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The Gods

    Odin 
A god of wisdom, war (emphasis on fury), poetry, magic, frenzy and death who is the head of the Aesir. Famously one-eyed, as he sacrificed his other eye in exchange for said wisdom. Modern interpretation of him varies. Some see him as a noble god and respect him for the theme of self-sacrifice and view his ruthless actions as necessary for preventing Ragnarok. Others see this as something of a Misaimed Fandom. They see him as being quite like Zeus — a philanderer and major-league jerk. Also, Wednesday is named after him ("Wodin's day," Wodin being one of his many names).
  • The Ace: He was considered the god of war, death, frenzy (literal and figurative), magic, nobility, poetry, healing, the pursuit of knowledge and the runic alphabet itself.
  • The Alcoholic: Apparently, he subsists upon nought but mead and wine. He's never really described as suffering from the negative effects of it, but then again, he is the god of frenzy and berserkers...
  • Always Accurate Attack: His spear Gungnir never misses its target.
  • Animal Motifs: He is associated with ravens. He has two ravens called Huginn ("thought") and Muninn ("memory" or "mind"). He's also titled "Raven-God" by The Prose Edda. He's also associated with wolves, he has two wolves by his side called Geri ("the ravenous") and Freki ("greedy one"). In The Prose Edda, he's destined to be killed by Fenrir, a colossal wolf. Odin is also the one who set the wolves, Hati ("One Who Hates" or "Hater") and Skoll ("One Who Mocks" or "treachery"), on the sun and moon when they refused to move.
  • Badass Beard: Typically presented as having a big ol' beard.
  • Badass Grandpa: He's a literal grandfather, and is among the oldest of the gods regardless and usually looks the part.
  • The Beastmaster: Commonly described as having a pair of wolves, Geri and Freki, by his left and right side, and two ravens, Huginn and Muninn, on his left and right shoulders.
  • The Berserker: The trope namers were consecrated to his worship. Additionally, his very name is a synonym for the fury and rage of battle, and that was part of his domain as the god of war.
  • Big Bad: One interpretation of his behavior is that his Chronic Backstabbing Disorder and attempts to be a Karma Houdini are what lead to Ragnarok.
  • Big Good: An interpretation of his actions is that everything he does—good or bad—is to stall Ragnarok.
  • Blade on a Stick: He owned the spear, Gungnir. Gungnir was created by the Dwarves and obtained from them by the deity, Loki. It had runes carved on its tip: its balance was so perfect that it could strike any target, even if its wielder was weak or not proficient in its use.
  • Blind Seer: Halfway there; he sacrificed an eye at Mimir's Well for knowledge.
  • Brutal Honesty: Odin is pretty open about acknowledging that people should not trust him, going so far as using himself as an example of the disloyalty of men. One of his many titles is oath-Breaker after all.
  • The Casanova: Slept with many mortal women.
  • Clever Crows: Had a pair of ravens that would circle the world every day and whisper in his ear the secrets they found at the end of the day. Evidently they weren't perfect since Odin is portrayed as far from omniscient even with them and the ability to view any place in the nine worlds. He still gets tricked a few times.
  • Cool Horse: The eight-legged steed Slepnir.
  • Crossdresser: Oh yes. He even Disguised in Drag so he could impregnate Rindr.
  • Death Glare: Is called Báleygr, flaming eye.
  • Double Standard: Rape, Divine on Mortal: In Saxo's account, Odin raped Rindr so that she would give birth to Vali.
  • Eaten Alive: By Fenrir.
  • Everybody Hates Hades: Inverted by the Norse, if you believe the theory that Odin and the Valkyries were identified with an older German death god who was even less fondly thought of before the Norsemen took a liking to them.
  • Expy:
  • Eye Scream: Self-inflicted to be used as toll for a drink from the Well of Knowledge.
  • Eyepatch of Power: One of the earliest examples.
  • Flight, Strength, Heart: Is the God of war, magic and poetry.
  • Genius Bruiser: Being both a warrior god and a trickster, and a god of wisdom.
  • Good Is Not Nice: It's arguable if he's even good, but being the head of a group that steadfastly opposes trolls, monsters, and other forces of chaos makes him the good guy by default. However, he's absolutely unscrupulous in the pursuit of his aims, willing to betray any ideal or any individual if it means protecting and strengthening Valhalla.
  • Handicapped Badass: Odin is famously one-eyed, having gouged it out himself in exchange for wisdom.
  • Heroes Love Dogs: He had two pet wolves called Freki and Geri, to whom he would give all the meat served to him.
  • Iconic Item: His spear Gungnir is among the most famous weapons in the mythos, probably second only to Mjolnir.
  • Iconic Outfit: Is known for the wide-brimmed hat he wears when in disguise. He's often depicted with a scarf or eyepatch to cover his missing eye, as well.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: In his mind, anything justifies delaying or preventing Ragnarok.
  • Horny Vikings: Played straight. The earlier depictions of Odin shows him with a dank helmet with horns/bird crests.
  • I Have Many Names: As American Gods put it; 'I have as many names as there are winds and as many titles as there are ways for men to die.'
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Odin can come off as a real jerk at times, but would often wander the earth testing mortals, punishing and rewarding them.
  • Karma Houdini: Averted unlike many gods. Whatever crimes Odin may have committed he is destined to die at Ragnarök. Some people perceive this as punishment for a betrayal of Loki or his treachery in general. Another story has Odin being banished from Asgard and replaced as king for a period of ten years as punishment for the rape of Rindr which he undertook to father Vali. Note that this is something that could have happened in the Norse society which was proto-democratic. If a king was disliked by the people, they had the right to get rid of him (just as the king had the unspoken right to defend himself from any attempts at dethroning).
  • Magic Knight: Possibly the Ur-Example because he is both a berserker god and a trickster.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: One of those names is "killer," followed by no less charming names like "God of Gore," "god of the hanged," "ruler of gallows," "Battle Wolf," "ruler of treachery," "terrible one," "Lord of the Undead" and "Oathbreaker."
  • Nice Hat: When wandering around in human guise, he wore a dang cool wide brimmed one.
  • One-Hit Kill: His spear Gungnir always kills its whoever or whatever it strikes.
  • The Philosopher King: Demonstrated in the Hávamál ("sayings of the high one") poem, which is written as a collection of Odin's thoughts, opinions, and advice on proper social conduct, how to lead one's life in a successful manner, and how to show wisdom in one's actions.
  • Properly Paranoid: He lives in constant fear that Ragnarok will start. He thus abstains from eating, and only drinks the mead produced by his nanny goat in case someone tries to poison his food.
  • Red Right Hand: No matter what form he took, it would always be missing an eye.
  • Robe and Wizard Hat: Very commonly depicted wearing them and possibly the Ur-Example.
  • Secret Identity: Odin has a habit of visiting Earth in human guise. Depending on his behavior, he may be an Angel Unaware or a Devil in Disguise.
  • The Smart Guy: Odin sacrificed one of his eyes to gain wisdom. He also has two pet ravens whose names, Huginn and Muninn, are translated as "Thought" and "Memory" that fly all over the world and essentially act as scouts.
  • Suicide Is Painless: Well, not exactly as the trope name says, but a pretty similar end result - there are accounts that say those who commit suicide would also be accepted by Odin in the afterlife (along with the well-known "dying in battle" reason), and this could be seen as preferable to dying in one's sleep and having to go to the duller domain of Hel. It's possible this interpretation arose later as Scandinavia eventually tended more to be peaceful in history and made it progressively less likely for warriors to meet their end on the battlefield.
  • Top God: King of the Gods.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Doesn't subsist on anything other than mead.
  • The Trickster: He's really not too different than Loki in many stories — probably explains why the two are blood brothers.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifter: One of Odin's specialties, also a trait he shares with Loki.
  • War God: He's the god of war and patron of berserkers. He started the first war in the world. Most tellingly, he is the only god in the surviving Norse myths who is explicitly and unmistakably associated with war, which perhaps tells something of his centrality to warfare as far as the Norse were concerned.
  • Warrior Poet: He's the god of war, poetry, and — among other things — wisdom.
  • Weapon of Choice: The magic spear Gungnir.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Odin invokes this by his sacrifice of one of his eyes in exchange for wisdom, which allows him to outwit and undermine his enemies. He has essentially willingly given up some of his ability in direct combat in exchange for being a superior tactician.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Everything he does is meant to delay Ragnarok.
  • Wizard Beard: Sometimes, probably counts as a Badass Beard as well it gives him the appearance of a Grandpa God.
  • Wizard Classic: The Ur-Example, an elderly (possibly bearded) god of wisdom who often traveled wearing a simple cloak and wide-brimmed hat, though he had a spear instead of a staff.
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    Frigg 
Odin's wife, who is sometimes confusingly conflated with Freyja. She ruled over motherhood, women and the home. Also, Friday is named after her ("Frigg's Day").
  • Blessed with Suck: She could see into the future but do nothing to change it.
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: She had dreams of Baldr's death just as he did. They're what spurred her into making him (almost) invulnerable.
  • The High Queen: Regal and majestic but also very benevolent.
  • Living Lie Detector: Her magic necklace glows when a lie is told.
  • Proper Lady: She provides patronage to women, motherhood and the home, and traditional female activities.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: She was the only other person Odin trusted to sit on Hliðskjálf.
  • Wholesome Cross Dresser: Historia Langobardorum shows that she had much to teach Odin when it came to which tribes he should be favoring, which she does by having a bunch of women disguise themselves with beards and present themselves to her husband.
  • Your Cheating Heart: All the Norse gods were jerk asses in Gesta Danorum but it particularly stands out with ones like Frigg, as not being guilty of infidelity was an important plot point on a couple of occasions.note 

    Baldr 
Odin and Frigg's son and the god of beauty, who developed over time into the Purity Sue of the pantheon. He married Nanna and is the father of Forseti, and in Asgard he lives in a palace called Breidablik. He was immune to damage from anything except mistletoe, and Loki killed him by tricking his blind brother Höðr into throwing a magic spear made of it at him.
  • Adaptation Species Change: He's a demigod in the Gesta Danorum instead of a full god.
  • Achilles' Heel / Weaksauce Weakness: To mistletoe.note 
  • Back from the Dead:
    • Some texts describe him as returning from Hel after Ragnarök has taken place, probably another sign of Christian influence on the character.
    • At least one version of the legend of his death had the bargain with Hel succeed and Baldr being brought back to life, upon which the flowers of the mistletoe turned white, as a sign that the wrong that had been done had now been made right. This version is extremely obscure, though — almost all the tellings of the myth has the bargain with Hel fail and Baldr staying dead.
  • Beauty = Goodness: He is the god of beauty, is described as being handsome, and is heavily associated with goodness.
  • Bishie Sparkle: He's said to be so beautiful that he literally glows with light.
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: He had dreams of his death, along with his mother.
  • Hijacked by Jesus: A possible explanation for some of his stories.
  • Killed Off for Real: Thanks to Loki, who both tricked his brother into killing him and made sure he couldn't be resurrected; however, some sources say he will return after Ragnarök.
  • Light Is Good: Though it's exclusive to myths hijacked by Jesus; in some stories he wasn't so pleasant. In Gesta Danorum, he is outright villainous.
  • Nice Guy: He's described as the "fairest spoken" and "most gracious" of the gods in the Prose Edda.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: Thanks to Frigg making (almost) everything in the world swear not to harm him.
  • Pretty Boy: He's usually described as this.
  • Purity Personified: Especially in later sources.
  • Royal Brat: In the Gesta Danorum.

