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Name Proto-Germanic Old English Old Norse
*Nauđiz Nȳd Nauðr
"need, hardship"
Shape Elder Futhark Futhorc Younger Futhark
Runic letter naudiz.svg Runic letter naudiz.svg Short-twig n rune.svg
Transliteration n
Transcription n
IPA [n]
Position in
10 8

*Naudiz is the reconstructed Proto-Germanic name of the n-rune , meaning "need, distress". In the Anglo-Saxon futhorc, it is continued as nyd, in the Younger Futhark as , Icelandic naud and Old Norse nauðr. The corresponding Gothic letter is 𐌽 n, named nauþs.

The rune is recorded in all three rune poems:

Rune Poem:[1] English Translation:

Old Norwegian
Nauðr gerer næppa koste;
nøktan kælr í froste.

Constraint gives scant choice;
a naked man is chilled by the frost.

Old Icelandic
Nauð er Þýjar þrá
ok þungr kostr
ok vássamlig verk.
opera niflungr.

Constraint is grief of the bond-maid
and state of oppression
and toilsome work.

Nyd byþ nearu on breostan;
ƿeorþeþ hi þeah oft niþa bearnum
to helpe and to hæle gehƿæþre,
gif hi his hlystaþ æror.

Trouble is oppressive to the heart;
yet often it proves a source of help and salvation
to the children of men, to everyone who heeds it betimes.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Original poems and translation from the Rune Poem Page Archived 1999-05-01 at the Wayback Machine..