, which the mythology particularly called
Thjasse, and which the heroic saga springing from the mythology in
Christian times particularly called Volund, were the following: (1) In
the study of Saxo I found in no less than three passages that Njord,
under different historical masks, marries a daughter of Volund, while
in the mythology he marries a daughter of Thjasse. (2) In investigating
the statements anent Volund's father in Volundarkvida's text and prose
appendix I found that these led to the result that Volund was a son of
Sumbl, the Finn king--that is to say, of Olvalde, Thjasse's father. (3)
My researches in regard to the myth about the mead produced the result
that Svigder-Olvalde perished by the treachery of a dwarf outside of a
mountain, where one of the smith-races of the mythology, Suttung's sons,
had their abode. In Vilkinasaga's account of the death of Volund's
father I discovered the main outlines of the same mythic episode.

The correspondence of so different sources in so unexpected a matter
was altogether too remarkable to permit it to be overlooked in my
mythological researches. The fact that the name-variation itself, Alvalde
(for Olvalde), as Thjasse's father is called in Harbardsljod, was in
meaning and form a complete synonym of Ivalde I had already observed, but
without attaching any importance thereto.

The next step was to examine whether a similar proof of the identity of
Thjasse's and Volund's mother was to be found. In one Norse mythological
source Thjasse's mother is called Greip. Volund's and Egil's (Ayo's and
Ibor's, Aggo's and Ebbo's) mother is in Paulus Diaconus and in Origo
Longobardorum called Gambara, in Saxo Gambaruc. The Norse stem in the
Latinised name Gambara is _Gammr_, which is a synonym of Greip, the
name of Thjasse's mother. Thus I found a reference to the identity of
Thjasse's mother and Volund's mother.

From the parents I went to the brothers. One of Volund's brothers bore
the epithet Aurnir, "wild boar." Aurnir's wife is remembered in the
Christian traditions as one who forebodes the future. Ebur's wife is a
mythological seeress. One of Thjasse's brothers, Ide, is the only one in
the mythology whose name points to an original connection with Ivalde
(Idvalde), Volund's father, and with Idun, Volund's half-sister. Volund
himself bears the epithet Brunne, and Thjasse's home is Brunnsacre. One
of Thjasse's sons is slain at the instigation of Loke, and Loke, who in
Lokasenna takes pleasure in stating this, boasts in the same poem that
he has caused the slaying of Thjasse.

In regard to bonds of relationship in general, I found that on the one
side Volund, like Thjasse, was regarded as a giant, and had relations
among the giants, among whom Vidolf is mentioned both as Volund's and
Thjasse's relative, and that on the other hand Volund is called an
elf-prince, and that Thjasse's father belonged to the clan of elves, and
that Thjasse's daughter is characterised, like Volund and his nearest
relatives, as a skee-runner and hunter, and in this respect has the same
epithet as Volund's nephew Ull. I found, furthermore, that so far as
tradition has preserved the memory of star-heroes, every mythic person
who belonged to their number was called a son of Ivalde or a son of
Olvalde. Orvandel-Egil is a star-hero and a son of Ivalde. The Watlings,
after whom the Milky Way is named, are descendants of Vate-Vade, Volund's
father. Thjasse is a star-hero and the son of Olvalde. Ide, too,
Thjasse's brother, "the torch-bearer," may have been a star-hero, and, as
we shall show later, the memory of Volund's brother Slagfin was partly
connected with the Milky Way and partly with the spots on the moon;
while, according to another tradition, it is Volund's father whose image
is seen in these spots (see Nos. 121, 123).

I found that Rogner is a Thjasse-epithet, and that all that is stated of
Rogner is also told of Volund. Rogner was, like the latter, first the
friend of the gods and then their foe. He was a "swan-gladdener," and
Volund the lover of a swan-maid. Like Volund he fought against Njord.
Like Volund he proceeded to the northernmost edge of the world, and there
he worked with magic implements through the powers of frost for the
destruction of the gods and of the world. And from some one he has taken
the same ransom as Volund did, when the latter killed Nidhad's young sons
and made goblets of their skulls.

I found that while Olvalde's sons, Ide, Aurner (Gang), and Thjasse, still
were friends of the gods, they had their abode on the south coast of the
Elivagar, where Ivalde had his home, called after him _Geirvadils setr_,
and where his son Orvandel-Egil afterwards dwelt; that Thor on his way to
Jotunheim visits Ide's _setr_, and that he is a guest in Egil's dwelling;
that the mythological warriors who dwell around Ide's _setr_ are called
"warrior-vans," and that these "Gang's warrior-vans" have these very
persons, Egil and his foster-son Thjalfe, as their leaders when they
accompany Thor to fight the giants, wherefore the _setr_ of the Olvalde
sons Ide and Gang must be identical with that of the Ivalde sons, and
Ide, Gang, and Thjasse identical with Slagfin, Egil, and Volund.

On these foundations the identity of Olvalde's sons with Ivalde's sons
is sufficiently supported, even though our mythic records had preserved
no evidence that Thjasse, like Volund, was the most celebrated artist
of mythology. But such evidence is not wanting. As the real meaning
of _Regin_ is "shaper," "workman," and as this has been retained as a
smith-name in Christian times, there is every reason to assume that
Thjasse, who is called _fjadrar-blads leik-Regin_ and _vingvagna Rögnir_,
did himself make, like Volund, the eagle guise which he, like Volund,
wears. The son of Ivalde, Volund, made the most precious treasures for
the gods while he still was their friend, and the Olvalde son Thjasse is
called _hapta snytrir_, "the decorator of the gods," doubtless for the
reason that he had smithied treasures for the gods during a time when he
was their friend and Thor's _ofrúni_ (Thor's confidential friend). Volund
is the most famous and, so far as we can see, also the first sword-smith,
which seems to appear from the fact that his father Ivalde, though a
valiant champion, does not use the sword but the spear as a weapon, and
is therefore called _Geirvandill_. Thjasse was the first sword-smith,
otherwise he would not have been called _fadir mörna_, "the father of
the swords." Splendid implements are called _verk Rögnis_ and _Thjaza
thingskil_, _Idja glýsmál_, _Idja ord_--expressions which do not find
their adequate explanation in the Younger Edda's account of the division
of Olvalde's estate, but in the myth about the judgment which the gods
once proclaimed in the contest concerning the skill of Sindre and the
sons of Ivalde, when the treasures of the latter presented in court had
to plead their own cause.



What our mythic records tell us about the sons of Olvalde and the sons
of Ivalde is under such circumstances to be regarded as fragments
which come to us from one and the same original myth. When combined,
the fragments are found to dovetail together and form one whole.
Volundarkvida (28) indicates that something terrible, something that in
the highest degree aroused his indignation and awakened his deep and
satanic thirst for revenge, had happened to Volund ere he, accompanied by
his brothers, betook himself to the wintry wilderness, where he smithied
the sword of revenge and the gand rings; and the poem makes Volund add
that this injustice remained to be avenged when he left the Wolf-dales.
It lies in the nature of the case that the saga about Volund did not end
where the fragment of the Volundarkvida which we possess is interrupted.
The balance of the saga must have related what Volund did to accomplish
the revenge which he still had to take, and how the effort to take
vengeance resulted. The continuation probably also had something to say
about that swan-maid, that dis of vegetation, who by the name Hervor
Alvitr spends nine years with Volund in the Wolfdales, and then, seized
by longing, departs with the other swan-maids, but of whose faithful
love Volund is perfectly convinced (Volundarkvida, 10). While Volund is
Nidhad's prisoner, the hope he has built on the sword of revenge and
victory smithied by him seems to be frustrated. The sword is in the power
of Mimer-Nidhad, the friend of the gods. But the hope of the plan of
revenge must have awakened again when Svipdag, Volund's nephew, succeeded
in coming up from the lower world with the weapon in his possession. The
conflict between the powers of frost and the kinsmen of Ivalde, who had
deserted the gods, on the one side, and the gods and their favourite
Halfdan, the Teutonic patriarch, on the other side, was kindled anew
(see No. 33). Halfdan is repulsed, and finally falls in the war in which
Volund got satisfaction by the fact that his sword conquered Thor's
Mjolner and made Thor retreat. But once more the hope based on the sword
of revenge is frustrated, this time by the possessor of the sword itself,
Volund's young kinsman, who--victor in the war, but conquered by the love
he cherished for Freyja, rescued by him--becomes the husband of the fair
asynje and gives the sword of Volund to Frey, the god of the harvests.
That, in spite of this crossing of his plan of revenge, Volund still did
not give it up may be taken for granted. He is described not only as the
most revengeful, but also as the most persistent and patient person (see
"Doer the Scald's Complaint"), when patience could promote his plans.
To make war on the gods with the aid of the giants, when the sword of
victory had fallen into the hands of the latter, could not give him the
least hope of success. After the mythology has given Volund satisfaction
for the despicable judgment passed on the products of his skill, it
unites the chain of events in such a manner that the same weapon which
refuted the judgment and was to cause the ruin of the gods became their
palladium against its own maker. What was Volund able to do afterwards,
and what did he do? The answer to this question is given in the myth
about Thjasse. With Idun--the Hervor Alvitr of the heroic poem--he
confined himself in a mountain, whose halls he presumably decorated with
all the wonders which the sagas of the middle ages, describing splendid
mountain-halls and parks within the mountains, inherited from the
mythology. The mountain must have been situated in a region difficult of
access to the gods--according to Bragarædur in Jotunheim. At all events,
Thjasse is there secure against every effort to disturb him, forcibly, in
his retreat. The means against the depredations of time and years which
Idun possesses have their virtue only when in her care. Without this
means, even the gods of Asgard are subject to the influence of time, and
are to grow old and die. And in the sense of a myth symbolising nature,
the same means must have had its share in the rejuvenation of creation
through the saps rising every year in trees and herbs. The destruction
of the world--the approach of which Volund wished to precipitate with
his sword of revenge--must come slowly, but surely, if Idun remains away
from Asgard. This plan is frustrated by the gods through Loke, as an
instrument compelled by necessity--compelled by necessity (Haustlaung,
str. 11), although he delighted in the mischief of deceiving even his
allies. Near Thjasse's mountain-halls is a body of water, on which he
occasionally rows out to fish (Bragarædur.) Once, when he rows out for
this purpose, perhaps accompanied by Skade, Idun is at home alone. Loke,
who seems to have studied his customs, flies in a borrowed feather guise
into the mountain and steals Idun, who, changed into a nut, is carried in
his claws through space to Asgard. But the robbing of Idun was not enough
for Loke. He enticed Thjasse to pursue. In his inconsiderate zeal, the
latter dons his eagle guise and hastens after the robber into Asgard's
vaferflames, where he falls by the javelins of the gods and by Thor's
hammer. Sindre's work, the one surpassed by Volund, causes his death, and
is avenged. I have already pointed out that this event explains Loke's
words to Idun in Lokasenna, where he speaks of the murder of one of the
Ivalde sons, and insists that she, Idun, embraced the one who caused his

The fate of the great artist and his tragical death help to throw light
on the character of Loke and on the part he played in the mythology.
Ivalde's sons are, in the beginning, the zealous friends of the gods,
and the decorators and protectors of their creation. They smithy
ornaments, which are the symbols of vegetation; and at their outpost by
the Elivagar they defend the domain of vegetation against Jotunheim's
powers of frost. As I have already stated, they are, like the Ribhus, at
the same time heroes, promoters of growth, and artists of antiquity. The
mythology had also manifestly endowed the sons of Ivalde with pleasing
qualities--profound knowledge of the mysteries of nature, intelligence,
strength, beauty, and with faithfulness toward their beloved. We find
that, in time of adversity, the brothers were firmly united, and that
their swan-maids love them in joy and in distress. For the powers of
evil it was, therefore, of the greatest moment to bring about strife
between the gods and these their "sworn men." Loke, who is a _gedreynir_
(Thorsdrapa), "a searcher of the qualities of the soul," a "tempter of
the character," has discovered in the great artist of antiquity the false
but hitherto unawakened qualities of his character--his ambition and
irreconcilable thirst for revenge. These qualities, particularly the
latter, burst forth fully developed suddenly after the injustice which,
at Loke's instigation, the gods have done to the sons of Ivalde. The
thirst for revenge breaks out in Thjasse-Volund in a despicable misdeed.
There is reason for assuming that the terrible vengeance which, according
to the heroic saga, he took against Nidhad, and which had its counterpart
in the mythology itself, was not the worst crime which the epic of the
Teutonic mythology had to blame him for. Harbardsljod (20) alludes to
another and worse one. Speaking of Thjasse (str. 19), _Hárbardr-Loke_[12]
there boasts that--

  hardan jotun
  ec hugda Hlebard vera,
  gaf han mer gambantein,
  en ec velta hann or viti.

Harbard-Loke here speaks of a giant who, in his mind, was a valiant
one, but whose "senses he stole," that is, whom he "cunningly deprived
of thought and reflection." There are two circumstances to which these
words might apply. The one concerns the giant-builder who built the
Asgard-wall, and, angry on account of the trick by which Loke cheated
him out of the compensation agreed on, rushed against the gods and was
slain by Thor. The other concerns Thjasse, who, seeing his beloved
carried away by Loke and his plan about to be frustrated, recklessly
rushed into his certain ruin. The real name of the giant alluded to
is not given, but it is indicated by the epithet _Hlébardr_, which,
according to the Younger Edda, (ii. 484), is a synonym of _Vargr_ and
_Gyldir_. It has already been shown above that _Vargr_ in Thorsdrapa
and _Fjallgyldir_ in Haustlaung are epithets of Thjasse. Loke says
that this same giant, whose sense he cunningly robbed, had previously
given him a _gambanteinn_. This word means a weapon made by Volund. His
sword of revenge and victory is called _gambanteinn_ in Skirnersmal.
But _gambanteinn_ is, at the same time, a synonym of _mistelteinn_,
hence, in an Icelandic saga from the Christian time, Volund's sword of
victory also reappears by the name _mistelteinn_ (see No. 60). Thus the
giant Hlebard gave Loke a weapon, which, according to its designation,
is either Volund's sword of victory or the mistletoe. It cannot be the
sword of victory. We know the hands to which this sword has gone and is
to go: Volund's, Mimer-Nidhad's, the night-dis Sinmara's, Svipdag's,
Frey's, Aurboda's and Eggther's, and finally Fjalar's and Surt's. The
weapon which Thjasse's namesake Hlebard gives Loke must, accordingly,
have been the mistletoe. In this connection we must bear in mind what
is said of the mistletoe. Unfortunately, the few words of Völuspa are
the only entirely reliable record we have on this subject; but certain
features of Gylfaginning's account (Younger Edda, i. 172-174) may be
mythologically correct. "Slender and fair"--not dangerous and fair to
behold--grew, according to Völuspa, the mistletoe, "higher than the
fields" (as a parasite on the trees); but from the shrub which seemed
innocent became "a dangerous arrow of pain," which _Hödr_ hurled.
According to a poetic fragment united with Vegtamskvida ("Balder's
draumar"), and according to Gylfaginning, the gods had previously
exacted an oath from all things not to harm Balder; but, according to
Gylfaginning, they had omitted to exact an oath from one thing, namely,
the mistletoe. By cunning Loke found this out. He went and pulled up the
mistletoe, which he was afterwards able to put into Hoder's hand, while,
according to Gylfaginning, the gods were amusing themselves by seeing
how every weapon aimed at Balder hit him without harming him. But that
Loke should hand Hoder this shrub in the form in which it had grown on
the tree, and that Hoder should use it in this form to shoot Balder, is
as improbable as that Hoder was blind.[13] We must take Völuspa's words
to mean that the shrub became an arrow, and we must conceive that this
arrow looked like every other arrow, and for this reason did not awaken
suspicion. Otherwise the suspicion would at once have been awakened,
for they who had exacted the oath of things, and Frigg who had sent the
messengers to exact the oaths, knew that the mistletoe was the only thing
in the whole world that had not been sworn. The heathen songs nowhere
betray such inconsistencies and such thoughtlessness as abound in the
accounts of the Younger Edda. The former are always well conceived, at
times incisive, but they always reveal a keen sense of everything that
may give even to the miraculous the appearance of reality and logic. The
mistletoe was made into an arrow by some one who knew how to turn it into
a "dangerous arrow of pain" in an infallible manner. The unhappy shot
depended on the magic qualities that were given to the mistletoe by the
hands that changed it into an arrow. The event becomes comprehensible,
and the statements found in the various sources dovetail together and
bear the test of sound criticism, if Loke, availing himself of the only
thing which had not been bound by oath not to harm Balder, goes with
this shrub, which of itself was innocent and hardly fit for an arrow,
to the artist who hated the gods, to the artist who had smithied the
sword of revenge, and if the latter, with his magic skill as a smith,
makes out of the _mistelteinn_ a new _gambanteinn_ dangerous to the
gods, and gives the weapon to Loke in order that he might accomplish
his evil purpose therewith. As Hlebard is a Thjasse-synonym, as this
Thjasse-synonym is connected with the weapon-name _gambanteinn_, which
indicates a Thjasse-work, and as Loke has treated Thjasse as he says he
has treated Hlebard--by a cunning act he robbed him of his senses--then
all accessible facts go to establish the theory that by Hlebard is meant
the celebrated ancient artist deceived by Loke. And as Hlebard has given
him a weapon which is designated by the name of the sword of revenge, but
which is not the sword of revenge, while the latter, on the other hand
and for corresponding reasons, also gets the name _mistelteinn_, then all
the facts go to show that the weapon which Hlebard gave to Loke was the
mistletoe fraught with woes and changed to an arrow. If Gylfaginning's
unreliable account, based on fragmentary and partly misunderstood mythic
records presented in a disjointed manner, had not been found, and if we
had been referred exclusively to the few but reliable statements which
are to be found in regard to the matter in the poetic songs, then a
correct picture of this episode, though not so complete as to details,
would have been the result of a compilation of the statements extant.
The result would then have been: (1) Balder was slain by an arrow shot
by Hoder (Völuspa, Vegtamskvida); (2) Hoder was not the real slayer, but
Loke (Lokasenna, 28); (3) the material of which the arrow was made was a
tender or slender (_mjór_) mistletoe (Völuspa); (4) previously all things
had sworn not to harm Balder ("Balder's draumar"), but the mistletoe
must, for some reason or other, have been overlooked by the messengers
sent out to exact the oaths, since Balder was mortally wounded by it; (5)
since it was Loke who arranged (_réd_) matters so that this happened,
it must have been he who had charge of the mistletoe for the carrying
out of his evil purpose; (6) the mistletoe fell into the hands of a
giant-smith hostile to the gods, and mentioned under circumstances that
refer to Thjasse (Harbardsljod); (7) by his skill as a smith he gave such
qualities to the mistletoe as to change it into "a dangerous arrow of
pain," and then gave the arrow to Loke (Harbardsljod); (8) from Loke's
hands it passed into Hoder's, and was shot by the latter (Lokasenna,

It is dangerous to employ nature-symbolism as a means of mythological
investigation. It is unserviceable for that purpose, so long as it
cannot be subjected to the rules of severe methodics. On the other hand,
it is admissible and justifiable to consider from a natural symbolic
standpoint the results gained in a mythological investigation by the
methodological system. If, as already indicated, Hlebard is identical
with Thjasse-Volund, then he who was the cause of the fimbul-winter
and sent the powers of frost out upon the earth, also had his hand in
the death of the sun-god Balder and in his descent to the lower world.
There is logic in this. And there is logic in the very fact that the
weapon with which the sun-god is slain is made from the mistletoe,
which blossoms and produces fruit in the winter, and is a plant which
rather shuns than seeks the light of the sun. When we remember how the
popular traditions have explained the appearance and qualities of various
animals and plants by connecting them with the figures of mythology or
of legendary lore, then I suppose it is possible that the popular fancy
saw in the mistletoe's dread of light the effect of grief and shame at
having been an instrument in evil hands for evil purposes. Various things
indicate that the mistletoe originally was a sacred plant, not only among
the Celts, but also among the Teutons. The Hindooic Aryans also knew
sacred parasitical plants.

The word _gamban_ which forms a part of _gambanteinn_ means
"compensation," "ransom," when used as a noun, and otherwise
"retaliating." In the Anglo-Saxon poetry occurs (see Grein's Dictionary)
the phrase _gamban gyldan_, "to compensate," "to pay dues." In the
Norse sources _gamban_ occurs only in the compounds _gambanteinn_
(Skirnersmal, 33; Harbardsljod, 20), _gambanreidi_ (Skirnersmal, 33),
and _gambansumbl_ (Lokasenna, 8). In the song of Skirner, the latter
threatens Gerd, who refused Frey's offer of marriage, that she shall
be struck by _gambanreidi goda_, the avenging wrath of the gods. In
Lokasenna, Loke comes unbidden into the banquet of the gods in Ægir's
hall to mix bitterness with their gladness, and he demands either a place
at the banquet table or to be turned out of doors. Brage answers that
the gods never will grant him a seat at a banquet, "since they well know
for whom among beings they are to prepare _gambansumbl_," a banquet of
revenge or a drink of revenge. This he manifestly mentions as a threat,
referring to the fate which soon afterwards happens to Loke, when he
is captured and bound, and when a venom-spitting serpent is fastened
above his mouth. For the common assumption that _gamban_ means something
"grand," "magnificent," "divine," there is not a single shadow of reason.
_Gambanteinn_ is accordingly "the twig of revenge," and thus we have
the mythological reason why Thjasse-Volund's sword of revenge and the
mistletoe arrow were so called. With them he desires to avenge the insult
to which he refers in Volundarkvida, 28: _Nu hefi ec hefnt harma minna
allra nema einna ivithgjarnra._

[12] Holtzmann and Bergmann have long since pointed out that Harbard is
identical with Loke. The idea that Harbard, who in every trait is Loke
in Lokasenna, and, like him, appears as a mocker of the gods and boasts
of his evil deeds and of his success with the fair sex, should be Odin,
is one of the proofs showing how an unmethodical symbolic interpretation
could go astray. In the second part of this work I shall fully discuss
Harbardsljod. Proofs are to be found from the last days of heathendom in
Iceland that it was then well known that the Harbard who is mentioned in
this poem was a foe of the gods.

