The Huldra is a seductive forest creature found in Scandinavian folklore. (Her name derives from a root meaning "covered" or "secret".) In Norwegian folklore, she is known as the skogsrå or skogsfru/skovfrue (meaning "Lady (read, counterpart of a Lord) of the forest"). She is known as Tallemaja (pine tree Mary) in Swedish folklore, and Ulda in Sámi folklore. Her name suggests that she is originally the same being as the völva Huld and the German Holda. A male hulder is called a huldu, or, in Norway, a huldrekarl.

Male huldes, called Huldrekarl, also appear in Norwegian folklore. This being is closely related to other underground dwellers, usually called tusser. Like the female counterpart, the huldrkarl is a shapeshifter who often lures girls under a fair countenance.


The huldra is a stunningly beautiful, sometimes naked woman with long hair; though from behind she is hollow like an old tree trunk, and has an animal's tail. In Norway, she has a cow's tail, and in Sweden she may have that of a cow or a fox. Further in the north of Sweden, the tail can be entirely omitted in favor of her hollow or bark-covered back.
In Norway, the huldra has often been described as a typical dairymaid, wearing the clothes of a regular farm girl, although somewhat more dazzling or prettier than most girls.


The huldra is one of several (keeper, warden), including the aquatic Sjörå (or havsfru), later identified with a mermaid, and the bergsrå in caves and mines who made life tough for the poor miners.
More information can be found in the collected Norwegian folktales of Peter Christen Asbjørnsen and Jørgen Moe.

Relations with humans

A huldra is talking with a collier. She looks like a young farmer woman, but her tail is peeking out under her skirt. From Svenska folksägner (1882).
The huldras were held to be kind to colliers, watching their charcoal kilns while they rested. Knowing that she would wake them if there were any problems, they were able to sleep, and in exchange they left provisions for her in a special place. A tale from Närke illustrates further how kind a huldra could be, especially if treated with respect (Hellström 1985:15).
A boy in Tiveden went fishing, but he had no luck. Then he met a beautiful lady, and she was so stunning that he felt he had to catch his breath. But, then he realized who she was, because he could see a fox's tail sticking out below the skirt. As he knew that it was forbidden to comment on the tail to the lady of the forest, if it were not done in the most polite manner, he bowed deeply and said with his softest voice, "Milady, I see that your petticoat shows below your skirt". The lady thanked him gracefully and hid her tail under her skirt, telling the boy to fish on the other side of the lake. That day, the boy had great luck with his fishing and he caught a fish every time he threw out the line. This was the huldra's recognition of his politeness.
In some traditions, the huldra lures men into the forest to have sexual intercourse with her, rewarding those who satisfy her and often killing those who do not. The Norwegian huldra is a lot less bloodthirsty and may simply kidnap a man or lure him into the underworld. She sometimes steals human infants and replaces them with her own ugly huldrebarn (changeling huldre children). In some cases, the intercourse resulted in a child, being presented to the unknowing father. In some cases, she forces him to marry her. Stories of such relationships were common in Norway a long time - an elderly man from Valdres claimed he had a child among the hulderpeople on Norwegian radio broadcasting. He was still alive around 1980.
Sometimes she marries a local farm boy, but when this happens, the glamour leaves her when the priest lays his hand on her, or when she enters the church. Some legends tell of husbands who subsequently treat her badly. Some fairy tales leave out this feature, and only relate how a marriage to a Christian man will cause her to lose her tail, and let the couple live happily ever after. However if she is treated badly, she will remind him that she is far from weak, often by straightening out a horseshoe with her bare hands, sometimes while it is still glowing hot from the forge.
If betrayed, the huldra can punish the man severely, as in one case from Sigdal, when she avenged her pride on a young braggart she had sworn to marry, on the promise that he would not tell anybody of her. The boy instead bragged about his bride for a year, and when they met again, she beat him around the ears with her cow's tail. He lost his hearing and his wits for the rest of his life.


