Tag: Odin (Page 1 of 2)

The Binding of Loki

Loki and the serpentLoki knew that his days in Asgard had come to an end. He knew how soon anguish can give way to anger and was sure the gods would avenge Balder’s death and detention in Hel.

He ran away. He made for a deserted part of Midgard, a remote place in the mountains at the head of a steep valley that fell into the sea. He found a hollow near Franang’s Falls and, using the rock and rubble lying all around, built a low house that no man was likely to see until he had stumbled into it. It had four doors so that Loki could keep watch in every direction.

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Loki’s Flyting

On one occasion some while after Balder’s death, when they could think about him quietly and talk about him calmly for all their foreboding, many of the gods went over to the island of Hlesey for a feast.

Aegir received them in his gleaming hall under the waves. And since Thor and Tyr had secured Hymir’s mighty cauldron for him, he had no choice but to keep his promise, brew a welter of ale and entertain his guests.

Thor himself was away on another foray into Jotunheim, but Odin and Frigg led the way; Thor’s wife, Sif, and Bragi and his wife Idun, accompanied them. So did Tyr who had left one hand in the mouth of the wolf Fenrir and to him the gods renewed their thanks for the part he had played in wresting the cauldron five miles deep from his father Hymir. Njord and his wife Skadi made the journey; so did Freyr and Freyja with Freyr’s two servants Byggvir and Beyla. Odin’s son Vidar, went with them. And Loki was there.

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The Death of Balder

The Death of Balder
The gods and goddesses gathered in the shadow of Balder’s terrible dreams, dreams that threatened to pitch him into the darkness for ever. Not one of them doubted his life was in danger and for a long time they discussed how to protect him.

The gods and goddesses thought of all the ways in which one can die; they named each earth-thing, sea-thing and sky-thing that can cause sudden death. Then Balder’s mother, Frigg, began to travel through the nine worlds and get each and every substance to swear an oath that it would not harm Balder.

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Balder’s Dream

Balder's dreamTHE GOD MOANED.
He twisted and writhed as he tried to escape the dark shapes. He panted and moaned again, and then he woke. For a long while the fairest of the gods lay in the half light, his brow gleaming as white as the whitest flower, his hair shining, and he tried to snare his dream — to name each form and dismiss it. But the shapes skulked in the shadows, shapeless now that he was awake. And in time his fear lapsed into a dull foreboding; he closed his eyes and began to drift.

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Otter’s Ransom

WINTER HAD LOST ITS HEART.
Every day the stallions Arvak and Alsvid rose earlier to haul the Sun’s chariot across the sky, and quietly the snow pulled back from the valleys and plains of Midgard. Small choirs of birds sang and Odin, Loki and Honir were to leave Asgard and resume their exploration of the worlds.

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Odin and Billing’s Daughter

“A creaking bow,” cried the High One. “a burning flame, a yawning wolf, a croaking raven, a grunting wild boar, a tree with shallow roots, mounting waves, a boiling kettle, a flying arrow, tide on the ebb, new ice, a coiled snake, a bride’s pillow talk, a sword with a hairline, a playful bear, the sons of a king, an ailing calf, a stubborn thrall, a witch’s flattery, a fresh corpse, a chance encounter with your brother’s murderer, a half-gutted house, a racehorse — if he lames one leg he will be useless: no man should be such a fool as to trust these things.”

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Thor’s Duel with Hrungnir

Odin, god of gods, was not content with being able to see everything that happened in the nine worlds. He was not content even with being able to understand all that he saw. His blood raced and he longed to test life’s winds and tides for himself. While Thor was away fighting trolls and troll women and their wolfchildren in Iron Wood, Odin bridled at his own lack of action. He became so restless that he donned his golden helmet and leaped on to Sleipnir hungry for some happening.

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The Lay of Vafthrudnir

horns-of-odin
SUCH FEVER IN MY BLOOD!’ cried Odin. ‘I so long to range far and wide.’ Allfather prowled up and down Valaskjalf as if he were caged. ‘What do you think, Frigg? I’ve a mind to visit Vafthrudnir in his high hall.’

‘I would rather the Father of Warriors stayed in Asgard, home of the gods,’ said Frigg. ‘So far as I know, Vafthrudnir has no equal amongst the giants.’

‘I’ve roamed far and I’ve learned much and all that the gods know I know,’ replied Odin. ‘I want to match my wits against the riddle- master, the wise giant Vafthrudnir.’

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The Necklace of the Brisings

Necklace of the BrisingsTHE NIGHT WAS ALMOST OVER; the sky was green and grey in the east, and snowflakes were ghosting around Asgard. Loki and only Loki saw Freyja leave Sessrumnir. Her cats slept undisturbed by the hearth; her chariot lay unused; in the half-light she set off on foot towards Bifrost. Then the Sly One’s mind was riddled with curiosity; he wrapped his cloak around him and followed her.

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The Lay of Grimnir

Grimnir maskHRAUDUNG, KING OF THE GOTHS, had two sons, Agnar and Geirrod. One day when Agnar was ten winters old and Geirrod eight, the brothers gathered their tackle and went out rowing in the hope of landing some fish. But soon the wind began to bluster, and the boys were driven so far out to sea that they lost sight of land. The night-shadow grew long, and in the darkness the small boat tossed and spun and was smashed to pieces on a rocky shore. Standing bedraggled in the darkness, with waves breaking around them, Agnar and Geirrod had not the least idea where they were.

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