Norse Mythology

Ymir in Norse Mythology

Most cultures have an “in the beginning” story which describes how the world came into being. The Vikings are no different. At the center of the Norse creation story is Ymir, also known as Aurgelmir, the first of all beings. A primordial giant that was the hermaphroditic ancestor of all giants, the Vikings also believed…

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Muspelheim

One of the nine worlds that formed the cosmos in Norse mythology, Muspelheim, the realm of fire, plays an important role in both the creation of the Norse universe, and its final destruction at Ragnarok. Muspelheim was the home of the Fire Giants, an old enemy of the Aesir gods led by Odin. They were…

History

Viking Women

Anyone who has watched an episode of the History Channel’s epic show Vikings would be forgiven for thinking that all Viking women were Valkyrie warriors on par with their menfolk, that enjoyed significant power and freedom. But, while Viking women enjoyed more freedoms than their counterparts in other parts of Europe, they were far from…

Norse Mythology

Odin

While Thor might be the best-known of the Norse gods, Odin was the most important of the Viking deities. Called the “Allfather” in recognition of his role as the ruler of the Aesir gods, he was a complex being. He was the god of war, wisdom, magic, death and the runes. He was intelligent and…

Norse Mythology

Svartalfheim

In Thor: The Dark World we are taken to Svartalfheim, where Peter Dinklage plays a dwarf of giant stature. Upon seeing it, we would be forgiven for thinking that it looked like Tolkien’s home of the dwarves, Moria, but in space. Both fictional worlds are based on the home of the dwarves, also known as…

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Midgard

The Vikings called that the land in which they, human beings, dwelled Midgard (Middle Earth) or Mannaheim (Home of Man). They believed that it was one of the nine worlds that made up the cosmos of Norse mythology. It was separated and protected from the rest of the cosmos by a great body of water…

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