NORSE MYTHOLOGY is the body of mythology of the North Germanic people
Numerous gods are mentioned in the source texts such as the
hammer-wielding , humanity-protecting thunder-god
Most of the surviving mythology centers on the plights of the gods
and their interaction with various other beings, such as humanity and
the jötnar , beings who may be friends, lovers, foes or family
members of the gods. The cosmos in
* 1 Sources
* 2.1 Gods and other beings * 2.2 Cosmology * 2.3 Humanity * 2.4 Influence on the popular culture
* 3 Further reading
* 3.1 General secondary works * 3.2 Romanticism * 3.3 Modern retellings
* 4 Notes * 5 References * 6 External links
The _Prose Edda_ was composed as a prose manual for producing skaldic poetry—traditional Old Norse poetry composed by skalds . Originally composed and transmitted orally, skaldic poetry utilizes alliterative verse , kennings , and various metrical forms. The _Prose Edda_ presents numerous examples of works by various skalds from before and after the Christianization process and also frequently refers back to the poems found in the _Poetic Edda_. The _Poetic Edda_ consists almost entirely of poems, with some prose narrative added, and this poetry—_Eddic_ poetry—utilizes fewer kennings . In comparison to skaldic poetry, Eddic poetry is relatively unadorned.
The _Prose Edda_ features layers of euhemerization , a process in
which deities and supernatural beings are presented as having been
either actual, magic-wielding human beings who have been deified in
time or beings demonized by way of
Christian mythology . Texts such
Numerous further texts, such as the sagas , provide further
information. The saga corpus consists of thousands of tales recorded
Old Norse ranging from Icelandic family histories (
Icelanders ) to
Objects from the archaeological record may also be interpreted as depictions of subjects from Norse mythology, such as amulets of the god Thor's hammer Mjölnir found among pagan burials and small silver female figures interpreted as valkyries or dísir , beings associated with war, fate or ancestor cults. By way of historical linguistics and comparative mythology , comparisons to other attested branches of Germanic mythology (such as the Old High German Merseburg Incantations ) may also lend insight. Wider comparisons to the mythology of other Indo-European peoples by scholars has resulted in the potential reconstruction of far earlier myths.
Of the mythical tales and poems that are presumed to have existed during the Middle Ages, Viking Age, Migration Period, and prior, only a tiny amount of poems and tales survive. Later sources reaching into the modern period, such as a medieval charm recorded as used by the Norwegian woman Ragnhild Tregagås —convicted of witchcraft in Norway in the 14th century—and spells found in the 17th century Icelandic _ Galdrabók _ grimoire also sometimes make references to Norse mythology. Other traces, such as place names bearing the names of gods may provide further information about deities, such as a potential association between deities based on placement of locations bearing their names, their local popularity, and associations with geological features.
GODS AND OTHER BEINGS
Central to accounts of
While they receive less mention, numerous other gods and goddesses
appear in the source material. (For a list of these deities, see List
of Germanic deities .) Some of the gods we hear less about include the
Iðunn and her husband, the skaldic god
the gold-toothed, white-skinned god
Heimdallr , born of nine mothers ;
the ancient god
Various beings outside of the gods are mentioned.
The cosmological, central tree
The cosmology of the worlds in which all beings inhabit—nine in
total—centers around a cosmological tree,
The afterlife is a complex matter in Norse mythology. The dead may go
to the murky realm of Hel —a realm ruled over by a female being of
the same name , may be ferried away by valkyries to Odin's martial
Valhalla , or may be chosen by the goddess
Freyja to dwell in her
According to the _Poetic Edda_ poem _Völuspá_ and the _Prose Edda_, the first human couple consisted of Ask and Embla ; driftwood found by a trio of gods and imbued with life in the form of three gifts. After the cataclysm of Ragnarok, this process is mirrored in the survival of two humans from a wood; Líf and Lífþrasir . From these two humankind are foretold to repopulate the new, green earth.
