Odin (pron.: /ˈdɨn/; from Old Norse Óðinn) is the major god and the ruler of Asgard. Odin is a son of Bor and Bestla. He is called Alfadir, Allfather, for he is indeed father of the gods. With Frigg he is the father of Balder, Hod, and Hermod. He fathered Thor on the goddess Jord; and the giantess Grid became the mother of Vidar. He is Homologous with the Old English "Wōden" and the Old High German "Wôdan", the name is descended from Proto-Germanic "*Wodanaz" or "*Wōđanaz". "Odin" is generally accepted as the modern English form of the name, although, in some cases, older forms may be used or preferred. His name is related to ōðr, meaning "fury, excitation," besides "mind," or "poetry." His role, like that of many of the Norse gods, is complex. Odin is a principal member of the Æsir (the major group of the Norse pantheon) and is associated with war, battle, victory and death, but also wisdom, Shamanism, magic, poetry, prophecy, and the hunt. Odin has many sons, the most famous of whom is Thor.

As Odin is closely connected with a horse called Sleipnir, a spear called Gungnir, the ring Draupnir, from which every ninth night eight new rings appear, and transformation/shape shifting into animal shapes. 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. On the day of the final battle, Odin will be killed by the wolf Fenrir.

Poetic Edda


In the poem Völuspá, a völva tells Odin of numerous events reaching far into the past and future, including his own doom. The Völva describes creation, recounts the birth of Odin by his father Borr and his mother Bestla and how Odin and his brothers formed Midgard from the sea. She further describes the creation of the first human beings - Ask and Embla - by Hœnir, Lóðurr and Odin.
Amongst various other events, the Völva mentions Odin's involvement in the Æsir-Vanir War, the oedipism of Odin's eye at Mímir's Well, the death of his son Baldr. She describes how Odin is slain by the wolf Fenrir at Ragnarök, the subsequent avenging of Odin and death of Fenrir by his son Víðarr, how the world disappears into flames and, yet, how the earth again rises from the sea. She then relates how the surviving Æsir remember the deeds of Odin.


In the poem Lokasenna, the conversation of Odin and Loki started with Odin trying to defend Gefjun and ended with his wife, Frigg, defending him. In Lokasenna, Loki derides Odin for practicing seid (witchcraft), implying it was women's work. Another example of this may be found in the Ynglinga saga where Snorri opines that men who used seid were ergi or unmanly.


In Rúnatal, a section of the Hávamál, Odin is attributed with discovering the runes. In a sacrifice to himself, the highest of the gods, he was hanged from the world tree Yggdrasil for nine days and nights, pierced by his own spear, in order to learn the wisdom that would give him power in the nine worlds. Nine is a significant number in Norse magical practice (there were, for example, nine realms of existence), thereby learning nine (later eighteen) magical songs and eighteen magical runes.
One of Odin's names is Ygg, and the Norse name for the World Ash —Yggdrasil—therefore could mean "Ygg's (Odin's) horse." Another of Odin's names is Hangatýr, the god of the hanged.


In Hárbarðsljóð, Odin, disguised as the ferryman Hárbarðr, engages his son Thor, unaware of the disguise, in a long argument. Thor is attempting to get around a large lake and Hárbarðr refuses to ferry him.

Prose Edda

Odin had three residences in Asgard. First was Gladsheim, a vast hall where he presided over the twelve Diar or Judges, whom he had appointed to regulate the affairs of Asgard. Second, Valaskjálf, built of solid silver, in which there was an elevated place, Hlidskjalf, from his throne on which he could perceive all that passed throughout the whole earth. Third was Valhalla (the hall of the fallen), where Odin received the souls of the warriors killed in battle, called the Einherjar. The souls of women warriors, and those strong and beautiful women whom Odin favored, became Valkyries, who gather the souls of warriors fallen in battle (the Einherjar), as these would be needed to fight for him in the battle of Ragnarök. They took the souls of the warriors to Valhalla. Valhalla has five hundred and forty gates, and a vast hall of gold, hung around with golden shields, and spears and coats of mail.
Odin has a number of magical artifacts associated with him: the spear Gungnir, which never misses its target; a magical gold ring (Draupnir), from which every ninth night eight new rings appear; and two ravens Huginn and Muninn (Thought and Memory), who fly around Earth daily and report the happenings of the world to Odin in Valhalla at night. He also owned Sleipnir, an octopedal horse, who was given to Odin by Loki, and the severed head of Mímir, which foretold the future. He also commands a pair of wolves named Geri and Freki, to whom he gives his food in Valhalla since he consumes nothing but mead or wine. From his throne, Hlidskjalf (located in Valaskjalf), Odin could see everything that occurred in the universe. The Valknut (slain warrior's knot) is a symbol associated with Odin. It consists of three interlaced triangles.
Odin is an ambivalent deity. Old Norse (Viking Age) connotations of Odin lie with "poetry, inspiration" as well as with "fury, madness and the wanderer." Odin sacrificed his eye (which eye he sacrificed is unclear) at Mímir's spring in order to gain the Wisdom of Ages. Odin gives to worthy poets the mead of inspiration, made by the dwarfs, from the vessel Óð-rœrir.
Odin is associated with the concept of the Wild Hunt, a noisy, bellowing movement across the sky, leading a host of slain warriors.
Consistent with this, Snorri Sturluson's Prose Edda depicts Odin as welcoming the great, dead warriors who have died in battle into his hall, Valhalla, which, when literally interpreted, signifies the hall of the slain. The fallen, the einherjar, are assembled and entertained by Odin in order that they in return might fight for, and support, the gods in the final battle of the end of Earth, Ragnarök. Snorri also wrote that Freyja receives half of the fallen in her hall Folkvang.
He is also a god of war, appearing throughout Norse myth as the bringer of victory. In the Norse sagas, Odin sometimes acts as the instigator of wars, and is said to have been able to start wars by simply throwing down his spear Gungnir, and/or sending his valkyries, to influence the battle toward the end that he desires. The Valkyries are Odin's beautiful battle maidens that went out to the fields of war to select and collect the worthy men who died in battle to come and sit at Odin's table in Valhalla, feasting and battling until they had to fight in the final battle, Ragnarök. Odin would also appear on the battle-field, sitting upon his eight-legged horse Sleipnir, with his two ravens, one on each shoulder, Hugin (Thought) and Munin (Memory), and two wolves (Geri and Freki) on each side of him.
Odin is also associated with trickery, cunning, and deception. Most sagas have tales of Odin using his cunning to overcome adversaries and achieve his goals, such as swindling the blood of Kvasir from the dwarves.