[13] When I come to consider the Balder-myth in the second part of
this work, I shall point out the source from which the author of
Gylfaginning, misunderstandingly, has drawn the conclusion that the man
of exploits, the warrior, the archer, and the hunter Hoder was blind. The
misunderstanding gave welcome support to the symbolic interpretation,
which, in the blind Hoder, found among other things a symbol of night
(but night has "many eyes").



It has already been shown (see Nos. 59, 93) that the Elivagar have their
source in the subterranean fountain Hvergelmer, situated on a mountain,
which separates the subterranean region of bliss (Hel) from Nifelhel.
Here, near the source of the Elivagar, stands the great world-mill,
which revolves the starry heavens, causes the ebb and flood of the
ocean and regulates its currents, and grinds the bodies of the primeval
giants into layers of mould on the rocky substrata (see Nos. 79, 80).
From Hvergelmer, the mother of all waters, the northern root of the
world-tree draws saps, which rise into its topmost branches, evaporate
into _Eikthyrnir_ above Asgard, and flow thence as vafer-laden clouds
(see No. 36), which emit fructifying showers upon Midgard, and through
the earth they return to their original source, the fountain Hvergelmer.
The Hvergelmer mountain (the Nida-mountains, _Nidafjöll_) cannot have
been left without care and protection, as it is of so vast importance
in the economy of the world, and this the less since it at the same
time forms the boundary between the lower world's realm of bliss and
Nifelhel, the subterranean Jotunheim, whose frost-thurses sustain the
same relation to the inhabitants on the evergreen fields of bliss as the
powers of frost in the upper Jotunheim sustain to the gods of Asgard and
to the inhabitants of Midgard. There is no reason for assuming that the
guard of brave sworn warriors of the Asgard gods, those warriors whom we
have already seen in array near the Elivagar, should have only a part
of this body of water to keep watch over. The clan of the elves, under
their chiefs, the three sons of Ivalde, even though direct evidence
were wanting, must be regarded as having watched over the Elivagar
along their whole extent, even to their source, and as having had the
same important duty in reference to the giants of the lower world as in
reference to those of the upper. As its name indicates, Nifelheim is
shrouded in darkness and mist, against which the peaks of the Hvergelmer
mountain form the natural rampart as a protection to the smiling fields
of bliss. But gales and storms might lift themselves above these peaks
and enshroud even Mimer's and Urd's realms in mist. The elves are endowed
with power to hinder this. The last strophe in Thorsdrapa, so interesting
from a mythological standpoint, confirms this view. Egil is there called
_hneitir undir-fjálfs bliku_, and is said to be _helblótinn_. _Blika_ is
a name for clouds while they are still near the horizon and appear as
pale vapours, which to those skilled in regard to the weather forbode
an approaching storm (compare Vigfusson's Dict., 69). _Undir-fjálfr_ is
thought by Egilson to mean subterranean mountains, by Vigfusson "the
deep," _abyssus_. _Hneitir undir-fjalfs bliku_ is "he who conquers (or
resolves, scatters) the clouds rising, storm-foreboding, from the abyss
(or over the lower-world mountain)." As Egil can be thus characterised,
it is easy to explain why he is called "_helblótinn_," "he who receives
sacrifices in the subterranean realm of bliss." He guards the Teutonic
elysian fields against the powers of frost and the mists of Nifelheim,
and therefore receives tokens of gratitude from their pious inhabitants.

The vocation of the sons of Ivalde, as the keepers of the Hvergelmer
fountain and of the Elivagar, has its counterpart in the vocation which,
in the Iranian mythology, is attributed to Thjasse's prototype, the
star-hero Tistrya (Tishya). The fountain Hvergelmer, the source of the
ocean and of all waters, has in the Iranian mythology its counterpart in
the immense body of water Vourukasha. Just as the Teutonic world-tree
grows from its northern root out of Hvergelmer, the Iranian world-tree
Gaokerena grows out of Vourukasha (Bundehesh, 18). Vourukasha is guarded
by Tistrya, assisted by two heroes belonging to the class of mythological
beings that are called Yazatas (Izads; in the Veda literature Yajata),
"they who deserve offerings," and in the Iranian mythology they form the
third rank of divine beings, and thus correspond to the elves of the
Teutonic mythology. Assisted by these two heroes and by the "fevers of
the just," Tistrya defends Vourukasha, and occasionally fights against
the demon Apaosha, who desires to destroy the world (Bundehesh, 7).
Tistrya, as such, appears in three forms: as a youth with bright and
glistening eyes, as a wild boar, and as a horse. Can it be an accident
that these forms have their counterparts in the Teutonic mythology in
the fact that one of Thjasse's brothers (Egil-Orvandel-Ebur) has the
epithet "wild boar," and that, as shall be shown below, his other brother
(Slagfin) bears the epithet Hengest, and that Thjasse-Volund himself, who
for years was possessor of, and presumably invented, the "remedy against
aging," which Idun, his beloved, has charge of--that Thjasse-Volund
himself was regarded as a youth with a "white neck" (Volundarkvida, 2)
and with glittering eyes (Volundarkvida, 17), which after his death were
placed in the heavens as stars?



I now come to the third Ivalde son, Slagfin. The name Slagfin
(_Slagfidr_) occurs nowhere else than in Volundarkvida, and in the prose
introduction to the same. All that we learn of him is that, like Egil,
he accompanied his brother Volund to the Wolfdales; that, like them, he
runs on skees and is a hunter; and that, when the swan-maids, in the
ninth year of their abode in the Wolfdales, are overcome by longing and
return to the south, he goes away to find his beloved, just as Egil
goes to find his. We learn, furthermore, that Slagfin's swan-maid is a
sister of Volund's and a kinswoman of Egil's, and that she, accordingly,
is Slagfin's sister (half-sister). She is called _Hladgudr Svanhvit_,
likewise a name which occurs nowhere else. Her (and accordingly also
that of Volund's swan-maid) mother is called Swan-feather, _Svanfjödr_
(Slagfin's beloved is _Svanfjadrar drós_--str. 2). The name Svan-feather
reminds us of the Svanhild Gold-feather mentioned in Fornm., ii. 7, wife
of one Finalf. If Svanfeather is identical with Svanhild Goldfeather,
then Finalf must originally be identical with Ivalde, who also is an elf
and bears the name _Finnakonungr_, _Sumblus Phinnorum rex_. But this then
simply confirms what we already know, namely, that the Ivalde sons and
two of the swan-maids are brothers and sisters. It, however, gives us no
clue by which we can trace Slagfin in other sources, and rediscover him
bearing other names, and restore the myth concerning him which seems to
be lost. That he, however, played an important part in the mythology may
be assumed already from the fact that his brothers hold places so central
in the great epic of the mythology. It is, therefore, highly probable
that he is mentioned in our mythic fragments, though concealed under some
other name. One of these names, viz., Ide, we have already found (see
No. 114); and thereby we have learned that he, with his brother Egil,
had a citadel near the Elivagar, and guarded their coasts against the
powers of frost. But of his fate in general we are ignorant. No extensive
researches are required, however, before we find circumstances which,
compared with each other, give us the result that Slagfin is Gjuke, and
therewith the way is open for a nearer acquaintance with his position
in the heroic saga, and before that in the mythology. His identity with
Gjuke is manifest from the following circumstances:

The Gjukungs, famous in the heroic saga, are, according to the saga
itself, the first ones who bear this name. Their father is Gjuke, from
whom this patronymic is derived. Through their father they belong to a
race that is called Hniflungs, Niflungs, Nebelungs. The Gjukungs form a
branch of the Niflung race, hence all Gjukungs are Niflungs, but not all
Niflungs Gjukungs. The Younger Edda says correctly, _Af Niflunga ætt var
Gjuki_ (Younger Edda, i. 522), and Atlakvida (17) shows that the Gjukungs
constitute only a part of the Niflungs. The identity of the Gjukungs in
this relative sense with the Niflungs is known and pointed out in Atlamal
(47, 52, 88), in Brot Sigurdarkvida (16), in Atlakvida (11, 17, 27), and
in "Drap Niflunga."

Who the Niflung race are in the widest sense of the word, or what known
heroes the race embraced besides Gjuke and his sons--to this question
the saga of Helge Hundingsbane (i. 48) gives important information,
inasmuch as the passage informs us that the hostile race which Helge
Hundingsbane--that is to say, Halfdan Borgarson (see No. 29)--combats are
the Niflungs. Foremost among the Niflungs Hodbrod is mentioned in this
poem, whose betrothed Helge (Halfdan Borgarson) gets into his power. It
has already been shown that, in this heroic poem, Hodbrod is the copy of
the mythological Orvandel-Egil (see Nos. 29, 32, 101). It follows that
Volund, Orvandel-Egil, and Slagfin are Niflungs, and that Gjuke either is
identical with one of them or that he at all events is descended from the
same progenitor as they.

The great treasure of works smithied from gold and other precious things
which the Gjukungs owned, according to the heroic traditions, are
designated in the different sources in the same manner as inherited. In
Atlakvida (11) the Gjukung treasure is called _arf Niflunga_; so also
in Atlakvida (27). In Gudrunarkvida (ii. 25) the queen of the deceased
Gjuke promises her and Gjuke's daughter, Gudrun, that she is to have the
control of all the treasures "after (_at_) her dead father (_fjöld allz
fjar at thin faudur daudan_)," and we are told that those treasures,
together with the halls in which they were kept and the precious carpets,
are an inheritance after (_at_) _Hlaudver_, "the fallen prince" (_hringa
rauda Hlaudves sali, arsal allan at jofur fallin_). From Volundarkvida
we gather that Volund's and Slagfin's swan-maids are daughters of
Hlaudver and sisters of their lovers. Thus Hlaudver is identical with
Ivalde, Volund's, Egil's, and Slagfin's father (see No. 123). Ivalde's
splendidly decorated halls, together with at least one son's share of
his golden treasures, have thus passed as an inheritance to Gjuke, and
from Gjuke to his sons, the Gjukungs. While the first song about Helge
Hundingsbane tells us that Volund, Egil, and Slagfin were, like Gjuke,
Niflungs, we here learn that Gjuke was the heir of Volund's, Egil's, and
Slagfin's father. And while Thorsdrapa, compared with other sources,
has already informed us that Ide-Slagfin and Gang-Egil inhabited that
citadel near the Elivagar which is called "Ide's chalet" and Geirvadel's
(Geirvandel's) chalet, and while Geirvandel is demonstrably an epithet
of Ivalde,[14] and as Ivalde's citadel accordingly passed into the
possession of Slagfin and Egil, we here find that Ivalde's citadel was
inherited by Gjuke. Finally, we must compare herewith Bragarædur (ch.
2), where it is said that Ivalde (there called Olvalde) was survived by
his sons, who harmoniously divided his great treasures. Thus Gjuke is one
of the sons of Ivalde, and inherited halls and treasures after Ivalde;
and as he can be neither Volund nor Egil, whose fates we already know,
he must be Slagfin--a result confirmed by the evidence which we shall
gradually present below.

[14] In Saxo Gervandillus (_Geirvandill_) is the father of Horvandillus
(_Örvandill_). Orvandel has been proved to be identical with Egil. And as
Egil is the son of Ivalde, Geirvandel is identical with Ivalde.



When Volund and Egil, angry at the gods, abandoned Frey to the power
of the giants and set out for the Wolfdales, they were unable to take
with them their immense treasures inherited from their father and
augmented by themselves. Nor did they need them for their purposes.
Volund carried with him a golden fountain in his wealth-bringing arm-ring
(see Nos. 87, 98, 101) from which the seven hundred rings, that Nidhad
to his astonishment discovered in his smithy, must have come. But the
riches left by these brothers ought not to fall into the hands of the
gods, who were their enemies. Consequently they were concealed. Saxo
(_Hist._, 193) says of the father of Svipdag-Ericus, that is to say, of
Orvandel-Egil, that he long had had great treasures concealed in earth
caves (_gazæ, quas diu clausæ telluris antra condiderant_). The same
is true of Gjuke-Slagfin, who went with his brothers to the Wolfdales.
Vilkinasaga (see below) has rescued an account of a treasure which was
preserved in the interior of a mountain, and which he owned. The same
is still more and particularly applicable to Volund, as he was the most
famous smith of the mythology and of the heroic saga. The popular fancy
conceived these treasures left and concealed by Volund as being kept in
earth caves, or in mountain halls, guarded and brooded over by dragons.
Or it conceived them as lying on the bottom of the sea, or in the bottom
of deep rivers, guarded by some dwarf inhabiting a rocky island near
by. Many of the songs and sagas of heathendom and of the older days of
Christianity were connected with the refinding and acquisition of the
Niblung hoard by some hero or other as the Volsung Sigmund, the Borgar
descendant Hadding-Dieterich, and Siegfried-Sigurd-Fafnersbane. The
Niflung treasure, _hodd Niflunga_ (Atlakvida, 26), _Nibelunge Hort_,
is in its more limited sense these Volund treasures, and in its most
general signification the golden wealth left by the three brothers. This
wealth the saga represents as gathered again largely in the hands of
the Gjukungs, after Sigurd, upon the victory over Fafner, has reunited
the most important one of Volund's concealed treasures with that of
the Gjukung's, and has married the Gjukung sister Gudrun. The German
tradition, preserved in middle-age poems, shows that the continental
Teutons long remembered that the _Nibelunge Hort_ originally was owned by
Volund, Egil, and Slagfin-Gjuke. In _Lied von Siegfried_ the treasure is
owned by three brothers who are "Niblungs." Only one of them is named,
and he is called King Euglin, a name which, with its variation Eugel,
manifestly is a variation of Eigel, as he is called in the Orentel saga
and in Vilkinasaga, and of Egil as he is called in the Norse records.
King Euglin is, according to _Lied von Siegfried_, an interpreter of
stars. Siegfried bids him _Lasz mich deyner kunst geniessen, Astronomey
genannt_. This peculiar statement is explained by the myth according
to which Orvandel-Egil is a star-hero. Egil becomes, like Atlas of
the antique mythology, a king versed in astronomy in the historical
interpretation of mythology. In _Nibelunge Noth_ the treasure is owned
by "the valiant" Niblungs, Schilbunc and Niblunc. Schilbunc is the Norse
_Skilfingr_, and I have already shown above that Ivalde-Svigder is the
progenitor of the Skilfings. The poem Biterolf knows that the treasure
originally belonged to _Nibelót, der machet himele guldîn; selber wolt
er got sîn_. These remarkable words have their only explanation in the
myths concerning the Niflung Volund, who first ornamented Asgard with
golden works of art, and subsequently wished to destroy the inhabitants
of Asgard in order to be god himself. The Norse heroic saga makes the
treasures brooded over by Fafner to have been previously guarded by
the dwarf Andvare, and makes the latter (Sigurdarkvida Fafn., ii. 3)
refer to the first owner. The saga characterises the treasure guarded
by him as _that gull, er Gustr átti_. In the very nature of the case
the first maker and possessor of these works must have been one of the
most celebrated artists of the mythology; and as _Gustr_ means "wind,"
"breath of wind;" as, again, Volund in the mythology is the only artist
who is designated by a synonym of _Gustr_, that is, by _Byrr_, "wind"
(Volundarkvda, 12), and by _Loptr_, "the airy one" (Fjölsvinnsmal,
26); as, furthermore, the song cycle concerning Sigurd Fafnersbane is
connected with the children of Gjuke Volund's brother, and in several
other respects strikes roots down into the myth concerning Ivalde's
sons; and as, finally, the German tradition shows an original connection
between _Nibelunge Hort_ and the treasures of the Ivalde sons, then every
fact goes to show that in _Gustr_ we have an epithet of Volund, and that
the Niflung hoard, both in the Norse and in the German Sigurd-Siegfried
saga was the inheritance and the works of Volund and his brothers.
Vigfusson assumes that the first part of the compound Slagfin is _slagr_,
"a tone," "a melody," played on a stringed instrument. The correctness
of this opinion is corroborated by the fact that Slagfin-Gjuke's son,
Gunnar, is the greatest player on stringed instruments in the heroic
literature. In the den of serpents he still plays his harp, so that the
crawling venomous creatures are enchanted by the tones. This wonderful
art of his is explained by the fact that his father is "the stringed
instrument's" Finn, that is, Slagfin. The horse Grane, who carries
Sigurd and the hoard taken from Fafner, probably at one time bore Volund
himself, when he proceeded to the Wolfdales. Grane at all events had
a place in the Volund-myth. The way traversed by Volund from his own
golden realm to the Wolfdales, and which in part was through the northern
regions of the lower world (_fyr mágrindr nedan_--Fjölsvinnsmal, 26)
is in Volundarkvida (14) called Grane's way. Finally, it must here be
stated that Sigurdrifva, to whom Sigurd proceeds after he has gotten
possession of Fafner's treasure, (Griperssaga, 13-15), is a mythic
character transferred to the heroic saga, who, as shall be shown in
the second part of this work, held a conspicuous position in the myths
concerning the Ivalde sons and their swan-maids. She is, in fact, the
heroic copy of Idun, and originally she had nothing to do with Budle's
daughter Brynhild. The cycle of the Sigurd songs thus attaches itself
as the last ring or circle in the powerful epic to the myth concerning
the Ivalde sons. The Sigurd songs arch themselves over the fateful
treasures which were smithied and left by the fallen Lucifer of the
Teutonic mythology, and which, like his sword of revenge and his arrow
of revenge, are filled with curses and coming woe. In the heroic poems
the Ivalde sons are their owners. The son's son Svipdag wields the sword
of revenge. The son's sons Gunnar and Hogne go as the possessors of the
Niblung treasure to meet their ruin. The myth concerning their fathers,
the Ivalde sons, arches itself over the enmity caused by Loke between
the gods on the one hand, and the great artists, the elf-princes, the
protectors of growth, the personified forces of the life of nature, on
the other hand. In connection herewith the myth about Ivalde himself
revolves mainly around "the mead," the _soma_, the strength-giving saps
in nature. He too, like his sons afterwards, gets into conflict with the
gods and rebels against them, seeks to deprive them of the _soma_ sap
which he had discovered, allies himself with Suttung's sons, in whose
keeping the precious liquid is rediscovered, and is slain outside of
their door, while Odin is within and carries out the plan by which the
mead becomes accessible to gods and to men (see No. 89). This chain of
events thus continues through three generations. And interwoven with
it is the chain of events opposed to it, which develops through the
generations of the other great mythic race of heroes: that of the Heimdal
son Borgar, of the Borgar son Halfdan, and of the Halfdan sons Hadding
and Guthorm (Dieterich and Ermenrich). Borgar fights and must yield to
the assault of Ivalde, and subsequently of his sons from the North in
alliance with the powers of frost (see Nos. 22, 28). Halfdan contends
with Ivalde's sons, recaptures for vegetation the Teutonic country as
far as to "Svarin's mound," but is slain by Ivalde's grandson Svipdag,
armed with the Volund sword (see Nos. 32, 33, 102, 103). In the conflict
between Svipdag and Guthorm-Ermenrich on the one side, and Hadding on
the other, we see the champions divided into two camps according to the
mythological antecedents of their families: Amalians and Hildings on
Hadding's side, the descendants of Ivalde on the other (see Nos. 42,
43). Accordingly, the Gjukungs, "the kings on the Rhine," are in the
German tradition on Ermenrich's side. Accordingly, Vidga Volundson, in
spite of his bond of friendship with Hadding-Dieterich, also fights under
Ermenrich's banner. Accordingly, Vildebur-Egil is again called to life
in the heroic saga, and there appears as the protector and helper of
the Volund son, his own nephew. And accordingly, Vate-Walther, too (see
No. 123), identical with Ivalde, Volund's father, is reproduced in the
heroic saga to bear the banner of Ermenrich in the battles (cp. No. 43).



Slagfin-Gjuke has many names in the German traditions, as in the Norse.
Along with the name Gibich, Gibche (Gjuke), occur the synonyms Dankrat,
Irung, and Aldrian. In the latter part of Nibelunge Noth Gibich is called
Dankrat (cp. "Klage;" Biterolf also has the name Dankrat, and speaks
of it in a manner which shows that in some of the sources used by the
author Dankrat was a synonym of Gibich). In Vilkinasaga Gjuke appears
now as Irung, now as Aldrian. Aldrian is (Vilkinasaga, 150) king of
Niflungaland, and has the sons Hogne, Gunnar, Gernoz, and Gilzer. Irung
(Vilkin., 15) is also king of Niflungaland, and has the sons Hogne,
Gunnar, Gudzorm, Gernoz, and Gisler. As Gjuke also is a Niflung, and has
the sons Hogne, Gunnar, and Guthorm, there can be no doubt that Gjuke,
Gibche, Dankrat, Irung, and Aldrian are synonyms, designating one and the
same person, namely, Volundarkvida's Slagfin, the Ide of the mythology.
Nibelunge Noth, too, speaks of Aldrian as the father of Hagen (Hogne).
Aldrian's wife is called Oda, Gibich's "Frau Uote," Dankrat's "Frau Ute."

The Norse form for Dankrat (Tancred) is _thakkrádr_, Thakkrad. This
name appears a single time in the Norse records, and then in connection
with Volund and Nidhad. In Volundarkvida (39) Thakkrad is mentioned as
Nidhad's chief servant, who still remains in his service when Volund,
his revenge accomplished, flies in an eagle's guise away from his
prison. That this servant bears a name that belongs to Slagfin-Gjuke,
Volund's brother, cannot be an accident. We must compare an account
in Vilkinasaga, according to which Volund's other brother Egil was in
Nidhad's service when Volund flew away. It follows that the heroic saga
made not only Volund, but also Slagfin and Egil, fall into Nidhad's
hands. Both in Volundarkvida itself and in its prose introduction we
read that when the home-sick swan-maids had left the Wolfdales, Egil and
Slagfin betook themselves thence, Egil going to the east to look for his
swan-maid Olrun, Slagfin going south to find his Svanhvit (Volundarkvida,
4), and that Nidhad thereupon learned--the song does not say how--that
Volund was alone in the Wolfdales (Volundarkvida, 6). The assumption
here lies near at hand, that Nidhad found it out from the fact that
Slagfin and Egil, though going away in different directions, fell into
his power while they were looking for their beloved. Whether this feature
belonged to the myth or not cannot be determined. At all events it is
remarkable that we refind in Volundarkvida the Gjuke name Thakkrad, as in
Vilkinasaga we find Volund's brother Egil in Nidhad's environment.