    Höðr 
Odin and Frigg's son, the god of winter and darkness, and Baldr's and Hermod's blind brother. He is tricked (depending of the source) by Loki into using mistletoe to murder his brother Baldr.

    Hermod 
Odin and Frigg's son, and Baldr and Höðr's brother. He acts as messenger of the gods. In one version of Baldr's death story, he is the only one brave enough to go to the underworld and seek an audience with Hel. Hermod asked Hel to allow Baldr to return among the living gods, but failed to get everything to shed a tear for him in order to bring him back.
  • Action Survivor: Some sources say he is one of the survivors of Ragnarok.
  • Canon Immigrant: Older Germanic texts, among them Beowulf, but also others, mention a jutish king named Hermodr or Armodr, who was killed while bathing - and with a conflicting reputation to boot. This king may actually be the mortal "source" for this god, having him elevated to Odin´'s stable boy (since Odin is quite capable of travelling to Hel by himself).
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: The above story is all that he's known to have done.

    Thor 
A thunder god and the favorite god of the average Norse farmer (Odin was preferred by the warrior aristocracy who found his more chaotic and bloodthirsty ways more conducive to their ideals of Drengskapr). Carries the title "Friend of the humans" (or, possibly, "Man's Best Friend") and would fight giants and various demonic threats to the gods and mankind. He was also considered the protector of slaves. Also has Thursday named after him (literally "Thor's Day").
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: For whatever reason *cough* Marvel Comics *cough*, Thor is almost universally depicted as blond in modern fiction. The Norse would have thought this completely out of character for the raging giant slayer, as blonds in their culture were considered to be shrewd and calculating, whereas redheads were whirling vortices of blood and spit.
  • Ambiguous Situation: His mother is identified as Jorth, but it’s unknown whether she was a distinct entity or simply another name for Frigg.
  • Animal Motifs: He was commonly associated with goats (which drew his chariot).
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: Well, to start with Thor means thunder. But also the literal translation of Mjölnir is crusher. Yes, apparantly Thor follows the same naming conventions as macho men with their dogs.
  • Badass Beard: Was said to have a fiery red beard.
  • Big Good: The strongest of the &A Elig;sir and dedicated protector of humanity.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: He had an appropriately thunderous personality and was prone to boasting of his deeds.
  • Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: When Ragnarök comes, he will kill Jörmungandr, but be fatally poisoned in the process.
  • Call on Me: Thor defended Midgard without being asked, but when the Jötnar were causing trouble in Asgard, the Æsir would often cry for Thor, who would storm in to take care of the issue. Loki inadvertently calls Thor on himself once.
  • Cuckold: In Lokasenna, Loki gloats about sleeping with his wife Sif in a public banquet.
  • Disguised in Drag: Close to being the trope originator given a humorous tale (Thrymskvida) where he had to impersonate Freyja.
    • Although if Loki was not there with his silver tongue, it's likely the Jötnar would have realized they were being tricked.
  • The Dreaded: Thor was widely feared among his enemies. He once had to face an enormous clay golem in combat. The golem saw Thor, and promptly pissed itself so hard it melted. That's right. Thor is such a terrifying opponent that he caused a clay golem to grow an excretory system solely so it could piss itself in terror of him.
  • Drop the Hammer: Mjölnir is one of the most well known examples.
  • Dumb Muscle: To an extent, although in some stories he's got Hidden Depths, making it Obfuscating Stupidity.
  • Fiery Redhead: Hot-blooded and red-haired, with those two traits being linked together by the Norse.
  • Golem: If you read the Prose Edda closely, you will find that Thor is Odin's oldest son, and that he is the "son of Earth." Whether Odin actually made him of earth, is a moot point, but the text can easily be read like that. In other sources, his mother's name is Jord (Scandinavian for "Earth"), making him the literal son of earth (although some believe this is simply another name for Frigg).
  • Happily Married: To Sif, who we know little about.
  • Hot-Blooded: It doesn't take much to set Thor off on a smashing rampage.
  • Iconic Item: His hammer Mjolnir is the iconic symbol of the mythos, historically used by worshipers of the Norse gods to mark their faith, and probably the most famous mythological weapon worldwide that isn't a sword or a spear.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: In a couple of stories, he is surprisingly clever; he even outwits Odin once.
  • Mutual Kill: Against Jormungandr.
  • Protectorate: He is the Friend of Humans and Protector Of Midgard, titles he received for his role in defending Midgard, the human world, from giants. He's also the god of order, in direct contrast to Odin.
  • Red Is Heroic: Thor was notedly a Fiery Red Head and a great hero to the Norse.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Thor is the Manly Man, being a very Blood Knight-y kind of guy, compared to the more sly Sensitive Guy Loki.
  • Simple Staff: Though not nearly as well-renowned as his hammer, one story mentions Thor being lent a magic staff by a giantess, Gridr. Rather noteworthy, in that some scholars debate whether it was more of a shepherd's staff in design, or more akin to an iron wand used by Norse sorceresses.
  • Shock and Awe: God of thunder, natch.
  • Space Is an Ocean: While most would use such things as Slepnir and Bifröst to pass through the nine worlds, Thor preferred to wade his way across. He did have a chariot with two goats for transporting other people, though. This is used to describe why rainbows follow thunderstorms. (Some stories claim that Thor wasn't actually allowed to use the Bifrost for fear he'd break it, since he was so big and heavy.)
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Thor was so popular, he essentially survived the transition to Christianity and had new stories connected to him for several hundreds of years. Thus, he is the hero of a "Just So" Story telling of how he made a famous mountain pass in Norway. Also a case of Adaptation Displacement, as a church features prominently in the narrative.
  • Weapon of Choice: His magic hammer Mjolnir.
  • Wolverine Publicity: If there's a heroic Norse god in modern media, it's Thor. Appropriately, Marvel Comics is the most obvious example.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Althrough much more sympathetic than Odin and a heroic defender of the weak, he would not back away from attacking a giantess or a female monster despite that the laws of the Norsemen (endorsed by Odin) considered the harming and killing of women monstrous.
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    Týr 
A noble war (emphasis on protection) god, confused with the Roman Mars, Tuesday is named after him (one of his names is Tiw so it is "Tyr's day"). He is attributed as a god of justice and martial honor (due to historical evidence suggesting he was called upon in courts), and he was the only god who did not fear Fenrir. Known as "the one-handed god."
  • An Arm and a Leg: Lost his arm as the price for binding Fenrir the wolf.
  • Demoted to Extra: Etymologically the name "Tyr" can be traced back to the Proto-Germanic god Tīwaz, who was likely the original Top God of the Germanic pantheon (the name shares its Indo-European root with "Zeus" and "Jupiter", and in fact means "god", which implies that at one time, he was the god). At some point, however, he was appearently replaced in this role by Odin (or Wōden) and, likely as a result thereof, he only appears in three of the surviving tales, and is only important in one of them.
  • Disabled Deity: He sacrificed his arm to bind Fenrir.
  • The Fettered: Some interpretations of his character—he's perfectly okay with Fenris eating his hand, as fair compensation for betraying his trust, since they had been rather good friends up to that point with Tyr being the only god willing to feed and spend time with him.
  • Handicapped Badass: Even after losing his arm he still plays a vital part in Ragnarok, killing Garm.
  • Honor Before Reason: Rather than try to kill Fenris like some of the other gods want to do (for things he hasn't even done yet), he opts for imprisonment, as the god of justice and retribution.
  • Master Swordsman: Was said to be one of the best warriors in Asgard prior to losing his hand. Even afterward, he's lost none of his skill once he switched to his left hand.
  • Mutual Kill: With Garmr.
  • War God: Is often interpreted as one in popular culture, though there's no explicit framing of him as such in surviving Norse myths, unlike Odin. It should be noted that as with other mythologies, no god in Norse myth is the god of something to the exclusion of any other.
    • Some Roman writers dealing with tribes distantly related to the Scandinavians seemed to believe him to be the local equivalent to Mars, however. But this is complicated by some tribes, such as the Goths, who saw "Mars" as an ancestor of their ruling class. Tyr never fathers any of the human classes in mythology, contrary to Heimdall and Odin in some national myths.

    Víðarr 
Vidarr is the son of Odin by Gríðr, a jötunn who aided the gods against Loki. During the events of the Ragnarök, while Thor fights Jörmungandr, Týr fights Garm, and Freyr fights Surtr, it falls to Víðarr to fight Fenrir. Rising to the challenge, he not only avenges his father, but survives both the battle and the Ragnarök. This earns him a reputation as a god of vengeance. He is also known as the "Avenger of the Gods."

    Váli 
A son of Odin and the giantess Rindr, Váli was conceived specifically to avenge Baldr's death. He does this when he's less than a day old by killing Höðr and later helps the other Æsir capture Loki. Like his brother Víðarr, he ultimately survives Ragnarök.

    Freyja 
Mostly a love goddess and fertility goddess, but also is connected to bloodthirst, as she rides into battle herself to claim half of the fallen dead for her hall, Folkvagnr—and gets first pick before Odin himself to boot. Because of this, she is heavily associated with the Valkyries and is often even regarded as their queen. She and the goddess of magic and witches. Along with Freyr, her twin brother, and her father Njord, she is a fertility deity of Vanaheimr. Also the patron of warrioresses and witches. Her name is the origin for the word for "lady" in several Germanic languages. In Scandinavia, Friday is named after her (Fredag).
  • Action Girl: She is the leader of the Valkyries. When she gets angry, she can make the whole of Asgard shake.
  • All Witches Have Cats: She is the goddess of seidr, a form of magic considered exclusively feminine, and her cart is drawn by two cats. Since Norse religion was often considered tantamount to witchcraft by medieval Christians, this makes Freyja the indirect Trope Maker.
  • Amazon Chaser: She is the resident Love Goddess who takes half the souls of the warrior slain for herself.
  • Body to Jewel: Her tears would eventually turn to gold.
  • Chickification: The majority of fiction based on Norse Mythology ignores her Action Girl aspects and the fact that she was associated with seidr, making her a witch-goddess too by logic, instead only showing her as a Love Goddess.
  • Decomposite Character: Maybe. The similarity between her name and Frigg's has a lot of academics arguing about a possible connection. Freya and Frigg do appear alongside each other in a couple Norse poems, but it's still possible they evolved divergently from one figure.
  • Full-Boar Action: Had a pet boar that she often used as a mount (or to draw her chariot) for battle. Said porcine familiar's name was Hildisvini, which literally translates as Battle-swine.
  • Good Bad Girl: Despite her wantonness, she was of benevolent nature.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: When Loki tells her that Thrym will only return Mjölnir if she marries him she is so angry that whole of Asgard shakes from her tantrum.
  • Hot Witch: She was the goddess of seidr, a type of Norse magic. And was noted to be extremely attractive.
  • Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: Some myths describe her as wearing beautiful, flowing white dresses. When Action Girl mode is called for, she just straps a breastplate and sword over the dress.
  • I Have Many Names: She gave a different name for herself in every nation she searched for her husband Oder in.
  • Love Goddess: Freyja is to the Aesir what Aphrodite was to the Olympians.
  • Psychopomp: Lead the Valkyries to the battlefields to choose and lead the souls who would enter the Folkvang and reclaim that of women who go down fighting.
  • Satellite Love Interest: Has one in her husband, Oðr. All that is known about him comes from her, when he would leave and she would wander the world looking for him, weeping. Much speculation exists as to who he might have been, if he was a separate god or another name or aspect of Odin.
  • Shapeshifter: Is said to be able to transform into an eagle.
  • Slut-Shaming: Subverted in the Lokasenna, where Loki attempts to slut shame Freyja, only for her father Njord to defend her by saying that there is nothing wrong with a married woman having a lover. Said lover in question happened to be Freyr.
  • Really Gets Around: In a Never Live It Down moment, she slept with four dwarf siblings in the course of a night in exchange for a necklace she wanted, though this particular story, is very likely a Christian addition, making it yet another early case of demonization by slanderous Slut-Shaming... That said, she really did get around a lot.

