Saturday, December 15, 2012

Nordic Myths

To continue with the Scandinavian topic, I'd like to write about a book I'm currently reading. Just like most books I own, I found it in a second-hand store for the price of 2.50. It's called "Nordic Myths" and retells various old myths and sagas of the Germanic people, including Eddas, The Song of Nibelungs (one of my favourite books) and the like. I had to study some of them for my education while at the Uni, but this book is much more detailed, and has a lot of information about the traditions and customs of  Northern European people. I definitely learned some new things while reading it, for instance that TYR was the name of the god of war who sacrificed his hand to save the inhabitants of Asgard from Loki's son Fenris. Well, that figures:)

I'm currently in the middle of the book, while trying simultaneously to read another one, about which I'll post later. I would highly recommend this particular book by H.A. Guerber to anyone, but I'm afraid it's currently out of print, since it was the 1930s edition.


  1. Interesting. I haven't read any of the Nordic myths, though I saw a movie version of Beowulf.

    I have, however, read some of the Icelandic sagas; namely, the Vinland sagas, of which my parents have a copy of the Penguin Books publication. They of course deal with the Norse arrival in North America, c. 1000 A.D. I've been to a site where they were encamped, and have seen the various finds from archaeological digs there.

  2. I haven't watched the film, but from what I heard about it there is little resemblance to the book which I had to read for my studies. I liked Elder Edda, it was quite entertaining, Younger Edda not so much. The Song of Nibelungs is a nice story. I have seen the ruins of the castle of a guy who is supposedly its author though in all probability he just wrote it down.

    Icelandic sagas sound interesting, I had to read the Saga of Njall, I'm not sure whether it war Iceladic or Norwegian. I do remember that at the time I found it terrible. It was full of grisly battle details about chopped off limbs etc, and Njall in the end died defending his house.

    Here we have some reenactments Viking groups. If you click on the word TYR you can watch a clip which was made during a reenactment event in Norway, I think. They have an annual Viking festival in summer.