The hulder has long been associated with hunting; she might blow down the barrel of a huntsman's rifle, causing it never thereafter to miss a shot. Some men are not so lucky, or perhaps skilled, and escape her only after surrendering their sanity.

A typical Huldra story

Once there was a married man, who was out looking for his cattle when he came upon a Huldra (or skogsrå). Unable to withstand the temptation, he went with her and made love to her becoming obsessed by her. He would return and make love to her every evening after that. Before long it began to be too much for him, draining him to the point where he collapsed. However, still he could not resist her. Eventually it got to be too much for him, the poor man became so exhausted that he could hardly walk. He didn't know what to do, so on one of his visits he asked the Huldra what he ought to do about a bull that he owned. The bull never did anything but mount the cows so that both the bull and cows were completely worn out and the cows had stopped giving milk.
The Huldra advised him to gather some tibast (Daphne mezereum) and vandelrot (Valeriana officinalis). The man obtained some of these herbs and pinned it to himself before going to meet her that evening. As soon as she saw him she cried, "Tibast and vandelrot is sure, fie on me for telling the cure!" And with that she turned around, so that he saw her from behind breaking the spell, and then disappeared.
The man in this legend narrowly escapes an obscure doom. These creatures, even when treated well, are reported to have evil, disruptive intentions, as their very presence fills one with foreboding. Folkloric stories such as this one offers advice on how to avoid, conquer or escape from encounters with the Huldra or Skogsrå


A multitude of places in Scandinavia are named after the Hulders, often places that are by legend associated with the presence of the "hidden folk". Here are some examples showing the wide distribution of Hulder-related toponyms between the northern and southern reaches of Scandinavia, and the terms usage in different language groups' toponyms.


  • Huldremose (Huldra Bog) is a bog located on Djursland, Denmark famous for the discovery of the Huldremose Woman, a bog body from 55 BC.


  • Hulderheim is located southeast on the island Karlsøya in Troms, Norway. The name means "Home of the Hulder".
  • Hulderhusan is an area on the southwest of Norway's largest island Hinnøya, the name of which means "Houses of the Hulders".


  • Ulddaidvárri in Kvænangen, Troms (Norway) means "Mountain of the Hulders" in North Sámi.
  • Ulddašvággi is a valley southwest of Alta in Finnmark, Norway. The name means "Hulder Valley" in North Sámi. The peak guarding the pass over from the valley to the mountains above has a similar name, Ruollačohkka, meaning "Troll Mountain" - and the large mountain presiding over the valley on its northern side is called Háldi, which is a term similar to the above mentioned Norwegian rå, that is a spirit or local deity which rules a specific area.


Verb: blóta
"sacrifice, offer, worship"

A blót is the greatest religious rite that was held amongst the Nordic peoples.

A blót is essentially a sacrificial feast. Where religious practices where performed. During the feast an animal is chosen as a sacrifice. This animal was usually a pig, horse, or goat. The animals chosen are the best of its herd. It has to be an animal that was cared for. Sacrificing an animal that was abused and neglected will ruin the blót. It is killed in the center of the feast, at the altar, and its blood "hlaut" is collected in a special bowl. The blood contains special powers and is sprinkled on statues of the gods, the walls, used to draw runes and staves, and sprinkled on the participants of the blót.

The meat of the animal is also boiled in large cooking pits with heated stones. Depending on the blot and circumstances some of the organs are chosen as sacrifice to the gods and burned in a large fire. The rest of the meat is divided amongst the participants and feasted upon. It was not uncommon for the skull to be put on display in the village as a protective totem.

A blót is a sacred time where people gather together around a steaming cauldron and have a meal together with the gods and/or elves. The drink blessed and is passed from participant to participant. The drink is usually beer or mead. It is highly important that it be an alcoholic drink however.