According to the Prose Edda, Odin, the first and most powerful of the Æsir, was a son of Bestla and Borr and brother of Vili and Vé. With these brothers, he cast down the frost giant Ymir and made Earth from Ymir's body. The three brothers are often mentioned together. "Vili" is the German word for "will" (English), "Vé" is the German word (Gothic wai) for woe but is more likely related to the archaic German "Wei" meaning 'sacred.'
Odin has fathered numerous children. With his wife, Frigg, he fathered his doomed son Baldr and the blind god Höðr. By the personification of earth, Fjörgyn or Jörð, Odin was the father of his most famous son, Thor. By the giantess Gríðr, Odin was the father of Vídar, and by Rinda he was father of Váli. Also, many royal families claimed descent from Odin through other sons. For traditions about Odin's offspring, see Sons of Odin.
Odin and his brothers, Vili and Ve, are attributed with slaying Ymir, the Ancient Giant, to form Midgard. From Ymir's flesh, the brothers made the earth, and from his shattered bones and teeth they made the rocks and stones. From Ymir's blood, they made the rivers and lakes. Ymir's skull was made into the sky, secured at four points by four dwarfs named East, West, North, and South. From Ymir's brains, the three Gods shaped the clouds, whereas Ymir's eyebrows became a barrier between Jotunheim (giant's home) and Midgard, the place where men now dwell. Odin and his brothers are also attributed with making humans.
After having made earth from Ymir's flesh, the three brothers came across two logs (or an ash and an elm tree). Odin gave them breath and life; Vili gave them brains and feelings; and Ve gave them hearing and sight. The first man was Ask and the first woman was Embla.
Odin was said to have learned the mysteries of seid from the Vanic goddess and völva Freyja, despite the unwarriorly connotations of using magic.


In section 2 of Skáldskaparmál, Odin's quest for wisdom can also be seen in his work as a farmhand for a summer, for Baugi, and his seduction of Gunnlod in order to obtain the Mead of Poetry.
In section 5 of Skáldskaparmál, the origins of some of Odin's possessions are described.

Sagas of Icelanders

Ynglinga saga

According to the Ynglinga saga:
Odin had two brothers, the one called Ve, the other Vili, and they governed the kingdom when he was absent. It happened once when Odin had gone to a great distance, and had been so long away that the people of Asa doubted if he would ever return home, that his two brothers took it upon themselves to divide his estate; but both of them took his wife Frigg to themselves. Odin soon after returned home, and took his wife back.
Further, in Ynglinga saga, Odin is described as venturing to Mímir's Well, near Jötunheimr, the land of the giants; not as Odin, but as Vegtam the Wanderer, clothed in a dark blue cloak and carrying a traveler's staff. To drink from the Well of Wisdom, Odin had to sacrifice his eye (which eye he sacrificed is unclear), symbolizing his willingness to gain the knowledge of the past, present and future. As he drank, he saw all the sorrows and troubles that would fall upon men and the gods. He also saw why the sorrow and troubles had to come to men.
Mímir accepted Odin's eye and it sits today at the bottom of the Well of Wisdom as a sign that the father of the gods had paid the price for wisdom.


It is attested in primary sources that sacrifices were made to Odin during blóts. Adam of Bremen relates that every ninth year, people assembled from all over Sweden to sacrifice at the Temple at Uppsala. Male slaves and males of each species were sacrificed and hung from the branches of the trees.
As the Swedes had the right not only to elect their king but also to depose him, the sagas relate that both King Domalde and King Olof Trätälja were sacrificed to Odin after years of famine. It has been argued that the killing of a combatant in battle was to give a sacrificial offering to Odin. The fickleness of Odin in war was well documented; in Lokasenna, Loki taunts Odin for his inconsistency.
Sometimes sacrifices were made to Odin to bring about changes in circumstance. A notable example is the sacrifice of King Víkar that is detailed in Gautrek's Saga and in Saxo Grammaticus' account of the same event. Sailors in a fleet being blown off course drew lots to sacrifice to Odin that he might abate the winds. The king himself drew the lot and was hanged.
Sacrifices were probably also made to Odin at the beginning of summer (mid April, actually—summer being reckoned essentially the same as did the Celt, at Beltene, Calan Mai [Welsh], which is Mayday—hence as summer's "herald"), since Ynglinga saga states one of the great festivals of the calendar is at sumri, þat var sigrblót "in summer, for victory;" Odin is consistently referred to throughout the Norse mythos as the bringer of victory. The Ynglinga saga also details the sacrifices made by the Swedish king Aun, to whom it was revealed that he would lengthen his life by sacrificing one of his sons every ten years; nine of his ten sons died this way. When he was about to sacrifice his last son Egil, the Swedes stopped him.

Persisting beliefs and folklore

Odin continued to hunt in Swedish folklore.

