In Norse mythology, Gerðr is a jötunn and the wife of the god Freyr. Gerðr is attested in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional sources. Gerðr is sometimes modernly anglicized as Gerth. In both the Poetic Edda and the Prose Edda, Freyr sees Gerðr from a distance, becomes lovesick at the sight of her shimmering beauty, has his servant Skírnir go to Jötunheimr to gain her love. In the Poetic Edda Gerðr refuses, yet after a series of threats by Skírnir she agrees. In the Prose Edda, no mention of threats are made. In both sources, Gerðr agrees to meet Freyr at a fixed time at the location of Barri and, after Skírnir returns with Gerðr's response, Freyr laments that the meeting could not occur sooner. In both the Poetic Edda and the Prose Edda, Gerðr is described as the daughter of Gymir and the jötunn Aurboða. In Heimskringla, Gerðr is recorded as the wife of Freyr, euhemerized as having been a beloved king of Sweden. In the same source, the couple are the founders of the Yngling dynasty and produced a son, Fjölnir, who rose to kinghood after Freyr's passing and continued their line.
Gerðr is theorized to be a goddess associated with the earth. Gerðr inspired works of literature. Gerðr is attested in two poems in the Poetic Edda, in two books of the Prose Edda, in two books in Heimskringla. In the Poetic Edda poem Skírnismál, the god Freyr sat on the high seat Hlidskjalf and looked into all worlds. Freyr saw a beautiful girl walking from the hall of her father to a storehouse. Freyr became heartsick for the girl. Freyr has a page named Skírnir. Freyr's father Njörðr and, in verse, the goddess Skaði tells Skírnir to find out what troubles Freyr. An exchange occurs between Freyr and Skírnir in verse, where Freyr tells Skírnir that he has seen a wondrous girl with shining arms at the home of Gymir, yet that the gods and elves do not wish for the two to be together: Skírnir requests that Freyr give him a horse and Freyr's sword. Under the cover of darkness, Skírnir rides the horse over nations and dew-covered mountains until he reaches Jötunheimr, the home of the jötnar, proceeds to Gymir's courts.
Ferocious dogs are tied before the wooden fence. Skírnir rides out to a herdsman sitting on a mound, greets him, asks the herdsman how he may speak to the maiden beyond Gymir's dogs. An exchange occurs between the herdsman and Skírnir, during which the herdsman tells Skírnir that he will never speak to the girl. Hearing a terrible noise in her dwellings, Gerðr asks where it is coming from, noting that the earth trembles and that all of Gymir's courts shake. A serving maid notes that outside a man has let it graze. Gerðr tells the serving maid to invite the man to come into their hall and to partake of some of their "famous mead," yet Gerðr expresses fear that the man outside may be her "brother's slayer". Gerðr asks the stranger if he is of the elves, Æsir, or the Vanir, why he comes alone "over the wild fire" to seek their company. Skírnir responds. Skírnir offers Gerðr 11 golden apples to gain her favor. Gerðr rejects the apples—no matter who offers them—and adds that neither will she and Freyr be together as long as they live.
Skírnir offers Gerðr a ring, here unnamed, that produces eight more gold rings every ninth night and "was burned with Odin's young son". Gerðr responds that she is not interested in the ring, for she shares her father's property, Gymir has no lack of gold. Skírnir turns to threats. Gerðr refuses. Skírnir again reminds Gerðr of his blade and predicts that Gerðr's jötunn father will meet his doom with it. Skírnir warns Gerðr that he will strike her with his Gambanteinn, a wand, that it will tame her to his desires, says that she will never again be seen by "the sons of men". From early morning, Gerðr will sit on an eagle's mound, looking outward to the world, facing Hel, that "food shall be more hateful to you than to every man is the shining serpent among men". Skírnir declares. Gerðr will experience "madness and howling, tearing affliction and unbearable desire" and that, in grief, tears will flow from her. Skírnir tells Gerðr to sit down, for her fate will be worse yet, she will be harassed by fiends all her weary days.
