Aegir - Aegir is the god of the sea. He is both worshipped and feared by sailors, for they believed that Aegir would occasionally appear on the surface to take ships, men and cargo alike, with him to his hall at the bottom of the ocean. Sacrifices were made to appease him. His wife is the sea goddess Ran with whom he has nine daughters (the billows), who wore white robes and veils. His two faithful servants are Eldir and Fimafeng. The latter was killed by the treacherous god Loki during a banquet the gods held at Aegir's undersea hall near the island of Hler . Aegir was known for the lavish entertainment he gave to the other gods.
Aesir - The Aesir are the warrior gods who live in Asgard, one of the nine worlds. They were formerly opposed by the Vanir, an elder race of gods, but the Vanir were eventually assimilated are often considered to be Aesir.
Alaisiagae - The goddess of war.
Alberich - A dwarven king, Alberich lives in a subterranean palace carved out of rock and ornated with gems and precious metal. He guards the Nibelung hoard and is also a very powerful magician. He gave Siegfried the sword Balmung and a cloak which granted invisibility. Freya received the necklace Brisingamen along with Draupnir, Odinís ring, and the magical sword Tyrfing from him also
Alfheim - Alfheim is one of the nine worlds. It is located on the highest level of the Norse universe. Also found on this level are the worlds of Asgard and Vanaheim. Alfheim is the palace of the god Freyr and the homeland of the elves of light. Neither the elves of light nor the elves of darkness, who live in Svartalfheim, participate in any of the events described in the Norse myths. Elves do, however, have active roles in the literature of quite a few of the other branches of Indo-European mythology.
Alfrodull - Alfrodull is the sun in Norse mythology and means "Glory of elves". It is thought to be a chariot driven by a girl is thought to be the sun. Two horses pull the chariot; their names are Arvak and Alsvid. Because she was being persued by the wolf, Skoll, she drove very fast. Before the world ends, she will have a daughter, then Skoll will eat her, and her daughter will take her place. The sun does not give off light but gives heat. The horse¹s mane is what gives off the light.
Andhrimnir - Andhrimnir is the cook of the Aesir and the Einherjar. Every evening he slaughters the cosmic boar Sahrimnir and cooks it in his magical cauldron, Eldhrimnir. This boar is restored to life the same night to be slaughtered and eaten again the following day. The milk provided by the goat Heidrun, which stands on top of the world tree and eats its leaves, forms the basic ingredient for the mead drunk by the Aesir.
Andvari - Andvari is a dwarf who can assume the shape of a fish if he is pursued. He lives underneath a waterfall and collects great wealth with the help of his ring Andvaranaut*. He was caught by Loki with a net provided by the goddess Ran and forced the yield all the gold he possessed. The dwarf tried to withhold his ring so that he could rebuild his wealth. Loki made him give up the ring as well and the dwarf cursed the stolen gold which would from then on bring disaster to all who owned it. The gold was used by the gods to pay a blood-debt to pay Hreidmar, the father of Fafnir, because they had killed his son Otter. This myth formed in later times the prelude to the Nibelungsaga.
*Andvaranaut is a sorcelled ring that seeks out gold and was the possession of Andvari, until Loki stole it. Andvari hexed the ring and to give bad luck and pain to all who beheld it. Loki gave the ring, which he regretted stealing by now, to King Hreidmar of the dwarves, as reparation for the murder of Otter, Hreidmarís son, accidentally. When Fafnir killed Hreidmar, he took the ring.
Angrboda - A giantess and the wife of the trickster Loki. Angrboda, meaning "herald of sorrow", spawned three monsters: the gigantic wolf Fenrir, the Midgard Serpent Jormungand, and the goddess of the death Hel. The gods abducted the children from her hall when they learned just how dangerous they were.
Asgard - Asgard is one of the nine worlds and the homeland of the Aesir, the race of warrior gods. Located on the highest level of the Norse universe, it is surrounded by a high wall of closely fitted stone blocks. Also found on this level are the worlds of Alfheim and Vanaheim as well as Valhalla, an immense hall where warriors slain in battle await the final conflict. In the middle of Asgard lies the plain of Idavoll where the Aesir meet to decide important issues. There the gods assemble in the hall of Gladsheim and the goddesses in the hall of Vingolf. The gods also meet daily at the Well of Urd, beneath the Asgard root of the ash tree Yggdrasil.