The Christianization of Scandinavia was slow, and it worked its way downwards from the nobility. Among commoners, beliefs in Odin lingered and legends would be told until modern times.
The last battle where Scandinavians attributed a victory to Odin was the Battle of Lena in 1208. The former Swedish king Sverker had arrived with a large Danish army, and the Swedes led by their new king Eric were outnumbered. It is said that Odin then appeared riding on Sleipnir and he positioned himself in front of the Swedish battle formation. He led the Swedish charge and gave them victory.
The Bagler sagas, written in the 13th century concerning events in the first two decades of the 13th century, tells a story of a one-eyed rider with a broad-brimmed hat and a blue coat who asks a smith to shoe his horse. The suspicious smith asks where the stranger stayed during the previous night. The stranger mentions places so distant that the smith does not believe him. The stranger says that he has stayed for a long time in the north and taken part in many battles, but now he is going to Sweden. When the horse is shod, the rider mounts his horse and says "I am Odin" to the stunned smith, and rides away. The next day, the battle of Lena took place. The context of this tale in the saga is that a peace-treaty has been signed in Norway, and Odin, a god of war, no longer has a place there.
Scandinavian folklore also maintained a belief in Odin as the leader of the Wild Hunt. His main objective seems to have been to track down and kill a lady who could be the forest dweller huldran or skogsrået. In these accounts, Odin was typically a lone hunter, save for his two dogs.
In late 19th century Danish folklore, an account of Odin as having hid in a cliff of Møen (modern Møn, Denmark) where his residence there is "still pointed out." At this time, he was referred to as the "Jætte (giant) from Uppsala" but "is now called Jön Upsal" and from this latter name comes the expression "Men jötten dog!" as opposed to the expression "Men Jös dog!" ("By Jesus!"). Outside his doorway a green spot is described on the otherwise white cliff; this is where he "goes out on behalf of nature". A man who "now lives in Copenhagen" is described as having once sailed along the cliff, having seen Jön toss out his "dirt" - a big cloud of dust was to be seen outside of his door. Several "still living people" have lost their way in Klinteskoven ("The Cliff Forest") and ended up in Jön Upsal's garden, that is said to be so big and wonderful that it is beyond any description. The garden is also in full bloom in midwinter. If one sets out to find this garden, it is impossible to find.


Odin was referred to by more than 200 names which hint at his various roles. Among others, he was known as Yggr (terror), Sigfodr (father of Victory) and Alfodr (All Father) in the skaldic and Eddic traditions of heiti and kennings, a poetic method of indirect reference, as in a riddle.
Some epithets establish Odin as a father god: Alföðr "all-father," "father of all;" Aldaföðr "father of men (or of the age);" Herjaföðr "father of hosts;" Sigföðr "father of victory;" Valföðr "father of the slain."

(Old Norse)
Meaning Sources
father of men (or of the age/world) Óðins nöfn, Vafþrúðnismál
Gautr of men (or of the age/world) Baldrs draumar
Alföðr Alfodr Allfather, Father of All Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (48), Óðins nöfn (2)
The aged Gautr The Icelandic rune poem (4)
Angan Friggjar
Delight of Frigg Völuspá (54)
Eagle Head Óðins nöfn (2)
Atriðr, Atriði
attacking rider, 'At-Rider' Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (48), Óðins nöfn (1)
Asagrim (< *Ásagrimmr)
Lord of the Aesir Stolt Herr Alf
friend of wealth (Edwin, Audoin) Óðins nöfn (1)
Bági ulfs
Enemy of the Wolf Sonatorrek (23)
Balder's Father
Báleygr Baleyg Flaming Eye, Shifty Eyed Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (47), Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld's Hákonardrápa (6), Gísl Illugason's Erfikvæði um Magnús berfœtt (1), þulur, Óðins nöfn (6), Grettisrímur V (61)
Biflindi / Spear Shaker, Shield Shaker Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (6)
Bileygr Bileyg Flashing Eye or Wavering Eye Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), þulur, Óðins nöfn (5)
Blindi, Blindr / Blind Gylfaginning, Helgakviða Hundingsbana II (prose)
Brúni, Brúnn
Brown, Bear Óðins nöfn (6)
Battle Enhancer
'Bale-Worker' or Evil Worker or Evil Deed Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Hávamál (109), Grímnismál (47), Óðins nöfn (7)
Bróðir Vilis, Bróðir Vilja
Vili's Brother
Burr Bors
Borr's Son
Distorted version of Biflindi Sturlaugsrímur III (50)
Darraðr, Dorruðr
Lord of the undead Ynglinga saga

Óðins nöfn (2)
Ein sköpuðr galdra
Sole Creator of Magical Songs
High (lit., 'straight') forehead Óðins nöfn (6)
The ever booming Óðins nöfn (6)
Faðmbyggvir Friggjar
Dweller in Frigg's Embrace
Faðr galdr
Father of Magical Songs
Farmagnuðr, Farmögnuðr
journey empowerer Háleygjatal (2), Skáldskaparmál
Farmaguð, Farmatýr Farmagud, Farmatyr God of Cargoes (or Burdens) Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (48), Óðins nöfn (2)
Farmr arma Gunnlaðar
Burden of Gunnlöð's Arms
Farmr galga
Gallows' Burden
Fetcher or Catcher Óðins nöfn (2)
Fimbultýr Fimbultyr Mighty God Völuspá (60)
Fimbulþulr Fimbulthul Mighty Thuler Hávamál (80, 142)
Shape god Óðins nöfn (2)
Fjölnir Fjolnir Wise One, concealer Grímnismál (47), Reginsmál (18), Gylfaginning (3, 20), many skaldic poems, þulur, Óðins nöfn (2), Skíðaríma (91, 174)
Fjölsviðr Fjolsvid, Fjolsvin Very Wise Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), Óðins nöfn (2)
Fjörgynn Fjorgyn Masculine counterpart of feminine Fjörgyn meaning "land/earth" Lokasenna (26), Völuspá (56)
Lord of the Earth
Ancient One
Ancient Ölvir Óðins nöfn (2)
Fráríðr, Fráríði
The one who rides forth Óðins nöfn (2), Grettisrímur III (1), Sturlaugsrímur VI (47)
Frumverr Friggjar
First husband of Frigg
The Found Óláfsrímur Tryggvasonar A III (1)
Gagnráðr Gagnrad Advantage Counsel Vafþrúðnismál (8, 9, 11, 13, 15, 17)
Father of Magical Songs
Gangari, Ganglari, Gangleri / Wanderer or Wayweary Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46), Óðins nöfn (3)
'Gain Rede,' Contrary advisor, Journey Advisor Óðins nöfn (3)
The one in gaping frenzy Óðins nöfn (3)
Gautatýr Gautatyr God of the Geats Skáldskaparmál, Eyvindr skáldaspillir's Hákonarmál (1)
Gautr Gaut Gautr Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (54), Óðins nöfn (1), Friðþjófsrímur, Skíðaríma, Landrésrímur, Hjálmþérsrímur, Geiplur, Bjarkarímur, Griplur, Þrændlur, Skáldhelgarímur, Blávusrímur, Geirarðsrímur, Völsungsrímur
Dangler Óðins nöfn (3)
Spear inviter Óðins nöfn (3)
Spear charger Óðins nöfn (5)
Gore/Spear God
Gore/Spear Master