The name Irung, Iring, as a synonym of Gjuke, is of more importance
from a mythological point of view. Widukind of Corvei (about the year
950) tells us in ch. 13 of his Saxon Chronicle that "the Milky Way is
designated by Iring's name even to this day." Just previously he has
mentioned a Saxon warrior by this name, whom he believes to have been
the cause of this appellation (_ ... Iringi nomine, quem ita vocitant,
lacteus cœli circulus sit vocatus_; and in the Aursberg Chronicle,
according to J. Grimm, _... lacteus cæli circulus Iringis, nomine
Iringesstraza sit vocatus_). According to Anglo-Saxon glossaries, the
Milky Way is called _Iringes uueg_. With this we should compare the
statements made above, that the Milky Way among the Teutonic population
of England was called the way of the Watlings (that is, the descendants
of Vate, _i.e._, Ivalde). Both the statements harmonize. In the one it is
the descendants of Ivalde in general, in the other it is Slagfin-Iring
whose name is connected with the Milky Way. Thus Slagfin, like Volund
and Orvandel-Egil, was a star-hero. In "Klage" it is said of Iring and
two other heroes, in whose company he appears in two other poems, that
they committed grave mistakes and were declared banished, and that they,
in spite of efforts at reconciliation, remained under the penalty to the
end of their lives. Biterolf says that they were exiles and threatened
by their foes. Here we have a reverberation of the myth concerning the
conflict between the gods and the Ivalde sons, of Frey's unsuccessful
effort to reconcile the enemies, and of their flight to the extreme north
of the earth. In the German poems they take flight to Attila.

The Gjuke synonym Aldrian is a name formed in analogy with Albrian,
which is a variation of Elberich. In analogy herewith Aldrian should be
a variation of Elderich, Helderich. In Galfrid of Monmouth's British
History there is a Saxon saga-hero Cheldricus, who, in alliance with a
Saxon chief Baldulf, fights with King Artus' general Cador, and is slain
by him. How far the name-forms Aldrian-Elderich have any connection
with the Latinised Cheldricus I think best to leave undetermined; but
there are other reasons which, independently of a real or apparent
name-identity, indicate that this Cheldricus is the same person as
Aldrian-Gjuke. Bugge has already pointed out that Baldrian corresponds
to Balder, Cador to _Hödr_; that Galfrid's account has points of contact
with Saxo's about the war between Balder and Hoder, and that Galfrid's
Cheldricus corresponds to Saxo's King Gelderus, _Geldr_, who fights with
Hoder and falls in conflict with him.

That which at once strikes us in Saxo's account of Gelderus (see No. 101)
is that he takes arms against Hotherus, when he learns that the latter
has got possession of the sword of victory and the wealth-producing
ring--treasures that were smithied by Volund, and in that sense belonged
to the Niblung hoard. That Saxo in this manner gave a reason for the
appearance of Gelderus can only be explained by the fact that Gelderus
had been in some way connected with the Niblung hoard, and looked upon
himself as more entitled to it than Hotherus. This right could hardly be
based on any other reason than the fact that Gelderus was a Niflung, a
kinsman of the maker and owner of the treasures. In the Vilkinasaga the
keeper and protector of the Niblung hoard, the one who has the key to
the rocky chambers where the hoard is kept bears the very name Aldrian,
consequently the very surname of Slagfin-Gjuke, Volund's and Egil's
brother. This of itself indicates that Gelderus is Slagfin-Aldrian.



From Slagfin-Gelderus' part in the war between the two divine brothers
Balder and Hoder, as described both by Saxo and by Galfrid, we must draw
the conclusion that he is a mythic person historified, and one who had
taken an important part in the Balder-myth as Balder's friend, and also
as Hoder's though he bore weapons against the latter. According to Saxo,
Hoder honours the dust of his slain opponent Gelderus in a manner which
indicates a previous friendly relation between them. He first gives
Gelderus a most splendid funeral (_pulcherrimum funeris obsequium_), then
he builds a magnificent grave-mound for him, and decorates it with tokens
of his respect (_veneratio_) for the dead one.

The position of Slagfin-Gelderus to the two contending divine brothers,
his brothership-in-arms with Balder, the respect and devotion he receives
from his opponent Hoder, can only be explained by the fact that he had
very intimate relations with the two brothers and with the mythical
persons who play a part in the Balder-myth. According to Saxo, Hoder
was fostered by _Gevarr_, the moon-god, Nanna's father. As Nanna's
foster-brother, he falls in love with her who becomes the wife of his
brother, Balder. Now the mythology actually mentions an individual who
was adopted by the moon-god, and accordingly was Hoder's foster-brother,
but does not in fact belong to the number of the real gods. This
foster-son inherits in the old Norse records one of the names with which
the moon-god is designated in the Anglo-Saxon poems--that is, _Hoce_, a
name identical with the Norse _Hjúke_. Hnaf (_Hnæfr_, _Næfr_, Nanna's
father) is also, as already shown, called Hoce in the Beowulf poem (see
Nos. 90, 91). From the story about Bil and Hjuke, belonging to the myth
about the mead and preserved in the Younger Edda, we know that the
moon-god took these children to himself, when they were to carry to their
father _Vidfinnr_, the precious burden which they had dipped out of the
mead-fountain, Byrger (see Nos. 90, 91).

That this taking up was equivalent to an adoption of these children by
the moon-god is manifest from the position Bil afterwards got in the
circle of gods. She becomes an asynje (Younger Edda, i. 118, 556) and
distributes the Teutonic mythological _soma_, the creative sap of nature
and inspiration, the same liquid as she carried when she was taken up
by the moon-god. The skalds of earth pray to her (_ef unna itr vildi
Bil skáldi!_) and Asgard's skald-god, Brage, refreshes himself with her
in Gevarr-Nokver's silver-ship (see Sonatorrek; cp. Nos. 90, 91). Odin
came to her every day and got a drink from the mead of the moon-ship,
when the latter was sinking toward the horizon in the west. The ship
is in Grimnersmal called _Sökkvabekkr_, "the setting or sinking ship,"
in which Odin and Saga "daily drink from golden goblets," while "cool
billows in soughing sound flow over" the place where they sit. The cool
billows that roar over Sokvabek are the waves of the atmospheric sea,
in which Nokver's ship sails, and they are the waves of the ocean when
the silver-ship sinks into the sea. The epithet _Saga_ is used in the
same manner as _Bil_, and it probably has the same reason for its origin
as that which led the skalds to call the bucket which Bil and Hjuke
carried _Sægr_. Bil, again, is merely a synonym of Idun. In Haustlaung,
Idun is called _Byrgis ár-Gefn_, "Byrger's harvest-giving dis;" Thjasse
is called _Byrgis ár-Gefnar bjarga-Tyr_, "Byrger's harvest-giving dis,
mountain-Tyr." Idun is thus named partly after the fountain from which
Bil and Hjuke fetched the mead, partly after the bucket in which it was

That Hjuke, like Bil-Idun, was regarded by the moon-god as a
foster-child, should not be doubted, the less so as we have already
seen that he, in the Norse sources, bears his foster-father's name. As
an adopted son of the moon-god, he is a foster-brother of Hoder and
Nanna. Hjuke must therefore have occupied a position in the mythology
similar to that in which we find Gelderus as a brother-in-arms of Nanna's
husband, and as one who was held in friendship even by his opponent,
Hoder. As a brother of the Ivalde daughter, Bil-Idun, he too must be an
Ivalde son, and consequently one of the three brothers, either Slagfin,
or Orvandel-Egil, or Volund. The mythic context does not permit his
identification with Volund or Egil. Consequently he must be Slagfin. That
Gelderus is Slagfin has already been shown.

This also explains how, in Christian times, when the myths were told as
history, the Niflungs-Gjukungs were said to be descended from _Næfr_,
_Nefir_, (_Nefir er Niflunger eru frá komnir_--Younger Edda, i. 520.) It
is connected with the fact that Slagfin, like his brothers, is a Niflung
(see No. 118) and an adopted son of the moon-god, whose name he bore.

Bil's and Hjuke's father is called _Vidfinnr_. We have already seen
that Slagfin's and his brothers' father, Ivalde, is called _Finnr_,
_Finnakonungr_ (Introduction to Volundarkvida), and that he is identical
with _Sumbl Finnakonungr, and Finnálfr_. In fact the name _Finnr_
never occurs in the mythic records, either alone or in compounds or in
paraphrases, except where it alludes to Ivalde or his son, Slagfin. Thus,
for instance, the byrnie, _Finnzleif_, in Ynglingasaga, is borne by a
historified mythic person, by whose name Saxo called a foster-son of
Gevarr, the moon-god. The reason why Ivalde got the name _Finnr_ shall be
given below (see No. 123). And as Ivalde (_Sumbl Finnakonungr_--Olvalde)
plays an important part in the mead-myth, and as the same is true of
Vidfin, who is robbed of Byrger's liquid, then there is every reason for
the conclusion that Vidfin's, Hjuke's, and Bil-Idun's father is identical
with _Finnakonungr_, the father of Slagfin and of his sister.

Gjuke and Hjuke are therefore names borne by one and the same person--by
Slagfin, the Niflung, who is the progenitor of the Gjukungs. They also
look like analogous formations from different roots.

This also gives us the explanation of the name of the Asgard bridge,
_Bilröst_, "Bil's way." The Milky Way is Bil-Idun's way, just as it is
her brother Hjuke's; for we have already seen that the Milky Way is
called Irung's way, and that Irung is a synonym of Slagfin-Gjuke. Bil
travelled the shining way when she was taken up to Asgard as an asynje.
Slagfin travelled it as Balder's and Hoder's foster-brother. If we now
add that the same way was travelled by Svipdag when he sought and found
Freyja in Asgard, and by Thjasse-Volund's daughter, Skade, when she
demanded from the gods a ransom for the slaying of her father, then we
find here no less than four descendants of Ivalde who have travelled
over the Milky Way to Asgard; and as Volund's father among his numerous
names also bore that of Vate, Vade (see Vilkinasaga), then this explains
how the Milky Way came to be called Watling Street in the Old English

In the mythology there was a circle of a few individuals who were
celebrated players on stringed instruments. They are Balder, Hoder,
Slagfin, and Brage. In the heroic poems the group is increased with
Slagfin-Gjuke's son, Gunnar, and with Hjarrandi, the Horund of the
German poem "Gudrun," to whom I shall recur in my treatise on the
heroic sagas. Balder's playing is remembered by Galfrid of Monmouth.
Hoder's is mentioned in Saxo, and perhaps also in the Edda's _Hadarlag_,
a special kind of metre or manner of singing. Slagfin's quality as a
musician is apparent from his name, and is inherited by his son, Gunnar.
Hjarrandi-Horund appears in the Gudrun epic by the side of Vate (Ivalde),
and there is reason for identifying him with Gevarr himself. All these
names and persons are connected with the myth concerning the _soma_
preserved in the moon. While the first drink of the liquid of inspiration
and of creative force is handed to Odin by Mimer, we afterwards find
a supply of the liquid preserved by the moon-god; and those mythic
persons who are connected with him are the very ones who appear as the
great harp-players. Balder is the son-in-law of the moon-god, Hoder and
Slagfin are his foster-sons, Gunnar is Slagfin's son, Brage becomes the
husband of Bil-Idun, and Hjarrandi is no doubt the moon-god himself, who
sings so that the birds in the woods, the beasts on the ground, and the
fishes in the sea listen and are charmed ("Gudrun," 1415-1418, 1523-1525,

Both in Saxo and in Galfrid Hoder meets Slagfin with the bow in his
conflict with him (Cheldricus in Galfrid; Gelderus in Saxo). The bow
plays a chief part in the relation between the gods and the sons of
Ivalde. Hoder also met Egil in conflict with the bow (see No. 112),
and was then defeated, but Egil's noble-mindedness forbade his harming
Slagfin's foster-brother. Hoder, as an archer, gets satisfaction for
the defeat in Saxo, when with his favourite weapon he conquers Egil's
brother, Slagfin (Gelderus), who also is an archer. And finally, with
an arrow treacherously laid on Hoder's bow, Volund, in demoniac thirst
for revenge and at Loke's instigation, takes the life of Balder, Hoder's

[15] Thus Vigfusson's opinion that the Asgard bridge is identical
with the Milky Way is correct. That the rainbow should be regarded as
the Bilrost with its bridge-heads is an invention by the author of



The names by which Slagfin is found in our records are accordingly
_Idi_, _Gjúki_, Dankrat (_thakkrádr_), Irung, Aldrian, Cheldricus,
Gelderus, _Hjúki_. We have yet to mention one more, Hengest (_Hengist_),
to which I shall return below. Of these names, Gelderus (_Geldr_),
Cheldricus, and Aldrian form a group by themselves, and they are possibly
simply variations of the same word. The meaning of the name Hengest,
"a gelding," is connected with the same group, and particularly to
the variation _Geldr_. The most important Slagfin epithets, from a
mythological standpoint, are Ide, Gjuke, Hjuke, and Irung.

The names of Volund (Wieland, Veland) in the various records are, as we
have seen, _thjazi_, Ajo (Aggo), Anund (_Önundr_), _Rögnir_, _Brunni_,
_Ásólfr_, _Vargr_, _Fjallgyldir_, _Hlébardr_, _Byrr_, _Gustr_, _Loptr_,
Haquinus (Aki, Ecke). Of these names and epithets _Ásólfr_, _Vargr_,
_Fjallgyldir_, and _Hlébardr_ form a group by themselves, and refer to
his animal-symbol, the wolf. The other brothers also have animal-symbols.
Egil is symbolised as a wild boar and a bear by the names _Aurnir_,
_Ebur_, _Isólfr_. Slagfin is symbolised as a horse in Hengest, and also
in the paraphrase _öndr-Jálkr_, "the gelding of the skees." Like his
brothers, he is a runner on skees. The Volund epithet, _Brunni_, also
alludes to skee-running. _Rögnir_ and _Regin_ are names of Volund and his
brothers in their capacity of artists. The names Ajo, Anund, and Thjasse
(the sparkling) may have their origin in ancient Aryan times.

The names of the third brother, Egil, are _Gangr_, _Örvandill_, _Egill_,
Agelmund, Eigel, Euglin, _Hödbroddr_, Toko, and Avo, the archer; Ebur
(Ibor, Wild-Ebur, Villefer, Ebbo), _Aurnir Isólfr_. Of these names
_Egill_, Agelmund, Egil, and Euglin form a separate group; _Örvandill_,
_Hödbroddr_, Toko, and Avo sagittarius form another group, referring to
his fame as an archer; Ebur, Aurnir, and Isolfr a third, referring to his



In the course taken by our investigation we have already met with and
pointed out several names and epithets by which Ivalde occurs in the
mythology and in the heroic poems. Such are _Geirvandill_, with the
variation _Geirvadill_; _Vadi_ (Vate), _Allvaldi_, _Audvaldi_, _Olvaldi_,
_Svigdir_ (_Svegdir_), _Ölmódr_, _Sumbl Finnakonungr_ (Sumblus Phinnorum
rex), _Finnakonungr_, _Vidfinnr_, _Finnálfr_, _Fin Folcvalding_,

Of these names _Ívaldi_, _Allvaldi_, _Audvaldi_, and _Ölvaldi_ form
a group by themselves, inasmuch as they all have the part, _valdi_,
_valdr_, "mighty," an epithet preserved from the mythology in those
heroic sagas which have treated distinct portions of the Ivalde-myth,
where the hero reappears as Walther, Valthari, Valdere, Valtarius

Another group is formed by _Ölvaldi_, _Ölmodr_, _Svidir_, _Sumbl
Finnakonungr_. _Svigdir_ means, as already shown, "the great drinker,"
and _Sumbl_ is a synonym of "ale," "mead." All the names in this group
refer to the quality of their bearer as a person belonging to the myth
about the mead.

The name _Sumbl Finnakonungr_ is at the same time connected with a
third group of names--_Finnakonungr_, _Finnr_, _Vidfinnr_, _Finnálfr_,
_Fin Folcvalding_. With this group the epithets _Vadi_ and _Vadill_ (in
_Geirvadill_) have a real mythological connection, which shall be pointed
out below.

Finally, _Geirvadill_ is connected with the epithet _Geirvandill_ from
the fact that both belong to Ivalde on account of his place in the

As has been shown above, Geirvandill means "the one occupied with the
spear," or, more accurately, "the one who exhibits great care and skill
in regard to the spear" (from _geir_, spear, and _vanda_, to apply
care to something in order that it may serve its purpose). In Saxo,
Gervandillus-Geirvandel is the father of Horvendillus-Orvandel; the
spear-hero is the father of the archer. It is evident that the epithets
of the son and father are parallel formations, and that as the one
designates the foremost archer in mythology, the other must refer to a
prominent spear-champion. It is of no slight importance to our knowledge
of the Teutonic weapon-myth that the foremost representatives of the
spear, the bow, and the sword among the heroes are grandfather, father,
and son. Svipdag, Ivalde's grandson, the son of Orvandel-Egil, is above
all others the sword-champion, "the sword-elf" (_sverdálfr_--see Olaf
Trygv., 43, where Svipdag-Erik's namesake and supposed descendant, Erik,
Jarl Hakonson, is called by this epithet). It is he who from the lower
world fetches the best and most terrible sword, which was also probably
regarded as the first of its kind in that age, as his uncle, who had
made it, was called "the father of swords" (see Nos. 113, 114, 115).
Svipdag's father is the most excellent archer whose memory still survives
in the story about William Tell. The grandfather, Ivalde, must have been
the most excellent marksman with the spear. The memory of this survives
not only in the epithets, _Geirvandill_ and _Geirvadill_, but also in
the heroic poem, "Valtarius Manufortis," written before the year 950 by
Eckehard in St. Gallen, and in Vilkinasaga, which has preserved certain
features of the Ivalde-myth.

Clad in an armour smithied by Volund (_Vuelandia fabrica_), Valtarius
appears as the great spear-champion, who despises all other weapons of

  Vualtarius erat vir maximus undique telis
  Suspectamque habuit cuncto sibi tempori pugnam (v. 366-7).

With the spear he meets a sword-champion--

  Hic gladio fidens hic acer et arduus hasta (v. 822);

and he has developed the use of the spear into an art, all of whose
secrets were originally known by him alone, then also by Hagano, who
learned them from the former (v. 336, 367). Vilkinasaga speaks of
Valthari as an excellent spear-champion. Sure of success, he wagers his
head in a competitive contest with this weapon.

It has already been shown above (see No. 89) that _Svigdir_-Ivalde in the
mythic saga concerning the race-heroes was the first ruler of the Swedes,
just as his sons, Volund and Egil, became those of the Longobardians and
Slagfin that of the Burgundians, and, as shall be shown below, also that
of the Saxons. Even in the Ynglingasaga, compiled in the twelfth century,
he remains, by the name _Svegdir_ among the first kings of the Yngling
race, and in reality as the first hero; for his forerunners, _Fjölnir_,
_Freyr_, and _Odinn_, are prehuman gods (in regard to _Fjölnir_, see
Völuspa). That _Svidir_ was made the race-hero of the Swedes is explained
by the fact that Ivalde, before his sons, before he had yet become the
foe of the gods and a "perjured _hapt_," was the guardian of the northern
Teutonic world against the powers of frost, and that the Sviones were the
northernmost race of the Teutonic domain. The elf-citadel on the southern
coast of the Elivagar was _Geirvadill_-Ivalde's _setr_ before it became
that of his sons (see Nos. 109, 113-115, 117, 118). The continental
Teutons, like their kinsmen on the Scandian peninsula, knew that north
of the Swedes and in the uttermost north lived a non-Teutonic people who
ran on skees and practised hunting--the Finns. And as the realm that was
subject to the race-hero of the Swedes in the mythology extended to
the Elivagar, where his _setr_ was situated, even the Finns must have
been subject to his sceptre. This explains his surname, _Finnakonungr_,
_Finnr_, _Vidfinnr_, Fin Folcvalding, and also the fact that his
descendants form a group of skee-runners. To the location of the _setr_
near the Elivagar, at the point where Thor was wont to wade across this
body of water (see Nos. 109, 114), we have a reference in the Ivalde
epithets, _Vadill Vadi_. They indicate his occupation as the keeper of
the ford. Vilkinasaga makes him a wader of the same kind as Thor, and
makes him bear his son, Volund, across a sound while the latter was still
a lad. Reasons which I may yet have an opportunity to present indicate
that Ivalde's mother was the mightiest amazon of Teutonic mythology,
whose memory survives in Saxo's account of Queen Rusila, Rusla (_Hist._,
178, 365, 394-396), and in the German heroic-saga's Rütze. This queen
of the elves, dwelling south of the Elivagar, is also remembered by
Tactitus' informer. In _Germania_ (45) we read: _Svionibus Sitonum gentes
continuantur. Cetera similes uno different quod femina dominatur.... Hic
Suebiæ fines_--"The Sviones are bounded by the Sitones. While they are
like each other in other things they differ in the one respect, that
a woman rules over the Sitones. Here the confines of Suebia end." The
name Sitones does not occur elsewhere, and it would be vain to seek it
in the domain of reality. Beyond the domain of the Sviones extended at
that time that of the mythic geography. The Sitones, who were governed
by a queen, belonged to the Teutonic mythology, like the Hellusians
and Oxionians, mentioned elsewhere in _Germania_. It is not impossible
that the name _Sitones_, of which the stem is sit, is connected with the
Norse mythological name of the chief citadel in their country--_setr_
(_Geirvadill's setr_, _Ide's setr_; cp. _setr-verjendr_ as a designation
in Ynglingasaga [17] of the descendants of _Svigdir_-Ivalde). The word
_setr_ is derived from _setja_, a causative form of _sitja_, the Gothic

I now pass to the name _Hlaudverr_, in Volundarkvida. This poem does not
state directly who Volund's, Egil's, and Slagfin's father was, but it
does so indirectly by mentioning the name of the father of Volund's and
Slagfin's swan-maids, and by stating that these swan-maids were sisters
of the brothers. Volund's swan-maid is called _theirra systir_ in str.
2. Among the many uncalled-for "emendations" made in the text of the
Elder Edda is also the change of _theirra_ to _theirrar_, made for the
reason that the student, forgetting that Volundarkvida was a poem born
of mythology, regarded it as impossible for a brother and sister to be
husband and wife, and for the reason that it was observed in the prose
introduction to Volundarkvida that the father of the three brothers was
_Finnakonungr_. _Hlaudverr_ is also found in a German source, "Biterolf,"
as King Liutwar. There he appears in the war between Hadding-Dieterich
and Gudhorm-Ermenrich, and the poem makes him a champion on the side
where all who in the mythology were foes of the Asas generally got their
place, that is, on Ermenrich's. There he occupied the most conspicuous
place as Ermenrich's standard-bearer, and, with Sabene, leads his forces.
The same position as Ermenrich's standard-bearer occupies is held in
"Dieterich's Flucht" by Vate, that is to say, _Vadi_-Ivalde, and in
Vilkinasaga by Valthari, that is to say again, Ivalde. Liutwar, Vate,
and Valthari are originally one and the same person in these German
records, just as Hlaudver (corresponding to Liutwar), Vade (corresponding
to Vate), and Ivalde (corresponding to Valthari) are identical in the
Scandinavian Volundarkvida's statement, that Volund's and Slagfin's
swan-maids are their sisters (half-sisters, as we shall see), and, like
them, daughters of Ivalde, is thus found to be correct by the comparison
of widely-separated sources.