Ask and Embla - After Odin and his two brothers Ve and Vili had created the universe and the nine worlds, they walked on the beach where they came upon two logs of wood which were washed ashore. They picked the logs up and give them a humanoid shape. Odin breathed into them the spirit of life, Vili gave them sharp wits and feeling hearts, and Ve bestowed upon them the senses, expressive features and speech. Furthermore, the brothers provided them with names and clothes. The male they named Ask, "ash", and the female the named Embla, "elm". Ask and Embla became the first of the human race and Midgard was given to them as their residence.
Astrild - The goddess of love
Balder - The god of light, joy, purity, beauty, innocence, and reconciliation. Son of Odin and Frigg, he is loved by both gods and man and is considered to be the best of the gods. He has a good character, is friendly, wise and eloquent, although he has little power. His wife is Nanna daughter of Nep, and their son is Forseti, the god of justice. Balder's hall is Breidablik, "broad splendor".
Bergelmir - Bergelmir is the son of Thrudgelmir and the grandson of Ymir. In the enormous amount of blood which flowed freely after Ymir's death, all the frost giants died, except Bergelmir and his wife. Just before the end, they climbed into a hollow tree trunk and survived. When things settled down, they became the makers of a new, younger race of frost giants.
Bifrost - Bifrost is the bridge between Midgard, the realm of man, and Asgard, the realm of the gods. Since it is the only way for the giants to enter Asgard it is closely guarded by Heimdall, the watchman of the gods. Bifrost is made of three colors with magic and great skill by the Aesir and is incredibly strong. At the end of the cosmos, this rainbow-bridge will collapse.
Bragi - The god of eloquence and poetry, and the patron of skalds (poets) in Norse mythology. He is regarded as a son of Odin and Frigg. Runes were carved on his tongue and he inspired poetry in humans by letting them drink from the mead of poetry. Bragi is married to Idun, the goddess of eternal youth. Oaths were sworn over the Bragarfull, "Cup of Bragi", and drinks were taken from it in honor of a dead king. Before a king ascended the throne, he drank from such a cup.
Dagur - Dagur is the personification of the day. He is the son of Delling, the personification of twilight, and Nott. The gods gave Dagur a chariot and put him in the sky. His chariot is pulled by the horse is Skinfaxi, whose shining mane illuminates the earth and the sky.
Eir - Eir, "mercy", is a minor Norse goddess of healing. She knows the secret powers of herbs, with which she can even resurrect the dead. She taught the art of healing only to women, who, in ancient Scandinavia, were the only physicians. Eir is a companion of the goddess Frigg.
Elli - Personified Norse goddess of old age, who ever overcame the mighty Thor in a wrestling match.
Fenris - Fenris is a gigantic and terrible monster in the shape of a wolf. He is the eldest child of Loki and the giantess Angrboda.
Forseti - Forseti is the god of justice. He is the son of the god Balder and his mother is Nanna. Forseti rules in the beautiful palace Glitnir, which serves as a court of justice and where all legal disputes are settled. Glitnir has a roof of silver that is supported by pillars of red gold.
Freya - Freya is a goddess of love and fertility, and the most beautiful and propitious of the goddesses. She is the patron goddess of crops and birth, the symbol of sensuality and is called upon at matters of love. She loves music, spring and flowers, and is particularly fond of the elves. Freya is one of the foremost goddesses of the Vanir. She owns the precious necklace of the Brisings, which she obtained by sleeping with four dwarves, a cloak of bird feathers which allows its wearer to change into a falcon, and a chariot pulled by two cats. She also owns Hildesvini, "battle boar", which is actually her human lover Ottar in disguise. Freya lives in the beautiful palace Folkvang, "field of folk", a place where love songs are always played, and her hall is Sessrumnir. She divides the slain warriors with Odin: one half goes to her palace, while the other half goes to Valhalla. Women also go to her hall.