From the court of jötnar to the halls of the hrimthurs, Gerðr shall everyday crawl without choice, nor hope of choice. Gerðr will weep rather than feel suffering tearfully, she will live the rest of her life in misery with a three-headed thurs or otherwise be without a man altogether. Skírnir commands for Gerðr's mind to be seized, that she may waste away with pining, that she be as the thistle at the end of the harvest. Skírnir says, he declares that the gods Odin and Thor are angry with Gerðr, that Freyr will hate her. Skírnir declares to the hrimthursar, the sons of Suttungr, the "troops of
Baldr is a god in Norse mythology, a son of the god Odin and the goddess Frigg. He has numerous brothers, such as Váli. In the 12th century, Danish accounts by Saxo Grammaticus and other Danish Latin chroniclers recorded a euhemerized account of his story. Compiled in Iceland in the 13th century, but based on much older Old Norse poetry, the Poetic Edda and the Prose Edda contain numerous references to the death of Baldr as both a great tragedy to the Æsir and a harbinger of Ragnarök. According to Gylfaginning, a book of Snorri Sturluson's Prose Edda, Baldr's wife is Nanna and their son is Forseti. In Gylfaginning, Snorri relates that Baldr had the greatest ship built and that there is no place more beautiful than his hall, Breidablik. Jacob Grimm in his Teutonic Mythology identifies Old Norse Baldr with the Old High German Baldere, Palter and with Old English bealdor, baldor "lord, king". Old Norse shows this usage of the word as an honorific in a few cases, as in baldur î brynju and herbaldr, both epithets of heroes in general.
Grimm traces the etymology of the name to *balþaz, whence Gothic balþs, Old English bald, Old High German pald, all meaning "bold, brave". But the interpretation of Baldr as "the brave god" may be secondary. Baltic has a word meaning "the white, the good", Grimm speculates that the name may originate as a Baltic loan into Proto-Germanic. In continental Saxon and Anglo-Saxon tradition, the son of Woden is called not Bealdor but Baldag and Bældæg, which shows association with "day" with Day personified as a deity. This, as Grimm points out, would agree with the meaning "shining one, white one, a god" derived from the meaning of Baltic baltas, further adducing Slavic Belobog and German Berhta. Grimm's etymology is endorsed by modern research. According to Rudolf Simek, the original name for Baldr must be understood as'shining day'. One of the two Merseburg Incantations names Baldere, but mentions a figure named Phol, considered to be a byname for Baldr. In the Poetic Edda the tale of Baldr's death is referred to rather than recounted at length.
Among the visions which the Völva sees and describes in the prophecy known as the Völuspá is one of the fatal mistletoe, the birth of Váli and the weeping of Frigg. Yet looking far into the future the Völva sees a brighter vision of a new world, when both Höðr and Baldr will come back; the Eddic poem Baldr's Dreams mentions that Baldr has bad dreams which the gods discuss. Odin rides to Hel and awakens a seeress, who tells him Höðr will kill Baldr but Vali will avenge him. In Gylfaginning, Baldur is described as follows: Apart from this description, Baldr is known for the story of his death, his death is seen as the first in the chain of events which will lead to the destruction of the gods at Ragnarök. Baldr will be reborn in the new world, according to Völuspá, he had a dream of his own death and his mother had the same dreams. Since dreams were prophetic, this depressed him, so his mother Frigg made every object on earth vow never to hurt Baldr. All objects made this vow except mistletoe—a detail which has traditionally been explained with the idea that it was too unimportant and nonthreatening to bother asking it to make the vow, but which Merrill Kaplan has instead argued echoes the fact that young people were not eligible to swear legal oaths, which could make them a threat in life.
