A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Valaskialf [val-ah-skyalf] – (“Seat of the Slain”) Odin’s silver-roofed hall in Asgard, where his high throne, Hlidskjalf; from it Odhinn can see into all the nine worlds.

Vafthruthnir – (“The one who knows answers'”) Wisest of the Giants. Odin visited him to see if he really was that smart. Vavtrudnir failed the last question and lost his head.

Váli – 1) In some sources, the twin brother of Vidar. In other sources, he is the youngest of Odin’s sons, by the Giantess Rind, and was born for the express purpose of avenging Balder’s death since the Gods could not kill one of their own. When he was only one night old, he killed Hodur. He is bold in battles, and an excellent arcber. He will be one of the seven Æsir to survive the Ragnarok. 2) A Dwarf.

Valfather – (“God of the Slain”) By-name of Odin.

Valhalla [val-hal-ah] – (“Hall of the Slain”) Valhalla is one of Odin’s halls in Asgard, where those who have fallen in battle, the Einherjar, go after death. (The other great hall is Vingolf.) It has five hundred and forty doors. Behind each door is a room for 800 warriors. The hall is roofed rafters of huge shining spear shafts and tiles of golden shields. Here the warriors gather to prepare for the final battle and the end of the world, Ragnarok. Each day the Odin’s cook boils the flesh of a boar in a great kettle The boar’s flesh suffices for all the warriors. The boar is resurrected each evening to be cooked again the next morning. The warriors spend their days fighting and killing each other, to be revived at night for feasting and drinking four different kinds of mead and ale.

Valkyrja, Valkyries pl. valkyrjur. ON  – (“Chooser of the Fallen” i.e., the slain). Disir sent by Odin into battle to select those who would go to Valhalla, lead by Freya. They are sometimes referred to as “shield-maidens” or “corpse-goddesses”. They have raven and swan forms, and are sometimes seen by men as the Aurora Borealiis, flickering light caused by reflections on their armor. They choose among the slain and bring fertility to the earth. The Valkyries also serve as Odin’sm messengers and servants. “Hrist and Mist I desire should bring me a horn, Skeggjöld and Skögul, Hildr and Thrûdr, Hlökk and Herfjötur, Göll and Geirahöd, Rándgridr and Reginleif. These serve ale to the Einheriar. Gunnr and Róta and the youngest norn, called Skuld, always ride to choose who shall be slain and to govern the killings.” Other Valkyrie include Brynhildr, Sigrún, Kára, Sigdrifa, Sváva, Hildeberg, Hildegund, Kreimhildr and Göndul and the other two norns, Urdhr and Verdhandi. See also Dis, Disir.

Vanadis – Another title for Freya. See Dis, Vanir.

Vanaheim, Vanaheimr – The world of the Vanir.

Vanir, Sg. Van. ON – The race of Gods corresponding to the fertility, prosperity, eroticism functions. The Old Norse Gods and Goddesses of the family which centered around Njord, Freyr and Freya. They tend on the whole to be more gentle and concerned with matters of nature and fertility than the Æsir. After a long war with the Æsir, they all exchanged hostages and lived in peace. The Vanir who came to the Æsir camp became assimilated into the Æsir, while retaining their special characteristics. The Gods identified as Vanir are: Holde, Nerthus, Njord, Freya, Freyr, Od , Hnoss, Aegir, Ran, Ullr, Ulla, Gerdh, Skirnir, Heimdallr, Idunna, Bragi, Siofyn, Gefjon, Skadhi, Erde, the Undines, Svol, Ostara, Gullveig. The Vanir are direct descendants of Holde by way of the mother, or are males that have married (female) Vans. Vanic (not Vanir) are Mundilfari, Mundilfara, Mani, Sol; Freyr’s servants: Byggvir, Beyla; Freya’s Valkyries. The Gods identified as Æsir are: Odin (Fjolnir), Fjorgyn, Loki, Thorr, Meili, Frigga (although she is sister to Van Njord), Tyr, Hermodr, Baldr, Hodr, Sif, Thrudh, Nanna, Forseti, Sigyn, Magni, Modi, Vali, Vidar. The Æsir are direct descendants of Odin by way of the father, or are females who have married (male) Æsir. Aesic (not Æsir) Gods are: Frigga’s servants: Vor, Hlin, Snotra, Vara, Saga, Gna, Syn, Eir, Fulla, Sjofn, Lofn; Thórr’s servants: Thjálfi, Roskva; and Odin’s Valkyries. The following are not identified as either Vanir or Æsir: Hoenir, Kvasir, Jorun, Helja.

Vanir war – A great war between the Vanir and the Aesir. Finally the two tribes reconciled, and gathered to make peace. They all spat into a large bowl as a token of their good wiil. Out of this “Godspit” emerges Kvæsir, originator of the Mead of Poetry. The Gods finally exchanged hostages to insure the peace.