Freyr - Freyr is the god of sun and rain, and patron of bountiful harvests. He is both a god of peace as well as a brave warrior. He is also the ruler of the elves. Freyr is the most prominent and most beautiful of male members of the Vanir, and is called 'God of the World'. After the merging of the Aesir and the Vanir, Freyr is called 'Lord of the Aesir'. Freyr was also called upon to grant a fertile marriage.
Frigg - As the wife of Odin, Frigg is one of the foremost goddesses of Norse mythology. She is the patron of marriage and motherhood, and the goddess of love and fertility. In that aspect she shows many similarities with Freya, of whom she possibly is in a different form. She has a reputation of knowing every person's destiny, but never unveils it. As the mother of Balder, she tried to prevent his death by extracting oaths from every object in nature, but forgot the mistletoe, and by a dart made from mistletoe Balder died. Her hall in Asgard is Fensalir, "water halls". Frigg's messenger is Gna, who rides through the sky on the horse Hofvarpnir. In some myths she was rumored to have had love affairs with Odin's brothers Ve and Vili.
Garm - The monstrous hound Garm guards the entrance to Helheim, the Norse realm of the dead. It has four eyes and a chest drenched with blood, and lives in Gnipa-cave. Anyone who had given bread to the poor could appease him with Hel cake. On the day of Ragnarok, Garm will join the giants in their fight against the gods. The god of war Tyr will kill it in this cataclysmic battle but will die from the wounds inflicted by the hound.
Gefion - Gefion, "giver", is an old-Scandinavian vegetation and fertility goddess, especially connected with the plough. She was considered the patron of virgins and the bringer of good luck and prosperity. Every girl who dies a virgin will become Gefion's servant. She is married to King Skjold, a son of Odin, and lived in Leire, Denmark, where she had a sanctuary. The Swedish kings are supposed to be her descendants. It is traditionally claimed that Gefion created the island of Zealand by ploughing the soil out of the central Swedish region with the help of her sons (four Swedish oxen), creating the great Swedish lakes in the process.
Gerd - Gerd is a beautiful giantess, the wife of Freyr and daughter of the giant Gymir. She is an earth goddess, the personification of the fertile soil. She was so beautiful that the brightness of her naked arms illuminated both air and sea. Gerd never wanted to marry Freyr and refused his proposals. Freyr sent his messenger Skirnir to woo her, but he did not succeed in winning her over with the eleven golden apples and the ring Draupnir he had with him. Eventually Skirnir threatened to use Freyr's sword, which would cover the earth in ice, and powerful magic which would doom Gerd's life to misery and sadness. She finally agreed to meet Freyr in a wood, nine days later, and soon became his wife.
Gna - Handmiaden and messenger for Frigg, she has a swift horse named Hofvarpnir, "Hoof-thrower", which can run in the air and over water.
Heimdall - Heimdall is the god of light and the son of nine mothers. He was born at the end of the world and raised by the force of the earth, seawater and the blood of a boar. Because of his shining, golden teeth he is also called Gullintani, "gold tooth". His hall is Himinbjorg, The Cliffs of Heaven, and his horse is Gulltop. Heimdall carries the horn Gjall*. He is also the watchman of the gods and guards Bifrost, the only entrance to Asgard, the realm of the gods. It is Heimdall's duty to prevent the giants from forcing their way into Asgard. He requires less sleep then a bird, and sees by night as well as by day a hundred miles around him. His hearing is so accurate that no sound escapes him: he can even hear the grass grow or the wool on a sheep's back.
*Gjall, "ringing horn", is the horn carried by Heimdall, the watchman of the gods. It lies hidden beneath the third root of the World Tree Yggdrasil. With a soft tone Heimdall announced the arrival of the gods, but sounded it more forcefully in times of danger. At Ragnarok it will sound one final time and will be heard all over the world, calling the gods and the warriors to the battlefield.
Hel - Hel is the ruler of Helheim, the realm of the dead. She is the youngest child of the evil god Loki and the giantess Angrboda and is usually described as a horrible hag, half alive and half dead, with a gloomy and grim expression. Her face and body are those of a living woman, but her thighs and legs are those of a corpse, mottled and moldering.