When Loki, the mischief-maker, heard of this, he made a magical spear from this plant. He hurried to the place where the gods were indulging in their new pastime of hurling objects at Baldr, which would bounce off without harming him. Loki gave the spear to Baldr's brother, the blind god Höðr, who inadvertently killed his brother with it. For this act and the giantess Rindr gave birth to Váli who grew to adulthood within a day and slew Höðr. Baldr was ceremonially burnt upon his ship, the largest of all ships; as he was carried to the ship, Odin whispered in his ear. This was to be a key riddle asked by Odin of the giant Vafthrudnir in the poem Vafthrudnismal; the riddle appears in the riddles of Gestumblindi in Hervarar saga. The dwarf Litr was burnt alive. Nanna, Baldr's wife threw herself on the funeral fire to await Ragnarök when she would be reunited with her husband. Baldr's horse with all its trappings was burned on the pyre; the ship was set to sea by Hyrrokin, a giantess, who came riding on a wolf and gave the ship such a push that fire flashed from the rollers and all the earth shook.
Upon Frigg's entreaties, delivered through the messenger Hermod, Hel promised to release Baldr from the underworld if all objects alive and dead would weep for him. All did, except Þökk, who refused to mourn the slain god, thus Baldr had to remain in the underworld, not to emerge until after Ragnarök, when he and his brother Höðr would be reconciled and rule the new earth together with Thor's sons. Writing during the end of the 12th century, the Danish historian Saxo Grammaticus tells the story of Baldr in a form that professes to be historical. According to him, Balderus and Høtherus were rival suitors fo
In Germanic mythology, Frija and Frige is a goddess. In nearly all sources, she is described as the wife of the god Odin. In Old High German and Old Norse sources, she is connected with the goddess Fulla; the English weekday name Friday bears her name. Frigg is described as a goddess associated with foresight and wisdom in Norse mythology, the northernmost branch of Germanic mythology and most extensively attested. Frigg is the wife of the major god Odin and dwells in the wetland halls of Fensalir, is famous for her foreknowledge, is associated with the goddesses Fulla, Lofn, Hlín, Gná, is ambiguously associated with the Earth, otherwise personified as an separate entity Jörð; the children of Frigg and Odin include the gleaming god Baldr. Due to the significant thematic overlap, scholars have proposed a particular connection to the goddess Freyja. After Christianization, the mention of Frigg continued to occur in Scandinavian folklore. During modern times, Frigg has appeared in popular culture, has been the subject of art and receives veneration in Germanic Neopaganism.
The theonyms Frigg and Frija are cognate forms—linguistic siblings of the same origin—that descend from a substantivized feminine of Proto-Germanic *frijaz. *frijaz descends from the same source as the feminine Sanskrit noun priyā and the feminine Avestan noun fryā. In the modern period, an -a suffix is sometimes applied to denote femininity, resulting in the form Frigga; this spelling serves the purpose of distancing the goddess from the English word frig. The connection with and possible earlier identification of the goddess Freyja with Frigg in the Proto-Germanic period is a matter of scholarly debate. Like the name of the group of gods to which Freyja belongs, the Vanir, the name Freyja is not attested outside of Scandinavia; this is in contrast to the name of the goddess Frigg, attested as a goddess common among the Germanic peoples, whose name is reconstructed as Proto-Germanic *Frijjō. Evidence does not exist for the existence of a common Germanic goddess from which Old Norse Freyja descends, but scholars have commented that this may be due to the scarcity of surviving sources.
Regarding a Freyja–Frigg common origin hypothesis, scholar Stephan Grundy comments that "the problem of whether Frigg or Freyja may have been a single goddess is a difficult one, made more so by the scantiness of pre-Viking Age references to Germanic goddesses, the diverse quality of the sources. The best that can be done is to survey the arguments for and against their identity, to see how well each can be supported."The English weekday name Friday comes from Old English Frīġedæġ, meaning'day of Frig'. It is cognate with Old High German frîatac. Several place names refer to Frigg in what are now Norway and Sweden, although her name is altogether absent in recorded place names in Denmark; the 7th-century Origo Gentis Langobardorum, Paul the Deacon's 8th-century Historia Langobardorum derived from it, recount a founding myth of the Langobards, a Germanic people who ruled a region of what is now Italy. According to this legend, a "small people" known as the Winnili were ruled by a woman named Gambara who had two sons and Agio.