Deceiver Óðins nöfn (1)
Riddler Óðins nöfn (1)
Gestumblindi / Blind Guest Hervarar saga (10), þulur, Óðins nöfn (7)
Glapsviðr Glapsvid, Glapsvin Swift in Deceit, Swift Tricker, Maddener, Wise in magical spells Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), Óðins nöfn (3)
Goði hrafnblóts
Goði of the Raven-offering
God Protector
Yeller Óðins nöfn (3)
Yeller Óðins nöfn (1)
Yeller Óðins nöfn (5)
Göndlir Gondlir Wand-Bearer, Wand-Wielder Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (3)
Gramr Hliðskjálfar
King of Hliðskjalf
Grímnir Grimnir Hooded, Masked One Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (introduction, 47, 49), Hallfreðr vandræðaskáld's lausavísur (9), Eilífr Goðrúnarson's Þórsdrápa (3), Húsdrápa (1), Rögnvaldr kali Kolsson's lausavísur (7), þulur, Óðins nöfn (1)
Grímr Grim Mask Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46, 47), þulur, Óðins nöfn (3, 7)
Battle blinder Óðins nöfn (8)
Skilful worker Óðins nöfn (4)
Lord of the hanged Ynglinga saga
Hangaguð, Hangatýr Hangagud, Hangatyr God of the Hanged Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál
Hanged One
Commander of Leaders
Haptaguð Haptagud God of Prisoners Gylfaginning
Teacher of gods
Fetter Loosener
Hárbarðr Harbard Hoary Beard, Grey Beard Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Hárbardsljód, þulur, Óðins nöfn (3)
Hárr Har High Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46), Óðins nöfn (2)
Harri Hliðskjálfar
Lord of Hliðskjalf
Hávi Havi High One Hávamál (109, 111, 164), Óðins nöfn (4)
Heimþinguðr hanga
Visitor of the Hanged
Helblindi / Hel Blinder Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46)
Hengikeptr, Hengikjopt
Hang jaw Óðins nöfn (4)
Host blinder Óðins nöfn (5)
Herföðr, Herjaföðr Herfodr, Herjafodr Father of Hosts Gylfaginning, Völuspá (29, 43), Vafthrúdnismál (2), Grímnismál (19, 25, 26), Óðins nöfn (5)
Host Gautr
Herjan / Warrior, Harrier, Lord Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46), Óðins nöfn (2)
Herteitr Herteit War-merry Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), Óðins nöfn (3)
Hertýr Hertyr Host-Tyr or God of Hosts Skáldskaparmál
Battle Wolf
Engager of Battle
God of battle
Hjálmberi Hjalmberi Helmet Bearer Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46), þulur, Óðins nöfn (2)
Screamer Óðins nöfn (4)
Famous/barrow lord Óðins nöfn (5)

Óðins nöfn (4)
Hnikarr Hnikar Overthrower, Thruster Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), Reginsmál (18, 19), Óðins nöfn (2)
Hnikuðr Hnikud Overthrower Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (48), Óðins nöfn (1)
One Eyed
High One
Hrafnaguð, Hrafnáss Hrafnagud Raven God Gylfaginning
Raven tester
Fetterer, Ripper Óðins nöfn (4)
Roarer Óðins nöfn (4)
Hroptr, Hroptatýr Hropt, Hroptatyr Sage Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Hákonarmál (14), Úlfr Uggason's Húsdrápa (8), Hávamál (160), Grímnismál (54), Sigrdrífumál (13), Óðins nöfn (2, 3, 5)
Horse hair moustache Gautreks saga, Óðins nöfn (4)
Courage of the whet-stone Óðins nöfn (5)
Roarer or Weather-maker Óðins nöfn (5)
Splendid Ruler
Jafnhárr Jafnhar 'Evenhigh,' Just as High, Equally High Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (8)
Yellow-brown Back
Jálg, Jálkr Jalk Gelding or Gelder Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49, 54), Óðins nöfn (7)
Iron Mask
Jólnir, Jölnir
Yule figure Óðins nöfn (7)
Horse-wolf, bear
Jölfuðr, Jölföðr
Yule father Óðins nöfn (8)
The mighty one, cosmic Óðins nöfn (8)
Kjalarr Kjalar Keel, Nourisher Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (1)
Langbarðr Langbard Long Beard þulur, Óðins nöfn (7)
Löndungr, Loðungr
Shaggy Cloak Wearer Óðins nöfn (7)
Niðr Bors
Borr's Kin
User, enjoyer or needed one Óðins nöfn (6)
Inciter Óðins nöfn (7)
Protector, Hawk Óðins nöfn (6)
Ómi Omi Resounding one Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (7)
Óski Oski God of Wishes, Wished For Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (8)
Red Mustache Bárðar saga Snæfellsáss 18, O˛rvar-Odds saga 19ff.
Wagon God or God of riders
Chief ('He that reigns') Óðins nöfn (5)
God of Runes
Runni vagna
Mover of Constellations
Saðr Sadr, Sann Truthful, Sooth Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), Óðins nöfn (8)
Sanngetall / Finder of Truth/Sooth Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), Óðins nöfn (7)
Síðgrani Sidgrani Long Beard Alvíssmál (6)
Síðhöttr Sidhott Broad Hat Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (48), þulur, Óðins nöfn (4)
Síðskeggr Sidskegg Long Beard Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (48), þulur, Óðins nöfn (6)
Victory giver Óðins nöfn (6)
Sigföðr Sigfodr Father of Victory, War Father Gylfaginning, Völuspá (54), Grímnismál (48), Óðins nöfn (4)
Victory Geat Óðins nöfn (6)
Victory Author
Victory protection Óðins nöfn (6)
Victory Tree
Sure of victory (Victory-true) Óðins nöfn (8)
Sigtýr Sigtyr God of Victory, War God Skáldskaparmál, Atlakviða (30), Glúmr Geirason's Gráfeldardrápa (12)
Successful in victory, Thriving in victory Óðins nöfn (8)
Skilfingr Skilfing Trembler or he of Hlidshilf Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (54), Óðins nöfn (8)
Ruler of treachery Óðins nöfn (6)
Sonr Bestlu
Son of Bestla
Spjalli Gauta
Friend of the Goths
Sváfnir Svafnir Sleep bringer, Closer Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (54), Óðins nöfn (4)
Reed Bringer
Sviðarr Svidar
Sviðrir Svidrir Calmer Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (50), Óðins nöfn (6)