Helheim - Helheim, "house of Hel", is one of the nine worlds of Norse mythology. It is ruled by Hel, the monstrous daughter of the trickster god Loki and his wife Angrboda. This cold, dark and misty abode of the dead is located in the world of Niflheim, on the lowest level of the Norse universe. No one can ever leave this place, because of the impassable river Gjoll that flows from the spring Hvergelmir and encircles Helheim. Once they enter Helheim, not even the gods can leave. Those who die of old age or disease, and those not killed in battle, go to Helheim while those who die bravely on the battlefield go to Valhalla. The entrance to Helheim is guarded by Garm, a monstrous hound, and Modgud. The giant Hraesvelg, "corpse eater", sits at the edge of the world, overlooking Helheim, in the form of an eagle with flapping wings he makes the wind blow.
Hermod - The son of Odin and Frigg and the messenger of the gods. After the death of Balder, Frigg sought for one brave enough to face Hel, the ruler of the underworld and plead for his Balder's return. The great hero Hermod the Nimble volunteered to make this dangerous journey. He mounted Odin's steed Sleipnir and traveled to the underworld. When Hermod came upon the gates of Hell, he jumped right over them and entered the great hall of the dead. There he saw Balder and he begged Hel to release him because Balder was loved by all so noone could miss him. Hel was skeptical and agreed to release Balder on the condition that everything, dead or alive, should weep for Balder. If only one thing should not cry, then she would keep Balder in the realm of the dead. Hermod returned to the land of the living and told the gods what Hel's terms were. But not everyone wept and therefore Balder had to remain in the underworld until the end of the world.
Hlin - Hiln is the goddess charged with protecting those men who Frigg wants kept safe, also called by others a goddess of consolation who was supposed to "kiss away the tears of mourners". In most sources, Hlin is just another name for Frigg.
Hod - The blind god of darkness and winter, the son of Odin and Frigg. When the gods enjoyed themselves by using his brother Balder as a target, Hod unintentionally killed him by throwing a dart made of mistletoe, the only object that could harm Balder. Hod was put to death for this deed by Vali, Odin's youngest son who was born for revenge. However, after the destruction of the cosmos when a new world is built, Hod will be reborn.
Holler - Holler is the god of death and destruction and the one who brings diseases and disasters. He drags people to his dungeon where he tortures them to death.
Honir - The long-legged god of the Aesir, known for his indecisiveness. He and the wise god Mimir were sent by the Aesir to the Vanir to seal their truce. The Vanir gladly accepted them and made Honir one of their leaders. Honir, however, was not as smart as the Aesir had claimed and relied heavily on Mimir. He gave noncommittal answers whenever Mimir was not around. Honir is one of the gods that will survive Ragnarok.
Hymir - Hymir is a sea giant, the husband of Hrod, who lives at edge of the heaven. He possessed an enormous cauldron which the Aesir coveted to brew beer in and Thor was sent to obtain it. In the final battle against the gods, Hymir will sail the terrible ship Naglfar, which is made entirely from the nails of the dead. The flood that precedes Ragnarok will free the ship after which the giants will board it and, with Hymir as commander, sail towards the battlefield of Vigrond.
Idun - The goddess of eternal youth, married to Bragi, the god of poetry. Idun is the custodian of the golden apples of youth. When the gods feel old age approaching, they only have to eat of the apples to become young again. As a goddess of fertility, youth and death, it is possible that she was originally one of the Vanir.
Jord - Jord is the personification of the primitive, unpopulated, and uncultivated Earth. She is one of the wives of the chief god Odin and the mother of the god Thor.
Jormungand - Jormungand is one of the three children of the god Loki and his wife, the giantess Angrboda. The gods were well aware that this monster was growing fast and that it would one day bring much evil upon gods and men, so Odin deemed it advisable to render it harmless. He threw the serpent in the ocean that surrounds the earth, but the monster had grown to such an enormous size that it easily spans the entire world, hence the name Midgard Serpent. It lies deep in the ocean where it bites itself in its tail, and all mankind is caught within his coils. At the destruction of the universe, Jormungand and Thor will kill each other.