The Vandals, ruled by Ambri and Assi, came to the Winnili with their army and demanded that they pay them tribute or prepare for war. Ybor and their mother Gambara rejected their demands for tribute. Ambra and Assi asked the god Godan for victory over the Winnili, to which Godan responded: "Whom I shall first see when at sunrise, to them will I give the victory."Meanwhile and Agio called upon Frea, Godan's wife. Frea counseled them that "at sunrise the Winnil should come, that their women, with their hair let down around the face in the likeness of a beard should come with their husbands". At sunrise, Frea woke him. Godan saw the Winnili, including their whiskered women, asked "who are those Long-beards?" Frea responded to Godan, "As you have given them a name, give them the victory". Godan did so, "so that they should defend themselves according to his counsel and obtain the victory". Thenceforth the Winnili were known as the Langobards. A 10th-century manuscript found in what is now Merseburg, features an invocation known as the Second Merseburg Incantation.
The incantation calls upon various continental Germanic gods, including Old High German Frija and a goddess associated with her—Volla, to assist in healing a horse: In the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13th century from earlier traditional material, Frigg is mentioned in the poems Völuspá, Vafþrúðnismál, the prose of Grímnismál, Oddrúnargrátr. Frigg receives three mentions in the Poetic Edda poem Völuspá. In the first mention, the poem recounts. In the poem, when the future death of Odin is foretold, Odin himself is referred to as the "beloved of Frigg" and his future death is referred to as the "second grief of Frigg". Like the reference to Frigg weeping in Fensalir earlier in the poem, the implied "first grief" is a reference to the grief she felt upon the death of her son, Baldr. In the prose introduction to the poem Grímnismál, Frigg plays a prominent role; the prose introduction recounts that two sons of king Hrauðungr and Geirröðr, once sailed out with a trailing line to catch small fish.
However, wind drove them out into the ocean and, d
Grímnismál is one of the mythological poems of the Poetic Edda. It is preserved in the AM 748 I 4to fragment, it is spoken through the voice of one of the many guises of the god Odin. The name suggests guise, or mask or hood. Through an error, King Geirröth tortured Odin-as-Grímnir, a fatal mistake, since Odin caused him to fall upon his own sword; the poem is written in the ljóðaháttr metre, typical for wisdom verse. The work starts out with a lengthy prose section describing the circumstances leading up to Grímnir's monologue; the monologue itself comprises 54 stanzas of poetic verse describing the worlds and Odin's many guises. The third and last part of the poem is prose, a brief description of Geirröth's demise, his son's ascension, Odin's disappearance; the prose sections were most not part of the original oral versions of Grímnismál. Henry Adams Bellows suggests that they were added in the 12th or 13th century and based on some sort of narrative tradition regarding the poem; this is not certain.
The poem itself was composed in the first half of the 10th century. Odin and his wife, were sitting in Hlidskjalf, looking out on the worlds, they turned their eyes towards King Geirröth, reigning in the stead of his late father, King Hrauthung. Geirröth and his older brother Agnarr had been raised by Frigg, respectively; the god and goddess had disguised themselves as a peasant and his wife, had taught the children wisdom. Geirröth returned to his father's kingdom where he became king upon his father's death, while Agnarr dwelt with a giantess in a cave. In Hliðskjálf, Odin remarked to Frigg that his foster-child Geirröth seemed to be prospering more so than her Agnarr. Frigg retorted that Geirröth was so parsimonious and inhospitable that he would torture his guests if he thought there were too many of them. Odin disputed this, the couple entered into a wager in this respect. Frigg sent her maid Fulla to Geirröth, advising him that a magician would soon enter his court to bewitch him, saying that he could be recognised by the fact that no dog was fierce enough to attack him.