While the father of these two swan-maids is called _Hlaudverr_ in
Volundarkvida, the father of the third swan-maid, Egil's beloved, is
called King _Kiarr_ in Valland. As Egil was first married to the dis
of vegetation, Groa, whose father is Sigtryg in the heroic saga, and
then to Sif, his swan-maid must be one of these two. In Volundarkvida,
where none of the swan-maids have their common mythological names,
she is called Olrun, and is said to be not a sister, but a kinswoman
(_kunn_--str. 15) of both the others. _Hlaudverr_ (Ivalde) and _Kiarr_
are therefore kinsmen. Who _Kiarr_ was in the mythology I cannot now
consider. Both these kings of mythological descent reappear in the cycle
of the Sigurd songs. It has already been shown above (No. 118) that the
Gjukungs appear in the Sigurd saga as heirs and possessors of _Hlaudverrs
halls_ and treasures; it is added that "they possess the whitest shield
from _Kiarr's_ hall (Gudrunarkvida, ii. 25; Atlakvida, 7). Here we
accordingly once more find the connection already pointed out between
the persons appearing in Volundarkvida and those in the Gjukungsaga. The
fathers of the swan-maids who love Volund and his brothers reappear in
the Sigurd songs as heroes who had already left the scene of action, and
who had owned immense treasures, which after their death have passed by
inheritance into the possession of the Gjukungs. This also follows from
the fact that the Gjukungs are descendants of Gjuke-Slagfin, and that
Slagfin and his brothers are Niflungs, heirs of Hlaudver-Ivalde, who was
_gullaudigr mjök_ (Younger Edda).

Like his sons, Ivalde originally stood in a friendly relation to the
higher reigning gods; he was their sworn man, and from his citadel near
the Elivagar, _Geirvadills setr_, he protected the creation of the gods
from the powers of frost. But, like his sons, and before them, he fell
into enmity with the gods and became "a perjured _hapt_." The features
of the Ivalde-myth, which have been preserved in the heroic poems and
shed light on the relation between the moon-god and him, are told partly
in the account of Gevarus, Nanna's father, in Saxo, and partly in the
poems about Walther (Valtarius, Walthari) and Fin Folcvalding. From these
accounts it appears that Ivalde abducted a daughter of the moon-god; that
enmity arose between them; that, after the defeat of Ivalde, Sunna's and
Nanna's father offered him peace, and that the peace was confirmed by
oath; that Ivalde broke the oath, attacked Gevar-Nokver and burnt him;
that, during the hostilities between them, Slagfin-Gjuke, though a son
of Ivalde, did not take the side of his natural father, but that of his
foster-father; and that Ivalde had to pay for his own deeds with ruin and

Concerning the point that Ivalde abducted a daughter of Gevar-Nokver
and married her, the Latin poems Valtarius Manufortis, Nibelunge Noth,
Biterolf, Vilkinasaga, and Boguphalus (Chronicon Poloniæ) relate that
Walther fled with a princess named Hildigund. On the flight he was
attacked by Gjukungs, according to Valtarius Manufortis. The chief one
of these (in the poem Gunthari, Gjuke's son) received in the battle a
wound "clean to the hip-bone." The statement anent the wound, which
Walther gave to the chief one among the Gjukungs, has its roots in the
mythology where the chief Gjukung, that is, Gjuke himself, appears
with surnames (Hengest, Geldr, _öndr-Jálkr_) alluding to the wound
inflicted. In the Anglo-Saxon heroic poem Fin Folcvalding is married
to Hildeburh, a daughter of Hnæf-Hoce, and in Hyndluljod (cp. str. 17
with str. 15) _Hildigunnr_ is the mother of Halfdan's wife Almveig,
and consequently the wife of _Sumbl Finnakonungr_, that is, Ivalde.
_Hildigunnr's_ father is called Sækonungr in Hyndluljod, a synonym of
_Nökkver_ ("the ship-captain," the moon-god), and Hildigun's mother is
called _Sváfa_, the same name as that by which Nanna is introduced in
the poem concerning Helge Hjorvardson. Hildeburh, Hnæf-Hoce's daughter,
is identical with Hildigun, daughter of _Sækonungr_. Compare furthermore
str. 20 in Hyndluljod, which speaks of Nanna as Nokver's daughter, and
thus refers back to str. 17, where Hildigun is mentioned as the daughter
of _Sækonungr_. The phrase _Nanna vat næst thor Nauckva dottir_ shows
that _Nökkver_ and another elder daughter of his were named in one of the
immediately preceding strophes. But in these no man's name or epithet
occurs except _Sækonungr_, "the sea-king," which can refer to _Nökkver_,
"the ship-owner," or "ship-captain," and the "daughter" last mentioned in
the poem is _Hildigunnr_.

Of the names of Ivalde's wife the various records contain the following

    Hlaudver-Ivalde is married to Svanfeather (_Svanfjödr_,

    Finnalf-Ivalde is married to Svanhild Gold-feather, daughter of
    Sol (Fornal. saga).

    Fin Folcvalding-Ivalde is married to Hildeburh, daughter of
    Hnæf-Hoce (Beowulf poem).

    Walther-Ivalde is married to Hildigunt (German poems).

    Sumbl-Finnakonungr is married to Hildigun, daughter of
    Sækonungr Nokver, the same as _Hnæfr_, _Hnefr_, Nanna's father
    (Hyndluljod, compared with Saxo and other sources).

She who is called Svanfeather, the sun-daughter Svanhild Gold-feather,
Hildeburh, Hildigunt, and Hildigun is accordingly a sister of the
moon-dis Nanna, and a daughter of the ruler of the atmosphere and of the
moon. She is herself a sun-dis. In regard to the composition of the name,
we must compare Hildigun, _Hiltigunt_, with Nanna's surname _Sinhtgunt_.
The Teutonic, or at all events the Norse, mythology knew two divinities
of the sun, mother and daughter. Grimnersmal (47) tells us that the older
one, _Alfraudull_, has a daughter, who, not at the present time, but in
the future, is to drive the car of the sun (_eina dottur berr Alfraudull
..._). The elder is the wife of the moon-god. The younger one is the
Sunna mentioned in the Merseburg formula (see No. 92), Sinhtgunt-Nanna's
sister. As a surname, Sunna also occurs in the Norse literature
(Alvissmal, 17; Younger Edda, i. 472, and elsewhere).

In the Beowulf poem and in "Battle of Furnesburg," we find Fin
Folcvalding, Hildeburh's husband, as the foe of his father-in-law Hnæf,
and conquered by him and Hengest. After a war ending unluckily for him,
he makes peace with his victors, breaks the peace, attacks the citadel
in the night, and cremates the slain and wounded in an immense funeral
pyre. Hnæf is among those fallen, and Hildeburh weeps at his funeral
pyre; Hengest escapes and afterwards avenges Hnæf's death. Saxo confirms
the fact, that the historified person who in the mythology is the
moon-god is attacked and burnt by one of his "satraps," and afterwards
avenged. This he tells of his Gevarus, Nanna's father (_Hist._, 131).
The correspondence on this point shows that the episode has its root in
the mythology, though it would be vain to try to find out the symbolic
significance from a standpoint of physical nature of the fact that the
moon-god was attacked and burnt by the husband of his daughter, the


(_From a painting by Lorenz Frölich._)

In the Icelandic Hervar's Saga is an account of the mythical sword
called Tyrfing, which Odin commanded the dwarfs Durin and Dvalin to
forge for his grandson, King Svafrlame. When, against their will, they
were compelled to deliver the sword to the king, the dwarfs pronounced a
curse upon it, declaring that it should never be drawn from its sheath
without causing the death of some one. Soon after Svafrlame was killed
by Arngrim and the sword passed to Angantyr, who, in turn, was slain by
Hjalmar and, to abate the curse, Tyrfing was buried with him. Angantyr's
daughter, Hervor, however, by a spell, exorcised the spirit of her father
and obtained the sword, after which it had many owners in succession,
but the curse remained, for it brought death as before to every one who
unsheathed it.]

Meanwhile we obtain from these scattered mythic fragments preserved
in the heroic poems, when compared with the statements found in the
mythology itself, the following connected story as the myth about the

Originally, the mead, the _soma_, belongs to Mimer alone. From an unknown
depth it rises in the lower world directly under the world-tree, whose
middle root is watered by the well of the precious liquid. Only by
self-sacrifice, after prayers and tears, is Odin permitted to take a
drink from this fountain. The drink increases his strength and wisdom,
and enables him to give order to the world situated above the lower
regions. From its middle root the world-tree draws liquids from the
mead-fountain, which bless the einherjes of Asgard as a beverage, and
bless the people of Midgard as a fructifying honey-dew. Still this mead
is not pure; it is mixed with the liquids from Urd's and Hvergelmer's
fountains. But somewhere in the Jotunheims, the genuine mead was
discovered in the fountain Byrger. This discovery was kept secret. The
keeper of the secret was Ivalde, the sworn watchman near the Elivagar.
In the night he sent his son Slagfin (afterwards called after his
adopted father Hjuke) and his daughter Bil (Idun) to dip liquid from the
fountain Byrger and bring it to him. But the children never returned.
The moon-god had taken them and Byrger's liquids unto himself, and thus
the gods of Asgard were able to partake of this drink. Without the
consent of the moon-god, Ivalde on his part secured his daughter the
sun-dis, and doubtless she bears to him the daughters Idun, Almveig, and
other dises of growth and rejuvenation, after he had begotten Slagfin,
Egil, and Volund with the giantess Greip. The moon-god and Ivalde have
accordingly taken children from each other. The circumstance that the
mead, which gives the gods their creative power and wisdom, was robbed
from Ivalde--this find which he kept secret and wished to keep for
himself alone--makes him the irreconcilable foe of the moon-god, is the
cause of the war between them, and leads him to violate the oath which he
had taken to him. He attacks Gevar in the night, kills and burns him, and
recaptures the mead preserved in the ship of the moon. He is henceforth
for ever a foe of the gods, and allies himself with the worst enemies
of their world, the powers of frost and fire. Deep down in Hades there
has long dwelt another foe of the gods, Surt-Durin, the clan-chief of
Suttung's sons, the father of Fjalar. In the oldest time he too was the
friend of the gods, and co-operated with Mimer in the first creation (see
No. 89). But this bond of friendship had now long been broken. Down into
the deep and dark dales in which this clan hostile to the gods dwells,
Ivalde brings his mead-treasure into safety. He apparently gives it as
the price of Fjalar's daughter Gunlad, and as a pledge of his alliance
with the world of giants. On the day of the wedding, Odin comes before
him, and clad in his guise, into Surt's halls, marries Gunlad, robs the
liquids of Byrger, and flies in eagle guise with them to Asgard. On the
wedding day Ivalde comes outside of Surt's mountain-abode, but never
enters. A dwarf, the keeper of the halls, entices him into his ruin. It
has already been stated that he was probably buried beneath an avalanche.

The myth concerning the carrying of the mead to the moon, and concerning
its fate there, has left various traces in the traditions of the Teutonic
people. In the North, Hjuke and Bil with their mead-burden were the
objects seen in the spots on the moon. In southern Sweden, according
to Ling, it was still known in the beginning of this century, that
the bucket carried by the figures in the moon was a "brewing kettle,"
consequently containing or having contained a brewed liquid. According
to English traditions, not the two children of Vidfin, but a drunken
criminal (Ritson's _Ancient Songs_; cp. J. Grimm, _Deut. Myth._, 681),
dwelt in the full moon, and that of which he is charged in widely
circulated traditions is that he was gathering fagots for the purpose of
crime, or in an improper time (on the Sabbath). Both the statements that
he is drunk and that his crime consists in the gathering of fagots--lead
us to suppose that this "man in the moon" originally was Ivalde, the
drink-champion and the mead-robber, who attacked and burnt the moon-god.
His punishment is that he will never get to heaven, but will remain in
the moon, and there he is for ever to carry a bundle of thorn-fagots
(thus according to a German tradition, and also according to a tradition
told by Chaucer). Most probably, he has to carry the thorn-rod of the
moon-god burnt by him. The moon-god (see Nos. 75, 91) ruled over the
Teutonic Erynnies armed with rods (_limar_), and in this capacity he bore
the epithet _Eylimi_. A Dutch poem from the fourteenth century says that
the culprit _in duitshe heet Ludergheer_. A variation which J. Grimm
(_Deut. Myth._, 683) quotes is Lodeger. The name refers, as Grimm has
pointed out, to the Old High German Liutker, the Lüdiger of the German
middle-age poem. In "Nibelunge Noth," Lüdiger contends with the Gjukungs;
in "Dieterichs Flucht," he abandons Dieterich's cause and allies himself
with the evil Ermenrich. Like Liutwar, Lüdiger is a pendant to the Norse
Hlaudver, in whom we have already rediscovered Ivalde. While, according
to the Younger Edda, both the Ivalde children Hjuke and Bil appear in the
moon, according to the English and German traditions it is their criminal
father who appears on the scene of the fire he kindled, drunk with the
mead he robbed, and punished with the rod kept by his victim.

The statement in Forspjallsljod, that Ivalde had two groups of children,
corresponds with the result at which we have arrived. By the giantess
Greip he is the father of Slagfin, Egil, and Volund; by the sun-dis
Gevar, Nokver's daughter and Nanna's sister, he is the father of dises of
growth, among whom are Idun, who first is Volund's beloved or wife, and
thereupon is married to Brage. Another daughter of Ivalde is the beloved
of Slagfin-Gjuke, Auda, the "frau Ute" of the German heroic saga. A third
is Signe-Alveig, in Saxo the daughter of _Sumblus Phinnorum_ (Ivalde). At
his wedding with her, Egil is attacked and slain by Halfdan. Hadding is
Halfdan's and her son.

Several things indicate that, when their father became a foe of the gods,
Ivalde's sons were still their friends, and that Slagfin particularly
was on the side of his foster-father in the conflict with Ivalde. With
this corresponds also the conduct of the Gjukungs toward Valtarius, when
he takes flight with Hildigun. In the Anglo-Saxon heroic poetry, the
name Hengest is borne by the person who there takes Slagfin's place as
Hnæf-Gevar's nearest man. The introduction to the Younger Edda has from
its English authorities the statement that _Heingestr_ (Hengest) was a
son of Vitta and a near kinsman of Svipdag. If, as previous investigators
have assumed, Vitta is Vade, then Hengest is a son of Ivalde, and this
harmonises with the statement anent his kinship with Svipdag, who is a
grandson of Ivalde. The meaning of the word Hengest refers of itself to
Slagfin-_Geldr_. The name _Geldr_ is a participle of _gelda_, and means
_castratus_. The original meaning of Hengest is "a gelding," _equus
castratus_ (in the modern German the word got for the first time its
present meaning). That the adjective idea _castratus_ was transferred to
the substantive _equus castratus_ is explained by the fact that _Gils_,
_Gisl_, a mythic name for a horse (Younger Edda, i. 70, 482), was also
a Gjukung name. One of Hengest's ancestors in his genealogy in Beda and
in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle is called Vict-gils; one of Slagfin-Gjuke's
sons is named _Gilser_. A neither mythic nor historic brother of
Hengest added in later times is named Horsa. The Ravenna geography
says that when the Saxons left their old abodes on the continent, they
marched _cum principe suo Anschis_, and with their chief _Ans-gisl_,
who therefore here appears in the place of Hengest. Synonymous with
Hengest is the Norse _Jálkr_, _equus castratus_, and that some member
of the mythological group of skee-runners, that is, some one of the
male members of the Ivalde race, in the Norse version of the Teutonic
mythology, bore this epithet is proved by the paraphrase _öndr-Jálkr_,
"the _equus castratus_ of the skee-runners." The cause of the designation
is found in the event described above, which has been handed down by the
poem "Valtarius Manufortis." The chief one of the Gjukungs, originally
Gjuke himself, there fights with Valtarius, who in the mythology was his
father, and receives in the conflict a wound "clean to the thigh-bone."
This wound may have symbolic significance from the fact that the fight
is between father and son. According to the English chronicler Nennius,
Hengest had two brothers, Ochta and Ebissa. In spite of their corruption
these names remind us of Slagfin's brothers, Aggo-Ajo (Volund) and
Ibor-Ebbo (Egil).

According to the historified saga, Hengest was the leader of the first
Saxon army which landed in Britain. All scholars have long since agreed
that this Hengest is a mythical character. The migration saga of the
Teutonic mythology was transferred by the heathen Saxons to England,
and survived there until Christian times. After the names of the real
leaders of the Saxon immigration were forgotten, Hengest was permitted
to take their place, because in the mythology he had been a leader of
the Saxon emigrants from their original country, the Scandian peninsula
(see No. 16), and because this immigration was blended in Christian times
with the memory of the emigration from Germany to Britain. Thus, while
the Longobardians made Volund and Egil (Ajo and Ibor) the leaders of
their emigration, the Saxons made Volund's and Egil's brother Slagfin
(Hengest-Gjuke) their leader. The Burgundians also regarded Slagfin
(Gjuke) as their emigration hero and royal progenitor. Of this there is
evidence partly in _Lex Burgundionum_, the preface of which enumerates
Burgundian kings who have Gjukung names; partly in a Middle High German
poem, which makes the Gjukungs Burgundian kings. The Saxon migration saga
and the Burgundian are therefore, like those of the other Teutonic races,
connected with the Ivalde race and with the fimbul-winter.



_with Explanations of the Character, Attributes and Significance of the
Gods, Goddesses, Giants, Dwarfs and associated creatures and places._



ÆGIR. [Anglo-Sax., _eagor_, the sea]. The god who presides over the
stormy sea. He entertains the gods every harvest, and brews ale for them.

AGNAR. A son of King Hraudung and foster-son of Frigg. _Agnar._

AGNAR. A son of King Geirrod. He serves drink to Grimner (Odin). _Agnar._

ALFR. An elf, fairy; a class of beings like the dwarfs, between gods and
men. They were of two kinds: elves of light (_Ljosalfar_) and elves of
darkness (_Dokkalfar_). The abode of the elves is _Alfheimr_, fairy-land,
and their king is the god Frey. _Elf._

ALFODR or ALFADIR [Father of all]. The name of Odin as the supreme god.

ALFHEIMR. Elf-land, fairy-land. Frey's dwelling. _Alfheim._

ALSVIDR. The all-wise. One of the horses of the sun. _Alsvid._

ALVISS. The dwarf who answers Thor's questions in the lay of Alvis.

AMSVARTNIR. The name of the sea, in which the island was situated where
the wolf Fenrer was chained. _Amsvartner._

ANNARR or ONARR. Husband of night and father of Jord (_the earth_).

ANDHRIMNIR. The cook in Valhal. _Andhrimner._

ANDVARI. The name of a pike-shaped dwarf; the owner of the fatal ring
called _Andvaranautr_. _Andvare._

ANDVARAFORS. The force or waterfall in which the dwarf Andvare kept
himself in the form of a pike fish. _Andvare-Force._

ANDVARANAUTR. The fatal ring given Andvare (the wary spirit).

ANGANTYR. He has a legal dispute with Ottar Heimske, who is favored by
Freyja. _Angantyr._

ANGEYJA. One of Heimdal's nine mothers. The Elder Edda says in the Lay of
Hyndla: Nine giant maids gave birth to the gracious god, at the world's
margin. These are: Gjalp, Greip, Eistla, Angeyja, Ulfrun, Eyrgjafa, Imd,
Atla, and Jarnsaxa. _Angeyja._

ANGRBODA [Anguish-creating]. A giantess; mother of the Fenris-wolf by
Loke. _Angerboda._

ARVAKR [Early awake]. The name of one of the horses of the sun. _Aarvak._

ASS or AS; plural Æsir. The _asas_, gods. The word appears in such
English names as _Os_born, _Os_wald, etc. With an _n_ it is found in
the Germ. _Ans_gar (Anglo-Sax. _Os_car). The term _æsir_ is used to
distinguish Odin, Thor, etc., from the _vanir_ (vans). _Asa._

ASA-LOKI. Loke, so called to distinguish him from Utgard-Loke, who is a
giant. _Asa-Loke._

ASA-THORR. A common name for Thor. _Asa-Thor._

ASGARDR. The residence of the gods (_asas_). _Asgard._

ASKR. The name of the first man created by Odin, Hœner and Loder. _Ask._

ASYNJA; plural ASYNJUR. A goddess; feminine of _Ass_. _Asynje._

ATLA. One of Heimdal's nine mothers. _Atla._

AUDHUMLA; also written AUDHUMBLA. The cow formed from the frozen vapors
resolved into drops. She nourished the giant Ymer. _Audhumbla._

AURBODA. Gymer's wife and Gerd's mother. _Aurboda._

AURGELMIR. A giant; grandfather of Bergelmer; called also Ymer.

AUSTRI. A dwarf presiding over the east region. _Austre. East._


BALDR. God of the summer-sunlight. He was son of Odin and Frigg; slain
by Hoder, at the instigation of Loke. He returns after Ragnarok. His
dwelling is Breidablik. _Balder._

BARREY. A pleasant grove in which Gerd agreed with Skirner to meet Frey.

BAUGI. A brother of Suttung, for whom (Baugi) Odin worked one summer in
order to get his help in obtaining Suttung's mead of poetry. _Bauge._

BELI. A giant, brother of Gerd, who was slain by Frey. _Bele._

BERGELMIR. A giant; son of Thrudgelmer and grandson of Aurgelmer.