Jotunheim - Jotunheim is one of the nine worlds, the homeland of the frost giants and rock giants. Situated in Midgard, on the middle level of the Norse universe, Jotunheim is separated from Asgard by the river Iving, which never freezes over. It lies in the snowy regions on the outermost shores of the ocean. Mimir's well of wisdom is in Jotunheim, beneath the Midgard root of the ash tree Yggdrasil.
Kvasir - Kvasir was the wisest of the Vanir, fashioned from the spittle of all the gods. Two brothers, the dwarves Fjalar and Galar, invited him to a feast in their dismal cavern and killed him. The dwarves mixed his blood with honey and preserved it in two jars and a cauldron. The mixture fermented, creating the mead of poetry. Those who drink it become inspired poets.
Laga - The goddess of wells and springs.
Lofn - Lofn is the goddess of forbidden love. She smiles upon illicit unions.
Loki - Loki is one of the major deities in the Norse pantheon. He is a son of the giant Farbauti, "cruel striker", and the giantess Laufey. He is regarded as one of the Aesir, but is on occasion their enemy. He is connected with fire and magic, and can assume many different shapes (horse, falcon, fly). Loki is handsome and has a friendly appearance, but an evil nature. He is crafty and malicious, but also heroic. The ambivalent god grows progressively more evil, and is directly responsible for the death of Balder, the god of light. Loki's mistress is the giantess Angrboda, and with her he is the father of three monsters. His wife is Sigyn, who stayed loyal to him, even when the gods punished him for the death of Balder. He was chained to three large boulders; one under his shoulders, one under his loins and one under his knees, and had a poisonous snake placed above his head. The dripping venom that lands on him is caught by Sigyn in a bowl. But every now and then, when the bowl is filled to the brim, she has to leave him to empty it. Then the poison that falls on Loki's face makes him twist in pain, causing earthquakes.
Magni and Modi - Magni and Modi, the sons of Thor, did not have many worshippers, as was common for sons and daughters of the major gods and goddesses. They did have a few, though for Magni was considered the god of might, or strength, and was believed to be the only being in the Norse universe stronger than his father. His worshippers praised his great strength and feats thereof. Magni was supposedly the only one besides Thor able to lift Mjollnir. Modi was the god of battle wrath. His worshippers were the berserks, some relying on drugs of various kinds to enhance their wrath and stifle fear. It is believed that some of his followers also worshipped Sif for her skill in battle.
Mani - Mani is the personification of the moon, son of Mundilfari and brother of Sol, the sun. At night he rides a chariot pulled by horses through the sky, and determines its waxing and waning. Mani is chased by the wolf Hati, "hate", and whenever the wolf manages to catch the moon, a lunar eclipse would take place. This caused great consternation, and by making a lot of noise people tried to scare the wolf away.
Midgard - Midgard is one of the nine worlds, the defensive fortress which the gods build about the middle portion of the earth allotted to men in order to protect mankind from the giants. Midgard, "middle world", is on the same level as Nidavellir the land of the dwarfs, Svartalfheim the land of the dark elves/dwarfs, and Jotunheim the land of the giants.
Miming - The god of forests.
Muspell - Muspell or Muspellheim, "home of desolation", is one of the nine worlds and is a flaming, torrid region, the land of fire far to the south. It is opposed to Niflheim and whose animating beams made the ice in Niflheim melt and created the first living beings. The celestial bodies were made from its sparks which flew out into space. Muspell is ruled by the fire giant Surt, whose wife is Sinmore.
Niflheim - One of the nine worlds, Niflheim the "house of mists" is the far northern region of icy fogs and mists, darkness and cold. It is situated on the lowest level of the universe. The realm of death, Helheim is part of the vast, cold region. Niflheim lies underneath the third root of Yggdrasil, close to the spring Hvergelmir, "roaring cauldron". Also situated on this level is Nastrond, the Shore of Corpses, where the serpent Nidhogg eats corpses and gnaws on the roots of Yggdrasil. After Ragnarok, there will be a hall here for the punishment of murderers, oath breakers, and philanderers.
