The Norse Gods are the mythological characters that, as far as we know, came from the Northern Germanic tribes of the 9th century AD. These stories were passed down in the form of poetry until the 11th – 18th centuries when the Eddas and other medieval texts were written.
Norse mythology comprises the pre-Christian beliefs and legends of the Scandinavian peoples including those who settled on Iceland where most of the written sources for Norse mythology were assembled. Norse mythology not only has it’s gods, goddesses and immortals but also a myriad of other characters and creatures that populate the stories including giants, dwarfs, monsters, magical animals and objects.
According to Norse mythology, the beginning of life was fire and ice, with the existence of only two worlds: Muspelheim and Niflheim. When the warm air of Muspelheim hit the cold ice of Niflheim, the jötunn Ymir and the icy cow Audhumla were created. Ymir’s foot bred a son and a man and a woman emerged from his armpits, making Ymir the progenitor of the Jotun. Whilst Ymir slept, the intense heat from Muspelheim made him sweat, and he sweated out Surtr, a jötunn of fire. Later Ymir woke and drank Audhumbla’s milk. Whilst he drank, the cow Audhumbla licked on a salt stone. On the first day after this a man’s hair appeared on the stone, on the second day a head and on the third day an entire man emerged from the stone. His name was Búri and with an unknown jötunn female he fathered Bor, the father of the three gods Odin, Vili and Ve.
Norse mythology comprises the indigenous pre-Christian religion, beliefs and legends of the Scandinavian peoples, including those who settled on Iceland, where most of the written sources for Norse mythology were assembled.
Norse mythology is the best-preserved version of the older common Germanic paganism, which also includes the very closely related Anglo-Saxon mythology.