BESTLA. Wife of Bur and mother of Odin. _Bestla._

BEYLA. Frey's attendant; wife of Bygver. _Beyla._

BIFROST. [To tremble; the trembling way]. The rainbow. _Bifrost._

BILSKIRNIR. The heavenly abode of Thor, from the flashing of light in the
lightning. _Bilskirner._

BOLTHORN. A giant; father of Bestla, Odin's mother. _Bolthorn._

BOLVERKR [Working terrible things]. An assumed name of Odin, when he went
to get Suttung's mead. _Bolverk._

BODN. One of the three vessels in which the poetical mead was kept. Hence
poetry is called the wave of the _bodn_. _Bodn._

BORR [_burr_, a son; Scotch _bairn_]. A son of Bure and father of Odin,
Vile and Ve. _Bor._

BRAGI. The god of poetry. A son of Odin. He is the best of skalds.

BREIDABLIK. [Literally to gleam, twinkle]. Balder's dwelling.

BRISINGAMEN. Freyja's necklace or ornament. _Brisingamen._

BURI. The father of Bor. He was produced by the cow's licking the stones
covered with rime, frost. _Bure._

BYGGVIR. Frey's attendant; Beyla's husband. _Bygver._

BYLEIPTR [Flame of the dwelling]. The brother of Loke. _Byleipt._


DAGR [Day]. Son of Delling. _Dag._

DAINN. A hart that gnaws the branches of Ygdrasil. _Daain._

DELLINGR [Dayspring]. The father of Day. _Delling._

DIS; plural DISIR. Attendant spirit or guardian angel. Any female mythic
being may be called Dis. _Dis._

DRAUPNIR. Odin's ring. It was put on Balder's funeral-pile. Skirner
offered it to Gerd. _Draupner._

DROMI. One of the fetters by which the Fenris-wolf was chained. _Drome._

DUNEYRR, DURAPROP. Harts that gnaw the branches of Ygdrasil. _Durathror._

DURINN. A dwarf, second in degree. _Durin._

DVALINN. A dwarf. _Dvalin._

DVERGR. A dwarf. In modern Icelandic lore dwarfs disappear, but remain
in local names, as Dverga-steinn, and in several words and phrases. From
the belief that dwarfs lived in rocks an echo is called _dwerg-mal_
(dwarf talk), and _dwerg-mala_ means to echo. The dwarfs were skilled in


EDDA. The literal meaning of the word is great-grandmother, but the term
is usually applied to the mythological collection of poems discovered by
Brynjolf Sveinsson in the year 1643. He, led by a fanciful and erroneous
suggestion, gave to the book which he found the name Sæmundar Edda,
Edda of Sæmund. This is the so-called _Elder Edda_. The _Younger Edda_,
is a name applied to a work written by Snorre Sturleson, and contains
old mythological lore and the old artificial rules for verse-making.
The ancients applied the name _Edda_ only to this work of Snorre. The
_Elder Edda_ was never so called. And it is also uncertain whether Snorre
himself knew his work by the name of Edda. In the Rigsmal (Lay of Rig)
Edda is the progenitrix of the race of thralls.

EGDIR. An eagle that appears at Ragnarok. _Egder._

EGILL. The father of Thjalfe; a giant dwelling near the sea. Thor left
his goats with him when on his way to the giant Hymer to get a vessel in
which to brew ale.

EIKTHYRNIR. A hart that stands over Odin's hall (Valhal). From his
antlers drops water from which rivers flow. _Eikthyrner._

EINHERI; plural EINHERJAR. The only (_ein_) or great champions; the
heroes who have fallen in battle and been admitted into Valhal.

EIR. [The word signifies _peace_, _clemency_]. An attendant of Menglod,
and the most skillful of all in the healing art. _Eir._

EISTLA. One of Heimdal's nine mothers. _Eistla._

ELDHRIMNIR. The kettle in which the boar Sæhrimner is cooked in Valhal.

ELDIR. The fire-producer; a servant of Æger. _Elder._

ELIVAGAR. The ice-waves; poisonous cold streams that flow out of
Niflheim. _Elivagar._

EMBLA. The first woman. The gods found two lifeless trees, the _ask_
(ash) and the _embla_; of the ash they made _man_, of the embla, _woman_.

EYRGJAFA. One of Heimdal's nine mothers. _Eyrgjafa._


FAFNIR. Son of Hreidmar. He kills his father to get possession of the
Andvarenaut. He afterwards changes himself into a dragon and guards the
treasure on Gnitaheath. He is slain by Sigurd, and his heart is roasted
and eaten. _Fafner._

FALHOFNIR [Hollow-hoof]. One of the horses of the gods. _Falhofner._

FARBAUTI [Ship-destroyer]. The father of Loke. _Farbaute._

FENRIR or FENRISULFR. The monster-wolf. He is the son of Loke, who bites
the hand of Tyr. The gods put him in chains, where he remains until
Ragnarok. In Ragnarok he gets loose, swallows the sun and conquers Odin,
but is killed by Vidar. _Fenrer_ or _Fenris-wolf_.

FENSALIR. The abode of Frigg. _Fensal._

FJALAR. A misnomer for Skrymer, in whose glove Thor took shelter.

FJALAR. A dwarf, who slew Kvaser, and composed from his blood the poetic
mead. _Fjalar._

FJALAR. A cock that crows at Ragnarok. _Fjalar._

FIMAFENGR. The nimble servant of Æger. He was slain by the jealous Loke.

FIMBUL. It means _mighty great_. In the mythology it appears as:

FIMBULFAMBI. A mighty fool. _Fimbulfambe._

FIMBULTYR. The mighty god, great helper (Odin). _Fimbultyr._

FIMBULVETR [_vetr_, winter]. The great and awful winter of three years'
duration preceding the end of the world. _Fimbul-winter._

FIMBULTHUL. A heavenly river. _Fimbulthul._

FIMBULTHULR. The great wise man. _Fimbulthuler._

FJOLNIR. One of Odin's many names. _Fjolner._

FJORGYN. A personification of the earth; mother of Thor. _Fjorgyn._

FOLKVANGR. [Paradise, a field]. The folk-field. Freyja's dwelling.

FORNJOTR. The most ancient giant. He was father of Æger, or Hler, the
god of the ocean; of Loge, flame or fire, and of Kaare, wind. His wife
was Ran. These divinities are generally regarded as belonging to an
earlier mythology, probably to that of the Fins or Celts. _Fornjot._

FORSETI [The fore-sitter, president, chairman]. Son of Balder and
Nanna. His dwelling is Glitner, and his office is that of a peacemaker.

FRANANGRS-FORS. The force or waterfall into which Loke, in the likeness
of a salmon, cast himself, and where the gods caught him and bound him.

FREKI. One of Odin's wolves. _Freke._

FREYJA [Feminine of Freyr]. The daughter of Njord and sister of Frey. She
dwells in Folkvang. Half the fallen in battle belong to her, the other
half to Odin. She lends her feather disguise to Loke. She is the goddess
of love. Her husband is Oder. Her necklace is Brisingamen. She has a boar
with golden bristles. _Freyja._

FREYR. He is son of Njord, husband of Skade, slayer of Bele, and falls in
conflict with Surt in Ragnarok. Alfheim was given him as a tooth-gift.
The ship Skidbladner was built for him. He falls in love with Gerd,
Gymer's fair daughter. He gives his trusty sword to Skirner. _Frey._

FRIGG. [Love]. She is the wife of Odin, and mother of Balder and queen of
the gods, and reigns with Odin in Hlidskjalf. She exacts an oath from all
things that they shall not harm Balder. _Frigg._

FULLA [Fullness]. Frigg's attendant. She takes care of Frigg's toilette,
clothes and slippers. Nanna sent her a finger-ring from Helheim. She is
represented as wearing her hair flowing over her shoulders. _Fulla._


GALAR. One of two dwarfs who killed Kvaser. Fjalar was the other.

GAGNRADE. A name assumed by Odin when he went to visit Vafthrudner.

GANGLERI. One of Odin's names in Grimner's Lay. _Ganglere._

GANGLERI. A name assumed by King Gylfe when he came to Asgard. _Ganglere._

GARDROFA. The goddess Gnaa has a horse by name Hofvarpner. The sire of
this horse is Hamskerper, and its mother is Gardrofa. _Gardrofa._

GARMR. A dog that barks at Ragnarok. He is called the largest and best
among dogs. _Garm._

GEFJUN or GEFJON. A goddess. She is a maid, and all those who die maids
become her maid-servants. She is present at Æger's feast. Odin says she
knows men's destinies as well as he does himself. _Gefjun._

GEIRRODR. A son of King Hraudung and foster-son of Odin; he becomes king
and is visited by Odin, who calls himself Grimner. He is killed by his
own sword. There is also a giant by name Geirrod, who was once visited by
Thor. _Geirrod._

GEIRSKOGUL. A valkyrie. _Geirskogul._

GEIRVIMUL. A heavenly river. _Geirvimul._

GERDR. Daughter of Gymer, a beautiful young giantess; beloved by Frey.

GERI. [_gerr_, greedy]. One of Odin's wolves. _Gere._

GERSEMI. One of Freyja's daughters. _Gerseme._

GJALLARBRU [_gjalla_, to yell, to resound]. The bridge across the river
Gjol, near Helheim. The bridge between the land of the living and the
dead. _Gjallarrbridge._

GJALLARHORN. Heimdal's horn, which he will blow at Ragnarok. _Gjallar

GILLING. Father of Suttung, who possessed the poetic mead. He was slain
by Fjalar and Galar. _Gilling._

GIMLI [Heaven]. The abode of the righteous after Ragnarok. _Gimle._

GJALP. One of Heimdal's nine mothers. _Gjalp._

GINNUNGA-GAP. The great yawning gap, the premundane abyss, the chaos or
formless void, in which dwelt the supreme powers before the creation. In
the eleventh century the sea between Greenland and Vinland (America) was
called Ginnunga-gap. _Ginungagap._

GJOLL. One of the rivers Elivagar that flowed nearest the gate of Hel's
abode. _Gjol._

GISL [Sunbeam]. One of the horses of the gods. _Gisl._

GLADR [Clear, bright]. One of the horses of the gods. _Glad._

GLADSHEIMR [Home of brightness or gladness]. Odin's dwelling. _Gladsheim._

GLASIR. A grove in Asgard. _Glaser._

GLEIPNIR. The last fetter with which the wolf Fenrer was bound.

GLER [The glassy]. One of the horses of the gods. _Gler._

GLITNIR [The glittering]. Forsete's golden hall. _Glitner._

GNA. She is the messenger that Frigg sends into the various worlds on her
errands. She has a horse called Hofvarpenr, that can run through air and
water. _Gnaa._

GNIPAHELLIR. The cave before which the dog Garm barks. _The Gnipa-cave._

GNITAHEIDR. Fafner's abode, where he kept the treasure called
Andvarenaut. _Gnita-heath._

GOINN. A serpent under Ygdrasil. _Goin._

GOLL. A valkyrie. _Gol._

GOMUL. A heavenly river. _Gomul._

GONDUL. A valkyrie. _Gondul._

GOPUL. A heavenly river. _Gopul._

GRABAKR. One of the serpents under Ygdrasil. _Graabak._

GRAD. A heavenly river. _Graad._

GRAFVITNIR, GRAFVOLLUDR. Serpents under Ygdrasil. _Grafvitner_;

GREIP. [Eng. _grip_]. One of Heimdal's nine giant mothers. _Greip._

GRIMNIR. A kind of hood or cowl covering the upper part of the face.
Grimner is a name of Odin from his traveling in disguise. _Grimner._

GROA. The giantess mother of Orvandel. Thor went to her to have her charm
the flint-stone out of his forehead. _Groa._

GUILLFAXI [Gold-mane]. The giant Hrungner's horse. _Goldfax._

GULLINKAMBI [Gold-comb]. A cock that crows at Ragnarok. _Gullinkambe_ or

GULLTOPPR [Gold-top]. Heimdal's horse. _Goldtop._

GULLVEIG [Gold-thirst]. A personification of gold. Though pierced and
thrice burnt, she yet lives. _Gulveig._

GULLINBURSTI [Golden bristles]. The name of Frey's hog. _Gullinburste._

GUNGNIR [To tremble violently]. Odin's spear. _Gungner._

GUNNLOD [To invite]. One who invites war. She was daughter of the giant
Suttung, and had charge of the poetic mead. Odin got it from her.

GYLFI. A king of Svithod, who visited Asgard under the name of Ganglere.
The first part of the Younger Edda is called Gylfaginning, which means
the Delusion of Gylfe. _Gylfe._

GYLLIR [Golden]. One of the horses of the gods. _Gyller._

GYMIR. A giant; the father of Gerd, the beloved of Frey. _Gymer._

GYMIR. Another name of the ocean divinity Æger. _Gymer._


HALLINSKIDI. Another name of the god Heimdal. The possessor of the
leaning (_halla_) way. _Hallinskid._

HAMSKERPIR [Hide-hardener]. A horse; the sire of Hofvarpner, which was
Gnaa's horse. _Hamskerper._

HAR. The High One, applied to Odin. _Haar._

HARBARDR. The name assumed by Odin in the Lay of Harbard. _Harbard._

HEIDRUNR [Bright-running]. A goat that stands over Valhal. _Heidrun._

HEIMDALR. He was the heavenly watchman in the old mythology, answering
to St. Peter in the medieval. According to the Lay of Rig (Heimdal),
he was the father and founder of the different classes of men, nobles,
churls and thralls. He has a horn called Gjallar-horn, which he blows at
Ragnarok. His dwelling is Himinbjorg. He is the keeper of Bifrost (the
rainbow). Nine giantesses are his mothers. _Heimdal._

HEL. [Anglo-Sax. and Eng. _hell_; to kill]. The goddess of death, born
of Loke and Angerboda. She corresponds to Proserpina. Her habitation is
Helheim, under one of the roots of Ygdrasil. _Hel._

HELBLINDI. A name of Odin. _Helblinde._

HELGRINDR. The gates of Hel. _Helgrind_ or _Helgate._

HELHEIM. The abode of Hel. _Helheim._

HERFODR, HERJAFODR. [The father of hosts]. A name of Odin. _Herfather._

HERMODR [Courage of hosts]. Son of Odin, who gives him a helmet and a
corselet. He rode on Sleipner to Hel to bring Balder back. _Hermod._

HILDISVINI [Means war]. Freyja's hog. _Hilde-svine._

HIMINBJORG [Heaven, help, defense; hence heaven defender]. Heimdal's
dwelling. _Himinbjorg._

HIMINBRJOTR [Heaven-breaker]. One of the giant Hymer's oxen.

HLESEY. The abode of Æger. _Hlesey._

HLIDSKJALF. The seat of Odin, whence he looked out over all the worlds.

HLIN. One of the attendants of Frigg; but Frigg herself is sometimes
called by this name. _Hlin._

HLODYN. A goddess; a name of the earth; Thor's mother. _Hlodyn._

HLORIDI [Eng. _low_, to bellow, roar, and _reid_, thunder]. One of the
names of Thor; the bellowing thunderer. _Hloride._

HNIKARR, HNIKUDR. Names of Odin, _Hnikar_ and _Hnikuder_.

HNOSS [Anglo-Sax. to hammer]. A costly thing; the name of one of Freyja's
daughters. _Hnos._

HODDMIMISHOLT. Hodmimer's holt or grove, where the two human beings Lif
and Lifthraser were preserved during Ragnarok. _Hodmimer's forest._

HODR. The slayer of Balder. He is blind, returns to life in the
regenerated world. The Cain of the Norse mythology. _Hoder._

HOENIR. One of the three creating gods. With Odin and Loder Hœner creates
Ask and Embla, the first human pair. _Hoener._

HOFVARPNIR [Hoof-thrower]. Gnaa's horse. His father is Hamskerper and
mother Gardrofa. _Hofvarpner._

HRAESVELGR [Corpse-swallower]. A giant in an eagle's plumage, who
produces the wind. _Hraesvelger._

HRAUDUNGR. Geirrod's father. _Hraudung._

HREIDMARR. Father of Regin and Fafner. He exacts the blood-fine from the
gods for slaying Otter. He is slain by Fafner. _Hreidmar_.

HRIMFAXI [Rime-mane]. The horse of night. _Rimefax._

HRIMTHURSAR [Eng. _rime_, hoar-frost]. Rime-giants or frost-giants, who
dwell under one of Ygdrasil's roots. _Giants._

HRODVITNIR. A wolf; father of the wolf Hate. _Hrodvitner._

HROPTR. One of Odin's names. _Hropt._

HRUNGNIR. A giant; friend of Hymer. Thor fought with him and slew him.

HRINGHORNI. The ship upon which Balder's body was burned. _Hringhorn._

HROSSTHJOFR [Horse-thief]. A giant. _Hrosthjof._

HUGINN [Mind]. One of Odin's ravens. _Hugin._

HVERGELMIR [The old kettle]. The spring in the middle of Niflheim, whence
flowed the rivers Elivagar. The Northern Tartaros. _Hvergelmer._

HYMIR. A giant with whom Thor went fishing when he caught the
Midgard-serpent. His wife was the mother of Tyr. Tyr and Thor went to him
to procure a kettle for Æger in which to brew ale for the gods. _Hymer._

HYNDLA. A vala visited by Freyja, who comes to her to learn the genealogy
of her favorite, Ottar. _Hyndla._


IDAVOLLR. A plain where the gods first assemble, where they establish
their heavenly abodes, and where they assemble again after Ragnarok. The
plains of Ida. _Idavold._

IDUNN. Daughter of the dwarf Ivald; she was wife of Brage, and the
goddess of early spring. She possesses rejuvenating apples of which the
gods partake. _Idun._

IFING. A river which divides the giants from the gods. _Ifing._

IMD. One of Heimdal's nine giant mothers. _Imd._

IMR. A son of the giant Vafthrudner. _Im._

INGUNAR-FREYR. One of the names of Frey. _Ingun's Frey._

INNSTEINN. The father of Ottar Heimske; the favorite of Freyja. _Instein._

IVALDI. A dwarf. His sons construct the ship Skidbladner. _Ivald._


JAFNHAR [Equally high]. A name of Odin.

JALKR. A name of Odin (Jack the Giant-killer?). _Jalk._

JARNSAXA [Iron-chopper]. One of Heimdal's nine giant mothers. _Jarnsaxa._

JARNVIDR [Iron-wood]. A wood east of Midgard, peopled by giantesses
called Jarnvids. This wood had iron leaves. _Jarnvid._

JARNVIDIUR. The giantesses in the Iron-wood. _Jarnvids._

JORD. Wife of Odin and mother of Thor. _Earth._

JOTUNN. A giant. The giants were the earliest created beings. The gods
question them in regard to Balder. Thor frequently contends with them.
Famous giants are: Ymer, Hymer, Hrungner, Orvandel, Gymer, Skrymer,
Vafthrudner and Thjasse. _Giant._

JOTUNHEIMAR (plural). The Utgaard; the home of the giants in the
outermost parts of the earth. _Jotunheim._


KERLAUGAR (plural). Two rivers which Thor every day must cross. _Kerlaug._

KORMT. Another river which Thor every day must pass. _Kormt._

KVASIR. The hostage given by the vans to the asas. His blood, when slain,
was the poetical mead kept by Suttung. _Kvaser._


LAEDINGR. One of the fetters with which the Fenris-wolf was bound.

LAERADR. A tree near Valhal. _Laerad._

LANDVIDI [A mountain range overgrown with trees]. Vidar's abode. The
primeval forests. _Landvide._

LAUFEY [Leafy island]. Loke's mother. _Laufey._

LEIFTHRASIR, LIF. The two persons preserved in Hodmimer's grove during
Surt's conflagration in Ragnarok; the last beings in the old and the
first in the new world. _Lif_ and _Lifthraser_.

LETTFETI [Light-foot]. One of the horses of the gods. _Lightfoot._

LITR. A dwarf that Thor kicked into Balder's funeral pile. _Liter._

LODDFAFNIR. A protege of Odin. _Lodfafner._

LODURR [To flame]. One of the three gods (Odin, Hœnir and Loder) who
create Ask and Embla, the first man and woman. He is identical with Loke.

LOKI [To end, finish; Loke is the end and consummation of divinity]. The
evil giant-god of the Norse mythology. He steers the ship Naglfar in
Ragnarok. He borrows Freyja's feather-garb and accompanies Thor to the
giant Thrym, who has stolen Thor's hammer. He is the father of Sleipner;
also of the Midgard serpent, of the Fenris-wolf and of Hel. He causes
Balder's death, abuses the gods in Æger's feast, but is captured in
Fraanangerforce and is bound by the gods. _Loke._

LOPTR [The aerial]. Another name of Loke. _Lopter._


MAGNI [_megin_, strength]. A son of Thor. _Magne._

MANI [Eng. _moon_]. Brother of Sol (the sun, feminine), and both were
children of the giant Mundilfare. _Moon_ or _Maane_.

MARDOLL or MARTHOLL. One of the names of Freyja. _Mardallar gratr_ (the
tears of Mardal), gold. _Mardal._

MANAGARMR [Moon-swallower]. A wolf of Loke's offspring. He devours the
moon. _Maanegarm_ or _Moongarm_.

MANNHEIMAR (plural) [Homes of man]. Our earth. _Manheim._

MEILI. A son of Odin. _Meile._

MIDGARDR. [In Cumberland, England, are three farms: _High-garth_,
_Middle-garth_, _Low-garth_.] The mid-yard, middle-town, that is,
the earth, is a mythological word common to all the ancient Teutonic
languages. The Icelandic Edda alone has preserved the true mythical
bearing of this old Teutonic word. The earth (Midgard), the abode of men,
is situated in the middle of the universe, bordered by mountains and
surrounded by the great sea; on the other side of this sea is the Utgard
(out-yard), the abode of the giants; the Midgard is defended by the yard
or burgh Asgard (the burgh of the gods) lying in the middle (the heaven
being conceived as rising above the earth). Thus the earth and mankind
are represented as a stronghold besieged by the powers of evil from
without, defended by the gods from above and from within. _Midgard._

MIDGARDSORMR [The serpent of Midgaard]. The world-serpent hidden in the
ocean, whose coils gird around the whole Midgard. Thor once fishes for
him, and gets him on his hook. In Ragnarok Thor slays him, but falls
himself poisoned by his breath. _Midgard-serpent._

MIMAMEIDR. A mythic tree; probably the same as Ygdrasil. It derives its
name from Mimer, and means Mimer's tree. _Mimameider._

MIMIR. The name of the wise giant keeper of the holy well Mimis-brunnr,
the burn of Mimer, the well of wisdom, at which Odin pawned his eye for
wisdom; a myth which is explained as symbolical of the heavenly vault
with its single eye, the sun, setting in the sea.