Nidhogg - Nidhogg, "tearer of corpses", is a monstrous serpent that gnaws perpetually at the deepest root of the World Tree Yggdrasil, threatening to destroy it. This serpent is always bickering with the eagle that houses in the top of the tree. It lies on Nastrond in Niflheim, were it also eats corpses to sustain itself. Nidhogg is not the only serpent whose task it is to destroy the World Tree. Other serpents include Graback, Grafvolluth, Goin and Moin.
Njord - The Norse god of winds, sea and fire. He brings good fortune at sea and in the hunt. He is married to the giantess Skadi. His children are Freya and Freyr, whom he fathered with his own sister.
Norns - The Norns are the demi-goddesses of destiny. They control the destinies of both gods and men, as well as the unchanging laws of the cosmos. They are represented as three sisters: Urd ("fate"), Verdandi ("necessity") and Skuld ("being"). They live at the base of the World Tree Yggdrasil in the realm of Asgard. Nothing lasts forever, and even the mighty Yggdrasil is subject to decay. The Norns try to stop this process, or at least slow it down, by pouring mud and water from the Well of Fate over its branches. This magical liquid stops the rotting process for the time being.
Nott - Nott is the personification of night, and the daughter of Narvi. Shewas married three times and with each husband she had one child. Her first husband was Naglfari, and their son was Aud. Her second husband was Annar, father of Earth. Her third husband was Delling, the personification of twilight, father of Dagur (Day). She and her son were given horse-drawn chariots by the gods and were placed in the sky to round the world every two half-days. Notts chariot is pulled by the horse Hrimfaxi, "frost-maned", which covers the earth with dew early in the morning.
Odin - The chief divinity of the Norse pantheon and the foremost of the Aesir. Odin is a son of Bor and Bestla. He is called Alfadir, Allfather, for he is indeed father of all the gods. With Frigg he is the father of Balder, Hod, and Hermod. He fathered Thor with the goddess Jord; and the giantess Grid became the mother of Vidar. Odin is a god of war and death, but also the god of poetry and wisdom. He hung for nine days, pierced by his own spear, on the world tree. Here he learned nine powerful songs, and eighteen runes. Odin can make the dead speak to question the wisest amongst them. His hall in Asgard is Valaskjalf, "shelf of the slain", where his throne Hlidskjalf is located. From this throne he observes all that happens in the nine worlds. The tidings are brought to him by his two ravens Huginn and Muninn. He also resides in Valhalla, where the slain warriors are taken. Odin's owns the spear Gungnir, which never misses its target, the ring Draupnir, from which every ninth night eight new rings appear, and his eight-footed steed Sleipnir. He is accompanied by the wolves Freki and Geri, to whom he gives his food for he himself consumes nothing but wine. Odin has only one eye, which blazes like the sun. His other eye he traded for a drink from the Well of Wisdom, and gained immense knowledge.
Ragnarok - Ragnarok, "Doom of the Gods", also called Gotterdammerung, means the end of the cosmos in Norse mythology. It will be preceded by Fimbulvetr, the winter of winters. Three such winters will follow each other with no summers in between. Conflicts and feuds will break out, even between families, and all moral will disappear. This is the beginning of the end.
Ran - Ran is the goddess of storms, and the wife of the sea god Aegir. She rules over the realm of the dead which is situated on the bottom of the ocean. She sinks ships and collects drowned sailors in her nets and takes them to her hall where she tenderly ministers them (drowned persons neither go to Valhalla nor to Helheim). With Aegir she is the mother of nine daughters (the billows), who wore white robes and veils.
Saga - Saga is the daughter of Odin and is the goddess of poetry. Every day she drinks with Odin from golden goblets in her hall Sokkuabekk. She knows all things and is hence the goddess of poetic arts and history.