Numerous heroes appear in
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INFLUENCE ON THE POPULAR CULTURE
With the widespread publication of Norse myths and legends at this
time, references to the Norse gods and heroes spread into European
literary culture, especially in Scandinavia, Germany, and Britain. In
the later 20th century, references to
GENERAL SECONDARY WORKS
* Abram, Christopher (2011). _Myths of the Pagan North: the Gods of the Norsemen_. London: Continuum. ISBN 978-1-84725-247-0 . * Aðalsteinsson, Jón Hnefill (1998). _A Piece of Horse Liver: Myth, Ritual and Folklore in Old Icelandic Sources_ (translated by Terry Gunnell & Joan Turville-Petre ). Reykjavík: Félagsvísindastofnun. ISBN 9979-54-264-0 . * Andrén, Anders. Jennbert, Kristina. Raudvere, Catharina. (editors) (2006). _ Old Norse Religion in Long-Term Perspectives: Origins, Changes and Interactions_. Lund: Nordic Academic Press. ISBN 91-89116-81-X . * Branston, Brian (1980). _Gods of the North_. London: Thames and Hudson. (Revised from an earlier hardback edition of 1955). ISBN 0-500-27177-1 . * Christiansen, Eric (2002). _The Norsemen in the Viking Age_. Malden, Mass.: Blackwell. ISBN 1-4051-4964-7 . * Clunies Ross, Margaret (1994). _Prolonged Echoes: Old Norse Myths in Medieval Northern Society, vol. 1: The Myths_. Odense: Odense Univ. Press. ISBN 87-7838-008-1 . * Davidson, H. R. Ellis (1964). _Gods and Myths of Northern Europe_. Baltimore: Penguin. New edition 1990 by Penguin Books. ISBN 0-14-013627-4 . (Several runestones ) * Davidson, H. R. Ellis (1969). _Scandinavian Mythology_. London and New York: Hamlyn. ISBN 0-87226-041-0 . Reissued 1996 as _Viking and Norse Mythology_. New York: Barnes and Noble. * Davidson, H. R. Ellis (1988). _Myths and Symbols in Pagan Europe_. Syracuse, NY: Syracuse Univ. Press. ISBN 0-8156-2438-7 . * Davidson, H. R. Ellis (1993). _The Lost Beliefs of Northern Europe_. London & New York: Routledge. ISBN 0-415-04937-7 . * de Vries, Jan . _Altgermanische Religionsgeschichte_, 2 vols., 2nd. ed., Grundriss der germanischen Philologie, 12–13. Berlin: W. de Gruyter. * DuBois, Thomas A. (1999). _Nordic Religions in the Viking Age_. Philadelphia: Univ. Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 0-8122-1714-4 . * Dumézil, Georges (1973). _Gods of the Ancient Northmen_. Ed. and Austin: University of Texas Press. ISBN 0-292-75546-5 . * Price, Neil S (2002). _The Viking Way: Religion and War in Late Iron Age Scandinavia_. Uppsala: Dissertation, Dept. Archaeology & Ancient History. ISBN 91-506-1626-9 . * Simek, Rudolf (1993). _Dictionary of Northern Mythology_. Trans. Angela Hall. Cambridge: D. S. Brewer. ISBN 0-85991-369-4 . New edition 2000, ISBN 0-85991-513-1 . * Simrock, Karl Joseph (1853–1855) _Handbuch der deutschen Mythologie_. * Svanberg, Fredrik (2003). _Decolonizing the Viking Age_. Stockholm: Almqvist 9122020071(v. 2). * Turville-Petre, E O Gabriel (1964). _Myth and Religion of the North: The Religion of Ancient Scandinavia_. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. Reprinted 1975, Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press. ISBN 0-8371-7420-1 .
* Anderson, Rasmus (1875). _Norse Mythology, or, The Religion of Our Forefathers_. Chicago: S.C. Griggs. * Guerber, H. A. (1909). _Myths of the Norsemen: From the Eddas and Sagas_. London: George G. Harrap. Reprinted 1992, Mineola, N.Y.: Dover. ISBN 0-486-27348-2 . * Keary, A & E (1909), _The Heroes of Asgard_. New York: Macmillan Company. Reprinted 1982 by Smithmark Pub. ISBN 0-8317-4475-8 . Reprinted 1979 by Pan Macmillan ISBN 0-333-07802-0 . * Mable, Hamilton Wright (1901). _Norse Stories Retold from the Eddas_. Mead and Company. Reprinted 1999, New York: Hippocrene Books. ISBN 0-7818-0770-0 . * Mackenzie, Donald A (1912). _Teutonic Myth and Legend_. New York: W H Wise & Co. 1934. Reprinted 2003 by University Press of the Pacific. ISBN 1-4102-0740-4 . * Rydberg, Viktor (1889). _Teutonic Mythology_, trans. Rasmus B. Anderson. London: Swan Sonnenschein & Co. Reprinted 2001, Elibron Classics. ISBN 1-4021-9391-2 . Reprinted 2004, Kessinger Publishing Company. ISBN 0-7661-8891-4 .