Óðins nöfn (4)
Sviðurr Svidur Wise One Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (50), Óðins nöfn (6)
Svipall / Changing, Fleeting (or shape-shifter) Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (47), Óðins nöfn (3)
Svölnir Svolnir Cooler Skáldskaparmál, Óðins nöfn (6)
Double Óðins nöfn (8)
Tvíblindi Tviblindi Twice Blind þulur, Óðins nöfn (4)
Þekkr Thekk Known, Welcome One Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46), Óðins nöfn (7)
Quarreler Óðins nöfn (4)
Þriði Thridi Third Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (46), Óðins nöfn (5)
Þrór Thror Burgeoning, Thriving Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (8)
Þróttr Thrott Strength Glymdrápa (2)
Þuðr Thud, Thunn Lean, Pale Gylfaginning, Óðins nöfn (7)
Þundr Thund Thunderer Gylfaginning, Hávamál (145), Grímnismál (46, 54), Óðins nöfn (7)
Uðr Ud, Unn Loved, Beloved, Striver Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (46), Óðins nöfn (7)
Váfuðr Vafud Wanderer Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Grímnismál (54)
Váfuðr Gungnis
Swinger of Gungnir
Váði vitnis
Foe of the Wolf
Vakr Vak Wakeful, Awakener Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (54), Óðins nöfn (7)
Valdr galga
Ruler of Gallows
Valdr vagnbrautar
Ruler of Heaven
Valföðr Valfodr Father of the Slain Gylfaginning, Völuspá (1, 27, 28), Grímnismál (48), þulur, Óðins nöfn (5)
Valgautr Valgaut Slaughter-Geat, Geat of the Slain Skáldskaparmál, Óðins nöfn (8)
Chooser of the Slain
Valtamr, Valtam
Slain Tame, The Warrior
Slain God
Slain Receiver
Vegtam / Wanderer or Way-tame Baldrs draumar (6, 13)
Veratýr Veratyr God of men, God of being Gylfaginning, Óðins nöfn (8)
Wide Famed
Viðrir Vidrir Stormer Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Lokasenna (26)
Viðrímnir, Viðhrimnir
Contrary screamer or 'wide hoary-beard' Óðins nöfn (1)
Viðurr Vidur Killer Gylfaginning, Grímnismál (49), Óðins nöfn (6), Karlevi Runestone
Swinger Óðins nöfn (5)
Vinr Lopts
Friend of Loptr
Vinr Lóðurs
Friend of Lóðurr
Vinr Míms
Friend of Mímir
Vinr stalla
Friend of Altars
Dangler Óðins nöfn (5)
Völundr rómu
Smith of Battle
Yggr Ygg Terrible One Gylfaginning, Skáldskaparmál, Völuspá (28), Grímnismál (53, 54), Óðins nöfn (8)
Ýjungr, Ýrungr
Stormy or of the primal streams Óðins nöfn (8)


Many toponyms in Northern Europe where Germanic Tribes existed contain the name of *Wodanaz (Norse Odin, West Germanic Woden).
Wednesday is named after Woden, the English form of Odin (Old English Wēdnes dæg, "Woden's day"). It is an early Germanic translation of the Latin dies Mercurii ("Mercury's day") based on the Roman practice of understanding foreign gods by comparing them to Roman deities.


I know that I hung on Yggdrasil
For nine nights long
Wounded by spear
Consecrated to Odin
Myself a sacrifice to myself
Upon that tree
The wisest know not the roots
of ancient time whence it sprang.

None brought me bread
None gave me mead
Down to the depths I searched
I took up the Runes
Raised them with song
And from that tree I fell.

Runes you shall know, and readable staves,
Very powerful staves, very great staves
Graven by the mighty one who speaks
Carved by the Highest host

Odin among the Aesir
Dvalin among the dwarfs,
Dain among the Alfs
Alvitter among the etins
I myself carved some for mankind.

ODIN put himself through some incredibly rigorous ordeals. The Well of Wisdom lies under the second root of YGGDRASIL, which allows the Dew of Knowledge to seep into it. So ODIN stabbed himself with his own spear and hung himself on the tree for nine days and nights. He was then allowed a peep, and saw magic runes appear on rocks beneath him.

With a superhuman effort he struggled to lift them, which must have been quite an acrobatic feat. Running his eye over the mystic symbols, he was instantly freed of all encumbrances; restored and rejuvenated with everlasting vigor enabling him to drop lightly to the ground.

His ordeal accomplished, ODIN was at last able to take a well-deserved swig from MIMIR's well, making him well-wise as well as wise. It was even tastier than his usual tipple Kvas, the Mead of Inspiration, a special brew made from the blood of KVASIR. 



Sigrblót: the Ynglinga saga states one of the great festivals of the calendar is at sumri, þat var sigrblót "in summer, for victory".