Geirröth heeded Fulla's false warning. He ordered his men to capture the man the dogs wouldn't attack. Odin-as-Grímnir, dressed in a dark blue cloak, allowed himself to be captured, he stated that his name was Grímnir. Geirröth had him tortured to force him to speak, putting him between two fires for eight nights. After this time, Geirröth's son, named Agnarr after the king's brother, came to Grímnir and gave him a full horn from which to drink, saying that his father, the king, was not right to torture him. Grímnir spoke, saying that he had suffered eight days and nights, without succour from any save Agnarr, Geirröth's son, whom Grímnir prophesied would be Lord of the Goths, he revealed himself for who he was, as the Highest One, promising Agnarr reward for the drink which he brought him. Shifting from prose to poetry for Odin-as-Grímnir's monologue, Grímnir describes at great length the cosmogony of the worlds, the dwelling places of its inhabitants, himself and his many guises. Grímnir turns to Geirröth and promises him misfortune, revealing his true identity.
Geirröth realized the magnitude of his mistake. Having learned that he is undone, he rose to pull Odin from the fires, but the sword which he had lain upon his knee slipped and fell hilt down, so that when the king stumbled he impaled himself upon it. Odin vanished, Agnarr, son of the dead King Geirröth, ruled in his father's stead; the 12th album of the comic Valhalla is loosely based on the poem. In the 2017 Starz television adaptation of Neil Gaiman's American Gods, the character Mad Sweeney refers to Mr. Wednesday as Grimnir. Mr. Wednesday emulates Odin's reveal of his identity through his various names when revealing his own true nature. Grímnismál in old Norse and Henry Adams Bellows' translation, at voluspa.org
In Germanic mythology, Týr, Tíw, Ziu is a god. Stemming from the Proto-Germanic deity *Tīwaz and from the Proto-Indo-European deity *Dyeus, little information about the god survives beyond Old Norse sources. Due to the etymology of the god's name and the shadowy presence of the god in the extant Germanic corpus, some scholars propose that Týr may have once held a more central place among the deities of early Germanic mythology. Týr is the namesake of the Tiwaz rune, a letter of the runic alphabet corresponding to the Latin letter T. By way of the process of interpretatio germanica, the deity is the namesake of Tuesday in Germanic languages, including English. Interpretatio romana, in which Romans interpret other gods as forms of their own renders the god as Mars, the ancient Roman war god, it is through that lens that most Latin references to the god occur. For example, the god may be referenced as Mars Thingsus on 3rd century Latin inscription, reflecting a strong association with the Germanic thing, a legislative body among the ancient Germanic peoples still in use among some of its modern descendants.
In Norse mythology, from which most surviving narratives about gods among the Germanic peoples stem, Týr sacrifices his arm to the monstrous wolf Fenrir, who bites off his limb while the gods bind the animal. Týr is foretold to be consumed by the monstrous dog Garmr during the events of Ragnarök. In Old Norse sources, Týr is alternately described as the son of the jötunn Hymir or of the god Odin. Lokasenna makes reference to an unnamed otherwise unknown consort also reflected in the continental Germanic record. Various place names in Scandinavia refer to the god, a variety of objects found in England and Scandinavia may depict the god or invoke him; the Old Norse theonym Týr has cognates including Old English tíw and tíʒ, Old High German Ziu. A cognate form appears in Gothic to represent the T rune. Like Latin Jupiter and Greek Zeus, Proto-Germanic *Tīwaz stems from the Proto-Indo-European theonym *Dyeus. Outside of its application as a theonym, the Old Norse common noun týr means' god'. In turn, the theonym Týr may be understood to mean "the god".