    Freyr 
Freya's brother; they were both part of the Vanir, the other group of gods opposing the Aesir, until they ended up being hostages as part of a truce alongside their father Njord. A god of fertility and sex, generally more benevolent than his sister, who ultimately dies in Ragnarok as he gave up his magic sword for the love of a giantess. His name means "lord." Like many fertility deities, Freyr was also an agricultural deity primarily responsible for good harvests and therefore prosperity.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: To Apollo; both are sun related gods associated with sexuality, and are not the only light related deities in their pantheon (the situation of replacement in the written myths is actually inverse: Apollo replaced Helios as the sun god, while Baldr replaced Freyr as a light god). Though do note that the actual sun in Norse mythology is a goddess (see below).
  • Animal Motifs: Usually pigs but also horses.
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed: As the god of fertility and sex, most depictions of Freyr shows him with a very large erect phallus.
  • Bi the Way: A common interpretation of his character. Not really surprising considering he was a god of sexuality.
  • Chekhov's Gun: He give his sword to Skirnir so his shield man could help him to win Gerd's heart. It isn't until Ragnarok that this event has a huge impact — Freyr fails to stop Surt since he is without weapon, allowing Surt to burn the world.
    • But not before partly blinding Surt with a deer-antler.
  • Combo Platter Powers: His domains include light, sunshine, rain, growth and the fruits of the earth, the livestock, all forms of fertility, pleasure, peace and prosperity.
  • Cool Boat: His ship Skidbladnir, described as the best of all ships. It is large enough to carry all the gods, can't be sunk, always sails the right direction with a gentle breeze and can be folded into his pocket.
  • Demoted to Extra: He was one of the three main gods of the Norse pantheon and stood alongside Odin and Thor, and was actually more worshiped than Odin, however where Odin and Thor are well known names today Freyr is anything but.
  • Decomposite Character: With the mythical danish king Frodi, both are sons of a man who was chosen as husband by his feet, both lived at the same time and where attributed with establishing the so-called Frodi-peace, and in general seems identical, nonetheless they are treated as different characters.
  • Full-Boar Action: Had a boar made of gold by the dwarves, so detailed it even was covered in fur!
  • The Good King: In Ynglinga-saga in which the gods are mortals, his reign is described as a peaceful era where everyone prospered.
  • Light 'em Up: Often associated with the sun and light, though Baldr seems to have replaced him as that in myths Hijacked by Jesus.
  • Love at First Sight: To the jötunn Gerdr, however also something of a deconstruction as it ends in his death and failure to save the universe at Ragnarok.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Whether he and Freyja was born in Vanaheim and exchanged as a hostage following the Aesir-Vanir war, or was born in Asgard following the war, also regarding if Skadi or Njord's sister is their mother.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: It is often suggested that his original name was Yngvi, but was addressed so often as Freyr (Lord) out of respect that it eventually became the name most associated with him.
  • Our Elves Are Better: Lord of the realm of the elves, Alfheim, and overall they were supposed to be like him.
  • Pretty Boy: Not quite to the extent of Baldr, but he was said to be fair of face.
  • With This Herring: Fought and killed Gerd's brother with an antler after giving up his sword.
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    Bragi 
The god of poetry, a son of Odin and the giantess Gunnlod, and the husband of Iðunn.
  • The Bard: He's the god of bards essentially.
  • Canon Immigrant: Consider that Odin himself also is reckoned a god of poetry, and that the first Real Life norse skald in tradition was named Bragi Boddason, some scholars believe this god actually is the skald elevated to godhood.
  • Dirty Coward: Is called this by Loki in Lokasenna, it is unclear if there is truth to this accusation.

    Iðunn 
Bragi's wife, the goddess of youth and spring, and the keeper of the golden apples that the gods use to maintain their immortality. The Æsir's only clear agriculture deity, through Thor and Siv/Sif are suggested to have been associated with it as well.
  • Damsel in Distress: When kidnapped by the jötunn Thjazi.
  • The Ditz: She's often portrayed as a bit of a scatterbrain.
  • Fountain of Youth: The Norse gods are somewhat unique in that they are not innately immortal (as also demonstrated by Thor's wrestling match with the personification of old age) but need to eat Iðunn's apples to stay young.
  • Noodle Incident / Missing Episode: Iðunn's brother was killed (Loki blames it on Bragi, or rather, he blamed it on someone she was sleeping with, which may imply something else), but the story has unfortunately not survived.
  • Our Elves Are Better: Is said to be the youngest daughter of the Elf Isvaldi's eldest set of children, and is thus of Elfin kin.

    Njörðr 
A god of the wind, wealth, sea, sailors and fishing. He is the father of Freyr and Freyja and was sent to the Æsir from the Vanir as a hostage at the end of the Æsir-Vanir war.
  • Arranged Marriage: With the giantess Skaði. Occasionally it is said to have been a failed marriage (never consummated).
  • Brother–Sister Incest: He had Freyr and Freyja with his unnamed sister. Such practice was apparently common among the Vanir.
  • Blow You Away: He directed the way the wind blew.

    Skaði 
A giantess who is counted among the Æsir due to her (failed) marriage to Njörðr. She was allowed to choose a husband from the Æsir, but was only allowed to see their feet, resulting in her choosing Njörðr. Goddess of hunting, winter and skiing.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Loki. Of course, Loki is responsible for the death of her father.
  • Avenging the Villain: She originally came to the Æsir seeking revenge for her father, Þjassi. Considering that he kidnapped Iðunn and tried to deprive the gods of their immortality, it's surprising that the gods treated her as well as they did.
  • Awful Wedded Life: A pretty tragic version. It's not that Skadi or Njord had anything against the marriage to begin with, they simply weren't right for each other. Skadi was a goddess of snow and skiing, and obviously preferred the mountains, while Njord was a seagod, who preferred to live by the seaside.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: One possible meaning of her name is "damage."
  • Odd Job Gods: She tends to be associated with skiing.
  • Triang Relations: She wanted to marry Baldr when he was single. Even after he was married to Nanna and killed, she was pretty damn spiteful to Loki.

    Heimdall 
The Watchman of the Aesir, permanently guarding the Bifrost Bridge against any threat - a task made easier by the fact that he can see and hear everything that happens in the world, and never needs to sleep. Left his post once to outdo Loki in retrieving Freyja's necklace from some giants, and then again for their final (and mutually fatal) battle. Heimdall is said to have sired the human classes and passed on the secret of the runes to them.
  • Angel Unaware: A key story focused on him depicts him staying with three different human families in disguise, and rewarding them based on their treatment of him. This is the creation of the human classes.
  • Covert Pervert: Guess whose idea it was to dress Thor in drag?
  • Extra Parent Conception: Has an unusual Origin Story, in some versions just appearing fully formed from the sea but in others being born to each of the sea god's daughters, of whom there were nine (one for each wave in a cycle). He may or may not also have a father in Odin.

    Vili and Vé 
Odin's brothers. They took part in Ymir's murder and the creation of humanity and Midgard, but are otherwise rarely mentioned.
  • Bait-and-Switch Tyrant: Ynglinga Saga states that after Odin had been gone for an exceptionally long time, they decide he must be dead, and they were the default rulers of Asgard entitled to share Frigg between them. It's not as bad as feared; neither want to have relations with their brother's wife, they just want to rule as equals beside her and immediately step down when Odin returns. Loki twists the story to Frigg throwing herself on Odin's brothers while he was away, but he is dismissed.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: And you've read everything they were known to do.
  • Depending on the Writer: Völuspá instead names Odin's brothers as Hœnir and Lóðurr. Lóðurr is likewise subject to Chuck Cunningham Syndrome, whereas Hœnir is mentioned a few more times (see below).

    Hœnir 
Another one of Odin's brothers, who according to the Völuspá assisted him in the creation of humanity along with Lóðr. He is mentioned as having been sent to the Vanir as a hostage at the end of the Æsir-Vanir war along with Mímir. Judging by one of the last stanzas of Völuspá, he is one of the few to survive Ragnarök.
  • Action Survivor: He actually manages to survive Ragnarök despite never coming across as much of a Badass in what little is known of him. Some have stipulated that he owes his survival just to not being present in Asgard yet at the time of the final battle.
  • Bit Character: The kind of role he usually has. He is actually mentioned in several myths (often as part of a trio along with Odin and Loki), but he almost never does anything of any real consequence in any of them.
  • The Ditherer: He passes all important decisions on to others. "Let others decide" is his Catchphrase while with the Vanir.
  • Extreme Doormat: While with the Vanir, he was supposedly incapable of making decisions without Mímir's advice.
  • Put on a Bus / The Bus Came Back: He was sent away to the Vanir as a hostage in exchange for Njörðr, Freyr and Freyja, but he they eventually send him back to the Aesir when they conclude he is useless without Mímir, and they kick Mímir out too since he is nothing but a talking head, having been decapitated by them in the war.

    Kvasir 
A god created from the saliva of all the Æsir and the Vanir, he is the wisest of the gods. He was murdered by the dwarves Fjalar and Galar and his blood was the main component of the Mead of Poetry.
  • The Bard: The original one, in-story.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Ynglinga saga dispenses with his origin of being created from saliva and instead just makes him one of the Vanir who was traded as a hostage to the Æsir at the end of their war.
  • Sacrificial Lamb: He only really features in the story where he gets killed.
  • Stuffed into the Fridge: He's only really remembered because of others fighting over his magical blood.

    Sunna and Máni 
The goddess of the Sun and the god of the Moon (contrary to Classical Mythology, most Northern European religions don't see the Sun as masculine or the Moon as feminine), they are sadly the most easily forgotten deities of the pantheon, but seemingly were of quite the relevance, as they even had days sacred to them (Mánadagr, which became Monday, and Sunnundagr, which became Sunday). They run across the heavens, running away from two evil wolves that want to kill them.