Sif - The golden-haired wife of the god Thor. There is not much known about her, except that she could originally have been a fertility goddess. Neither does she appear often in the myths. The best know myth, however, is when Loki the Trickster sneaked into Sif's bedroom and lopped off her hair. Furious, Thor threatened to smash him unless Loki managed to replace the hair. He went to a great cave, the home of the sons of Ivaldi, and told them the reason of his journey. He then asked the dwarfs to spin gold as fine as Sif's hair and imbue it with magic that it will grow on her head. The dwarfs agreed and made a long wave of fine golden strands, which Loki gave to Sif.
Sjofn - Sjofn is the goddess who inspires human passion, she is also a goddess concerned with causing men and women to think of love. It is her duty to stop fights between married couples.
Skadi - A giantess, called the 'snow-shoe goddess', and the embodiment of winter. She is the wife of the god Njord. When her father Thiazi was slain by the gods, Skadi wanted to take revenge. The gods thought it wiser to reconciliate and offered her a marriage with one of them. She was free to marry any god, but while she made her choice she was only allowed to see the feet of the potential candidates. She noticed a very elegant pair and, convinced that their owner was the fair god Balder, she choose them. Unfortunately for her, those feet belonged to the older god Njord.
Snotra - A wise and gentle goddess, the goddess of virtue and master of all knowledge, she knows the value of self-discipline.
Sol - Sol is the sun goddess, daughter of Mundilfari and married to Glen. Sol rides through the sky in a chariot pulled by the horses Alsvid, "all swift", and Arvak, "early riser". Below their shoulder-blades the gods inserted iron-cold bellows to keep them cool. She is chased during the daytime by the wolf Skoll who tries to devour her, just like her brother Mani is chased by the wolf Hati at night. It was believed that during solar eclipses the sun was in danger of being eaten by Skoll. Both wolves are the offspring of the giantess Hrodvitnir who lives in the Iron Wood. Eventually, the wolf will catch her. The goddess Svalin stands in front of the sun and shields the earth from the full intensity of its heat.
Svalin - The goddess Svalin stands in front of the sun (Sol) and shields the earth from the full intensity of its heat.
Syn - She was one of the thirteen divine goddesses and was invoked by defendants at trial. Syn was an attendant of Frigg, guarding the door of Frigg¹s palace.
Thor - Thor is the Norse god of thunder. He is a son of Odin and Jord, and one of the most powerful gods. He is married to Sif, a fertility goddess and his mistress is the giantess Jarnsaxa, "iron cutlass", their sons are Magni and Modi and his daughter is Thrud. Thor is helped by Thialfi; his servant and the messenger of the gods. Thor is usually portrayed as a large, powerful man with a red beard and eyes of lightning. Despite his ferocious appearance, he is very popular as the protector of both gods and humans against the forces of evil. He even surpassed his father Odin in popularity because, in contrary to Odin, he did not require human sacrifices. The Norse believe that during a thunderstorm, Thor is riding through the heavens on his chariot pulled by the goats Tanngrisni, "gap-tooth", and Tanngnost, "tooth grinder". Lightning flashed whenever he threw his hammer Mjollnir*. Thor wears the belt Megingjard which doubles his already considerable strength and his hall is Bilskirnir which is located in the region Thrudheim, "place of might". His greatest enemy is Jormungand, the Midgard Serpent.
*Mjollnir - The hammer that belongs to the mighty god Thor. Mjollnir, "that smashes", was made for him by the dwarfs Brok and Eitri, who made many magical objects for the gods. Every time Thor threw the hammer lightning flashed, after which it returned to his right hand, on which he wore an iron glove. Mjollnir was greatly feared by the frost giants, the enemies of the gods, for Thor had dispatched a large number of them, among which was the giant Hrungnir.
Thrud - Thrud is the daughter of Thor. Some of the gods had promised that Alvis could marry Thrud if he provided them with weapons and other help, which he did. Thor did not like Alvis and certainly did not want him to marry his daughter because he lived underground in a cavern and never came out in the daylight. So Thor came up with a plan to trick Alvis into coming into the daylight. Thor asked Alvis many, many questions, which he knew would give Alvis a chance to display his extensive knowledge. Alvis was so busy showing off that he did not realize that the sun had risen and when he was caught in the light he was turned to stone.
