Happy Stikklestad Day

Today we celebrate the death of Olaf II Haraldsson, king of Norway. He was killed by Thorir Hund (Thorir the Hound) at the Battle of Stiklestad People have called Olaf by several different names. During his lifetime he was known as Olaf ‘the fat’ or ‘the stout’ or simply as Olaf ‘the big’ (Ólafr digri; Modern Norwegian Olaf digre). In Norway today, he is commonly referred to as Olav den hellige (Bokmål; Olaf the Holy) or Heilage-Olav (Nynorsk; the Holy Olaf) in honor of his sainthood.

death of olaf

He was posthumously given the title Rex Perpetuus Norvegiae(English: Norway’s Eternal King) and canonised in Nidaros (Trondheim) by Roman Catholic Bishop Grimkell, one year after his death. His remains were enshrined in Nidaros Cathedral, built over his burial site.

 

In Heathenry he is known as Olaf the Lawbreaker.

So raise a horn and thank Thorir Hund for his love and devotion to the Gods by ending the life of such a blood-thirsty killer of his people.

Tore Hund Monument

The Tore Hund Monument, by Norwegian artist Svein Haavardsholm, was erected in 1980 beside the road to the church on Bjarkøy. The memorial honors both Thorir Hund and the Bjarkøy clan, who had their seat on Bjarkøy.

 

 

 

Neolithic house discovery at Avebury stone circle dig

aveburyarchaeologydiggingintheavenue©nationaltrustabbygeorge

Archaeologists at the three-week Avebury dig are researching the daily lives of Neolithic and Bronze Age people

Archaeologists believe they may have found the remains of a house where people who built Avebury stone circle may have lived.

The three-week Between the Monuments project is researching the daily lives of Neolithic and Bronze Age residents at the Wiltshire site.

The dig is being led by The National Trust and Southampton and Leicester University archaeologists.

The National Trust said if it is a house they will have “hit the jackpot”.

Spokesman Dr Nick Snashall said: “I could count the number of middle Neolithic houses that have been found on the fingers of one hand.

“This site dates from a time when people are just starting to build the earliest parts of Avebury’s earthworks, so we could be looking at the home and workplace of the people who saw that happening.”

Read more here.

Three Norse Customs that Christianity Killed.

Author C.J. Adrien

When Christianity spread across Scandinavia during the Viking Age, it changed many  Norse cultural norms. The following are three of the most notable changes that took place as a result of their Christianization.

1. Grooming.

vk_comb Reindeer Antler Comb from Ribe, circa 8th Century

Prior to converting to Christianity, Norse culture valued good grooming habits. We know this from several sources, including both Christian and Muslim texts, as well as archeological finds of combs, washbowls, and saunas. Christianity, however, viewed Norse grooming habits as signs of vanity. In Christendom, it was required of some people, especially clerics, to never bathe. In fact, monks actually thought the dirtier they were, the holier they were because they were rejecting vanity. As Christianity spread across Scandinavia, the Scandinavian people joined the rest of Christendom in their smelliness. Read more about Norse grooming.

2. Religious Tolerance.

KKSgb7543 The baptism of Harald-Klak of Denmark.

History has…

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More on Odin from Gylfaginning

2 Gangleri began his questioning thus: “Who is the highest and ancient of all Gods?”

High said : He is called Alföðr (All-father) in our language, but in Old Asgard he had twelve names. One is Alföðr (All-father), the second Herjan (Warrior or Lord) or Herian, the third    Hnikarr (Thruster) or Nikarr, the fourth Hnikuðr (Overthrower) or Nikuz, the fifth Fjölnir (Wise One), the sixth Óski (God of Wishes),  the seventh Ómi (Resounding one), eighth Blindi (Blind) or Biflindi ( Spear Shaker, Shield Shaker), the ninth Sviðurr (Wise One), the tenth Sviðrir (Calmer),  the eleventh Viðrir (Stormer), the twelfth Jálg or Jálkr (Gelding or Gelder).’ manuscript Prose Edda Odin Heimdall Sleipnir Norse mythology myth religion Then Gangleri asked : ‘Where is this God, what power has he, and what great works has he performed?’

High said : He lives throughout all ages and rules all his kingdom and governs all things great and small.’ Manuscript_Gylfi

(Gylfi is tricked in an illustration from Icelandic Manuscript, SÁM 66)

Then spoke Just-as-high : ‘He made heaven and earth and the skies and everything in them. ‘ Then spoke Third : But his greatest work is that he made man and gave him a soul that shall live and never perish though the body decay to dust or burn to ashes. And all men who are righteous shall live and dwell with him himself in the place called Gimlé or Vingólf, but wicked men go to Heljar (Hel) and on to Niflhel; that is down in the ninth world.’ manuscript snorre

(Snorre Sturlason)

  – Gylfaginning, or the Tricking of Gylfi

Who Is Odin?

13

Then spoke Gangleri: “Which are the Æsir, that men ought to believe in?”

High [ Hárr ] answered: “The divine Æsir are twelve.”

Then spoke Just-as-High [Jafnhárr]: “No less holy are the Ásynjur, the goddesses,  nor is their power less.”

Then said Third: “Óðinn is highest and most ancient of the Æsir: he rules all things, and mighty though the other gods are, yet they all submit to him as children to their father. Frigg is his wife, and she knows all the fates of men, though she speaks no prophecy,–as is said here, when Óðinn himself spoke to the As[ Æsir ] called Loki:

“Mad you are Loki, and out of your wits,–
Why will you not be silent, Loki?
All fates I believe Frigg knows, though she herself does not pronounce.”

Óðinn is called All-father because he is father of all the gods. He is also called Valföðr [Val-father – Father of the Slain], because all those that fall in battle are his adopted sons. He assigns them places in Val-hall and Vingólf, and they are then called Einherjar. He is also called Hangatýr [God of the Hanged], God of Gods, Farmaguð [God of Cargoes]; and he has also been named in many more ways, after he had come to King Geirrödr:

I call myself Grím and Ganglari,
Herjann, Hjálmberi;
Thekk, Third, Thudnn, Unn,
Helblindi, Hárr.

Sann, Svipall, Sann-getall,
Herteitr, Hnikarr;
Bileygr, Báleygr, Bölverkr, Fjölnir,
Grímnir, Glapsvidr, Fjölsvidr.

Sídhöttr, Sidskegg, Sigfödr, Hnikud,
Alfödr, Atrídr, Farmatýr;
Óski, Ómi, Jafnhárr, Biflindi,
Göndlir, Hárbardr.

Svidurr, Svidrir, Jálkr, Kjalarr, Vidurr,
Thrór, Yggr, Thundr;
Vakr, Skilfingr, Váfudr, Hroptatýr,
Gautr, Veratýr.”

Gylfaginning, or the Tricking of Gylfi

Old Norse (Dǫnsk tunga)

runestone

 

Old Norse, the language of the Vikings, is a North Germanic language once spoken in Scandinavia, the Faroe Islands, Iceland, Greenland, and in parts of Russia, France and the British Isles. The modern language most closely related to Old Norse is Icelandic, the written form of which has changed little over the years, while the spoken form has undergone significant changes.

Thanks to Omniglot.