    Forseti 
The son of Baldr and Nanna, lawmaker and god of justice and reconciliation. In Asgard he presides over a hall called Glitnir, acting as a judge and settling disagreements between the gods and mortal men.
  • Foil: His skills in reconciliation are described as being contrary to Týr.
  • Meaningful Name: "Forseti" means "the presiding one," and he did just that. His hall Glitnir's name means "Shining," and it's described as having a ceiling made of silver and shining gold pillars.
  • Mediator: He apparently acts as this to disagreeing parties, as it's mentioned that no one who leaves his hall leaves dissatisfied.
  • Only Sane Man: By virtue of his role as arbiter between disagreeing gods and men.

    Mimir 
The wisest of the Aesir. During the peacetime in the midst of the Aesir and Vanir war, he was one of the hostages given to the Vanir.
  • Chessmaster Sidekick: To Hœnir, secretly. Too bad for him, he was found out.
  • Depending on the Writer: Odin's wisdom being provided by Mimir's disembodied head is one version of its origin; in another, Odin gains wisdom by sacrificing his eye in order to drink from the Well of Mimir underneath the World Tree.
  • Losing Your Head: Of course, his head kept the ability to talk after it was separated from his body, and Odin used herbs to make sure it would not decay.
  • Off with His Head!: What the Vanir did to him after discovering that he was giving Hœnir advice, angry at being tricked. It was sent back to the Aesir.
  • The Smart Guy: All of Hœnir's seemingly thought-out plans were Mimir's.

    Magni & Modi 
The sons of Thor. Magni is his son by the giantess Jarnsaxa, while Modi's mother is never explicitly identified.
  • Action Survivor: They both survive Ragnarok.
  • Badass Adorable: Magni beat up the giant Hrungnir when he was only three days old.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Magni and Jarnsaxa save Thor from the giant Hrungnir.
  • Bit Character: Other than being Thor's son and Magni's brother and surviving Ragnarok, not much is known about Modi.
  • Cool Horse: Thor rewards Magni with Hrungnir's horse, Gullfaxi, after he saves him.
  • Heroic Bastard: Magni is Thor's son via an affair with a giantess. No source identifies Modi's mother, though he's sometimes assumed to be Sif's son.
  • Super Strength: Magni's strength is described as being nearly equal to Thor's.
  • Tragic Keepsake: They inherit Mjollnir after Ragnarok and Thor's death.
  • Warrior Poet: Modi, according to the Prose Edda.

    Ullr 
The son of Sif, and god of justice, hunting, hand-to-hand combat, and dueling. He married Skadi and in Asgard lives in a place called Ydalir.
  • The Archer: He's skilled at this.
  • Disappeared Dad: He is specifically described as Thor's stepson; the identity of his father is unknown.
  • Missing Episode: Like Tyr, he must have been a important good at some point, given the number of places named after him in Norway and Sweden. But no actual story about him survives aside from his name, attributes and function.
  • Odd Job Gods: He's credited with the invention of snowshoes and teaching man how to ski.
  • Pretty Boy: He's described as this in the Prose Edda.

    Sif 
The wife of Thor and mother of Ullr. She was the goddess of corn, and possibly fertility. Unfortunately, not much is known about her in the present.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Her most famous myth involves Loki getting dwarves to make her the trademark golden wig that she is most known for.
  • Your Cheating Heart: Possibly. In Lokasenna, Loki gloats about sleeping with her in a public banquet with the gods, an argument she doesn't respond to or oppose.

    Thrud 
The daughter of Thor and Sif, and goddess of power and strength. She once tried to marry a dwarf named Alvis, only for Thor to turn the dwarf into stone.

  • Action Girl: Presumably, based on her name. There is a Valkyrie named Thrud, who may be the same person.

    Jörd 
Goddess of the earth, the daughter of Annar and a giantess named Nott. In some sources she is the mother of Thor.
  • Flat Character: She never really got a role or much development. She's pretty much just a cosmic entity.