* Bradish, Sarah Powers (1900). _
Old Norse stories_. New York:
American Book Company /
Internet Archive .
* Colum, Padraic (1920). _The Children of Odin: The Book of Northern
Myths_, illustrated by
Willy Pogány . New York, Macmillan. Reprinted
2004 by Aladdin, ISBN 0-689-86885-5 .
* Crossley-Holland, Kevin (1981). _The Norse Myths_. New York:
Pantheon Books. ISBN 0-394-74846-8 . Also released as _The Penguin
Book of Norse Myths: Gods of the Vikings_. Harmondsworth: Penguin.
ISBN 0-14-025869-8 .
* d\'Aulaire, Ingri and Edgar (1967). "d\'Aulaire\'s Book of Norse
Myths ". New York, New York Review of Books.
* Munch, Peter Andreas (1927). _Norse Mythology: Legends of Gods and
Heroes_, Scandinavian Classics. Trans.
* ^ _A_ _B_ Faulkes (1995) , pp. vi–xxi, and Turville-Petre (1964) , pp. 1–34. * ^ Faulkes (1995) , pp. xvi–xviii. * ^ Turville-Petre (1964) , pp. 27–34. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 11–12, Turville-Petre (1964) , pp. 17–21, and MacLeod & Mees (2006) , pp. 27–28, 216. * ^ Regarding the dísir, valkyries, and figurines (with images), see Lindow (2001) , pp. 95–97. For hammers, see Simek (2007) , pp. 218–219, and Lindow (2001) , pp. 288–289. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 29–30, 227–228, and Simek (2007) , pp. 84, 278. * ^ Puhvel (1989) , pp. 189–221, and Mallory (2005) , pp. 128–142. * ^ Turville-Petre (1964) , p. 13. * ^ Regarding Ragnhild Tregagås, see MacLeod & Mees (2006) , p. 37. For _Galdrabók_, see Flowers (1989) , p. 29. * ^ Turville-Petre (1964) , pp. 2–3, 178. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 287–291. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 128–129, 247–252. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 118, 126–128. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 121–122. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 241–243. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 311–312. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 86–88, 135–137, 168–172, 198–199, 297–299. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 99–102, 109–110, and Simek (2007) , pp. 67–69, 73–74. * ^ Simek (2007) , pp. 108–109, 180, 333, 335. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 95–97, 243–246. Simek (2007) , pp. 62–62, 236–237, 349. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 319–332. Simek (2007) , pp. 375–376. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 91–92, 205–206, 222–223, 278–280. * ^ For Hel, see Lindow (2001) , p. 172, and Orchard (1997) , p. 79. For Valhalla, see Lindow (2001) , pp. 308–309, and Orchard (1997) , pp. 171–172. For Fólkvangr, see Lindow (2001) , p. 118, and Orchard (1997) , p. 45. * ^ For Rán, see Lindow (2001) , pp. 258–259, and Orchard (1997) , p. 129. For Gefjon, see Orchard (1997) , p. 52. * ^ Orchard (1997) , p. 131. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 42–43. * ^ Lindow (2001) , pp. 1–2, 40, 254–258. * ^ Simek (2007) , p. 189.
* _Edda_. Translated by Faulkes, Anthony. Everyman . 1995. ISBN
* Flowers, Stephen (1989). _The Galdrabók: An Icelandic Grimoire_.
ISBN 0-87728-685-X .
* Lindow, John (2001). _Norse Mythology: A Guide to the Gods,
Heroes, Rituals, and Beliefs_.
Oxford University Press
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