April 14th is the sigrblot and with it the summer half of the year starts. The name of the month that follows it is Harpa. The name comes from a female vette, but why she has a full month named after her is lost to us.
Sumarmál is a time for the summer blót, the first of the summer half of the year and dedicated to victory in war and good luck on journeys. According to Gro Steinsland the blót was in the name of Odin. This of course makes sense when we know that Odin is among others a god of war, as well as a traveler.
Traditionally in Norway this day marked the end of the winter fishing season.
And finally this is the day when we turn the prime staff so that the summerside faces up. It is also the month of the girls, where the boys have to take extra care of their sisters.

Festivities include the sacrifice of prized livestock to the gods and large feasts outdoors. The blood is sprinkled on the statues of the gods, on the walls and on the participants themselves. Typically the drinks involve many fruity and sparkling drinks, meads and ales. At night there are large bonfires and dancing. Prominent members of the community are honored (especially those with academic achievement) and they boast to the community. Toasts are held in honor of Odin and for victory this summer. Saying the old prayer til árs ok friðar, "for a good year and frith (peace)" They asked for fertility, good health, a good life and peace and harmony between the people and the powers. Toasts are held in honor the community leaders. And Toasts are held in honor of the ancestors.

This is a particularly good day to do magical workings.


Ostara - Ēostre - Hausōs - Freyja - Idunn

The vernal equinox, often called Ostara, inaugurates the new year on the Zodiacal calendar. Which means nothing to the Norse because they had their own calendar. A Runic Calendar that was based upon the moon. They did not have any form of Zodiac and did not seem to care much for Astrology. But from this point the day overcomes the night. It is widely recognized by many mythologies as the time of rebirth or return for vegetation gods and is celebrated as a time of great fertility. Which seems incredibly important to all modern pagan observances. It is noted that there is no source that ever mentions the Norse ever celebrating Ostara. But it was documented in most of Europe and many familiar traditions have been passed down through the generations. Such as egg decorating which is a very common tradition in vernal celebration throughout Europe and America.
The holiday is strongly associated with fertility goddess Ēostre. She is notably associated with the fecund symbols of the hare and egg. A hare was the animal that was sacrificed to her. Much like Thor's goat, and Freyr's boar.

The Venerable Bede gives us our only specific information about the Anglo-Saxon Goddess known as Eostre in his De temporibus ratione, where he informs us that the month of April was called Ēostur-monath, and that he believed the name was derived from a Goddess that had been worshipped in ancient times. Some scholars, and even certain pagans consider the information unreliable and so dismiss the claim. I would counter however that we have ample evidence of not only a heathen religious holy tide celebrated at this time of year, but other evidence, which while not direct, only adds credence to Bede’s claim.
Just as the Anglo-Saxon month of April was Eoster-monath, as we know from Einhard’s Vita Karoli Magni the Germanic Franks shared a similar name for their month of April: Ostarmanoth. So here we have some supportive evidence of the Anglo-Saxon practices from continental Germans.
So what happened to her in the Norse Pantheon?

The answer might be in the name itself.

Ēostre derives from Proto-Germanic Austrō, ultimately from a PIE root Hausōs (→ *awes-), "to shine". Hausōs thus translates to "the shining one". Both the English word east and the Latin auster "south" are from a root cognate adjective *aws-t(e)ro-. Also cognate is aurum "gold", from *awso-. The name for "spring season", *wes-r- is also from the same root. The dawn goddess was also the goddess of spring, involved in the mythology of the Indo-European new year, where the dawn goddess is liberated from imprisonment by a god (reflected in the Rigveda as Indra, in Greek mythology as Dionysus and Cronus)

 Hausōs, one of the most important goddesses of reconstructed Proto-Indo-European religion is the personification of dawn as a beautiful young woman. 
a number of epithets of the dawn goddess may be reconstructed with some certainty. Among these is *wenos- (also an s-stem), whence Sanskrit vanas "loveliness; desire", used of Uṣas in the Rigveda, and the Latin name Venus and the Norse Vanir. The name indicates that the goddess was imagined as a beautiful nubile woman, who also had aspects of a love goddess.
As a consequence, the love goddess aspect was separated from the personification of dawn in a number of traditions, including Roman Venus vs. Aurora, and Greek Aphrodite vs. Eos. The name of Aphrodite Άφροδίτη may still preserve her role as a dawn goddess, etymologized as "she who shines from the foam [ocean]" (from aphros "foam" and deato "to shine").
The Italic goddess Mater Matuta "Mother Morning" has been connected to Aurora by Roman authors (Lucretius, Priscianus). Her festival, the Matralia, fell on 11 June, beginning at dawn.
The abduction and imprisonment of the dawn goddess, and her liberation by a heroic god slaying the dragon who imprisons her, is a central myth of Indo-European religion, reflected in numerous traditions. Most notably, it is the central myth of the Rigveda, a collection of hymns surrounding the Soma rituals dedicated to Indra in the new year celebrations of the early Indo-Aryans.

So to put it plainly the main attributes that are most important to Hausos (Eostre) is the fact that she is a young and beautiful woman. Who has connections to the rising sun, gold, fertility, and love. She is often desired or captured.

Now I have heard it proposed that Baldr fits this the most, since he is the most beautiful and beloved of the gods, who is sent to the underworld and brought back in spring. But this does not sit well with me. It seems to fit more with Jesus and the Christian interpretation of Hausos in a post Christianization sense. To me a better fit would be Freyja. Though she is associated more with cats, then with rabbits. It is plain that the name was rooted into the word Vanir, and she fits the description in all other aspects. She was even desired by the Jotunns but Thor took her place. Or quite possibly Idunn. For is is beautiful and young. and her Golden apples are a powerful symbol of rebirth and fertility. And she is even snatched away by the Jotunn Thjazi in eagle form, according to the prose edda. The root for gold could also refer to the golden apples of Idunn. Carole M. Cusack comments that, among adherents, Eostre is "associated with the coming of spring and the dawn, and her festival is celebrated at the spring equinox. Because she brings renewal, rebirth from the death of winter, some Heathens associate Eostre with Idunn, keeper of the apples of youth in Scandinavian mythology".