Loki and Prominent Family Members

    Loki 
The blood brother of Odin, Loki is technically a god — one of the Æsir. As in Norse culture, once you are adopted, you are officially one of the tribe — and therefore are a part of the family. So even though Loki was a child of giants (which were the primal forces in Norse Mythology), he was also one of the Æsir. He's a trickster who has been often turned into a Satan equivalent. Also known as "the sly god" and "father of the wolf." He was born the giant Farbauti and the giantess Laufey, his biological brothers are Helblindi and Býleistr.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Mostly occurred due to later writers missing that there are two distinctly different entities in Norse mythology named Loki and then further conflating the stories and linking them incorrectly, creating even more confusion. On top of that, some of the myths written later appear out of nowhere and contradict the earlier versions. For example, in the original form of the myth about Baldur's death, Loki is never even mentioned, and his involvement is very unclear. There is also no reason to believe there was ever a standard canon, let alone one that synced up understandings across different population centers. A major theme of Loki in the recorded stories seems to be that 'it is dangerous to let someone into your kinship group who might cause trouble, even if he's useful and you like him a lot.' This is unlikely to have been part of his original conception.
  • Alternative Character Interpretationinvoked: Some researchers have theorized that he was originally another aspect of Odin, while a more popular theory is that Loki is the same as Lóðurr, as Loki is often mentioned along with Odin and Hœnir in many tales and it would also explain why Lóðurr is never mentioned again. Some experts say that the benevolent Lóðurr is incompatible with Loki. Note that Loki actually appears rather benevolent in a few stories too. Most experts agree that it's very hard to make a clear statement about Loki's origin and true nature, which is in all appropriate.
  • Animal Motifs: He's associated with fish. In the Faroese ballad Loka Táttur, Loki transforms a boy into a grain in the middle of a flounder's roe to hide him from a jötunn who wanted to murder the child, and Loki uses fishing as part of his ruse against the giant.note  He's also the inventor of the fishing net, and he once shape-shifted into a salmon to evade the Æsir.
  • Arch-Enemy: Not of Thor but of Heimdall and Skadi, the latter because he caused the death of her father Thjazi. Thor might have killed him, but it was Loki who started the fight that led to his death. Of course, whose idea was it to let a snake drip poison in the eyes of Loki?
  • Attractive Bent-Gender: He must have been sufficiently attractive as a milkmaid because he gave birth to several children during an eight-year period.
  • Attractive Bent Species: By horse standards, Loki as a mare must have been quite alluring because the stallion Svaðilfari is Distracted by the Sexy, ignores the commands of his master, and chases after Loki into the woods. Loki later gives birth to the foal Sleipnir.
  • Badass Mustache: Certain old depictions of Loki show him with a mustache that resembles that of another character. Also, some of the (believed) Viking Age depictions of his face features a mustache.
  • Big Bad Slippage: The Ur-Example as he started off as just a trickster, but eventually became greatest enemy to the Æsir.
  • Big Eater: In one story, he just loses an eating contest to the embodiment of fiery destruction.note  In spite of his great appetite, Loki remains the Lean and Mean to Thor's Dumb Muscle; he's a Voluntary Shapeshifter, after all.
  • Big Bad: Loki is the primary villain of Norse myth at least in the version of the stories known to modern audiences.
  • Blow You Away: One of his names means "loptr," which comes from a Norse word for "air." Even today he is associated in folklore with weather phenomena.
  • Butt-Monkey: Poor Loki goes from The Chew Toy to Iron Butt-Monkey to a woobie to Jerkass Woobie to Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds depending on when the myth is supposed to take place.
  • Cain and Abel: To Odin, his bloodbrother.
  • Canon Foreigner: While most Norse gods have obvious Indo-European roots and equivalents in other Indo-European-derived religions (for example, Thor is a distant cousin of Zeus and Indra, and the Æsir and Vanir are fairly clearly related to the Asuras/Ahuras and Devas/Daevas of Hinduism and Zoroastrianism), Loki doesn't even appear in other Germanic myths. He seems to be unique to Scandinavian traditions and nobody's entirely sure how he got there (which, you know, is appropriate).
    • Most of the Germanic sources are very scarce and often are second or third hand sources leaving out many gods, so Loki's status could merely be a case of lack of evidence.
  • Cute Monster Girl: He's a Cute Monster Guy; while admittedly some giantesses receive this treatment, Loki is a rare good-looking male giant, and notably, most of his kids (male and female) are hideous monsters.
  • Determinator: When Loki gives his word, he keeps it, whether for good or ill. He'll keep on going even when the likes of Odin have given up.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: He's not evil per se, but he does hold his mother, Laufey, in high esteem, to the point where he chose to call himself "Laufeyjarson" rather than "Farbautison."
  • Evil Gloating: Many people notes that the in the older sources (Lokasenna), Loki is tied up and put under the snake for insulting all the gods at a party. Of course, at said party Loki puts salt in the wound of Tyr by gloating how his son (Fenrir) bit off Tyr's hand and then to Frigg's face that he was responsible for the death of her son, Baldr.
  • Evil Redhead: Mostly as part of his equivalency with Satan by Christians, but he is often portrayed as a redhead as well as an evil, malicious soul, contrasting the noble and redheaded Thor.
  • Extreme Omnisexual: He's done it with men, women, giants, monsters, and at one point, a horse has done him.
  • Eye Scream: Sometimes his imprisonment specifically mentions that the serpent's venom drips into his eyes.
  • Eyes Never Lie: It's the only way to detect him when he's transformed.
  • Face–Heel Turn: When his pranks go too far and result in Baldr being Killed Off for Real, the gods imprison Loki in a cave with a serpent dripping venom into his face for eternity. When Loki breaks free, he will not be happy.
  • Facial Horror: Had his lips sewn shut after losing a bet. Modern adaptations often gloss over this, but there have been some depictions found of a face with its mouth sewn shut which are often taken as depictions of Loki.
  • Fiery Redhead: Not as much as Thor, but he has his moments.
  • Flaming Hair: Is sometimes depicted with this. Also, one of his kennings is actually "Flame-Hair," although this is likely a confusion with the god of fire, Logi.
  • Forgot About His Powers: Twice in Þrymskviða. He borrows Feyja's magic flying cloak to go and look for Mjöllnir when he already has magic flying shoes. He then disguises Thor as Freyja, hiding his face with a veil then shapeshifts himself into a handmaiden. He could have shapeshifted into a realistic Freyja to fool Thrym. Then again, Loki could very well have be trolling Thor by forcing him to dress up as a woman.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: Loki's relationships with the other gods would continually sour over time. Part of it was due to mistreatment by the other gods, but part of it was because Loki himself was such a massive troublemaker.
  • The Gadfly: When it comes to antics, he is either this or an outright troll. In one story, he is a literal gadfly, stinging a dwarf to distract him from crafting better items than those Loki had provided earlier (it was a bet).
  • Gender Bender: Frequently. His gender-fluidity is why some in the LGBTQ community consider Loki to be an icon.
  • Hijacked by Jesus: ... and turned into Satan. Although even in the more generous tales, Loki is usually a troublemaker who causes the problem he is forced by the other gods to fix.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: An interpretation for his reason for killing Baldr. Jötunns are meant to represent nature while Gods are meant to represent culture(or "humans"), and Loki particularly represents what everyone dislikes but you have to face, such as an untimely death of a loved one. By trying to get everything that lives to promise not to harm Baldr, Frigg tried to break the laws of nature and stop death. Loki, being a representation of the unavoidable, thus killed Baldr because no man can escape death.
  • Informed Ability: A heavy case of Depending on the Writer, but his status as a trickster. In some stories, he does get the better of his opponents. In others, his tricks are so obvious that everyone immediately knows it was him, and he comes across as Too Dumb to Live for even trying them. A notable case is when he shaved Sif's head.
  • In Touch with His Feminine Side: He's the epitome of an effeminate male in Norse mythology—Loki is a Gender Bending Pretty Boy who has gotten pregnant more than once, and he thrives on pulling off pranks rather than engage in combat. He's the antithesis of what the macho Norse culture considers to be the ideal man.
  • Jerkass Gods: Well, singular. The list of nasty stuff Loki does is pretty extensive. Often his reasons are also rather petty or just of the lolz:
    • In Lokasenna, Loki is invited to a party at Ægir's hall and kills one of Ægir's servants because he can't stand all the positive attention the other gods give said servants. He is promptly thrown out and then forces his way back in again by invoking his bloodbrotherhood with Odin. Loki then continues to heckle and insult the other gods and tops it off by gloating that he was the mastermind behind Baldr's death to Frigg's face.
    • In Reginsmál & Völsunga Saga, he kills Ottr and is forced to pay weregild to ransom Odin. Loki does this by robbing Andvari blind and taking his precious ring. Andvari curses the ring to bring misfortune to the owner, but Loki dodges this by handing the ring to Ottr's family causing them to start killing each other.
    • The entire episode where he shaved Sif's head for no good reason.
    • Him tricking Thjalfi into breaking the bone to get the marrow, if one believes in the analysis of both Neil Gailman and Peter Madsen. Loki essentially got two children into slavery.
    • Of course the narrative in the Prose Edda where he tricked Hödr into murdering his own brother. Also, since Odin is Loki's bloodbrother, he technically conspired to murder his nephew.
  • Kick the Dog: Killing Baldr for no real reason was bad enough, but tricking Baldr's blind brother into doing it was even worse.
    • Then Odin did try to drown Loki's son.
  • The Lancer: Takes on this role while he joins Thor to visit Utgard and when they retrieve stolen Mjölnir.
  • Large Ham: See the Lokasenna. When Loki gets on a roll, there's no shutting him up.
  • Light Is Not Good: Over time, he acquired an association with fire (due to a Rouge Angles of Satin — Logi is the Norse personification of fire), and tends to be portrayed as a Pretty Boy much like Lucifer. One of his origins was that he came out of a tree struck by lightning. He represents fire that harms.
  • Manipulative Bastard: One of the most prominent trickster-figures in mythology.
  • Meaningful Name: Scholars have struggled for a very long time to ascertain the etymology of his name, but the philologist Eldar Heide has determined that Loki most likely means "knot," "tangle" or "loop." (Indeed, modern Danish still uses the word "løkke" as a possible synonym for all three words.) This works both literally and figuratively, as Loki is credited in-universe as the inventor of fishing nets, and he's The Trickster in the Norse pantheon who "ensnares" others with his mischievous and chaotic nature.
  • Momma's Boy: He's closer to his mother than his father, as Loki uses the matronymic Laufeyjarson.
  • Mister Seahorse:
    • Odin's steed Sleipnir was born when Loki assumed the form of a mare and let the stallion of a giant who was building Asgard's walls couple with "her" to sap his strength.
    • In some retellings, after the death of Angrboða, Loki eats her heart and becomes pregnant. These tellings differ on whether the pregnancy results in the birth of either Hel or the first trolls.
    • Odin accuses Loki of having given birth to many children while the latter had lived as a milkmaid for eight years.
    • In one country, stories of Loki having children in female form were so common that it was accepted practice for men without mothers to claim their father had driven their mother off in disgust after learning "she" was actually the shapeshifted Loki.
  • Mutual Kill: With Heimdall during Ragnarök.
  • Nephewism: Sort of, not many stories tell about Thor and Odin, but there are plenty where Loki follows Thor on adventures and helps him out.
  • Nom de Mom: Is commonly given the surname "Laufeyjarson" (Laufey's son). Laufey is actually his mother; his father's name is Farbauti.
    • The reason for this is quite simple: Norse myth was originally transmited through alitterative poetry, so calling him Laufeyjarson simply rhymes better.
  • Not So Different: Despite all his many, many faults (including promiscuity), he was also quite a family man just like Odin and Thor. Notably, he was said to have been raising his kids alone in secret after his first wife died. (That was a BAD thing since they were monsters — so says Odin anyway — and Odin subsequently locked them away, but still.)
    • Poiting this out is what gets him punished. When the gods shame him for being so deprived, he points out that the gods aren't better themselves and have infact done worse things than him. For this the gods saw it fit to murder his children and leave him under a venomous snake.
  • One Steve Limit: Played With rather hilariously in one story, where he and Thor meet two men called Utgard-Loki (as in 'Loki of Utgard') and Logi.
  • Order Versus Chaos: He's most definitely on the side of chaos—his mischief usually results in some form of mayhem.
  • Papa Wolf: Is sometimes known as a god of fatherhood and protector of children, as seen in Loka Táttur. In said story a farmer angers a giant who swears to kill his young son and the farmer in desperation prays to Loki to save his son after Odin and Hoenir fail. Loki manages to hide the boy as a fish in the water but when the giant catches on to what he's doing, he transforms the boy back and tells him to run into the nearby boathouse. The boy does that and when the giant follows him, he ends up stuck in the opening and Loki then takes the opprotunity to kill him and returns the boy home.
    • This could possibly be the reason why Loki completly turns on the gods in the end and starts Ragnarok even though he knows it's suicide, because after all of his children have been either ripped from him or horribly murdered, he doesn't see any other option than dying and taking Asgard with him.
  • Playing with Fire: Is sometimes associated with fire. This may be in part due to him being confused with the character Logi, the personification of fire, who, despite what you may think, is not just an alternate spelling for Loki. He is also confused with Lóðr/Lódurr, another name for Odin's biological brother Ve, which means burning.
  • Pretty Boy: He's described as "pleasing and handsome" (an alternate translation is "beautiful and comely," which is closer to our modern definition of this trope), and has a lithe frame.
  • Really Gets Around: The myths aren't shy about the fact that, even by the standards of the Æsir, Loki likes to have sex with people in a variety of forms.
  • Scars Are Forever: The ones he acquired when the dwarfs sewed his mouth shut. They even stay with him in all his transformations. Notably, however, the scars can also change. They're always on his lip, but they needn't stay in the same spot or shape.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: He's the wily Sensitive Guy to Thor's warrior Manly Man.
  • Shadow Archetype: In some ways, he is a shadow image of Odin, with all his bad sides taken Up to Eleven.
  • Shapeshifting Seducer: Aside from turning into a mare and seducing the stallion Svadilfari, Loki has a reputation for getting knocked up by mortal men and trolls.
  • Shapeshifting Squick: Loki's seduction of Svadilfari aside, there are tales of his pregnancies, and the aforementioned stories of motherless men claiming their father drove their mother away in disgust upon realizing she was actually Loki in disguise.
  • Slut-Shaming: He sure likes to point out how slutty the other godesses are. Suprisingly, considering the times, Njord has no issue with married women having affairs and defends his daughter Freyja by saying that she has done nothing wrong.
    • To be fair his shaming is not so much "you have sex alot" as "you have had sex with people no one should sleep with". His accusation of Gefjun is that she has sex even though she is meant to be a virgin goddess, Freyja slept with her own brother, and Frigg, the goddess of marriage, cheated on her husband.
  • Sissy Villain: Part of what identifies Loki as the "bad guy" of the Nordic mythos? He's a slender, effeminate-looking man who relies on trickery and magic over courage and forthrightness, as well as a bisexual who enjoys being penetrated so much he willingly turns into a woman for it, happily accepting pregnancy as acceptable in exchange for the pleasure.
  • The Trickster: One of, if not THE most famous examples. Loki is a mercurial agent of change and chaos within the Norse pantheon, and he frequently disrupts the status quo. In pop culture, he's known as the god of mischief (even though he's not directly referred to as this in the myths).
  • Troll: Loki loves to make people mad and cause trouble just for the sheer hell of it. He thinks it's great fun to piss people off.
  • The Vamp: Loki shapeshifts into a mare and uses all his marely charms to seduce the stallion Svadilfari in order to save Asgard from a debt the Æsir didn't want to pay.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: To Odin and Thor.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifter: At last count, he's taken the form of a fly, a flea, a hawk, a salmon, a horse, and a woman — the latter multiple times.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Alongside Thor, Loki tends to show up in adaptations a lot, often as the villain.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: He was, originally, a decent guy. The serfs were particularly fond of him. But after the dwarves sewed his lips shut (after he managed to trick them out of chopping his head off), the other gods laughed at him, and he began to plot his revenge.

    Angrboða 
Loki's giantess consort. The gods abducted her three children when they became aware of how dangerous they would become. Some scholars say she was a very powerful witch and that she had the ability to see into the future. She was confined to Hel and would not be released from the realm of the dead until Loki was unbound.
  • Action Girl: A competent fighter and a proud giantess at that.
  • Ambiguously Evil: A version of her story implies she knew her children would help destroy the world.
  • Animal Motif: Wolves. She would change into one at will.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: There are several myths that involve Angrboða's heart being consumed by Loki. The basic premise is that the Æsir (specifically Odin) ambush her and try to kill her by setting her on fire. There are variations on how that ended, with one version saying she survived the three times she was burned, and another version saying that she died the third time with only her heart remaining intact.
    • One outcome of that has Loki eat her still beating heart to make sure she remains dead.
    • There is also a version where he does this to her heartto remember her by.
    • The most popular version is Loki doing this to resurrect her.
  • Cute Monster Girl: Got this treatment as a giantess.
  • Meaningful Name: Her name can be interpreted as either "the one who brings grief" or "she-who-offers-sorrow." Fenrir, Jörmungandr and Hel were all her children. We all know what happened there.
  • The Mistress: It's a little tricky to sort this one out since she was in some versions Loki's first wife. He married Sigyn in Asgard which "demoted" Angrboða to being concubine instead of a wife.
  • Out of the Inferno: When the Æsir want her dead, they try to burn her. There is one version of the myth that has her rise from the flames three times unharmed.
  • Red String of Fate: Her relationship to Loki.
  • Super Strength: There is a story where the gods were trying to launch Baldr's funeral ship, Righorn, but the ship carried so many gifts and offerings they could not move it. Not even Thor could make it budge. In comes Angrboða and in one swift move she helped launch the ship. Apparently this infuriated Thor so much it took all the Æsir to hold him back from attacking her.
  • The Vamp: In the version where she knows her children will help their father end the world.
    • Contemporary artists tend to depict her with black hair and in dark clothing.