MJOLNIR. Thor's formidable hammer. After Ragnarok, it is possessed by his
sons Mode and Magne. _Mjolner._

MISTILTEINN [Eng. _mistletoe_]. The mistletoe or mistletwig, the fatal
twig by which Balder, the white sun-god, was slain. After the death
of Balder, Ragnarok set in. Balder's death was also symbolical of the
victory of darkness over light, which comes every year at midwinter. The
mistletoe in English households at Christmas time is no doubt a relic
of a rite lost in the remotest heathendom, for the fight of light and
darkness at midwinter was a foreshadowing of the final overthrow in
Ragnarok. The legend and the word are common to all Teutonic peoples of
all ages. _Mistletoe._

MODI [Courage]. A son of Thor. _Mode._

MODSOGNIR. The dwarf highest in degree or rank. _Modsogner._

MOINN. A serpent under Ygdrasil. _Moin._

MUNDILFARI. Father of the sun and moon. _Mundilfare._

MUNINN [Memory]. One of Odin's ravens. _Munin._

MUSPELL. The name of an abode of fire. It is populated by a host of
fiends, who are to appear at Ragnarok and destroy the world by fire.

MUSPELLSHEIMR. The abode of Muspel. This interesting word (_Muspell_)
was not confined to the Norse mythology, but appears twice in the old
Saxon poem Heliand. In these instances _muspel_ stands for the _day of
judgment_, _the last day_, and answers to Ragnarok of the Norse mythology.

MOKKURKALFI [A dense cloud]. A clay giant in the myth of Thor and
Hrungner. _Mokkerkalfe._


NAGLFAR [Nail-ship]. A mythical ship made of nail-parings. It appears in
Ragnarok. _Naglfar._ _Nailship._

NAL [Needle]. Mother of Loke. _Naal._

NANNA. Daughter of Nep (bud); mother of Forsete and wife of Balder. She
dies of grief at the death of Balder. _Nanna._

NARI or NARFI. Son of Loke. Loke was bound by the intestines of Nare.
_Nare_ or _Narfe_.

NASTROND [The shore of corpses]. A place of punishment for the wicked
after Ragnarok. _Naastrand._

NIDAFJOLL. The Nida-mountains toward the north, where there is after
Ragnarok a golden hall for the race of Sindre (the dwarfs). _Nidafell._

NIDHOGGR. A serpent of the nether world, that tears the carcases of the
dead. He also lacerates Ygdrasil. _Nidhug._

NIFLHEIMR. The world of fog or mist; the nethermost of the rime worlds.
The place of punishment (Hades). It was visited by Odin when he went to
inquire after the fate of Balder. _Niflheim._

NJORDR. A van, vanagod. He was husband of Skade, and father of Frey and
Freyja. He dwells in Noatun. _Njord._

NOATUN [Place of ships]. Njord's dwelling; Njord being a divinity of the
water or sea. _Noatun._

NORDRI [North]. A dwarf presiding over the northern regions. _Nordre_ or

NOTT. Night; daughter of Norve. _Night._

NORN; plural NORNIR. The weird sisters; the three heavenly norns Urd,
Verdande, and Skuld (Past, Present, and Future); they dwelt at the
fountain of Urd, and ruled the fate of the world. Three norns were also
present at the birth of every man and cast the horoscope of his life.


ODINN [Anglo-Sax. _Wodan_]. Son of Bor and Bestla. He is the chief of
the gods. With Vile and Ve he parcels out Ymer. With Hœner and Loder he
creates Ask and Embla. He is the fountain-head of wisdom, the founder of
culture, writing and poetry, the progenitor of kings, the lord of battle
and victory. He has two ravens, two wolves and a spear. His throne is
Hlidskjalf, whence he looks out over all the worlds. In Ragnarok he is
devoured by the Fenris-wolf. _Odin._

ODR. Freyja's husband. _Oder._

ODROERIR [The spirit-mover]. One of the vessels in which the blood
of Kvaser, that is, the poetic mead, was kept. The inspiring nectar.

OFNIR. A serpent under Ygdrasil. _Ofner._

OKOLNIR. After Ragnarok the giants have a hall (_ale-hall_) called
Brimer, at Okolner.

OKU-THORR. So called from the Finnish thunder-god Ukko. _Akethor._

OSKI [Wish]. A name of Odin. _Oske._ _Wish._

OTR [Otter]. A son of Hreidmar; in the form of an otter killed by Loke.

OTTARR or OTTARR HEIMSKI [Stupid]. A son of Instein, a protege of Freyja.
He has a contest with Angantyr. Hyndla gives him a cup of remembrance.


RAGNAROK [Sentence, judgment, from _rekja_, is the whole development from
creation to dissolution, and would, in this word, denote the dissolution,
doomsday, of the gods; or it may be from _rokr_ (_reykkr_, smoke),
twilight, and then the word means the twilight of the gods]. The last
day; the dissolution of the gods and the world. _Ragnarok._

RAN [Rob]. The goddess of the sea; wife of Æger. _Ran._

RATATOSKR. A squirrel that runs up and down the branches of Ygdrasil.

RATI. An auger used by Odin in obtaining the poetic mead. _Rate._

REGINN. Son of Hreidmar; brother of Fafner and Otter. _Regin._

RINDR. A personification of the hard frozen earth. Mother of Vale.
The loves of Odin and Rind resemble those of Zeus and Europa in Greek
legends. _Rind._

ROSKVA. The name of the maiden follower of Thor. She symbolizes the ripe
fields of harvest. _Roskva._


SAEHRIMNIR [Rime-producer]. The name of the boar on which the gods and
heroes in Valhal constantly feed. _Saehrimner._

SAGA [History]. The goddess of history. She dwells in Sokvabek.

SESSRUMNIR. Freyja's large-seated palace. _Sesrumner._

SIDHOTTR [Long-hood]. One of Odin's names, from his traveling in disguise
with a large hat on his head hanging down over one side of his face to
conceal his missing eye. _Sidhat._

SIDSKEGGR [Long-beard]. One of Brage's names. It is also a name of Odin
in the lay of Grimner. _Sidskeg._

SIF. The wife of Thor and mother of Uller. The word denotes affinity.
Sif, the golden-haired goddess, wife of Thor, betokens mother earth with
her bright green grass. She was the goddess of the sanctity of the
family and wedlock, and hence her name. _Sif._

SIGFADIR [Father of victory]. A name of Odin. _Sigfather._

SIGYN. Loke's wife. She holds a basin to prevent the serpent's venom from
dropping into Loke's face. _Sigyn._

SILFRINTOPPR. One of the horses of the gods. _Silvertop._

SINDRI. One of the most famous dwarfs. _Sindre._

SINIR [Sinew]. One of the horses of the gods. _Siner._

SJOFN. One of the goddesses. She delights in turning men's hearts to
love. _Sjofn._

SKADI [_scathe_, harm, damage]. A giantess; daughter of Thjasse and the
wife of Njord. She dwells in Thrymheim, and hangs a venom serpent over
Loke's face. _Skade._

SKEIDBRIMIR [Race-runner]. One of the horses of the gods. _Skeidbrimer._

SKIDBLADNIR. The name of the famous ship of the god Frey that could
move alike on land or sea and could be made small or great at will.

SKINFAXI [Shining-mane]. The horse of Day. _Skinfax._

SKIRNIR [The bright one]. Frey's messenger. _Skirner._

SKRYMIR. The name of a giant; also the name assumed by Utgard-Loke.

SKULD [Shall]. The norn of the future. _Skuld._

SKOGUL. A valkyrie. _Skogul._

SLEIPNIR [The slipper]. The name of Odin's eight-footed steed. He is
begotten by Loke with Svadilfare. _Sleipner._

SNOTRA [Neat]. The name of one of the goddesses. _Snotra._

SOKKMIMIR [Mimer of the deep]. A giant slain by Odin. _Sokmimer._

SOKKVABEKKR. A mansion where Odin and Saga quaff from golden beakers.

SOL [Sun]. Daughter of Mundilfare. She drives the horses that draw the
car of the sun.

SONR. One of the vessels containing the poetic mead. _Son._

SUDRI [South]. A dwarf who presides over the south region. _Sudre._

SURTR. A fire-giant in Ragnarok who contends with the gods on the plain
of Vigrid and guards Muspelheim. _Surt._

SUTTUNGR. The giant possessor of the poetic mead. _Suttung._

SVADILFARI. A horse; the sire of Sleipner. _Svadilfare._

SVAFNIR. A serpent under Ygdrasil. _Svafner._

SVALINN [Cooler]. The shield placed before the sun. _Svalin._

SVASUDR [Delightful]. The name of a giant; the father of the sun.

SYN. A minor goddess.


TYR. Properly the generic name of the highest divinity, and remains
in many compounds. In mythology he is the one-armed god of war. The
Fenris-wolf bit one hand off him. He goes with Thor to Hymer to borrow a
kettle for Æger. He is son of Odin by a giantess. _Tyr._

THJALFI. The name of the servant and follower of Thor. The word properly
means a delver, digger. The names Thjalfe and Roskva indicate that Thor
was the friend of the farmers and the god of agriculture. _Thjalfe._

THJAZI [Thjassi]. A giant; the father of Njord's wife, Skade. His
dwelling was Thrymheim; he was slain by Thor. _Thjasse._

THORR. The English _Thursday_ is a later form, in which the phonetic rule
of the Scandinavian tongue has been followed. The god of thunder, keeper
of the hammer, the ever-fighting slayer of trolls and destroyer of evil
spirits, the friend of mankind, the defender of the earth, the heavens
and the gods; for without Thor and his hammer the earth would become the
helpless prey of the giants. He was the consecrator, the hammer being
the cross or holy sign of the ancient heathen. Thor was the son of Odin
and Fjorgyn (mother earth); he was blunt, hot-tempered, without fraud
or guile, of few words but of ready stroke--such was Thor, the favorite
deity of our forefathers. The finest legends of the Younger Edda and the
best lays of the Elder Edda refer to Thor. His hall is Bilskirner. He
slays Thjasse, Thrym, Hrungner, and other giants. In Ragnarok he slays
the Midgard-serpent, but falls after retreating nine paces, poisoned by
the serpent's breath. _Thor._

THRIDI [Third]. A name of Odin in Gylfaginning. _Thride._

THRUDGELMIR. The giant father of Bergelmer. _Thrudgelmer._

THRUDHEIMR or THRUDVANGR. Thor's abode. _Thrudheim; Thrudvang._

THRUDR. The name of a goddess; the daughter of Thor and Sif. _Thrud._

THRYMHEIMR. Thjasse's and Skade's dwelling. _Thrymheim._

THRYMR. The giant who stole Thor's hammer and demanded Freyja as a reward
for its return. _Thrym._

THOKK. The name of a giantess (supposed to have been Loke in disguise) in
the myth of Balder. _Thok._


ULFRUN. One of Heimdal's nine giant mothers. _Ulfrun._

ULLR. The son of Sif and stepson of Thor. His father is not named. He
dwells in Ydaler. _Uller._

URDARBRUNNR. The fountain of the norn Urd. The Urdar-fountain. The weird

URDR [Eng. _weird_]. One of the three norns. The norn of the past. _Urd._

UTGARDAR [The out-yard]. The abode of the giant Utgard-Loke. _Utgard._

UTGARDA-LOKI. The giant of Utgard visited by Thor. He calls himself
Skrymer. _Utgard-Loke._


VAFTHRUDNIR. A giant visited by Odin. They try each other in questions
and answers. The giant is defeated and forfeits his life. _Vafthrudner._

VALASKJALF. One of Odin's dwellings. _Valaskjalf._

VALFODR [Father of the slain]. A name of Odin. _Valfather._

VALGRIND. A gate of Valhal. _Valgrind._

VALHOLL [The hall of the slain]. The hall to which Odin invited those
slain in battle. _Valhal._

VALKYRJA [The chooser of the slain]. A troop of goddesses, handmaidens of
Odin. They serve in Valhal, and are sent on Odin's errands. _Valkyrie._

VALI. Is a brother of Balder, who slays Hoder when only one night old. He
rules with Vidar after Ragnarok. _Vale._

VALI. A son of Loke. _Vale._

VALTAMR. A fictitious name of Odin's father. _Valtam._

VE. A brother of Odin (Odin, Vile and Ve). _Ve._

VEGTAMR. A name assumed by Odin. _Vegtam._

VANAHEIMAR. The abode of the vans. _Vanaheim._

VANR; plural VANIR. Those deities whose abode was in Vanaheim, in
contradistinction to the asas, who dwell in Asgard: Njord, Frey and
Freyja. The vans waged war with the asas, but were afterwards, by virtue
of a treaty, combined and made one with them. The vans were deities of
the sea. _Van._

VEORR [Defender]. A name of Thor. _Veor._

VERDANDI [To become]. The norn of the present.

VESTRI. The dwarf presiding over the west region. _Vestre._ _West._

VIDARR. Son of Odin and the giantess Grid. He dwells in Landvide. He
slays the Fenris-wolf in Ragnarok. Rules with Vale after Ragnarok.

VIGRIDR [A battle]. The field of battle where the gods and the sons of
Surt meet in Ragnarok. _Vigrid._

VILI. Brother of Odin and Ve. These three sons of Bor and Bestla
construct the world out of Ymer's body. _Vile._

VIMUR. A river that Thor crosses. _Vimer._

VINDSVALR. The father of winter. _Vindsval._

VINDHEIMR. The place that the sons of Balder and Hoder are to inhabit
after Ragnarok. _Vindheim._ _Windhome._

VIN-GOLF [The mansion of bliss]. The palace of the asynjes. _Vingolf._

VINGTHORR. A name of Thor. _Vingthor._

VOR. The goddess of betrothals and marriages. _Vor._


YDALIR. Uller's dwelling. _Ydaler._

YGGR. A name of Odin. _Ygg._

YGGDRASILL [The bearer of Ygg (Odin)]. The world-embracing ash tree. The
whole world is symbolized by this tree. _Ygdrasil._

YMIR. The huge giant in the cosmogony, out of whose body Odin, Vile and
Ve created the world. The progenitor of the giants. He was formed out of
frost and fire in Ginungagap. _Ymer._



Transcriber's Note: This index doesn't use the accented letters found in
the rest of the text.


    Achilles, 44, 192.

    Achivians, 62.

    Adalbert, 320.

    Adam, 86, 132, 319, 338.

    Adam of Bremen, 714.

    Adriatic, 62.

    Aeduans, 66.

    Aegir, 43, 136, 235, 422, 575, 697, 813, 822, 967.

    Aeneas, 44, 66, 81, 730.

    African, 6.

    Agelmund, 858.

    Aggo, 104, 861, 893, 953, 1008.

    Agni, 587, 605, 886.

    Agrippa, 76, 86.

    Ahriman, 817.

    Ahura, 8.

    Ahuramazda, 127, 381, 450.

    Ai, 140.

    Ajo, 100, 861, 992.

    Alamannians, 53, 119, 708.

    Alarik, 25.

    Alba-Longa, 66.

    Aldonus, 101.

    Aldrian, 981, 991.

    Alexander, 50, 55.

    Alf, 167.

    Alfather, 376, 220, 340.

    Alfheim, 696, 865, 947.

    Alfhild, 168.

    Alfrandull, 1002.

    Alfsol, 168.

    Alps, 62.

    Almveig, 1000.

    Alvalde, 174, 584, 898, 953, 992.

    Alveig, 173, 257, 263, 273.

    Alveig-Signe, 793, 902.

    Alvis, 437.

    Alvism, 365, 376.

    Alvismal, 436, 445.

    Alvitr, 898.

    Amala, 293.

    Amalgort, 293.

    Amalian, 147, 285, 293, 980.

    Amazons, 168.

    Ambri, 100.

    Amelolt, 293.

    Amelungs, 147, 293.

    America, 940.

    Amlethus, 317, 843.

    Amlodi, 843, 568.

    Amma, 140.

    Ammianus, 58.

    Amsvartner, 564.

    Anarr, 157.

    Anchises, 54, 112.

    Andlanger, 706.

    Andvare, a dwarf, 300, 977.

    Angerboda, 226, 275, 558, 707, 809.

    Angeyja, 597.

    Angles, 55.

    Anglo-Saxon, 86.

    Angra-Mainyu, 127.

    Angul, 89.

    Animals, 23.

    Anses, 738.

    Ansgarius, 806.

    Ansgis, 54, 112.

    Antenor, 53, 62.

    Anthaib, 101.

    Anthropology, 729.

    Anti-Christ, 722.

    Anundus, 848, 884, 896, 932, 951.

    Anus, 879.

    Anzius, 147.

    Apaosha, 970.

    Apollo, 79.

    Aquili, 553.

    Are, 57, 425, 438.

    Arinbjorn, 173, 464.

    Aristarchus, 53.

    Armenia, 3.

    Arnulf, 54.

    Artimis, 79.

    Arvidson, 844.

    Aryan, 3, 14, 30, 124, 188, 253, 380, 746.

    Asa-Brage, 256, 801.

    Asa-father, 746.

    Asa-god, 147, 191, 210, 246, 740, 777, 793, 820.

    Asaland, 33.

    Asalfr, 926.

    Asas, 34, 41, 83, 211, 235, 254, 275, 364, 376, 397, 436, 485,
      580, 620, 720, 819, 838, 852, 875, 888, 946.

    Asasynir (goddesses), 446.

    Asbjorn, 245.

    Asciburgium, 122, 839.

    Asgard, 33, 41, 166, 218, 229, 245, 276, 376, 397, 423, 443,
      467, 575, 601, 693, 724, 751, 772, 790, 806, 845, 865, 877,
      909, 938, 959, 977, 989, 1004.

    Asia-land, 45.

    Asia Minor, 77.

    Asiatic, 4, 14.

    Ask, 127, 140, 604, 733.

    Asmegir, 353, 436, 446, 827, 878.

    Asmund, 265, 743.

    Assi, 100.

    Assyrians, 37.

    Astrology, 71.

    Asvid, 365, 743.

    Asvinians, 880, 910.

    Atlakvida, 512.

    Atlantic, 87.

    Atlas, 977.

    Atle, 471, 915.

    Attic, 53.

    Attila, 286, 809, 983.

    Audhumbla, 389, 574, 733, 433.

    Augustus, 711.

    Aurboda, 213, 242, 781, 815, 845, 962.

    Aurgelner, 433, 570.

    Aurnir, 899, 948, 992.

    Austria, 28.

    Ave, 140.

    Avo, 848, 884, 896.

    Avernians, 66.

    Avesta, 8, 17, 30, 450, 878.

    Azdingi, 159.


    Baal, 37.

    Babel, 37, 84.

    Babylon, 37, 84.

    Bacchus, 900.

    Bactria, 9, 84.

    Bærmagnis-Sogo, 310.

    Bainaib, 101.

    Balder, 36, 88, 191, 212, 248, 346, 368, 377, 400, 413, 436,
      465, 622, 684, 726, 782, 796, 809, 833, 877, 888, 898, 963, 985.

    Banings (destroyers), 297.

    Barbarossa, 55.

    Baugregin's Well, 577.

    Beda, 55, 88.

    Beistla, 624.

    Bel, 836.

    Beldegg, 40, 88.

    Belgium, 28.

    Beli, 836.

    Benfey, 18.

    Beowulf, 130, 191, 472, 605, 749, 811, 825, 844, 986, 1002.

    Berchter, 591.

    Berchtung, 146, 291.

    Bergelmer, 434, 570, 626.

    Bergio, 115.

    Berggram, 848.

    Berig, 116.

    Berker, 146.

    Bergtrollet, 844.

    Berserks, 39.

    Berther, 146.

    Bessarabia, 25.

    Bestla, 160, 389, 476.

    Beyla, 575.

    Bhrigu, 587.

    Bifrost, 397, 415, 462, 534, 586, 693, 705, 758, 827, 989.

    Bil, 676, 985, 1003.

    Billing, 471, 698.

    Birka, 806.

    Biterolf, 359, 644, 977, 997.

    Bjaef, 88.

    Bjarmia, 563.

    Bjorn, 245.

    Bjorno, 884.

    Bjort, 229, 756.

    Blekingia, 104.

    Blid, 229, 756.

    Bodn, 331.

    Bodvar, 530.

    Boethius, 812.

    Bolthorn, 361, 624.

    Bor, 389, 434, 574, 603.

    Borgar, 145, 255, 281, 293, 591, 847, 861, 976.

    Bose Saga, 310.

    Bosphorus, 48.

    Bous, 787.

    Bragarædur, 959.

    Brage, 43, 468, 675, 824, 967, 986.

    Bravalla, 283.

    Breidablik, 36.

    Brimer, 643.

    Brisingamen, 272, 364, 725, 819, 829, 876.

    Britain, 55.

    Brok, 361, 718, 895.

    Brunnakr, 898, 953.

    Brunnie, 898, 953.

    Brutus, 66.

    Brynhild, 491, 979.

    Buddhism, 732.

    Budlungs, 189.

    Bundehash, 126.

    Bure, 389.

    Burgarus, 145.

    Burgundaib, 101, 113.

    Byggvir, 575.

    Byleipt, 559.

    Byrgir, 676, 986, 1003.

    Byzantium, 48.


    Cæsar, 66, 283.

    Cain, 813.

    Capitoline Hill, 74.

    Carthage, 58.

    Cassiodorus, 114.

    Cave of Punishment, 552.

    Celts, 10, 25, 254.

    Cerberus, 38, 413.

    Ceres, 79.

    Chaldæans, 72.

    Cham, 85.

    Chaos, 389.

    Charlemagne, 53, 101, 807.

    Cheldricus, 981, 990.

    Cherson, 25.

    Christ, 77, 284, 807.

    Christianity, 50, 285.

    Chus, 85.

    Cimmerians, 76.

    Cis-Alpine, 66.

    Claudius, 114.

    Claybrimer, 570.

    Codex Regius, 233.

