Friday, November 4, 2011

Divine Friday


   According to the ancient skalds, the storytellers among the Vikings, the world was shared by many different races. There were men and women, but there were also dwarves that dwelled in the secret places of the earth, and the Alfar (similar to the Fair Folk of the Tuatha De Danann). Among the stronger races there were the Aesir and the Vanir, the two races of gods, and then there were the giants. There were fire giants who lived in the Earth and who caused fire to erupt, and there were frost giants who were the bringers of winter and darkness. It was the frost giants that the Aesir most fought with in the heathen myths, and as the story of Skadi shows just because a battle was over didn't mean that a war was won.
   A giantess, called the 'snow-shoe goddess', she is the wife of the god Njord. When her father Thiazi was slain by the gods, Skadi wanted to take revenge. Thiazi had stolen the golden apples of youth in an attempt to rob the Aesir of their immortality, and the Aesir had reacted in a predictably violent manner with Thor dealing a death blow with the great treasure the war hammer Mjollnir. The gods thought it wiser to reconciliate and offered her a marriage with one of them. She was free to marry any god, but while she made her choice she was only allowed to see the feet of the potential candidates. She noticed a very elegant pair and, convinced that their owner was the fair god Balder, she chose them. Unfortunately for her, those feet belonged to the older god Njord.

   Their marriage was not a happy one.  She wanted to live where her father had lived, in Thrymheim in the mountains, and Njord wanted to live in Noatun, his palace by the sea. So they agreed to spend the first nine days in the mountains and the following nine days by the sea. This arrangement did not work out very well, and they separated.

   Her name means Shadow or Harm and she is associated with mountains, winter, hunting, revenge and dark magic. She is also associated with Death. She is the goddess who after the capture of Loki, fastened the snake above his head in revenge for Loki's part in killing her father.



Anonymous said...

The blog url has changed to a .NET! Please change my links to

Land, Sky & Sea said...

Done! Thanks for letting me know!

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