    Fenrir 
Loki and Angrboða's first son, sometimes also called Vanargandr (the monster of the river Ván), Hróðvitnir (fame-wolf) and the Fenris Wolf, the latter being the name by which most modern day Scandinavians refer to him. When the gods learn that he is fated to kill Odin, they bind and seal him when he's still young, with Tyr losing his arm in the process. When Ragnarok comes, he indeed kills Odin, but is killed by Odin's son Vidar in return.
  • Animalistic Abomination: A gigantic wolf that can end the world. See below:
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: His final size is such that when he opens his mouth, the lower jaw rests on the ground and the upper jaw hits the sky. In the Prose Edda, it says "he would gape yet more if there were room for it."
  • Beast of the Apocalypse: Along with Jormungandr. Brothers and children of Loki, the two were imprisoned because of their prophesied role in Ragnarok. It doesn't work. When the end times do roll around, Fenrir is freed (when his sons, Skoll and Hati devour the Sun and the Moon), and Jormungandr crawls onto land, and the two of them lead the assault on Asgard, where they batter down the gates and slay Odin and Thor respectively. By this point Fenrir is so large that his upper jaw hits the sky when he opens his mouth, Jormungandr can encircle the world, and the din they create is so loud that it causes the sky to split open, freeing Surtr and the sons of Muspel to make war on the gods.
  • Canis Major: His mouth is said to be so large that his upper jaw hits the sky!
  • Decomposite Character: It is possible that Garmr and Skoll were other names for Fenrir, but Snorri wrote them as separate characters.
  • The Dreaded: The Aesir, Odin in particular, fear him and his destiny.
  • Glory Seeker: His desire to become famous is what allowed the Aesir to put bindings on him, as he believed facing danger was needed to gain fame. This is seemingly mocked by the other giants who nickname his son Hati "Hróðvitnisson" (Son of famous wolf).
  • God of Evil: May or may not have originally filled this role, since he is noted as sharing a similar mythology to Ahriman.
  • Hero Killer: Destined to kill Odin, responsible for the maiming of Tyr, harbinger of the world's end...yeah he counts.
  • Horror Hunger: One of the reasons he must be chained up.
  • The Juggernaut: The gods couldn't even slow him down once he started to grow.
  • Just Eat Him: He eats Odin.
  • Kill the God: Kills Odin.
  • Meaningful Name: Fenrir means "fen-dweller." Sometimes he is called Fenrisulfr which means "the fen-wolf."
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: In all probability the reason he kills Odin. He was chained because the gods foresaw that he would cause a lot of trouble if he wasn't (which makes it a Self-Fulfilling Prophecy). Also Odin makes an argument for a person making a name for himself, which could have inspired Fenrir and thus adding to the fire of hate in his heart.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Bound for as long as the Sun and the Moon remain in the sky. Depending on the versions of the myth, his sons, Skoll and Hati, may be trying to do something about that.
  • Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: Maybe he wouldn't have killed Odin if, you know, the gods didn't try to bind him for eternity.
  • Siblings in Crime: Fenrir and Jormungandr came into the world together and they leave it together, assaulting the very heavens and killing the gods.
  • You Killed My Father: Inflicted on him by the actual God of Vengeance no less.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Despite the gods' efforts, Fenrir murders Odin during Ragnarök.

    Hati and Sköll 
Fenrir's sons, and Loki's grandsons, Hati and Skoll are twin wolves who pursue Mani and Sol (the moon and the sun) across the night sky every night. At Ragnarök, they will finally capture their prey and help to bring about the end of the world.
  • Animalistic Abomination: Like their father, they're gargantuan lupine monsters who will kill and devour the Anthropomorphic Personification of the sun and the moon.
  • Beast of the Apocalypse: Hati and Skoll's capture of the sun and the moon is a major part of Ragnarok, and one of the signs that the end is nigh.
  • Canis Major: Large enough to swallow the Sun and the Moon—though since Sol and Mani were personifications of light rather than giant balls of gas or rock this still makes them smaller than their father, Fenrir.
  • Decomposite Character: In earlier myths they and their father, Fenrir, may have been a single character. In at least one prior version of Ragnarok it is Fenrir, not Skoll, who devours the sun.
  • I Have Many Names: Invoked with Hati; he has the mock lastname "Hróðvitnisson" (son of fame wolf) and "Måna-Garmr" meaning "Moon-wolf."
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Hati means "Enemy," "Hater," or "He Who Hates" and Sköll means "Treachery" or "Traitor."
  • Revenge by Proxy: Unable to avenge their father's binding by attacking Odin directly,
  • Savage Wolves: They are wolves and two of the most dangerous beings in Norse Myth.
  • Siblings in Crime: Share the goal of turning out all the lights in the universe.
  • Wolves Always Howl at the Moon: Now you know why.

    Jormungandr 
Loki and Angrboða's second son. When he is but a small snake, the gods toss him to the ocean to drown him. But he does not drown and grows big enough to circle the world. He has beefs with Thor, up to the Ragnarök, where the two face off and kill each other.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: Can be compared to the Egyptian monster serpent Apep. Some scholars believe they might come from a myth of Proto-Indo-European origin that spread surprisingly widely, which would mean the legend is Older Than Dirt. In any case, both are huge serpentine menaces so the comparison is obvious, even if they're totally unrelated.
  • Animalistic Abomination: A giant snake who encircles the world and will help to end it.
  • Arch-Enemy: To Thor. He does fit in a pan-European-North African-Indo-motif about a beastly serpent/dragon fighting the sky god.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: As big or bigger than Fenrir. He wraps all the way around Midgard, with his tail in his mouth. When he joins his brother in the assault on Asgard, only a third of his body is able to emerge from the ocean.
  • Beast of the Apocalypse: With Fenrir. Brothers and children of Loki, the two were imprisoned because of their prophesied role in Ragnarok. It doesn't work. When the end times do roll around, Fenrir is freed (when his sons, Skoll and Hati devour the Sun and the Moon), and Jormungandr crawls onto land, and the two of them lead the assault on Asgard, where they batter down the gates and slay Odin and Thor respectively. By this point Fenrir is so large that his upper jaw hits the sky when he opens his mouth, Jormungandr can encircle the world, and the din they create is so loud that it causes the sky to split open, freeing Surtr and the sons of Muspel to make war on the gods.
  • Big Little Brother: It's a testimony to his sheer size that he manages to be this to his older brother. As a reminder, Fenrir has children so large they can eat the sun!
  • Breath Weapon: Exhales venom and will turn the ocean and air alike to poison at Ragnarok.
  • The Dreaded: The Jotnar fear him, and by extension many fear Thor, given his exploits against it.
  • Hero Killer: Much like his older brother, he absolutely terrifies the gods and will eventually slay Thor.
  • Kill the God: Thor.
  • Kraken and Leviathan: The largest being in the ocean, dwarfing even the Kraken. As is the case with many of these beings, he more or less stays where he is until the end of days.
  • Mutual Kill: He and Thor. The Thunderer manages to kill Jormungandr, but the latter's breath poisons him and he only makes it nine steps before keeling over dead.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: His name literally translates as "giant monster."
  • Ouroboros: Some texts describe him as biting his own tail after growing so big.
  • Poison Is Evil: Drips and breathes poison, and will eventually strike against the Gods come Ragnarök.
  • Poisonous Person: His Breath Weapon.
  • Sea Monster: The sea monster to end all sea monsters. There isn't an ocean in Midgard that doesn't have a part of him in it.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Jormungandr is trapped in the ocean until Ragnarok.
  • Siblings in Crime: Fenrir and Jormungandr came into the world together and they leave it together, assaulting the very heavens and killing the gods.

    Hel 
Loki and Angrboða's only daughter, the last of their three children, and sometimes described as having been born from Loki himself after he ate Angrboða's heart. Goddess of Death and Graves and ruler of Hel who welcomes the souls of those who died of old age, disease or by accident. She is described as half of her body being that of a regular woman, the other half being rotten like a corpse. The myths never state which half, but people tend to represent it Two-Face style.
  • Adaptation Name Change: In works published by Marvel comics, she is known as Hela.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: She was mostly an outcast and generally not very well perceived among all the other Gods and mortals alike.
  • Bewildering Punishment: Was cast into the realm of Hel for the crime of... existing. She never did anything wrong and could most likely not fathom why her "uncle" would cast her into the world of the dead. The reason she was banished was because she could possibly become a threat in the future so Odin got rid of her while she was still a child.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Isn't a malevolent goddess per se, despite what people may think, and keeps her word when she gives it. Hel is referred to as a dark and shady place, but a peaceful one, a bit like Limbo. She herself doesn't torture the souls of the dead, she simply welcomes them and gives them a place to rest, only punishing the ones that committed a grave sin and sending them to Na-strond. See below.
  • Egopolis: Hel is the ruler of Hel.
  • Face-Revealing Turn: With the vertical asymmetry thing she probably gets this a lot..
  • Hijacked by Jesus: Her realm was originally played as dreary, but not exactly a place of torture. (To the Norse warriors, not going to the warrior's afterlife was the big torture in itself.) Christianity turned it into... well, Hel. And like it says above, she was originally just patchwork coloured, which progressed to either half a skeleton/rotting corpse or half old woman.
    • The original myths state that there are four afterlives (possibly even more). Those who die in battle go to Valhalla and Folkvagnr to prepare for Ragnarok. Those who drown belong to Ran. Those who die of sickness, old age or by accident go to Hel, which is dull and dreary, but not a bad place. Those who die after committing what the Norse regarded as sinsnote  (such as oathbreaking and murder) are punished by being sent to Na-strond, which is described as a monstrous fortress, located somewhere in Hel, woven from the poison-dripping skeletons of serpents, situated behind several deadly rivers, and where the damned wade through sucking blood and have nothing to drink but the urine supplied by a herd of foul-tempered black goats that roam the fortress. Some versions of the myths even state that Na-strond is where Níðhöggr goes to get his meals.
  • I Hate You, Vampire Dad: Resented her father for having made her look the way she did.
  • I Love the Dead: In Ynglingatal, it is stated no less than three times that Hel has sex with the dead king. First it is written: "I do not deny that Hel is taking lustful pleasure in the corpse of Dyggvi," then later: "And Loki`s daughter has seduced the ruler of the people of Yng" and last "And Loki`s daughter (Hel) invited the king, the third in the row, to meet for lovemaking from the world of the living."
  • I Work Alone: Dislikes interacting with the other Gods and avoids looking for trouble the way her father does. Indeed, she is perfectly satisfied with ruling over the souls of the guiltless non-combatants.
  • Ice Queen: Stoic, dour and cold.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Seldom seen in the myths, apart from Baldr's death, since she would interfere with the other Æsir's plans only when it concerned her directly. It makes sense, seeing as she was the embodiment of Death and the gods didn't die in every myth. Why would they want to go to her for anything other than resurrection?
  • Plague Master: It was said that when a plague hit the countryside, she would ride from town to town on a three-legged horse with a broom and a rake. In villages where many—but not all—died, she used her rake. But when she used her broom...
  • Sole Survivor: Depending on how you interpret her lack of direct participation in Ragnarok, she may be destined to be Loki's only surviving child after the end and continue to rule over the dead.
  • Two-Faced: A possible interpretation of her, although her description in the texts is pretty vague — some have taken it to mean she's actually withered below the waist.note 
  • Undead Abomination: Ignoring the whole "Underworld Goddess" thing, she is often described as being Two-Faced; half of her a living woman, the other half an emaciated corpse.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Her final fate in Ragnarok is not mentioned. She might be destined to perish, though it's possible she managed to stay out of the final conflict along with the other goddesses.