    Codex Upsalensis, 353, 538.

    Cool, 519.

    Cosmogony, 157.

    Cosmographic Review, 692.

    Creator, 813.

    Creation of Man, 126.

    Crete, 38.

    Crimea, 25.

    Cumæan Prophetess, 75.

    Curetians, 261.

    Cuso, 784.

    Cybile, 79.

    Cyclops, 715.


    Dacians, 129.

    Dag, 366, 420, 433, 446, 602, 696.

    Dainn, an elf artist, 240, 365, 717.

    Dalmatia, 63.

    Damkan, 386.

    Dan, 137.

    Danai, 56, 255.

    Danes, 27, 56, 117, 178, 257.

    Danische Wold, 811.

    Danish Adventurers, 714.

    Dankrat, 981.

    Danmark, 89.

    Dannevirke, 913, 927.

    Danr Draupr, 142.

    Danube, 62.

    Dardanus, 38.

    Darius, 3.

    Darnanians, 58.

    Dasyus, 596.

    Decius, 710.

    Delling, 356, 366, 377, 416, 461, 602, 696, 823.

    Diaconus, 54, 101, 859.

    Dictys, 59.

    Dieterich, 285, 980.

    Dis, sun goddess, 167.

    Disertus, 794.

    Ditevin, 109.

    Dobrudscho, 25.

    Domarr, 137.

    Don, 113.

    Doom of the Dead, 485.

    Dore, 356.

    Drauper, 361, 374, 427, 635.

    Draupner, 725, 824, 862.

    Drott, 143.

    Duben, 29.

    Dudo, 56, 67.

    Dulsi, 608, 652.

    Dunelmensis, 130.

    Durin, 357, 653.

    Durnir, 652.

    Dutch, 27.

    Dvalinn, a dwarf artist, 164, 244, 356, 461, 717.

    Dwarfs, 445.

    Dygve, 144, 621.


    Earendel, 769.

    East Goths, 25.

    Ebbo, 104, 779, 847.

    Ebur, 863, 953.

    Eckenbrecht, 896.

    Eckihard, 360.

    Edda, 325, 354, 406, 562, 603, 647, 718, 791, 827, 851, 888,
      927, 962.

    Egil, 425, 463, 529, 838, 847, 863, 873, 884, 901, 926, 941,
      969, 977, 990.

    Egilsson, 733.

    Eggther, sword guardian, 223, 707, 810, 962.

    Egyptian, 94.

    Eikthynir, a thunder cloud, 249, 968.

    Eilif, 857.

    Eilif Gudrunson, 331.

    Einar, 372, 908, 914.

    Einar Skalaglam, 330.

    Einberges, gods, 824, 1003.

    Eir, 229, 756.

    Eirikr, 793, 803, 823, 847.

    Elbe, 107.

    Elderich, 984.

    Elf Clans, 603.

    Elivagar, 424, 519, 532, 695, 775, 827, 835, 846, 857, 911,
      938, 960, 968, 1003.

    Elivogs, 325, 379.

    Elizabeth, 723.

    Elves, 164, 445, 696.

    Elysian Fields, 325.

    Embla, 127, 143, 604, 733.

    Emperor Theodosius, 710.

    Endil, 941.

    Endymion, 728.

    Eomenric, 830.

    Eos, 901.

    Ephesus, 709, 728.

    Epirus, 25.

    Ericus, 793, 868.

    Erik, 463, 620, 794, 807, 818, 828, 994.

    Eriksmal, 472.

    Erikvidforle's Saga, 306, 322.

    Erinnyes, 493.

    Ermenrich, 980, 998.

    Erythreian Sibyl, 76.

    Esculapians, 79.

    Ethelwardus, 130.

    Etgeir, 927.

    Etruria, 83.

    Etrurians, 58.

    Euhemerists, 49.

    Euripides, 716.

    Europe, 76.

    Eylud Mill, 827.

    Eyludr, 568, 584.

    Eystrasalt, the Baltic, 235.

    Eyrbyggja, 478.

    Eyrgjafa, 598.

    Eyvind, 225, 469.


    Fadir, 140.

    Fafner, 977.

    Fafnersbane, 191, 218, 260, 735.

    Fafnersmal, 460, 693.

    Fagerskinna, 741.

    Fal, 87.

    Falen, 89.

    Fann, 522.

    Farbaute, 823.

    Fenja, 262, 567, 584, 890, 951.

    Fenrer, 618, 705.

    Fenris Wolf, 44, 215, 404, 448, 558, 618.

    Fifel, 559.

    Fimbulthul, 642.

    Fimbul-Winter, 171, 585, 796.

    Finalf, 971.

    Finmark, 310.

    Finnr, 988.

    Finns, 118.

    Fjalar, a giant sorcerer, 210, 224, 266, 317, 336, 513, 596,
      647, 661, 707, 810, 891, 962, 1004.

    Fjallgyldir, 926.

    Fjolner, 499, 995.

    Fjolsvinn, 354, 499, 571.

    Fjolsvinsmal, 229, 238, 721, 747, 758, 772, 790, 817, 832, 978.

    Fjorgyn, 155.

    Fjorgyn-Frigg, 374.

    Flatey-bok, 133, 306.

    Floedarmal, 858.

    Flying Serpents, 564.

    Fornald, 363.

    Fornaldr Saga, 858.

    Fornmanna Saga, 96.

    Forsets, 888.

    Forspjallsljod, 196, 330, 447, 532, 553, 871, 911, 917, 1008.

    Francis, 51.

    Franks, 50, 60, 99, 708.

    Frankish, 82.

    Frankland, 40.

    Frau Breyde, 834.

    Frauenlob, 68.

    Frea, 100.

    Frey, 34, 137, 157, 230, 361, 426, 558, 575, 607, 661, 702,
      718, 777, 796, 810, 820, 863, 884, 918, 958, 983.

    Fredegar, 50, 60.

    Freyja, 34, 100, 155, 166, 229, 327, 363, 607, 443, 461, 526,
      684, 796, 819, 834, 843, 879, 887, 897, 931, 958, 989.

    Freki, Odin's wolf dog, 249, 559.

    Freyja Menglad, 250.

    Frid, 229, 842.

    Fridleif, 88.

    Fridleifson, 567.

    Fridigernus, 842.

    Fridlevus, 245, 798, 863, 884.

    Frigg, 34, 100, 155, 229, 607, 684, 824, 842, 903, 963.

    Frigga, 55.

    Frigida, 39.

    Friesland, 320.

    Frisian Adventurers, 715.

    Frode, 135, 499, 565, 578, 794.

    Froste, 225.

    Frotho, 815, 837, 868.

    Frotho-Frey, 274.

    Fulda, 111.

    Fulla, 685, 824.

    Funen, 35.

    Fylgies, 457.


    Gabriel, 836.

    Gaelic, 94.

    Galfrid, 66, 984.

    Gambanteinn, 427, 815, 964.

    Gambara, 100, 893, 953.

    Gambarac, 104.

    Gambrivians, 155.

    Gandaricus Magnus, 222.

    Gandil, 468.

    Gang, 946, 955, 974.

    Ganges, 10.

    Gangr, 932, 948.

    Gang-Urmir, 196.

    Gardarike, 15.

    Garm, 440, 564.

    Gastrofnir, 754.

    Gaul, 26, 58, 66, 129.

    Gauta, 505, 642.

    Gaya-Maretan, 127.

    Gayomert, 127.

    Gehenna, 437, 549.

    Gefion, 35.

    Gefu, 773.

    Geiger, 19, 131.

    Geirrod, a fire giant, 106, 310, 432, 459, 535, 598, 915, 928,

    Geiter, 96, 536.

    Geirvandil, 848, 867, 883, 948, 974, 993.

    Geldr, 784, 984, 1000.

    Gepaute, 116.

    Gepidians, 708.

    Gerd, a giantess, 192, 227, 241, 426, 437, 528, 815, 967.

    Geri, 754.

    German-Saga Cycle, 294.

    Germans, 548.

    Germany, 19, 27, 120.

    Gernoz, 981.

    Gersami, 756.

    Gerutha, 779.

    Geruthus, 312.

    Gesta, 62.

    Gevarr, 669, 792, 990, 1002.

    Gevarr-Nokkue, 202.

    Gevarus, 781, 836.

    Ghosts, 742.

    Giants, 39, 96, 175, 770, 836.

    Gibich, 981.

    Gifr, 754.

    Gigas, a giant, 776.

    Gillingr, 483.

    Gilzer, 981.

    Gimule, 561.

    Ginungagap, 452, 940.

    Gipties, 457.

    Gisle, 684, 741.

    Gisler, 981, 1007.

    Gissur, 527.

    Gjallahorn, 524.

    Gjaller-bridge, 736.

    Gjalp, 928, 933.

    Gjoll, 328, 415, 448, 515.

    Gjuke, 971, 981, 991, 999, 1009.

    Gjukung, 515.

    Gleipner, 565, 824.

    Glenr, husband of the Sun Dis, 169.

    Glitner, 827.

    Glittering-fields, 309, 322, 418, 517, 636.

    Gnipa-Cave, 440, 564.

    Godan, Odin, 100.

    Godmundr, 642.

    Gods of the Week Days, 72.

    Golaida, 101.

    Gold-Comb, 449.

    Gold-glittering Cock, 760.

    Gorm, 312, 418, 432, 515, 534, 552, 641, 714.

    Gosh, 382.

    Got, Gotland, 89, 132.

    Gothic, 23, 60, 99, 113, 178.

    Goths, 708, 729.

    Grafvitner, a giant wolf, 240.

    Gragas, 430.

    Gram, 147, 283, 794.

    Grandvik, 832, 940.

    Grane, 241, 978.

    Great Babylonia, 836.

    Greco, 10, 25.

    Greeks, 59.

    Greenland, 940.

    Greip, a giantess, 551, 598, 893, 928, 1004.

    Gregorius, 50, 81, 288, 711, 728.

    Grendel, 811.

    Grep, 797, 836.

    Gridarvolr, 933.

    Gridr, 933.

    Grimhild, 516.

    Grimm, 10, 298.

    Grimm's Mythology, 721.

    Grimner, 434.

    Grimner's Lay, 139.

    Grimnersmal, 423, 447, 564, 592, 644, 717, 802, 855, 866, 889.

    Grimnismal, 105, 236, 251, 399.

    Groa, 150, 196, 255, 268, 747, 776, 793, 819, 847, 858, 900,

    Grœdir, 566.

    Grogalder, 151, 201, 354, 571, 747, 758, 770, 795, 805, 832.

    Grotte, 727.

    Grotte-mill, 565.

    Grotte-Song, 181, 262, 584, 890, 951.

    Grund, 310.

    Gugnir, 876.

    Gudheim, 36.

    Gudhorm, 153, 255, 270.

    Gudmund, 217, 309, 360, 393, 516, 636.

    Gudmund-Mimer, 727.

    Gudolf, 88.

    Gudrun, 355, 915, 974, 989.

    Gudrunarkvida, 138, 522.

    Gudrundson, 138, 421, 452, 491, 516, 932.

    Gudzorm, 981.

    Gull, 231.

    Gulltoppr, 592.

    Gulveig, 165, 204, 230, 486.

    Gulveig-Heid, 724, 746, 780.

    Gunbjorn, 245.

    Gunlad, 224, 648, 1004.

    Gungner, a sword, 193, 268, 639.

    Gunnar, 472, 502, 735, 978, 989.

    Gunno, 787.

    Gunvara, 795, 815.

    Guod, a ship, 265.

    Guritha, 150.

    Guthmundus, 314.

    Guthorm, 567.

    Guthormus, 151.

    Gutland, 104.

    Gylder, 962.

    Gygr, a troll woman, 845.

    Gylfaginning, 41, 128, 138, 325, 344, 395, 425, 497, 524, 538,
      552, 565, 607, 757, 856, 925, 962.

    Gylfe, 35, 41, 93.

    Gymer, 426, 536.

    Gymir, a giant, 213, 227, 242.


    Hadaland, 741.

    Hadding, 255, 263, 273, 289, 317, 432, 449, 492, 517, 604, 729,
      737, 793, 806, 819, 843, 902, 980, 997.

    Hades, 123, 337, 392, 431, 482, 514, 577, 730, 817, 1004.

    Hadingus, 159, 301.

    Hadolaun, 107.

    Hadugoto, 108.

    Hagen, 298, 981.

    Haguinus, 896.

    Hakon, 370, 467, 500, 824, 867, 904, 913, 929.

    Hakonarmal, 468.

    Halfdan, 132, 185, 191, 202, 255, 318, 460, 489, 591, 741, 779,
      792, 803, 819, 847, 896, 919, 958, 973, 1000.

    Halfe, 256, 262.

    Haliorunæ, 22.

    Halir, 446.

    Hallfred, 407, 479.

    Hallin, 115.

    Halogaland, 312.

    Ham, 85.

    Hama, 830.

    Hamal, 147, 192, 281.

    Hamingjes, 457, 505.

    Hamlet, 843.

    Handuanus, 300.

    Har, 42, 95.

    Harald, 464.

    Harald Blue Tooth, 929.

    Harald Hardrade, 282.

    Harald Hildetand, 282.

    Harbard, 889, 961.

    Harbardsljod, 276, 449, 953, 967.

    Hardgrep, 260, 271, 492, 737.

    Hartung, 289.

    Hate, a monster, 558, 690, 707, 810.

    Haustlaug, 416, 574, 853, 902, 987.

    Havamal, 128, 259, 330, 361, 431, 476, 492, 642, 717, 735, 934.

    Hedinn, 887.

    Heid, 65, 351, 480, 876.

    Heidrun, 644.

    Heimdal, 36, 135, 170, 236, 272, 280, 298, 378, 425, 447, 586,
      695, 705, 722, 738, 822, 830, 891.

    Heimskringla, 32, 35, 47, 82, 94, 243, 370, 520, 606, 741.

    Heingest, 88, 99, 970, 991, 1008.

    Hektor, 38.

    Hel, 400, 406, 420, 440, 447, 478, 614, 745, 824, 968.

    Helblinde, 559, 599.

    Helblottin, 414, 969.

    Hel-dog, 564.

    Helgakvida, 216.

    Hel-gate, 702.

    Helge, 147, 181, 310, 520, 571, 690, 744, 791, 973.

    Helgo, 784.

    Hel-horse, 480.

    Heliand, 416, 456, 560.

    Hellenic, 25.

    Hellewite, 407.

    Hel-rivers, 765.

    Hel-shoes, 737.

    Helvegir, 440.

    Helvegum, 442.

    Hel-way, 515.

    Hengikjoptr, 566.

    Henricus, 86.

    Hephæstros, 189.

    Hercynian, 1.

    Herikon, 87.

    Hermanaricus, 301.

    Hermes, 70.

    Hermes-Mercurius, 94.

    Hermes-Trismegistus, 94.

    Hermionians, 155, 301.

    Hermod, 327, 374, 415, 465, 565, 737, 819, 845.

    Hertrich, 359.

    Herulians, 113.

    Hesiodus, 127.

    Hervor, 309, 335, 957.

    Hieronymus, 51.

    Hildebrand, 147, 814.

    Hildeger, 147, 193.

    Hildigun, 1000.

    Hildings, 190.

    Himalaya, 10.

    Himinn, 445.

    Himminbjorg, 36, 289, 705.

    Hindoos, 4, 254.

    Hindukush, 10.

    Hjaller-horn, 708.

    Hjardarholt, 592.

    Hjarrandi, 989.

    Hjorvardson, 746.

    Hjuki, 676.

    Hlandverr, 997.

    Hlebardr, 956, 964.

    Hler, 96.

    Hlidskjolf, 696.

    Hlif, 756.

    Hlin, 842.

    Hlodyn, 155, 599, 803, 930, 945.

    Hnoss, 756.

    Hoce, 986.

    Hodd-Mimer, 342.

    Hodbrod, 973.

    Hodd-goda, 416.

    Hoder, 415, 684, 791, 885, 963, 985, 880, 887.

    Hodrofner's-horn, 624.

    Hoenir, 739, 904.

    Hofudlausn, 500.

    Hogne, 979.

    Hohni, 738.

    Holt, 818.

    Homer, 76, 268.

    Honer, 34, 127, 243, 461, 505, 529, 603, 732.

    Hordaland, 929.

    Horn, 773.

    Hornklofve, 674.

    Horund, 989.

    Horvendillus, 317, 843.

    Hothbrodus, 781, 792.

    Hother, 340.

    Hothurus, 633, 773, 787, 823.

    Hrabanus, 111.

    Hraunbui, 855.

    Hraunn, 424.

    Hrimgrimner, 817.

    Hrimner, a giantess, 218, 230, 817.

    Hrolfr, 801.

    Hromund-Greipson's Saga, 269.

    Hroptatyr, 367.

    Hrunger, 748, 852.

    Hrutr-Heimdall, 286.

    Huginn, 696.

    Hunding's-bane, 184, 281, 744.

    Huns, 11, 116, 222, 273.

    Huyrvillus, 117.

    Hoedrung, 489.

    Hoergelmer, 402, 414, 423, 451, 519, 532, 562, 639, 702, 713,
      749, 765, 968.

    Hylten-Cavallius, 735.

    Hymir, winter giant, 854.

    Hymirskvida, 853.

    Hyndla, 526.

    Hyndley's Lay, 138.

    Hyndluljod, 155, 223, 526, 694, 718, 755, 773, 824, 892, 1000.

    Hypnos, 718.

    Hyrr, 753.

    Hyrroken, a giantess, 234.


    Iberians, 24.

    Ibor, 100, 119, 862, 1008.

    Iceland, 48, 82.

    Ida's Plains, 346.

    Ide, 425, 890, 926, 944, 972, 991.

    Idi, 197, 935.

    Idun, 174, 871, 887, 906, 918, 931, 950, 958, 987, 1003.

    Idunn, 197.

    Ilium, 52.

    Illyrian, 61.

    India, 3.

    Indo-Iranian, 14.

    Indra, 360.

    Indride, 88.

    Ing, 265.

    Ingjold, 457.

    Irania, 3, 84, 126, 254.

    Ire, 356.

    Ireland, 66.

    Ironwood, 216, 558, 707, 809, 877, 930.

    Irpa, 913.

    Irung, 281, 991.

    Isodorus, 76.

    Isolfr, 865.

    Israel, 58.

    Istævonians, 155.

    Isung's Wood, 223.

    Itrman, 88.

    Ivalde, 172, 196, 361, 747, 804, 838, 870, 879, 897, 948, 956,
      974, 999.

    Ivalderson, 202.


    Jafnhar, 42, 95.

    Jarl Hakonson, 994.

    Jarl Rig, 137.

    Jat, 88.

    Jaxartes, 9.

    Jerusalem, 83, 835.

    Jessen, 158.

    Jewes, 71.

    Jima (Grove), 381, 629, 878.

    Jokull, 96, 166.

    Jonsson, 114.

    Jord, the earth, 68, 615.

    Jordanes, 59, 113, 178, 301, 830.

    Jormungander, 919.

    Jormungrun, 601, 695.

    Jormunrek, 270, 836, 847.

    Jotunheim, home of the giants, 96, 223, 248, 310, 399, 425,
      434, 580, 599, 675, 770, 827, 845, 876, 885, 914, 936, 947,
      968, 1003.

    Jupiter, 38, 87.

    Jupiter's Temple, 74.

    Jutland, 40, 785.


    Kabulistan, 7.

    Kari, 96.

    Kark, 456.

    Karl (Churl), 140.

    Kiarr, 998.

    King Englin, 976.

    King Liutwar, 997.

    Kirshipta, 386.

    Kjalki, 267.

    Klage, 981.

    Klaproth, 9.

    Kollr, 851.

    Kon, 142.

    Kormak, 210, 463, 530.

    Kour-Rig, 137.

    Kuhn, 17.

    Kullen, 850.

    Kvaser, 34.


    Lactantius, 76.

    Lake Maelar, 47.

    Lamedon, 88.

    Lamia, 92.

    Lamissio, 859.

    Langarbrekku-Einar, 741.

    Lassen, 10.

    Latham, 15.

    Latin, 50, 87.

    Latium, 58.

    Latona, 79.

    Laurin, 301.

    Leifner's flames, 260, 299, 750.

    Leifthraser, 353, 378, 442, 453, 530.

    Legend of the Cross, 90.

    Leika, 365.

    Leikin, 476, 534, 705.

    Leiptr, 420.

    Lesso, 43, 265.

    Lethe, 335.

    Letto-Slavic, 14.

    Liburnia, 61.

    Libyan, 76.

    Lidskjalfn, 356, 911.

    Lif, 353, 378, 442, 453, 530.

    Lif and Leifthraser, 341.

    Lifthraser, 180.

    Link, 7.

    Liserus-Heimdal, 829.

    Liutker, 1006.

    Loder, 127, 732.

    Lodr, 603.

    Lodur, 601, 739.

    Lofdung, 189.

    Logi, 96, 662.

    Logrin, 35, 40.

    Loka-Senna, 155, 279, 428, 558, 575, 661, 897, 953, 965.

    Loke, 43, 136, 171, 214, 269, 273, 428, 438, 448, 476, 548,
      556, 575, 600, 697, 722, 761, 822, 840, 856, 876, 891, 904,
      921, 936, 945, 960, 991.

    Longobardians, 54, 156, 422, 708, 858, 995.

    Longobardian Saga, 99, 322.

    Longlegs, 738.

    Loptr, 760.

    Loride, 88.

    Lothurus, 604.

    Lower World Mill, 760.

    Ludr, 760.

    Luneburg, 100.

    Lykoa, 900.

    Lyngvi, Island of darkness, 278, 564, 705.

    Lyrner, 445.

    Lysir, the shining one, 272.


    Macedonia, 45, 54.

    Maeringaburg, 297.

    Magne, 88, 441.

    Malmesburiensis, 130.

    Mane, 446, 580, 629, 698.

    Manegarm, 564.

    Mani, 690.

    Mani-Karl, 791.

    Manu, 387, 587.

    Mannus, 68, 155, 841, 847.

    Manufortis, 993, 1008.

    Manus, 284.

    Mardoll, 819, 830.

    Marcellinus, 84.

    Markomir, 62.

    Marpessus, 76.

    Mars, 809.

    Mary, 723.

    Mashia, Mashiena, 127.

    Master Masons, 87.

    Maurus, 111.

    Mayence, 111.

    Mead Myth, 644.