The first drink is usually dedicated to Odinn for victory and power to your leaders. The second prayer is "till ors ok friðar" "for a good year and peace". It is common to ask for fertility, good health, a good life, and peace and harmony between people and powers. The last drinks are dedicated to the memories of departed friends and family.


The autumn blót (Haustblót) is performed at the end of Haustmánuður (about October 20th), vetrnætr (the Winter Nights), indicating the beginning of winter. The Great Midwinter blót, or Jól, at Midwinter which is about Janurary (3rd). Freyr being the most important god of the autumn blót, and Odinn, Freyr, and Thorr being the most important ones at Jól. At the end of Mörsugur (January 14th) there is also a Sonarblót. This blót was for making sacred oaths that will last throughout the year. This is where the greatest wild boar are sacrificed and are dedicated to Freyr. The summer blót takes place at the beginning of Harpa (April 14th) This blót is dedicated to Odinn. During this blót you drink to victory in war and all of your endeavors for the year. This was particularly important when the tradition of "Viking" was still practiced.


http://www.rosala-viking-centre.com/images/blotfest2.JPGA blót can take place in one of many locations. Large buildings of worship known as Hov are common. But you may also hold a blót out in nature. If there is a particularly sacred Hörgr, Vé, Lund or Haug, it is recommended you hold it there. Hörgr is an altar that is created outside, usually out of heaping stones. Lund is a sacred grove, and Vé simply means a sacred place, usually marked out. The haugr were sacred mounds, and were once so common places of worship that it was actually outlawed by Christian laws.

Specific Blóts


  • Dísablót - blót lead by women for the spirits. (first full moon after winter solstice. Homestead Blot)
  • álfablót or Elven blót was a small scale and was celebrated at the homestead and led by its mistress. (Homestead Blot)
  • Jólblót, the most important and largely celebrated blót of the year. Celebrated during Midwinter. Janurary 3rd (Community Blot)
  • Sonarblót/þorriblót Celebrated on the 12th day of Jól. A great boar is sacrificed and sacred oaths are sworn. For Rebirth. This begins the new year celebrated on The beginning of þorri, January 14th. (Community Blot)


  • Sigrblót A blót to Odin for victory held First day of Harpa, April 14th. (Community Blot) 
  • Midsummer This was the time of the Alþing (July 14th). Blót may be made on this day.


  • Vetrnætr (Winter Nights) - Haustblót "autumn sacrafice" celebrated at the end of Haustmánuður (October 13th) held in honor of Freyr and the vanir for a good year.
  • Völsiblót the blót of the horse penis during the winter slaughter.(Homestead Blot)
  • Ullrsblót a blot at the end of Gormánuður (November 13th) in honor of Ullr, for good hunting during the winter. (Homestead blot)


Hunting Prayer

by Geordie Ingerson

If you would go out to hunt and bring home game to eat, first take your weapon and go out to the woods, or the tall grass, and kneel for Ullr. Say the following prayer:
hunter's arrow
Hunter through the snows of Asgard,
May I take the perfect target.
Hunter through the fields of Vanaheim,
Guide my gift of flying death.
Hunter through the wood of Alfheim,
Drop them swift and sweetly gone.
Hunter through the mountains of Jotunheim,
May prey never scream and never suffer.
Hunter through the Worlds
Upward on the Tree,
See me safe to home and  hearthstone,
To feed those waiting there for me.
Hold up your weapon and say,
Straight and strong may they all fly,
And find their mark in many hearts.

Then rise, take a few steps, and then turn back for the moment and trace the rune Algiz in you’re your footprints. Place your feet again in the footprints and keep walking. After you come home with your kill, give a piece of the heart, a piece of the liver, and a piece of the flesh to Ullr as an offering.