    Sigyn 
Loki's Æsir wife. Sigyn is known for her role in assisting Loki during his captivity. She would hold a bowl over his face to prevent venom from touching it and would leave his side only to empty it. By him she bore two sons, Narfi and Vali.
  • Anti-Magic: One of her kennings is "Incantation-Fetter," which may suggest that she has the ability to bind and ward off magic, but there's simply not enough information that has survived about Sigyn for scholars to be certain.
  • Bureaucratically Arranged Marriage: It is sometimes implied that Loki married Sigyn after he became Odin's blood brother as a way of establishing his position in Asgard. The results of the marriage vary: in some versions it was a Perfectly Arranged Marriage, while in others not so much.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Most depictions of her show her to be blonde. She was also a very sympathetic character.
  • Honor Before Reason: Stays by Loki's side and in some versions of their story, endures verbal abuse from him instead of leaving him to return to Asgard.
  • Love Martyr: She's not blind to Loki's flaws. In some versions, he wouldn't exactly go out of his way to be kind to her, and he certainly didn't care to be loyal to her.
  • May–December Romance: She is often described as being significantly younger than Loki.
  • Meaningful Name: Her name means "Victorious Girlfriend."
  • Proper Lady: Is depicted in most Renaissance-era artwork as one.
  • Second Love: In some versions of traditional lore, she is this to Loki when Angrboða dies.
  • Undying Loyalty: To Loki. Her steadfast loyalty is such a defining trait that in the Marvel comic books, Sigyn is known as the Goddess of Fidelity.

    Narfi and Vali 
The sons of Loki and Sigyn. Vali was transformed into a wolf by the gods and tore Nafri to shreds to punish Loki for his transgression against the gods in Asgard. Narfi's entrails were used to bind Loki beneath a venomous serpent.
  • Body Horror: What Vali did to him and what was done with what was left of him.
  • Cain and Abel: Unwillingly, Vali was forcefully transformed and made to kill his brother
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Narfi did not deserve to die the way he did. Point of fact, he didn't deserve to die at all, as he was killed for Loki's crimes. And Vali didn't deserve to be turneed into a beast and devour his brother.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Vali nearly devoured his brother.
  • Killed Off for Real: Narfi, rather gorily too.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: The reason Vali became a wolf was because the gods turned him into one.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: Very little is known about these two other than that Vali became a wolf and killed Narfi and that Narfi's entrails were turned to iron and used to bind Loki.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: There's no mention of what became of Vali after he became a wolf.

Giants/Jötnar

    Ægir 
King and personification of the sea, he was married to the sea-goddess Ran, with whom he had nine daughters who personified the waves. He thought Viking Vifilsson of Bornholm how to make dragonships. He is also known as Hler or Gymir.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: Of the sea.
  • Blue and Orange Morality: More so than most other characters. He can be very helpful, he is sociable and is on good terms with the gods, and does seem to have some sort of idea of right and wrong, but whatever wrong is it doesn't include sinking ships and brewing mead on human blood.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Subjugates his grand-nephew Snio to this by having him eaten by lice, because Snio asked him how he would die.
  • Happily Married: With Ran.
  • Making a Splash: He is king of the sea, this is mandatory.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: He has two brothers — Logi who personifies fire, and Kari who personifies wind.

    Surtr 
The Lord of the Fire Giants and King of Muspelheim, Surtr is destined to kill Freyr, and burn the world with the black sword Laveteinn at the peak of Ragnarok while his legions destroy the Bifrost. The real life island of Surtsey on Iceland is named after him.
  • Cool Sword: Laveteinn, which is a Flaming Sword.
  • Depending on the Writer: His Flaming Sword. Sometimes, it was always it, but has no name, others it's Laveteinn and again always his, or Laevteinn used to belong to Loki and he somehow got it, or it's the sword Freyr gave away (although neither the last two explain how the sword grew enough for a Fire Giant to wield it).
  • Destroyer Deity: Surt is Lord of the Fire Giants and will destroy the universe at Ragnarok.
  • Evil Is Burning Hot: He's the entity who annihilates the entire universe, simply For the Evulz. So, naturally, he's a giant made out of fire.
  • Generic Doomsday Villain: The Ur-Example. He doesn't appear in any other myths, and his only role is described above - simply Because Destiny Says So - and as noted below, his fate is left ambiguous after Ragnarok in most stories.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: Sometimes in retellings, he and his kin just arrive with no hype when Ragnarok begins.
  • Hero Killer: "At the end of the world he will go and wage war and defeat all the gods and burn the whole world with fire."
  • Hijacked by Jesus: Is often depicted as a Satan-like figure elsewhere, which is fair considering what he actually does. Though many scholars think he is an old concept, since there are a few very old places named after him, many agree that his flaming sword is a loan from the Biblical story of The Garden of Eden.
  • Karma Houdini: Possibly. Though it's ambiguous if Surtr survives Ragnarok, no one is reported to have killed him during it. One version has him succumb to wounds caused by Frey after burning everything up but most do not.
  • Kill the God: Frey and anybody else who gets in his way.
  • Large and in Charge: He's the king of all Fire Giants
  • Light Is Not Good: His sword is stated to be "brighter than the Sun." It will be used to bring about the burning of the nine worlds.
  • Omnicidal Maniac: One of the major players at Ragnarok, and the one most directly responsible for the end of the world.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: He represents the "face" of the Fire Giants, the giants of fire, flame and magma who will ultimately destroy everything.
  • Playing with Fire: What else would you expect for the king of the Fire Giants?
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: His fate after Ragnarok is left ambiguous in most stories. In the few that does, dies when the universe collapses into itself as his fire spreads.

    Thrym 
A giant that steals Mjölnir, and demands Freya as his wife if they want it back. On the advice of Loki, Thor dresses up as Freya, and eventually retrieves the hammer, after Loki hilariously manages to convince Thrym that Thor is Freya with increasingly unlikely explanations. When Thor retrieves his hammer, he kills Thrym and his sister.
  • And Now You Must Marry Me: He steals Thor's hammer and demands that the gods gave him Freyja as his wife in return for Mjölnir. Instead, on Loki's advice, the gods dress up Thor as Freyja to trick Thrym into returning the hammer and then using it to kill him.
  • Arranged Marriage: Attempts to arrange one with Freya. It goes bad for him.
  • Entitled to Have You: With Freya.
  • Genre Blind: Fails to see through Thor's Paper-Thin Disguise as Freya, and dies for it.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Probably should have thought a little more about how Freya looked, and maybe should not have stolen the hammer in the first place, or maybe should have demanded a better ransom, or just led the giants to attack Asgard, and abduct Freya, now that they lacked Thor's hammer.

    Utgarda-Loki 
Not to be confused with Loki, Utgarda-Loki was a giant living in Jotunheim, with the alias Skrymir. He challenges Thor, Loki, Thjalfi and Röskva to complete different tasks, each more impossible than the last. Is a rare beast, as he actually survives despite being a giant.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: Uses these to defeat the gods. Goes as follows: Hugi, the personified thought, Logi, the personified fire, Elli, the personified old age.
  • Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: Averted. He humiliates the gods by making them atempt to do impossible feats, then reveal his tricks as soon as they leave Utgard, and then just vanishes along with the castle before Thor can take vengeance. Other giants are killed before getting to do half of what he did.
  • Felony Misdemeanor: He may have done more to the gods than any other giant, but he also did less than most of them tried to do. All Utgarda-Loki did was embarass them with impossible tasks. But, when Thor learns what happened, he promptly tries to kill the giant. Values Dissonance is at play, as norsemen did not take kindly to insults.
  • A Hero to His Hometown: His parting words to Thor are a warning that he will protect his domain with deception and illusion if the thunder-god returns.
  • Master of Illusion: Uses illusions to trick the gods; he disguises himself as a giant named Skrymir, disguises the Midgard Serpent as a cat, makes his own thought into Þjalfi's opponent and fire into Loki's.
  • One Steve Limit: Averted. "Utgarda" isn't actually a part of his name, merely a prefix meaning "of Utgard," probably intended to differentiate him from his more famous namesake.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: While he is disguised as Skrymir, who thinks Mjölnir is just leaves hitting him, and whose gloves are the size of a house.

    Thjassi 
Thjassi is a giant who resided in Þrymheimr and often took the form of a large eagle. He once kidnapped the goddess Iðunn, cutting the gods off from their source of immortality, the golden apples Iðunn picked. Iðunn is eventually rescued thanks to Loki's efforts and Thjassi is killed. Thjassi's daughter Skaði later marries Njörður as a compensation for her father's death.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: His daughter Skaði was angered enough by his death that she prepares to attack Asgard single-handed, and one of her conditions for backing down is that the gods create a monument to honor him, which Odin does by taking Thjassi's eyes and turning them into stars.
  • Feathered Fiend: Being able to shapeshift into an eagle did not make him any less of a monster.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: He uses some sort of power to prevent Odin, Hœnir and Loki from getting any water in their pot to boil, then when they offer him some meat to get him to stop he leaves them with hardly any. It is not said if the Aesir or Loki actually owned the cattle they were cooking with or not, which would make Thjassi a thief of thieves at best and a regular jerk otherwise.
  • An Offer You Can't Refuse: He forces Loki to assist him in his scheme to capture Iðunn.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Into an eagle.

    Logi 
The personification of fire. In modern days, he is often confused for or combined with Loki, although he is quite explicitly a different person and in fact competes against Loki in the most famous myth in which he appears. He is the son of the jötunn Fornjótr and the brother of Ægir and Kári.
  • Anthropomorphic Personification: Of fire.
  • Big Eater: He not only bests Loki in an eating contest, he does so on the technicality that he devours everything on his side of the divide; meat, gravy, bones, wooden trencher and all.
  • Meaningful Name: Logi literally means "flame," and also suits him given his role as Loki's opponent.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: His brothers are Ægir, god of the sea, and Kári, a god of wind.

    Glóð 
The jötunn wife of king Logi/Hálogi, presumably to be identified with the personification of fire Loki competed against. Her name literally means "Glow," and she's the mother of two daughters by Logi named Eisa (Embers) and Einmyria (Ashes).

