Norse Mythology

Norse Mythology – Introduction

The name ‘Viking’ instantly conjures up images for all of us. Horned helmets, long beards, and a tendency to whack people with hammers all come to mind.

An Introduction to Norse Mythology

The medieval peoples of Scandinavia had a vibrant belief system full of gods, realms, and beasts.

Norse Historical Sources

Norse mythology was rarely written down, so historians must work with a limited pool of sources.

The Norse Gods

Historians disagree on the number of Norse gods, with some people thinking there were more than fifty. Here are ten of the most important, including Odin, Freya, and Thor.

Beings and Creatures

As well as gods and jötnar, Norse mythology includes a variety of races and creatures, from 8-legged horses to giant wolves.

The 9 Realms

The 9 realms are never explicitly described in a historical source, but scholars have managed to piece together a limited depiction of each one.

Stories and Legends

Norse mythology was built upon storytelling. Here are some of the most famous legends which have survived to the modern day.

The Decline of Norse Mythology

The decline of Norse mythology was fatally intertwined with the rise of Christianity. Where one belief system proliferated, the other faded away.

Ásatrú: a Return to Old Ways

In the 1970s, a group of Icelanders decided to resurrect the old religion. For the first time in almost 1000 years, the Æsir were worshiped in public.

Influence on the Modern World

Norse mythology only has a few thousand followers in the modern world, but its influence can also be felt in other areas, from language, to literature, to music.

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