("Glory" in Old Norse)

Victorian UllrUllr is a very old god of the northern lands, so old that by the time the Iron Age Norse myths were written down, not much more was known about him except that he was a god of archery, hunting, and the winter. His name occurs so frequently as part of Scandinavian place-names that he must have been a much more important deity at one time. He was shown frequently with skates or skis on his feet, and because of this he has been hailed as the modern God of Skiing. One story talks about him "crossing water on a magic bone", alluding to crossing the frozen ice on skates. He was also called God of the Shield, and the shield was referred to as his "ship", which may be a reference to using a shield or shield-shaped board as a sled … or to the ice of winter enveloping the world like a shield.
Ullr's name comes from wuldor, an Old High German word meaning "glory". It was pronounced "Ool" in ancient times, but today is generally pronounced "Ooler". In Germany he was known as Holler and said to be the husband of the Germanic goddess Holda.
Victorian Ullr 2Ullr was said to be the son of Sif and the stepson of Thor. Some claim that he was the son of Egill/Aurvandil, the great archer who was Thor's hunting companion and the father of Svipdag as well. Some see him as Aesir because of his mother and stepfather; some as Vanir because of his food-procuring hunter's nature. He lived in Ydalir, the Yew-grove, referring to the fact that yew wood was the favorite for making bows even thousands of years ago. In Saxo Grammaticus's works, where the Gods are recast as human heroes, Odin is temporarily exiled for rape and Ullr is chosen to lead in his place until Odin's return, which is an echo of his former importance to the people of the North.
In Lilla Ullevi, Sweden, an actual shrine to Ullr was unearthed. In the earth around it were found 65 rings; old references to swearing on Ullr's ring indicate that he was one of the Gods who watched over a vow. The rings were apparently used for swearing oaths and then buried at his shrine.
In modern times, Ullr has seen a great surge in popularity as the official God of Skiing. First he was unearthed as such earlier in the century in northern Europe, where little amulet necklaces with his skiing figure on them were given out as gifts and good-luck charms for skiers. Then the Ullr custom spread to America, where he has been taken as the patron of various winter sports and winter hunting organizations, including a major festival – Ullr Fest – in Breckenridge, Colorado, and sacrificial bonfires to Ullr in Utah and other states (burning old worn-out skis and sleds) to bring the snow. He now has numerous amulets, sigils, organizations, and even liquor named after him. Ullr may currently be the Norse god most called upon and invoked today by people who don’t consider themselves to be Pagans or Heathens. 

Poetic Edda

Ullr is mentioned in the poem Grímnismál where the homes of individual gods are recounted.
Ýdalir heita
þar er Ullr hefir
sér of görva sali.
Ydalir it is called,
where Ullr has
himself a dwelling made.– Thorpe's translation
The name Ýdalir, meaning "yew dales", is not otherwise attested. The yew was an important material in the making of bows, and the word ýr, "yew", is often used metonymically to refer to bows. It seems likely that the name Ýdalir is connected with the idea of Ullr as a bow-god.
Another strophe in Grímnismál also mentions Ullr.
Ullar hylli
hefr ok allra goða
hverr er tekr fyrstr á funa,
því at opnir heimar
verða of ása sonum,
þá er hefja af hvera.
Ullr’s and all the gods’
favour shall have,
whoever first shall look to the fire;
for open will the dwelling be,
to the Æsir's sons,
when the kettles are lifted off.– Thorpe's translation
The strophe is obscure but may refer to some sort of religious ceremony (possibly fire scrying). It indicates Ullr as an important god.
The last reference to Ullr in the Poetic Edda is found in Atlakviða:
Svá gangi þér, Atli,
sem þú við Gunnar áttir
eiða oft of svarða
ok ár of nefnda,
at sól inni suðrhöllu
ok at Sigtýs bergi,
hölkvi hvílbeðjar
ok at hringi Ullar.
So be it with thee, Atli!
as toward Gunnar thou hast held
the oft-sworn oaths,
formerly taken -
by the southward verging sun,
and by Sigtý’s hill,
the secluded bed of rest,
and by Ullr’s ring.– Thorpe's translation
Both Atlakviða and Grímnismál are often considered to be among the oldest extant Eddic poems. It may not be a coincidence that they are the only ones to refer to Ullr. Again we seem to find Ullr associated with some sort of ceremony, this time that of swearing an oath by a ring, a practice associated with Thor in later sources. During an excavation in 2007, of a Vendel era shrine for Ullr north of Stockholm, many symbolic rings were discovered and which are considered to represent Ullr's ring.