Vár – Goddess of awareness. Var personifies an idealized concept of truth and honesty. Var and Vor were handmaidens of Frigga with Eir, and are invoked to witness oaths and to punish oathbreakers. Goddess of love-vows, she listens to (and punishes those who break) agreements between men and women. Newly married couples say her name when they take each other’s hands.

Vardlokkur – ON: One who opens and closes fetters and locks. Man with the power of binding spirits using runes, calls and knot-magic, a “warlock”. Also the runes used for defense.

Vargr – ON: outlaw, wolf.

Vavtrudne – A very wise Jotun whom Odin once managed to trick. The poem Vavtrudnemål tells of this feat.

Vé – (“Holiness”) 1) Odin’s brother. 2) one of Odin’s names (Odin-Vili-Vé). 3) A “sacred enclosure”; the place of working magic.

Vébond – ON: The posts and rope enclosing a Vé (sacred place). In Viking times, open-air courts were sanctified by the Vébond. This was a fence made of hazel posts linked by ropes. It formed a magical as well as physical barrier.

Vedfolnir – (“Blown Down”) The hawk that lives between the eyes of the eagle Hraesvelg in the top of Yggdrasil. He is the highest placed creature in the world.

Veraldargod – An aspect of Freyr.

Veratyr(“God of Men”) A by-name of Odin.

Verdhandi, Verdandi – (“The Present”) One of the Great Norns. The Fate Verdhandi spins the humans’ life-threads with her hands. Her threads are about the present. She lives with the other Fates at the Urdawell. Verdhandi is the present participle of the verb verda, and so means “that which is becoming”, i.e. “the present”.

Vestri – (“West”) The Dwarf Vestri was put in the sky’s west corner by Odin, Vili and Ve. The sky is made out of the Giant Ymir’s head.

Vidar – Twin of Váli, son of Odin and the Giantess Rind. He will avenge Odin’s death by slaying the Wolf at Ragnarok, and will survive to become one of the new Gods. Known as the silent As, he is a source of support to Gods in danger.

Vidi(“Wooden”) Home of Vidar.

Vidblain – (“Wide Blue”) The third heaven above and to the south of Asgard and above the second heaven, Andlang.

Vidofner – (“Willowtwister”) The rooster that lives in Yggdrasil. He is watched by Sinmara with her Laevatein, the only thing that can kill him.

Vig – A Dwarf.

Vigard [vee-gard] – A great plain in Asgard, a hundred and twenty leagues in every direction. It is at this place that the final battle of Ragnarok takes place.

Viking – A word meaning “adventurer” or “explorer” and which characterized a Scandinavian civilization which thrived from the 6th to the 12th centuries.

Vili – (“The Will”) Odin’s brother; alternately, one of Odin’s names (Odin-Vili-Vé). He gave the humans thought and motion. He is identified with Hoenir by some and only as a part of Odin by others.

Vindalf – (“Wind Elf”) A Dwarf.

Vindonnus – Saxon tutelary god of Vienna. By-name for Woden (Odin).

Vingólf, – [veen-gulf]: A beautiful hall build by the Aesir as a sanctuary for the goddesses. Vingólf, along with Valhalla, is alloted to the Einheijar.

Virpir – A Dwarf.

Vitkar – ON: Wise women who worked magic and healing with the runes.

Vitki – ON: A “wizard” or “magician” who is skilled in magical lore, particularly the lore of the runes.

Vitr – A Dwarf.

Vjofn, also known as Sjöfn or Sjofna – An attendant to Frigga, Vjofní’s duty was to incline obdurate hearts to love, to maintain peace and concord among mankind, and to reconcile quarreling husbands and wives.

Volva- ON. A “wand-bearer”, a witch, seer, fortune-teller, wise woman, the Norse equivalent of the Shaman. Seidh practioners were called Volva.

Volund, Volundr, Weland, Wayland, Wieland – “Wonder Smith”; Saxon smith diety, a supreme craftsman. A Shape-shifter associated with horses..Volund was a skillful smith who had forged both the magic ring Andvaranut and the sword Gram. He was kept in prison for a time by king Nidud, but the smith revenged deeply and got free. Mentioned in the tales of Siegfried (Sigurdr) and Dietrich of Bern. Represents strength, cunning, skill, healing, horses, magic, metal working.

Völva – ON: A wise woman. A seer and an exponent of Seidr. Wand-bearer, having magical powers.

Vor – One of the handmaidens of Frigga, with Var and Eir. Var and Vor are invoked to witness oaths and to punish oathbreakers. Vor is wise and inquiring, and nothing can be concealed from her.

Vördhr – ON: Guardian or warden during soul travel to the realms of the World Tree. From it we get the term vardhlokkur (warlock).

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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