Modern English writers anglicize the god's name by dropping the proper noun's diacritic, rendering Old Norse Týr as Tyr. The modern English weekday name Tuesday means'Tíw's day', referring to the Old English extension of the deity. Tuesday derives from Old English tisdæi, which develops from an earlier tywesdæi, which itself extends from Old English Tīwesdæg; the word has cognates in numerous other Germanic languages, including Old Norse týsdagr, Frisian tīesdi, Old High German zīostag, Middle High German zīestac, Alemannic zīstac. All of these forms derive from a Proto-Germanic weekday name meaning'day of Tīwaz', itself a result of interpretatio germanica of Latin dies Martis; this attests to an early Germanic identification of *Tīwaz with Mars. The god is the namesake of the rune representing /t/ in the runic alphabets, the indigenous alphabets of the ancient Germanic peoples prior to their adaptation of the Latin alphabet; the name of the rune first occurs in the historical record as tyz, a character in the Gothic alphabet.
Germanic weekday names for'Tuesday' that do not transparently extend from the above lineage may ultimately refer to the deity, including modern German Dienstag, Middle Dutch dinxendach and dingsdag. These forms may refer to the god's associate with the thing, a traditional legal assembly common among the ancient Germanic peoples with which the god is associated; this may be either due to another form of the god's name or may be due to the god's strong association with the assembly. A variety of place names in Scandinavia refer to the god. For example, Viby, Denmark was once a stretch of meadow near a stream called Dødeå. Viby contained another theonym and religious practices associated with Odin and Týr may have occurred in these places. A spring dedicated to Holy Niels, a Christianization of prior indigenous pagan practice exists in Viby. Viby may mean "the settlement by the sacred site". Archaeologists have found traces of sacrifices going back 2,500 years in Viby. While Týr's etymological heritage reaches back to the Proto-Indo-European period few direct references to the god survive prior to the Old Norse period.
Like many other non-Roman deities, Týr receives mention in Latin texts by way of the process of interpretatio romana, in which Latin texts refer to the god by way of a perceived counterpart in Roman mythology. Latin inscriptions and texts refer to Týr as Mars; the first example of this occurs on record in Roman senator Tacitus's ethnography Germania: A. R. Birley translation: Among the gods Mercury is the one they principally worship, they regard it as a religious duty to sacrifice to him, on fixed days, human as well as other sacrificial victims. Hercules and Mars they appease by animal offerings of the permitted kind. Part of the Suebi sacrifice to Isis as well; these deities are understood by scholars to refer to *Wōđanaz, *Þunraz, *Tīwaz, respectively. The identity of the "Isis" of the Suebi remains a topics of debate among scholars. In Germania, Tacitus mentions a deity referred to as regnator omnium deus venerated by the Semnone
In Germanic mythology, Odin is a revered Germanic god. In Norse mythology, from which stems most surviving information about the god, Odin is associated with wisdom, death, the gallows, war, victory, poetry and the runic alphabet, is the husband of the goddess Frigg. In wider Germanic mythology and paganism, the god was known in Old English as Wōden, in Old Saxon as Wōdan, in Old High German as Wuotan or Wōtan, all stemming from the reconstructed Proto-Germanic theonym *wōđanaz. Odin is a prominently mentioned god throughout the recorded history of the Germanic peoples, from the Roman occupation of regions of Germania through the tribal expansions of the Migration Period and the Viking Age. In the modern period, Odin continued to be acknowledged in the rural folklore of Germanic Europe. References to Odin appear in place names throughout regions inhabited by the ancient Germanic peoples, the day of the week Wednesday bears his name in many Germanic languages, including English. In Old English texts, Odin holds a particular place as a euhemerized ancestral figure among royalty, he is referred to as a founding figure among various other Germanic peoples, such as the Langobards.