Prose Edda

In chapter 31 of Gylfaginning in the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson, Ullr is referred to as a son of Sif (with a father unrecorded in surviving sources) and as a stepson of Sif's husband Thor:
Ullr heitir einn, sonr Sifjar, stjúpsonr Þórs. Hann er bogmaðr svá góðr ok skíðfœrr svá at engi má við hann keppask. Hann er ok fagr álitum ok hefir hermanns atgervi. Á hann er ok gott at heita í einvígi.
Ullr, Sif's son and Thór's stepson, is one [too]. He is such a good archer and ski-runner that no one can rival him. He is beautiful to look at as well and he has all the characteristics of a warrior. It is also good to call on him in duels.– Young's translation

In Skáldskaparmál, the second part of the Prose Edda, Snorri mentions Ullr again in a discussion of kennings. Snorri informs his readers that Ullr can be called ski-god, bow-god, hunting-god and shield-god. In turn a shield can be called Ullr's ship. Despite these tantalising tidbits Snorri relates no myths about Ullr. It seems likely that he didn't know any, the god having faded from memory.

Popular reception

The town of Breckenridge, Colorado hosts a week-long festival called "Ullr Fest" each year in January, featuring numerous events designed to win his favor in an effort to bring snow to the historic ski town. Breck Ullr Fest was first held in 1962.

Archaeological record

Thorsberg chape

The Thorsberg chape (a metal piece belonging to a scabbard found in the Thorsberg moor) bears an Elder Futhark inscription, one of the earliest known altogether, dating to roughly AD 200.
owlþuþewaz / niwajmariz
The first element owlþu, for wolþu-, means "glory", "glorious one", Old Norse Ullr, Old English wuldor. The second element, -þewaz, means "slave, servant". The whole compound is a personal name or title, "servant of the glorious one", "servant/priest of Ullr". Niwajmariz means "well-honored".

Lilla Ullevi

In Lilla Ullevi ("little shrine of Ullr") north of Stockholm archaeologists excavated during 2007 the site of a religious worshiping ground for Ullr (from 500 to 800 AD). The well-preserved state of the shrine may be unique in Scandinavia: it was shaped like a platform with two "arms" of rocks having four erected poles in front of it where there was probably a wooden platform. Moreover, the archaeologists found 65 "amulet rings" in the area; rings are reported to have been used when people swore oaths. They may be the rings of Ullr that are referred to in the eddic poem Atlakviða.

Feast of Ullr

The Feast of Ullr is to celebrate the Hunt and to gain personal luck needed for success. Weapons are dedicated on this day to Ullr, God of the Bow. If your hunting arms were blessed by the luck of the God of the Hunt, your family and tribe shared the bounty with a Blot and Feast to Ullr.

The Feast of Ullr was traditionally a hunting festival. Ullr, god of hunting, and the bow was honored and a feast was shared by the tribe of the spoils of the hunt.  The tribe (or family) on this day would take a portion of the meat from the hunt and have a large and joyous feast before the winter sets in hard. Today, most of us do not hunt, we get our meals from the super market, and if we are lucky, we grow a small amount of herbs and vegetables for eating. But we always get our meat from the grocery store. So celebrating a feast of the hunt is not as powerful a gesture in out modern times. I would argue for those who live in the U.S. that it is just as good to honor Ullr at the Thanksgiving dinner. I know that Thanksgiving is not actually descended from the northern traditions of the Feast of Ullr, but as a modern heathen, I’d like to seek to change that around.
Next year I would like to actually go on a bow hunting trip right before, and feast on what I bring back. But tonight I’ll walk out to the yard and pour a quick libation in honour of Ullr, and maybe even light a candle if I am so lucky. I wish everyone a bountiful feast day! May your plates fill up, and your drinking horns overflow. Skål!