So who do you honor during the festival of Ostara? Well for those who don't mind including Anglo-Saxon Dieties into the mix, you could use the name Eostre. Though if you do, it is important to mention that the name Ēostre is the the Northumbrian Old English version of the name Ostara. And Northumbrian dialect was influenced by the Viking settlements.

Now this is how you combine Ostara with Norse practices. But there was already a blot chosen for the return of summer.
If we look to the Norse sources, and at the collection of sagas that comprise the Heimskringla, we see multiple mentions to three high holy tides throughout those sagas, such as mentioned in Ynglinga Saga, and is echoed again in Óláfs saga helga which states: “It is their custom to perform a sacrifice in the fall to welcome winter, a second at midwinter, and a third in the summer to welcome it’s arrival.”
Now most modern people would interpret this incorrectly, because today we have a concept of there being four seasons in the year (Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter), but we know from both ancient Icelandic laws as well as Bede’s description of the Anglo-Saxons that the ancient people’s had a cultural concept that the year was only comprised of two seasons: Summer and Winter. Thus the first day of Summer occurs sometime in what we might think of as the Spring today, and ‘midsummer’ or the summer solstice (known sometimes as Litha) occurs in the middle of the summer. The beginning of Winter occurs in the Autumn and is marked by the celebration known as Winter Nights. By following this reasoning the midwinter celebration is therefore Yule. We see this timing echoed when we hop back across to the Anglo-Saxons.

While the Norse sagas do specifically mention Winter Nights and Yule, the springtime celebration is never specifically called Ostara. We do however find ample celebrations held at this time amongst the Scandinavians: Sigrblot (which translates to victory sacrifice), Sumarmál or Surmanaetr (Summer Nights, sometimes occasionally called Summer Finding by modern heathens).
Now, I’m sure a few of you might be puzzled about why there would be a ‘victory sacrifice’ at what amounts to the beginning of the modern-day concept of Spring. In part the warmer months are generally when ancient peoples would conduct war-fare. But summer also was a time you start doing everything. During the harsh winters you just held tight and endured. But during the summer you do your crafts and plant your crops. So it is my personal opinion that for the Norseman, the Ostara festival should be replaced with the Sigrblot.


After more research I found it would be most accurate to say that Ostara was not a set holiday but more of an annual ritual for the northern pagans. I would let go of the idea of Ostara all together and instead perform the Charming of the plow. The time for which the ritual would happen would be different for each community. When the farmers of that community were ready they would bless and charm the plow for the fertile season and keep the plows as a totem of good fortune. These keeps with the theme of fertility and is such a ritual the main gods would be Freyr and Freyja.


Charming of the Plow

Landsegen ("Land-blessing") - or "Charming of the plow" On this day, the farming implements are blessed, as is the land, and the hearth fire is put out and re-lit using a need-fire. The household spirits are sacrificed to on this holy tide. The main focus of this day is the home.

For many pagans, this is the time of year where they honor and celebrate Imbolc one of the eight sabbats that comprise the Wheel of the Year. For those of us in the Northern Tradition however, we have our only celebrations known as holy tides (from the Old Norse hátíðir) that we may currently be celebrating instead: Charming of the Plough or Disting.