Forms of his name appear throughout the Germanic record, though narratives regarding Odin are found in Old Norse works recorded in Iceland around the 13th century. These texts make up the bulk of modern understanding of Norse mythology. In Old Norse texts, Odin is depicted as one-eyed and long-bearded wielding a spear named Gungnir, wearing a cloak and a broad hat, he is accompanied by his animal companions and familiars—the wolves Geri and Freki and the ravens Huginn and Muninn, who bring him information from all over Midgard—and rides the flying, eight-legged steed Sleipnir across the sky and into the underworld. Odin is the son of Bestla and Borr and has two brothers, Vili and Vé. Odin is attested as having many sons, most famously the gods Thor and Baldr, is known by hundreds of names. In these texts, he seeks greater knowledge, at times in disguise, makes wagers with his wife Frigg over the outcome of exploits, takes part in both the creation of the world by way of slaying the primordial being Ymir and giving the gift of life to the first two humans Ask and Embla.
Odin has a particular association with Yule, mankind's knowledge of both the runes and poetry is attributed to him, giving Odin aspects of the culture hero. In Old Norse texts, female beings associated with the battlefield—the valkyries—are associated with the god and Odin oversees Valhalla, where he receives half of those who die in battle, the einherjar; the other half are chosen by the goddess Freyja for Fólkvangr. Odin consults the disembodied, herb-embalmed head of the wise being Mímir for advice, during the foretold events of Ragnarök, Odin is told to lead the einherjar into battle before being consumed by the monstrous wolf Fenrir. In folklore, Odin appears as a leader of the Wild Hunt, a ghostly procession of the dead through the winter sky, he is associated with charms and other forms of magic in Old English and Old Norse texts. Odin is a frequent subject of study in Germanic studies, numerous theories have been put forward regarding his development; some of these focus on Odin's particular relation to other figures.
Other approaches focus on Odin's place in the historical record, a frequent question being whether the figure of Odin derives from Proto-Indo-European religion, or whether he developed in Germanic society. In the modern period, Odin has inspired numerous works of poetry and other forms of media, he is venerated in most forms of the new religious movement Heathenry, together with other gods venerated by the ancient Germanic peoples. The Old Norse theonym Óðinn and its cognates, including Old English Wōden, Old Saxon Wōden, Old High German Wuotan, derive from the reconstructed Proto-Germanic theonym *wōđanaz; the masculine noun *wōđanaz developed from the Proto-Germanic adjective *wōđaz, related to Latin vātēs and Old Irish fáith, both meaning'seer, prophet'. Adjectives stemming from *wōđaz include Gothic woþs'possessed', Old Norse óðr,'mad, furious', Old English wōd'mad'; the adjective *wōđaz was further substantivised, leading to Old Norse óðr'mind, soul, sense', Old English ellen-wōd'zeal', Middle Dutch woet'madness', Old High German wuot'thrill, violent agitation'.
Additionally the Old Norse noun æði'rage, fury' and Old High German wuotī'madness' derive from the feminine noun *wōđīn, from *wōđaz. The weak verb *wōđjanan derived from *wōđaz, gave rise to Old Norse æða'to rage', Old English wēdan'to be mad, furious', Old Saxon wōdian'to rage', Old High German wuoten'to be insane, to rage'. Over 170 names are recorded for Odin; these names are variously descriptive of attributes of the god, refer to myths involving him, or refer to religious practices associated with the god. This multitude of names makes Odin the god with the most names known among the Germanic peoples; the modern English weekday name Wednesday derives from Old English wōdnesdæg. Cognate terms are found in other Germanic languages, such as Middle Low German wōdensdach, Old Norse Óðinsdagr (Danish, Nor
Hjúki and Bil
In Norse mythology, Hjúki and Bil are a brother and sister pair of children who follow the personified moon, Máni, across the heavens. Both Hjúki and Bil are attested in the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson. Scholarly theories that surround the two concern their nature, their role as potential personifications of the craters on the moon or its phases, their relation to folklore in Germanic Europe. Bil has been identified with the Bilwis, an agriculture-associated figure, attested in the folklore of German-speaking areas of Europe. In chapter 11 of the Prose Edda book Gylfaginning, the enthroned figure of High states that two children by the names of Hjúki and Bil were fathered by Viðfinnr. Once while the two were walking from the well Byrgir — both of them carrying on their shoulders the pole Simul that held the pail Sæg between them — Máni took them from the earth, they now follow Máni in the heavens, "as can be seen from the earth". Hjúki is otherwise unmentioned.