Tyr - The original Germanic god of war and the patron god of justice, the precursor of Odin. At the time of the Vikings, Tyr had to make way for Odin, who became the god of war himself. Tyr was by then regarded as Odin's son (or possibly of the giant Hymir). He is the boldest of the gods, who inspires courage and heroism in battle. Tyr is represented as a man with one hand, because his right hand was bitten off by the gigantic wolf Fenrir (in old-Norse, the wrist was called 'wolf-joint'). His attribute is a spear; the symbol of justice, as well his chief weapon.
Ull - Ull, "glory", is the god of justice and dueling, as well as the patron god of agriculture. He excels in archery and in skiing and lives in his hall Ydalir, "yew dales". He is regarded as the son of Sif and the stepson of Thor. When the giantess Skadi divorced Njord she married Ull.
Valhalla - Valhalla, Hall of the Slain, is the hall presided over by Odin. This vast hall has five hundred and forty doors, the rafters are spears, it's roofed with shields ,and breast-plates litter the benches. A wolf guards the western door and an eagle hovers over it. It is here that the Valkyries, Odin's messengers and spirits of war, bring the heroes that died on the battle fields. These heroes, the Einherjar, are prepared in Valhalla for the oncoming battle of Ragnarok. When the battle commences, eight hundred warriors will march shoulder to shoulder out of each door.
Vali - Little is known about Vali, except that he is a son of Odin and his giant mistress Rind. When Balder was killed unintentionally by his twin brother Hod, Vali was born to avenge his death.
Valkyries - The Valkyries, "chosers of the slain", are beautiful young women, mounted upon winged horses and armed with helmets and spears. Odin needs many brave warriors for the oncoming battle of Ragnarok, and the Valkyries scout the battlefields to choose the bravest of those who have been slain. They escort these heroes, called the Einherjar, to Valhalla, Odin's hall. The Valkyries are also Odin's messengers and when they ride forth on their errands, their armor causes the strange flickering light that is called "Aurora Borealis" (Northern Lights).
Vanaheim - One of the nine worlds meaning "home of the Vanir", is the land of the Vanir. It is located in Asgard, on the highest level of the universe.
Var - Var is the goddess of contracts and marriage agreements, one of the principal goddesses. She listens to the vows and compacts made by men and woman with each other (those agreements were called varar). She takes vengeance on those who break their vows.
Ve - Ve is one of ancient Scandinavian gods and, together with Odin and Vili, the son of the primordial pair of giants Bor and Bestla. The three brothers created heaven and earth from the slain body of the primeval being Ymir and built the twelve realms. They also created Ask and Embla, the first pair of humans.
Vidar - In Norse myth, Vidar is the son of Odin and the giantess Gridr. He is the god of silence and revenge, the second strongest of the gods. At the destruction of the world, Odin will be killed by the wolf Fenrir, and Vidar will avenge his father by killing the wolf with his bare hands. He will press one foot on Fenrir's bottom jaw, and will take hold of his other jaw and tear the wolf apart. He is one of the gods that will rule the new world when it is created. His hall in Asgard is Vidi.
Villa - Villa is one of the primordial gods, brother of Odin and Ve. The three of them were responsible for the creation of the cosmos, as well as the first humans.
Yggdrasil - Yggdrasil, "The Terrible One's Horse", also called the World Tree, is the giant ash tree that links and shelters all the worlds. Beneath the three roots are the realms of Asgard, Jotunheim, and Niflheim. Three wells also lie at its base: the Well of Wisdom (Mímisbrunnr), guarded by Mimir; the Well of Fate (Urdarbrunnr), guarded by the Norns; and the Hvergelmir (Roaring Kettle), the source of many rivers. Four deer run across the branches of the tree and eat the buds; they represent the four winds. There are other inhabitants of the tree, such as the squirrel Ratatosk, "swift teeth", a notorious gossip, and Vidofnir, "tree snake", the golden cock that perches on the topmost bough. The roots are gnawed upon by Nidhogg and other serpents. On the day of Ragnarok, the fire giant Surt will set the tree on fire.