Dedicate the Feast to Ullr with this Invocation:

Invocation to Ullr

by Raven Kaldera

Hail to the Hunter of Winter,
The twin tracks in the snow,
The twin tracks of your eyes
Sharp in the frosty air, you see
Where every bird flies,
Where every squirrel passes,
Where the deer have bedded for the night.
All must eat, especially in the hard season,
bowsAnd you take only what is needed,
Leaving enough to breed again
And continue the cycle of Life.
Yew-god, bow-god, death-god,
Bringer of the most silent slaughter,
The death that comes swift and unseen,
Spare us from the wrath of frozen winter
With the cloud of your joyful laughter
And the shield of your great hand.
We hail you, God On Skis,
Evergreen Lord, Sunbeam On Snow,
In this the time of your white realm.

A prayer to Ullr while on your hunting trip:

Hunting Prayer

by Geordie Ingerson

If you would go out to hunt and bring home game to eat, first take your weapon and go out to the woods, or the tall grass, and kneel for Ullr. Say the following prayer:

hunter's arrowHunter through the snows of Asgard,
May I take the perfect target.
Hunter through the fields of Vanaheim,
Guide my gift of flying death.
Hunter through the wood of Alfheim,
Drop them swift and sweetly gone.
Hunter through the mountains of Jotunheim,
May prey never scream and never suffer.
Hunter through the Worlds
Upward on the Tree,
See me safe to home and  hearthstone,
To feed those waiting there for me.
Hold up your weapon and say,
Straight and strong may they all fly,
And find their mark in many hearts. 

Then rise, take a few steps, and then turn back for the moment and trace the rune Algiz in you’re your footprints. Place your feet again in the footprints and keep walking. After you come home with your kill, give a piece of the heart, a piece of the liver, and a piece of the flesh to Ullr as an offering.



To the Norseman's codex of Heathenism. Let me start by defining Heathenism.

What is a Heathen?

Well According the thefreedictionary.com it is
"a. One who adheres to the religion of a people or nation that does not acknowledge the God of Judaism, Christianity, or Islam.
b. Such persons considered as a group; the unconverted.

Heathen An adherent of a Neopagan religion that seeks to revive the religious beliefs and practices of the ancient Germanic peoples."

Heathen (Old Norse heiðinn, was coined as a translation of Latin paganus, in the Christian sense of "non-Abrahamic faith". In the Sagas, the terms heiðni and kristni (Heathenry and Christianity) are used as polar terms to describe the older and newer faiths.

What is Heathenism?

 Again according to thefreedictionary.com

1. a belief or practice of heathens.
2. pagan worship; idolatry.
3. irreligion.
4. barbaric morals or behavior.

Modern followers have decided to reclaim this title of "Heathen". Yes we are pagans. Yes we believe in the morals and behaviors of our ancestors and we say this is not a bad thing. Being a Heathen is a badge of honor.

Asatru is another name given to the modern revival of Germanic Paganism. The word "Asa" is derived from the pantheon of the Æsir. And "tru" is old norse for "belief in". To me personally Asatru is the spiritual beliefs of our ancestors and Heathenism is the revival of their way of life in general.

It is my goal to provide all information I know, and learn about Heathenism. Which is not only Asatru as accurately as possible to the way my ancestors practiced it, but also to their way of life in general. Their moral codes, their laws, their lifestyles, clothing, weapons, relationship, and just about every else you can imagine. I wish to honor my family, and my ancestors by immortalizing their way of life. By living their traditions in my daily life. To revive the golden age of the Scandinavians and learn from the noble time commonly referred to as, The Viking Age. The time, traditions, and cultures that history has tried so desperately to erase from our memories.