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Jan

13

The Vanir Gods Njord and Nerthus

Original title :CIRCLING THE WAGONS:The Vanir Gods Njord and Nerthus Although some scholars have pointed out possible foreign models for Tacitus’ account of the Nerthus cult, it is more probable that he based his account on native Scandinavian tradition. A divinity in a wagon is well-known in Germanic lore, thus there is little need to

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Jan

11

The Epic School in Odin’s Wife

The major literary sources of Norse myth are of four kinds: eddicpoems, skaldic stanzas, Snorri Sturluson’s Prose Edda, and the sagas.  What unites this body of literature is that it provides us with a picture of the pre-Christian past, either, because the material itself originated in the pre-Christian period and was recorded later, or because its authors were

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Dec

26

OH MY GODDESS! FRIGG AS ALL-MOTHER.

That the gods form a family is self-evident in their leadership. Odin is the All-Father, as well as their ruler. The gods together are esteemed “Frigg’s progeny” (Friggjar niðja) in a skaldic kenning by Egill Skalla-grímsson in Sonatorrek 2. As previously demonstrated, numerous poetic references designate the Earth as Odin’s wife and Thor’s mother, and

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Dec

24

JULA-GALT, THE YULE BOAR

“THE BOAR’S HEAD IN HAND BEAR I” . In a group of petroglyphs from Litsleby in West Sweden, one image depicts a man driving a plow pulled by two horned draught animals. In one hand he holds a budding branch or a small tree and in the other an undefined object which may be a

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Dec

23

Yuletide Customs

“They set the table for the Queen of Heaven,—whom the common people call Frau Holda” Like the White Lady, Frau Perchta and Berchta, Frau Holle was also connected with prophecy, although on a more domestic level. Near Hörselberg in Thuringia, maidens would place new fiber on their distaffs on Christmas Eve before Frau Holle began

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Dec

23

Rider on the storm: Wodan, master of the Wild Hunt

WODAN, MASTER OF THE WILDWhat Jackson Crawford Left Out. Despite various historical figures being placed at the head of this host, the Wild Huntsman himself is most often identified as Wodan. According to tales collected by Ernst Meier, he is described as handsome, proud and extraordinarily large, far superior to human size. He possesses inexhaustible

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Dec

21

Nerthus Vs. Hertha, An Earth Goddess by Any Other Name .

 While some scholars have disputed various aspects of the Nerthus cult, from her name to her status as a genuine Germanic earth goddess, none of these arguments has proven particularly effective in light of a comprehensive examination of the evidence. Most often doubted is the name Nerthus itself. Tacitus writes, Nerthum, id est Terram matrem,

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Dec

21

Where the Wild Things Are: Frau Percht and the Wild Perchten

Costumed Holiday traditions are quite common throughout northern Europe, as well as in England and Scandinavia. In some regions, Holda, Percht and Bercht play a prominent part in them. Indeed, vivid visual descriptions of her may allude to a popular portrayal, perhaps as part of a seasonal festival or holiday drama. In 1522, in The

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Dec

20

On the Second Merserburg Charm

Scholars have long debated the meaning of the name Phol and the word balderes in this verse. Phol is sometimes interpreted as the male half of an otherwise unattested couple : Phol and Volla. Likewise scholars have argued that the word balderes should be understood as a simple appellation meaning “ lord , ” also

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