    Mead Wells, 329.

    Media, 7.

    Memnor, 68.

    Menelaus, 840.

    Menglad, 202, 229, 368, 747, 757, 770, 836.

    Menglodum, 747.

    Menja, a giantess, 262, 567, 584, 890, 951.

    Mennon, 39.

    Mercury, 70.

    Merv, 9.

    Metals, 23.

    Metz, 54.

    Middle Ages Saga, 309.

    Midgard, 127, 136, 166, 232, 255, 276, 325, 362, 377, 404, 417,
      466, 558, 573, 707, 810, 819, 851, 877, 892, 968, 1003.

    Midgard Serpent, 44, 438, 599, 704, 838.

    Midjung, 922.

    Midvitnir, 651.

    Migration Saga, 32.

    Miklagard (Constantinople), 307.

    Miklagard Pison, 307.

    Milky-way, 983.

    Mime, 359.

    Mimameidr, 833.

    Mimer, 34, 180, 197, 203, 243, 326, 362, 389, 403, 423, 448,
      505, 529, 577, 602, 628, 696, 707, 719, 751, 766, 808, 817,
      871, 896, 909, 928, 962, 990.

    Mimer's Grove, 353, 379, 439, 484, 878.

    Mimingus, 635, 783, 804.

    Mimisholt, 529.

    Mimmung, 644.

    Mistelteinn, 790.

    Mistletoe, 963.

    Mithra, 93.

    Mitothian (Loke), 277.

    Mjolner, Thor's Hammer, 172, 329, 428, 599, 803, 855, 869, 958.

    Mode, 88, 441, 920.

    Modinn, 723.

    Modir, 140.

    Modsognir, 357, 367, 642.

    Mœotian, 52.

    Mokkr-Kalfi, 859.

    Moldgelmer, 570.

    Molossus, a giant dog, 885.

    Monasteriensis, 130.

    Mongolian, 5, 11.

    Moringia, 104.

    Morkwood, 929.

    Morn, 534.

    Mount Ida, 76.

    Muller, 13.

    Mundilfore, 579, 607, 721.

    Muspel, 441, 552, 705.

    Muspelheim, 561.

    Myrkwood, 558, 631.

    Mysing, 568.

    Mythology, 729.


    Nabbi, 718.

    Na-gates, 429, 478, 531, 564, 705, 745, 760, 817, 885.

    Nagelfar, 438, 556.

    Nanna, 43, 374, 466, 469, 782, 824, 986, 999.

    Nar, 426, 430.

    Narfi, 611.

    Narfi-Mimer, 872.

    Narve, 157, 612, 640.

    Narvi, 612.

    Nastrand, a place of torture, 328, 392, 405, 423, 535, 554.

    Nat, mother of the gods (also night), 157, 367, 446, 470, 530,
      602, 640, 719, 762, 871.

    Nedan, 640.

    Nef, 678.

    Nennius, 88.

    Neptune, 38.

    Nero, 59.

    Nerthus, 156.

    Nestor, 87.

    New Testament, 723.

    Niblunc, 977.

    Nibelungs, 972, 1000.

    Nida Mountains, 423, 532, 608, 704, 725, 765, 968.

    Nidad, 631, 634.

    Nide, 392, 577.

    Nidhad, 630, 763, 874, 915, 955, 975.

    Nidhog, 392, 423, 517, 533, 555, 639, 718.

    Nidi, 640.

    Nine Giant Mothers of Heimdal, 598.

    Nifelheim, 419, 532, 564, 764, 827, 969.

    Nifelheim demon, 271.

    Nifelhel, 328, 368, 399, 419, 431, 443, 478, 512, 694, 722,
      745, 817, 887, 968.

    Niflgodr, 533.

    Niflungs, 678, 971.

    Niflung hoard, 975.

    Nimrod, 85.

    Ninevah, 85.

    Ninus, 85.

    Nitherians, 323.

    Njal, 458.

    Njord, 34, 156, 203, 236, 244, 346, 470, 611, 640, 697, 721,
      757, 777, 816, 863, 884, 930, 955.

    Njorve, 613.

    Noah, 37, 85, 570.

    Noatun, 36, 136.

    Nokkvi, 669.

    Nokver, 987, 1000.

    Normandy, 56.

    Normans, 56.

    Norns (fates), 186, 458.

    Norse, 105.

    Norse Sagas, 844.

    Norwegians, 27.

    Noth, 1000.

    Numina, 353.

    Ny, 640.


    Ochta, 1008.

    Od, 772.

    Oda, 981.

    Odainsaker, a place of joy, 300, 336, 389, 808.

    Oder-Svipdag, 791.

    Odin, 6, 33, 40, 48, 70, 81, 93, 134, 157, 177, 212, 235, 252,
      273, 296, 326, 361, 368, 376, 410, 431, 444, 469, 585, 615,
      645, 687, 732, 758, 777, 787, 821, 858, 866, 906, 934, 987.

    Odlungs, 149.

    Odoacer, 103, 296.

    Odr, 758, 773, 823, 846.

    Odrærer, 362, 624.

    Odysseus, 189, 840.

    Offote, a giant, 249, 886.

    Oinopion, 900.

    Oland, 117.

    Olaf, 407.

    Olaf Trygveson, 310, 334, 731.

    Old, 149.

    Olgefion, 863.

    Olgefu, 197.

    Ollerus, 925.

    Olympus, 73, 806.

    Onar, 615.

    Ope, 534.

    Ore, 356.

    Orentel, 834, 843, 863.

    Origo Longobardarum, 156.

    Orion, 802, 900.

    Ormuzd, 8, 878.

    Orosius, 60, 81.

    Orvalde, 890, 932, 954, 988.

    Orvandel, 151, 192, 255, 426, 767, 779, 802, 827, 843, 865,
      900, 947, 975.

    Otacher, 296.

    Othale, 534.

    Otharus, 770, 779, 805, 823, 831, 845.

    Otto of Friesinger, 300.

    Ottar, 296, 526, 773, 805.

    Oxus, 9.


    Padua, 61.

    Pannonia, 50, 82, 100, 129.

    Paradise, 307.

    Parusha, 626.

    Patavi, 64.

    Paul, 711.

    Paulus Diaconus, 288, 712, 887.

    Peleid, 189.

    Pendschab, 7.

    Penka, 19.

    Persians, 7, 84.

    Petosiris, 71.

    Phœnicians, 59.

    Phrygians, 51, 76.

    Pictet, 12.

    Pindar, 59.

    Pliny, 84.

    Plutus, 38.

    Pompey, 83.

    Pomponius, 114.

    Posche, 19.

    Priam, 44, 55, 87.

    Priamus, 38, 81.

    Procopius, 117.

    Prometheus, 189.

    Prose Edda, 32, 48.

    Proserpine, 79, 457, 787.

    Psychopomps, 477.

    Ptolemy, 114, 839.


    Queen Rusila, 996.


    Rabenbattle, 303.

    Race of Ivalde, 125.

    Ragnaricii, 115.

    Ragnarok, 44, 192, 224, 276, 340, 378, 390, 442, 466, 534, 556,
      661, 701, 707, 721, 810, 866, 877.

    Ragnvaldson, 513.

    Ran, 422, 600, 822.

    Rati, 596.

    Raumaricii, 115.

    Reidgothaland, 40.

    Regin, 871, 909, 920.

    Retzius, 29.

    Rhetia, 58, 129.

    Rhine, 51, 839.

    Rhoa, 901.

    Rhoda, 8.

    Ribhuians, 639.

    Ribhus, 360, 879, 960.

    Rig, 137.

    Rig-Heimdal, 377.

    Rigsthula, 137.

    Rig-Veda, 3, 30, 166, 360, 586, 639, 740, 802, 874, 883, 902.

    Rimbegla, 585.

    Rimfaxe, 530.

    Rimgrimner, 434.

    Rimner, 437.

    Rim-Odin, 435.

    Rind, 210, 471, 749, 789.

    Rinda, 787.

    Ringhorn, 910.

    Risting, 472.

    Ritta, 88.

    Rogner, 871, 899, 909, 920, 943.

    Rolf Krake's Saga, 183.

    Roller, 795, 838.

    Roman Mythology, 78.

    Romans, 26, 49.

    Romund Greipson, 791.

    Roricus, 788.

    Rosengarten, 288, 896.

    Roskva, 943.

    Rubhus, 363.

    Rudbeck, 87.

    Rudiger, 286.

    Rudolph, 108.

    Rugen, 104.

    Rugians, 708.

    Ruler of the Lower World, 312.

    Runes, 163.

    Ruther, 167, 283.

    Rutze, 996.

    Rymer, 438.


    Saba, 90.

    Sacredfire, 586.

    Sacred Runes, 165.

    Sæming, 40.

    Sæmund, 57.

    Saga, 987.

    Saga-Men, 1.

    Saint Olaf, 746.

    Salian, 64.

    Sallust, 58.

    Samian, 76.

    Sanscrit, 6, 738.

    Sardinia, 58.

    Sarmatian, 129.

    Saturnus, 38, 85.

    Satyrs, 810.

    Saviour, 90.

    Saxo, 44, 49, 104, 211, 261, 360, 535, 546, 553, 607, 714, 773,
      789, 801, 822, 850, 890, 952.

    Saxland, 35, 97, 134.

    Saxons, 55, 90, 98.

    Scamandrius, 58.

    Scandians, 2, 98, 131, 264.

    Scandinavians, 2, 27, 49, 102.

    Scandza, 115, 178.

    Scania, 850.

    Sceaf, 131.

    Scedeland, 131.

    Scef-Saga, 132.

    Schelling, 11.

    Schelt, 64.

    Schildbunc, 977.

    Schlegel, 7.

    Schleicher, 13.

    Schrader, 19.

    Scoringia, 102.

    Scritobinians, 102.

    Scyld, 131.

    Scythia, 58.

    Sea-kidney, 819.

    Seeland, 35, 785.

    Sela, a giantess, 860.

    Semitic, 18.

    Servius, 59, 63, 75.

    Seven Sleepers, 707.

    Shem, 86.

    Shield-Maids, 90, 283.

    Shield-Song, 161.

    Sib, 90.

    Sibil Sibylla, 39, 55.

    Sibylline Books, 74.

    Sicily, 58.

    Sicombria, 52.

    Sida, 900.

    Sigemund, 826, 828, 976.

    Siege of Asgard, 235.

    Siegfried, 976.

    Sif, 39, 89, 780, 802, 852, 887, 897.

    Sigge, 40.

    Sigmundson, 181.

    Signe, 149, 196.

    Sigrdrifva, 49, 531.

    Sigrun, 181, 520.

    Sigtuna, 36, 40, 47.

    Sigtrygg, 149, 198.

    Sigurd, 191, 218, 241, 300, 319, 531.

    Sigurd-sven, 360, 471, 735, 976, 998.

    Sindre, 172, 361, 532, 704, 717, 723, 780, 865, 876, 883, 956.

    Sinfjotle, 217.

    Singasteinn, 828.

    Sinmara, 720, 760, 962.

    Sintram, 723.

    Skade, 236, 309, 565, 691, 780, 816, 846, 896, 903, 925, 959,

    Skaden, 100, 203.

    Skagul, 468.

    Skalaglam, 917.

    Skaldaspiller, 468, 500, 561, 799.

    Skaldskaparmal, 200, 567, 616, 932.

    Skallagrimson, 436, 500, 521, 566, 674.

    Skidbladner, 36, 172, 556, 639, 870, 880, 910.

    Skida-Rima, 916.

    Skidfinna, 713.

    Skidner, 241.

    Skidnersmal, 426, 434, 447, 528, 562.

    Skilfing-Yingling, 843, 862.

    Skilfings, 154, 608, 977.

    Skirner, 436, 815, 823, 846.

    Skjold, 35, 132, 149, 604.

    Skjoldun, 88, 154.

    Skold, 88, 150, 322.

    Skoldung, 827.

    Skuld, 453, 621.

    Slagfin, 849, 870, 890, 917, 947, 971, 982, 997, 1000.

    Slavs, 10, 117.

    Sleiper, 215, 241, 300, 327.

    Sleipner, 737, 824.

    Slesvik, 109, 482.

    Slid, 535.

    Slidrugtanne, 725, 880.

    Smaland, 735.

    Snæbjorn, 568, 583.

    Sno, 104, 322.

    Snœr, 96.

    Snot (Idun), 898.

    Sokkvabekkar, 987.

    Sokmimer, 651, 664.

    Sol, 367, 446, 580, 641, 680, 697.

    Solarjod, 719.

    Solarljod, 534, 579.

    Solbjartr, 767, 816.

    Solblinde, 238.

    Solon, 78.

    Solomon, 86.

    Sonatorrek, 340.

    Sons of the world ruin, 220.

    Speechrunes, 490.

    Spiegel, 19.

    St. Quentin, 56.

    Sturlason, 47, 57.

    Sughda-Sodiana, 8.

    Sulpicius, 50.

    Sumble, 901, 952.

    Sumblus, 196.

    Sunno, 53, 64, 656, 688, 999.

    Sursons-Saga, 458.

    Surt, 220, 226, 266, 345, 442, 561, 659, 701, 809, 928, 962,

    Sutting, 224, 928, 934, 952, 979.

    Suttung, 436, 552, 646.

    Svafa, 1000.

    Svafr, 757.

    Svaldilfan, giant Horse, 215.

    Svanhild, 301, 971.

    Svarin, 98.

    Svarin's Mound, 194.

    Svartalfaheim, 827.

    Svea, 37, 134.

    Svedal, 832.

    Svefuthorn, 721.

    Svehaus, 115.

    Sven, 89.

    Svend, 832.

    Svethidi, 118.

    Svevian, 2.

    Svider, 995.

    Svidferhd, 628, 846.

    Svidur, 651.

    Svigder, 664, 928, 952.

    Sviones, 2, 265.

    Svipdag, 150, 200, 255, 283, 354, 368, 379, 640, 683, 729, 744,
      747, 760, 770, 793, 803, 815, 827, 841, 870, 883, 919, 957,
      975, 989.

    Svithiod, 35, 178, 198, 475, 656.

    Swabians, 708.

    Swabian Saga, 107.

    Swan Maids, 90.

    Swedes, 27, 178.

    Sweden, 33, 89, 134.

    Switzerland, 28.

    Sygin, 618.

    Sygritha, 770, 831, 845.

    Sygrutha, 779, 860.

    Symbols of Nature, 73.

    Syr, 776.

    Syvaldus, 773.


    Tabernaculum, 720.

    Tacitus, 21, 68, 119, 193, 283, 475, 548.

    Tadchiks, 10.

    Tanais, 58, 82.

    Tanakvisi, 33, 45.

    Tanngnjostr, 853.

    Tanngrisnir, 853.

    Tarquin, 75.

    Teutonic, 726.

    Teutonic Mythology, 31, 38, 119, 173, 345.

    Teutons, 10, 14, 26, 50, 58, 99, 188, 713.

    Tertulianus, 93.

    Thakkrod, 982.

    Thanatos, 718.

    Theodosius, 710.

    Theodoric, 25, 295.

    Thidrek, 814.

    Thingstead, 485.

    Thiudemer, 295.

    Thjalfe, 857, 943.

    Thjasse, 166, 176, 225, 236, 309, 757, 890, 897, 903, 921, 931,
      943, 952, 970.

    Thjaza, 956.

    Thjelvar, 859.

    Thor, 36, 45, 88, 151, 198, 240, 256, 276, 298, 316, 415, 425,
      437, 470, 580, 599, 748, 784, 793, 809, 838, 852, 866, 889,
      909, 920, 933, 943, 960, 996.

    Thora, 784, 803.

    Thorbjorn, 243.

    Thord Sjarekson, 237.

    Thorer wood-beard, 513.

    Thorgerd, 913.

    Thorkil, 278, 312, 335, 515, 537, 552, 714, 727.

    Thorolf, 464.

    Thorri, 166.

    Thorsdraper, 270, 425, 447, 857, 915, 929, 947, 960.

    Thracia, 39, 65.

    Thraim, 791.

    Thrand, 309.

    Thride, 42.

    Thridi, 95.

    Thrudgelmer, 433, 570, 626.

    Thrudheim, 39, 866.

    Thruma, 753.

    Thrundvang, 36.

    Thrymheim, 237, 904.

    Thrymskvida, 822, 891.

    Thule, 117.

    Thund, 692.

    Thuringian, 108.

    Thurs, 752.

    Tiberius, 99.

    Tiburtinian, 76.

    Timavus, 61.

    Tistrya, 970.

    Tivi, 159.

    Toko, 848.

    Tope, 534.

    Tours, 50.

    Troy, 6, 39, 58, 397, 445.

    Troy-Asgard, 32.

    Trojans, 61, 76, 134.

    Trol (thrall), 140.

    Troy-Saga, 50.

    Trykland, 655.

    Tuisco, 155.

    Tvashtar, 878.

    Tyr, 74, 459, 809, 854, 897.

    Tyrfing, 363.

    Tysk, 3.

    Tyskland, 3, 35, 45.


    Udr Unnr, 157.

    Ugarthilocus, 278, 552.

    Uggarus, 274.

    Uggeson, 592, 823.

    Ulf, 823.

    Ulfdale, 558.

    Ulfilas, 723.

    Ulixes (Ulysses), 43, 51.

    Ull, 203, 236, 607, 846, 869, 925, 954.

    Ullr, 801, 865, 887.

    Ulysses, 730, 839.

    Undensaker, 317.

    Upregin, 446.

    Upsala, 36, 49, 561.

    Urd, a giantess, 136, 326, 397, 423, 448, 484, 523, 613, 660,
      759, 611.

    Urdr, 457.

    Ure, 356.

    Urner, 176, 890.

    Utgard-Loke, a giant, 224, 477, 662, 857.


    Vade, 927, 989.

    Vadgelmer, 431.

    Vaferflames, 753, 909, 959.

    Vafthrudner, 434.

    Vafthrudnersmal, 127, 325, 342, 353, 410, 417, 447, 569.

    Vagasker, 823.

    Vagn, 265.

    Vagnholde, 256.

    Vagoth, 114.

    Vajush, 382, 389.

    Valas, 228.

    Valdere, 173.

    Vale, 441, 620.

    Valentinianus, 53, 82.

    Valfather, 162, 441, 524, 720, 875.

    Valhal, 95, 207, 327, 414, 462, 512, 623, 692, 824, 876.

    Valkyries, 199, 457.

    Valthari, 993, 999.

    Vana-Child, 143.

    Vana-God, 135, 213, 254, 436, 602, 702, 757.

    Vanaheim, 607.

    Vandals, 100, 708.

    Vanlande, 477.

    Vamod, 114.

    Vans, 34, 49, 95, 157, 208, 275, 326, 441, 486, 603, 696, 720,
      801, 819, 869, 891.

    Var, 356, 367.

    Vardir, 754.

    Varg, 946, 962.

    Varinians, 117.

    Varro, 75.

    Vate, 899, 954, 989.

    Vaya-Vata, 383.

    Ve, 34, 83.

    Veda, 970.

    Vegdrasil, 356.

    Veggdegg, 40, 88.

    Vegtamskvida, 328, 368, 410, 447.

    Vei, 603, 739.

    Veig, 231.

    Velint, 360, 644.

    Velleka, 370, 907.

    Venetia, 58.

    Venus, 79.

    Vestfold, 741.

    Vidar, 44, 193, 441, 933.

    Vidblainn, 706.

    Vidfin, 676, 986.

    Vidforle, 517.

    Vidga, 869, 980.

    Vidofner, 449, 706, 758.

    Vidolf, 927, 954.

    Vidolt, Vitolphus, 170, 223.

    Vifill, 177.

    Vifir, 177.

    Vigfusson, 94, 156, 264, 459, 499.

    Vigrid, 441, 561.

    Vildebur, 980.

    Vile, 34, 83.

    Vili, 603, 739.

    Vilkinasaga, 223, 289, 300, 359, 644, 814, 839, 850, 863, 927,

    Villifer, 863.

    Vimur, 424, 933.

    Vindelicia, 58.

    Vingthor, 88.

    Vinnilians, 100.

    Virchow, 28.

    Virgil, 51, 75, 92.

    Visburr, 144.

    Visigoths, 25.

    Vitrgils, 88.

    Volsung, 826.

    Volund, 289, 359, 630, 707, 763, 790, 804, 814, 849, 864, 874,
      897, 909, 920, 947, 962, 978, 994.

    Volund's Sword, 815.

    Volunga Saga, 218.

    Voluspa, 128, 166, 208, 243, 326, 356, 431, 440, 499, 524, 538,
      555, 603, 707, 732, 758, 776, 875, 891.

    Vorva, 499.

    Vulcan, 300.

    Vyrd, 455.


    Wace, 56.

    Walther, 993, 999.

    Watlings, 899, 989.

    Wayland, 289, 359.

    Weapons, 24.

    Weber, 17.

    Welcker, 27.

    Wessex, 133.

    Westmonast, 133.

    Westphalia, 40, 89.

    Whitney, 17.

    Widukind, 54, 107.

    Wieland, 812, 839, 863, 991.

    Wild Boar, 899.

    Willehad, a saint, 321.

    William Tell, 850, 994.

    Wodan, 389.

    Wolfdales, 631, 765, 849, 874, 885, 898, 957, 978.

    Wolfdieterich, 292.

    Wonder-smith, 812.

    World-mill, 568, 586, 750.

    World-tree, 708, 766.

    World-war, 252.

    Wurth, 455.


    Ybor, 861.

    Ydaler, 865.

    Ygdrasil, tree of life, 326, 366, 395, 421, 433, 451, 534, 556,
      645, 704, 722, 817.

    Yggr, 274.

    Yingling-Saga, 231, 340, 475.

    Ylfings, 154.

    Ymer, 424, 433, 534, 569, 602, 733, 754, 812, 939, 946.

    Ynglingatal, 454, 740, 995.

    Ynglings, 37, 133.

    Yngve, 40, 135, 195, 255, 277, 304, 468.

    Younger Edda, 37, 82, 133, 242, 595.

    Yse, 838.


    Zarathustra, 84, 382.

    Zend, 6, 878.

    Zend Avesta, 383.

    Zeus, 73, 159.

    Zodiac, 87.

    Zoroaster, 3, 37, 84.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Teutonic Mythology, Vol. 3 (of 3) - Gods and Goddesses of the Northland" ***

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