    Ymir 
The primeval frost giant, that emerged from the melting ice of Niflheim and Muspellheim at the creation of the world. Was nourished by the milk of Audhumbla, the primeval ox, and were the ancestor to all giants. Was killed by Odin and his brothers, and the world was then created from his body.
  • An Ice Person: Was the first frost giant.
  • Decoy Protagonist: Is killed as the first person in the mythology.
  • Giant Corpse World: The entire world is made from his dead body.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: So, ice and fire collides, ice melts, and this guy turns up from it along with a cow. Why? Why not?
    • It is stated in the myths that the ice was frozen Eitr, a poisonous substance. Later the dragons and lindworms emerged from the same substance.
  • Great Flood: Given his size, this is natural when he is wounded.
  • Green Thumb: Given the land was made form his flesh.
  • Mother of a Thousand Young: Technically the father, but given it is birth without female intervention, it doesn't really matter. He fathered new giants constantly while he was still alive, which meant there was already plenty around when Odin finally killed him.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: In this case, really big, since the world could be made from them.

    Hrungner 
A mountain giant with a triangular stone heart who owned the fastest horse in his world. After coming into Asgard uninvited he gets drunk and causes trouble that leads to him and Thor facing off at Grjottungard.
  • The Alcoholic: He boasted that he could drink all the ale in Asgard, then set out to do it.
  • Cool Horse: Gold mane, which Odin probes him about because the valfather wants it for himself. It turns out to be slower than Slepnir, whom Odin already owns but Odin still whines when Gold mane is later awarded to Magni.
  • Dirty Coward: Him calling Thor one for threatening him with violence when Thor tells him to get out of Valhalla makes Thor more eager for the duel.
  • Dishing Out Dirt: His head was as hard as stone, his heart was made of it and he fought with stone weapons.
  • Duel to the Death: He was the first one to issue such a challenge to Thor, which Hrungner does after Thor berates him for his disrespectful conduct inside the hall of honored dead.
  • Golem: The giants forged him a partner out of clay called Mokkerkalfe, who was nine leagues across at the chest, to help him against Thor, but Mokkerkalfe ended up being afraid of Thor.
  • Jerkass: One could see why he was annoyed with Odin boasting about Slepnir but it seems a little much to try to kill Odin over, even for the time period. As he barges into Asgard chasing Odin the other gods assume he is a guest and offer him drinks but he takes their hospitality to mean that he gets ALL of their food and drink. Then he declares he will destroy Asgard and kill everyone after he has finished, except Freyja and Sif. This guy is largely responsible for the giants' bad reputation.
  • Monumental Theft: He wants to take Valhalla from Asgard and move it to Jotunheim.
  • Our Giants Are Bigger: While Thor does manage to kill Hrungner he is cut by shards of his shattered flint stone(or whetstone) weapon, pieces of which fly from Jotunheim and form a new mountain range on Midgard. His dead weight was too heavy for Thor to lift (because it had fallen on his neck) and all the gods who watched the duel to move off Thor.
  • Scars Are Forever: A shard of his broken whetstone remained embedded in Thor's head after their fight. It was possible to remove but Thor never bothered to see the procedure through.
  • World's Strongest Man: He was at one point the strongest man in Jotunheim.

    Horik Ironhead 
A nasty half-giant who tries to force the Swedish princess Hunvor to marry him.
  • Cool Sword: Angervadil, inscribed with Runic letters, which glowed in time of war and could even kill giants.
  • David vs. Goliath: His duel with Viking.
  • Dirty Coward: He has Nigh-Invulnerability, but when Viking shows up he carries the sword Angervadil. The sword in question originally belonged to a brother of Horik and when he sees the sword he says he would never accepted the duel with Viking if he had known he had the sword. This is despite him being half giant and facing a seventeen-year-old boy. However his honor dictates he can't back out of an accepted challange and has to fight Viking in an honest fight and is cleaved in half.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: He can't be killed with ordinary weapons.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Towards Hunvor.
  • Theme Naming: His brother-in-law Jokul is called Ironback.

Other characters

    Valkyries 
The Death Maidens, who sweep down on battlefields to carry the most valiant warriors to either Odin's hall or Freyja's, as she got half the battle-slain.
  • Amazon Brigade: They're all female.
  • Animal Motifs: The valkyries are associated with birds.
  • Grim Reapers: They were responsible for gathering the souls of slain warriors for Odin and Freyja's halls. In some versions of the myths, they were more proactive than usual for this trope, actively arranging for worthy warriors to get killed so that they could harvest their souls.
  • Lady of War: They're all female, but they're also bold, fearless warriors and skilled tacticians.
  • Old Soldier: The type of people they are looking for.
  • Psychopomp: They choose the slain to be taken to Odin or Freyja's halls to prepare for Ragnarok.
  • "Ride of the Valkyries"
  • War Is Glorious: The spiritual embodiment of this entire concept.
  • Warrior Heaven: The people they take go here.
  • The Wild Hunt: Led by Odin.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Mostly thanks to Wagner.
  • Xenafication: In the mythology, they are mostly akin to grim reapers. Modern portrayals downplay or drop this entirely in favour of emphasising their martial skills.

    Norns 
The multi-species group of women who oversee Fate and tend the World Tree Yggdrasill. While Urðr, Verðandi and Skuld, who determine how long people live, are the main ones, there are reputed to be many more working with them.

    Thjalfi 
A human boy taken by Thor as a page, as payment for an injury his father did to one of his goats. Despite this rather awkward start to their relationship, he is mentioned in several other stories as a faithful and valuable companion to the Thunder God.

    Garm 
Hel's dog, he guards the gates to her realm. At Ragnarok he will lead her legions against the rest of the world, and he and Tyr will slay one another.

    Níðhöggr 
One of the oldest beings in Norse myth, Níðhöggr is a dragon who has existed since creation. It emerged from the Etir, a mysterious and highly poisonous substance (it's Etir from Jörmungandr that kills Thor) originating from Ymir. He sits beneath the entire World Tree Yggdrasill itself, gnawing at its roots. One retelling states that he gnaws on oathbreakers, murderers, and thieves. But he basically stays at the roots, gnawing on them—ensuring they do not overgrow—until Ragnarok, and when he joins in... well, that's when things get really bad for the rest of creation. Of course, he survives it.

    Audhumbla 
The primeval ox that appeared along with Ymir after Niflheim and Muspellheim collided. Nourished Ymir, while simultaneously licking Burr from the salty ice, whose grandsons were Odin, Vile and Ve.
  • Everything's Better with Cows: Directly responsible for nourishing all life in the early days of creation, creating the gods and, by extension, leading to the creation of humanity.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: After Odin kills Ymir, and creates the world from him, Audhumbla just disappears from the myths. One can assume she drowned with most of the jotun.

The Legendary Heroes

    Sigurd 
The heroic dragonslayer who with the aid of his fosterfather Reginn and ancestor Odin slew Fafnir and got the girl. But, because people can act like figurative dragons he was slain in his bed by a boy, manipulated by his brothers in law.
  • The Dragonslayer: Through not the only one, the most notable example in Norse mythology.
  • The Hero Dies: Killed due to jealousy, which in it self was brought upon by greed.
  • Ideal Hero: Subverted, actually. Sigurd ambushes Fafnir and strikes him hidden from below. He does not even tell Fafnir his name. This purely out of pragmatism.
  • The Kirk: He acts like a decent enough guy and otherwise only resorts to violence when attacked, like by Reginn.
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: After drinking Fafnir's blood. The birds then warn him of Reginn's betreyal.
  • World's Best Warrior: And he is murdered in his bed.

    Brynhildr 
A shieldmaiden and one of the Valkyries. Also known as Sigrdrífa.
  • Brought Down to Normal: When she was asked to decide the outcome of a battle, her decision angered Odin. He responded by making her mortal and locking her away in a castle.
  • Girl in the Tower: She's imprisoned in a castle on top of a mountain.

    Bodvar Bjarki 
The champion of king Hrolf Kraki. Possibly a variation of the Beowulf story, but it's not certain.
  • Animorphism: Prince Bjorn is turned into a were-bear, and while under that spell begets Bodvar Bjarki. Much later, in the Battle of Hleidragard, Bödvar Bjarki's spirit charges into battle as a giant bear.
  • Alternate Continuity: If his legend share it's origin with Beowulf, it would be a case of an alternative telling of his story.
  • The Berserker: Bödvar Bjarki turns into a bear in the final battle at the end of Hrolf Kraki's Saga.
  • Last Stand: When he is overrun by Skuld's army of criminals and monsters, he turns into a giant bear.
  • Only the Chosen May Wield: Bödvar Bjarki's father Bjorn leaves his three sons three weapons struck into a wall of rock. When the sons later arrive to retrieve the weapons, everyone of them can only take the one weapon intended for him: Elk-Frodi a short-sword, Thorir Dogfoot a battle-axe; only Bödvar can pull out the most precious weapon, a longsword.
  • Werewolf Theme Naming: Bodvar Bjarki reveals himself as a shape-changer at the Battle of Hleidragard: While Bodvar appears to sleep, his spirit fights in the shape a giant bear. Interpreted literally, 'Bodvar Bjarki' means 'Little Battle-Bear'.

    Völsung 
The ancestor of the Völsungs.

    Viking Vifilsson 
The grandson of Logi and the first Viking, born on Bornholm.
  • All There in the Manual: You have to read both Thorsten Vikingsson's Saga and Frithiof's Saga to connect all the dots of his story. You would not realise the point of Ægir giving him the ship Ellida, if you don't know Ægir is Viking's uncle, and you would only know that by reading both sagas.
  • Avenging the Villain: Viking kills the halfgiant Horik Ironhead, a Stalker with a Crush who tried to force Hunvor to marry him using threats of violence. He then has to deal with his nasty siblings, who curses him with disease, invades Hunvor's lands, kills her father and sends their berserker inlaw to kill him.
  • Chastity Couple: Won't marry Hunvor until they are 20, giving his enemies time to kidnap her.
  • Cool Sword: Angervadil, inscribed with Runic letters, which glowed in time of war and could even kill giants.
  • David vs. Goliath: His duel with Horik Ironhead. Horik had Nigh-Invulnerability, but Angervadil took away this advantage over him
  • Duel to the Death: First with Horik Ironhead, later with Horik's brother in law Jokul Ironback.
  • Heroic Lineage: The grandson of Logi. Also, becomes a legendary ancestor of two other heroes.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partner: To Halfdan, his best friend.
  • Meaningful Name: Like the raiders that have him as their namesake, his name means "One of the inlet."
  • Romantic Wingman: To Halfdan, so he can marry Hunvor's maid Ingeborg.

    Starkad 

  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: In some myths he has eight arms. In others he used to have multiple arms, but Thor cut off all but two.

    Harald Wartooth 

  • Blood Knight: This guy is actually called "Wartooth." He wanted to die in battle to go to Odin in Valhalla and started a war with Sigurd Ring, a kinsmen of his, leading to the apocalyptic battle of Bråvalla. At this point he could not stand and was partly blind, so they tied him to a chariot so he could charge his enemy. It did not stop until a servant of his thought the king had earned enough glory (or just realised what sort of lunatic he dealt with) and clubbed him to death. Another version has it that Odin himself came down and personally killed Harald.

    Ivar Widefame 

    Völundr 

    Wayland The Smith 


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