In chapter 35 of Gylfaginning, at the end of a listing of numerous other goddesses in Norse mythology, both Sól and Bil are listed together as goddesses "whose nature has been described". Bil appears twice more in the Prose Edda book Skáldskaparmál. In chapter 75, Bil appears within another list of goddesses, her name appears in chapter 47 in a kenning for "woman"; as the two are otherwise unattested outside of Snorri's Prose Edda, suggestions have been made that Hjúki and Bil may have been of minor mythic significance, or that they were made up outright by Snorri, while Anne Holtsmark posits that Snorri may have known or had access to a now lost verse source wherein Hjúki and Bil personified the waxing and waning moon. Holtsmark further theorizes. Scholars have theorized that Hjúki and Bil may represent lunar activity, including that they may represent the phases of the moon or may represent the craters of the moon. 19th century scholar Jacob Grimm rejects the suggestion that Hjúki and Bil represent the phases of the moon, states that Hjúki and Bil rather represent the craters on the moon seen from the earth.
Grimm says. No change of the moon could suggest the image of two children with a pail slung over their shoulders. Moreover, to this day the Swedish people see in the spots of the moon two persons carrying a big bucket on a pole." Grimm adds that: What is most important for us, out of the heathen fancy of a kidnapping man of the moon, apart from Scandinavia, was doubtless in vogue all over Teutondom, if not farther, there has evolved itself since a Christian adaptation. They say the man in the moon is a wood-stealer, who during church time on the holy sabbath committed a trespass in the wood, was transported to the moon as a punishment. Plainly enough the water-pole of the heathen story has been transformed into the axe's shaft, the carried pail into the thornbrush. Grimm gives further examples from Germanic folklore until the time of his writing and notes a potential connection between the German word wadel and the dialectal employment of the word for "brushwood, twigs tied up in a bundle, esp fir-twigs, wadeln to tie up brushwood", the practice of cutting wood out in the full moon.
Benjamin Thorpe agrees with the theory of Bil as the personified shapes of moon craters. Rudolf Simek states that the obscurity of the names of the objects in the tale of Hjúki and Bil may indicate that Snorri derived them from a folktale, that the form of the tale of the Man in the Moon is found in modern folklore in Scandinavia and Northern Germany. In both the story Hjúki and Bil found in the Icelandic Prose Edda and the English nursery rhyme "Jack and Jill", two children, one male and one female, fetch a pail of water, the pairs have names that have been perceived as phonetically similar; these elements have resulted in theories connecting the two, the notion has had some influence, appearing in school books for children from the 19th century and into the 20th century. A traditional form of the rhyme reads: Jack and Jill went up the hill to fetch a pail of water Jack fell down and broke his crown and Jill came tumbling after. Up Jack got and home did trot as fast, he went to bed to mind his head with brown paper.
A figure by the name of Bilwis is attested in various parts of German-speaking Europe starting in the 13th century. Scholar Leander Petzoldt writes that the figure seems to stem from the goddess and over time saw many changes developing "an elfin, dwarfish aspect and the ability to cripple people or cattle with the shot of an arrow". Petzoldt further surveys the development of the figure: During the course of the thirteenth century, the Bilwis is less and less treated as the personification of a supernatural power but becomes identified as a malevolent human being, a witch. Still with the rise of the witch persecution at the end of the Middle Ages, the Bilwis was demonized.