Since Northern Tradition religious practices can vary because some groups and individuals opt to recreate the celebrations of geo-specific historic cultures, others look at the vast umbrella that we see amongst the Æsic-worshipping peoples as they appear throughout ancient Germania, into Scandinavian countries (like Sweden, Norway, Iceland, etc.), and into Anglo-Saxon England.
The timing of these holy tides varies based on regional differences in the seasonal transition of climate, as well as in the different time-keeping and calendar methods that were employed by the different cultures when compared to the calendar modern-day man uses instead. As a result, while some Heathens opt to sync the timing up with the quarter-day of Imbolc so that their holy tide celebration occurs at the same time as their pagan cousins, others have already celebrated, and yet others more may not be celebrating for a few weeks yet.
Many Heathens at this time of year are celebrating the Charming of the Plough. According to Bede’s De temporum ratione, the Anglo-Saxon month of February was known as Solmonad, and meant month of mud. Most likely mud month refers to the act of ploughing the fields. According to Bede, this was a time celebrated by people offering cakes to their Gods. The only other time we see offerings of cakes ever mentioned as occurring is with the celebration of Hlæfmæsse, which occurs at the opposite time of year at the time of the harvest. So here we have a mirrored tradition of offerings of cakes or loaves given to the land as the people prepared for the ploughing season.
In England, there is a folk tradition known as Plough Monday (which was the first Monday after the Yuletide had ended) that encompassed the ceremonial act of ploughing the first furrows in the fields. Many modern day Heathens take inspiration from the Anglo-Saxon land ritual the Æcerbot (or Field Remedy) to help form part of their celebrations. While the Æcerbot as it is recorded references Christian belief, many believers and scholars believe it was adapted from pre-Christian practices. The daylong ritual was intended to act as a means to restore fertility to land that may not be yielding properly, or was potentially suffering from some sort of blight or infestation. In the ritual described, we see that the plough is hallowed and even anointed with soap and herbs, the land is plowed, and then the earth prayed to:
Whole may you be [Be well] earth, mother of men!
May you be growing in God’s embrace,
with food filled  for the needs of men.
Afterwards, special offerings of cakes were placed into the furrows that had been ploughed.
Aspects of the ritual structure in Æcerbot, is reminiscent of hallowing land or even land-taking rituals that we see in a variety of other sources. These land-taking customs can be seen in the Icelandic Landnambok, where men might walk around their property with fire, or women who were claiming land could only claim what they could plough in a day from sunrise to sunset. There are folk-traditions in areas of Russia (so named for the Viking Tribe known as the Rus) that describe women ploughing around their communities as a charm against disease outbreaks, so like the Aecerbot which is to make well the land again, we see another tie between plowing and health in this folk tradition.
The ploughing story and landtaking we see most famously with the Danes, when the Goddess Gefjon is seen ploughing the fields with her Jotun (giant) sons in the form of great oxen. The ploughing of this Swedish soil was so deep that the land was uprooted, leaving a lake behind, the uprooted land was named Zealand, and is the most agriculturally ripe part of the Danish countryside today. For this reason, those Heathens who celebrate the Charming of the Plough may honor Her in their celebrations, though others may opt to honor instead the other Goddesses found in our tradition of the Earth, such as the Germanic goddess Nerthus.
There are several scholars (as well as Heathens today) who see a link between Nerthus and Gefjon. In Tacitus’ Germania, he writes of Nerthus:
“There is a sacred grove on an island in the Ocean, in which there is a consecrated chariot, draped with cloth, where the priest alone may touch. He perceives the presence of the goddess in the innermost shrine and with great reverence escorts her in her chariot, which is drawn by female cattle. There are days of rejoicing then and the countryside celebrates the festival, wherever she designs to visit and to accept hospitality. No one goes to war, no one takes up arms, all objects of iron are locked away, then and only then do they experience peace and quiet, only then do they prize them, until the goddess has had her fill of human society and the priest brings her back to her temple.”
Here are two Goddesses, both associated with cattle and the earth, and both who dwell on islands. But more than just this similar motif, scholars see that the medieval place name for the modern-day city of Naerum in Denmark was Niartharum, which etymologically may connect to Nerthus’ name.
While most of us when we think of agricultural celebrations thing of deities of the earth, and associated fertility Gods and Goddesses, I also like to incorporate into the festivities Wayland (or Wolund), who was a blacksmith. After all, blacksmiths represented the luck of a community. They helped to craft the tools used in the agricultural process. By connection we can also think of this as a time of the dwarves, for where does the metal come from that a blacksmith uses, if not from us mining the earth?
While most of us today don’t make our livelihoods directly from the land, we can still understand this time of year as the time meant to prepare ourselves for the workload ahead, which is why many Heathens who celebrate the Charming of the Plough may ask for blessings regarding career prospects, job offers and other related elements for the coming year. Some groups may have rituals where people and the ‘tools’ of their trade are blessed.  A tailor might bring their scissors to be blessed, a writer might bring a pen, people may bring their security badges for places they work, or anything else that seems appropriate.
In addition to Charming of the Plough, we also have the Swedish known holy tide of Disting as observed in Uppsala. Disting was partly comprised of the Disablot (a special communal ritual to the Disir) as well as a regular Thing gathering. Rituals to the Disir exist at several different times in sources, some we see at the Winternights celebration, another at Yule’s Mother’s Night, and another in the aforementioned Disting, which suggests that observance of the Disablot may have varied based on different cultural traditions. The Disir embody the protective female spirits that look after individuals, their families, and the tribe or community. As such, both Goddesses as well as female ancestors comprise the Disir.
Things, as seen throughout the ancient world, were gatherings of people with appointed representatives where legal matters were discussed, and people came together in the spirit of trade. In pre-Christian times the Things happened several times a year at this location, but after the conversion to Christianity only one Thingtide was still observed, the one that fell at this time of year, specifically at Candlemas. While this Thingtide kept its original timing, the religious aspects of the gathering were removed.
In Heimskringla, we have a description of the ancient holy tide of Disting. A sacrifice was offered at Uppsala for both peace, and victory to the king.  In another section of that text, we have a description of a Disablot, which suggests that the King oversaw the ritual in his role as High Priest, while ritually riding around the sacred hall. Just as we have aspects of land-taking in stories of Gefjon, or as exhibited in the Aecerblot, we can understand that it is likely that the King’s riding on his horse probably ritually connected to some aspect of land-taking, or boundary making as well.
Land-taking isn’t just for the past either. If you look at the way the “Freedom to Roam” laws operate, as seen throughout Europe (including Norway, Sweden, England, Scotland, Wales, etc.), this ancient concept is still in a sense being used. In the case of the Freedom to Roam, it grants rights to citizens who responsibly and without harm to the property, traverse it so they can have access for the purposes of exercise and recreation to these undeveloped parcels of land, or lands specifically set aside for community use like common land and village greens. In other areas, these rights of access to the common land are only upheld so long as at least once in a stipulated period of time it has been used. In some areas there are community-wide traditions where all the able-bodied people will go on a walk to make sure they keep these areas ‘claimed’ as common land. For this reason, some of the more hardy Heathens may opt for a camping trip at this time of year.
There is an 8th century text, indiculus superstitionum et paganiarum, that mentions that in the month of February there was a celebration still on-going in Germany called Spurcalia. Spurcalia is a Latin name used to describe the celebration, and it is believed that it roots to the German word Sporkel, which meant piglet. In fact in parts of Germany the month of February was actually called piglet-month, or Sporkelmonat, and the Dutch name of the month is the very similar Sprokkelmaand. The assumption is made that with the first livestock births of the year occurring, that pigs were most likely sacrificed at around this time. While this is an obscure reference even to most Heathens, there are a handful who use Spurcalia as their inspiration for making sure there’s some pork on the altar given in offering to the Gods and Goddesses.


The Legend of Hlodyn

The Legend of Frau Holle
In some Scandinavian traditions, Hlodyn is known as the feminine spirit of the woods and plants, and was honored as the sacred embodiment of the earth and land itself. She is associated with many of the evergreen plants that appear during the Yule season, especially mistletoe and holly, and is sometimes seen as an aspect of Frigga, wife of Odin. In this theme, she is associated with fertility and rebirth. Typically, she is seen as a goddess of hearth and home, although in different areas she has clearly different purposes.

Interestingly, Hlodyn (Frau Holle) is mentioned in the story of Goldmary and Pitchmary, as compiled by the Grimm brothers. In this context -- that of a Germanic Cinderella-type tale -- she appears as an old woman who rewards an industrious girl with gold, and offers the girl's lazy sister an equally appropriate compensation.

In the Norse Eddas she gives gifts to women at the time of the Winter Solstice, or Jul. She is sometimes associated with winter snowfall as well -- it is said that when Hlodyn shakes out her mattresses, white feathers fall to the earth. A feast is held in her honor each winter by many people in the Germanic countries.