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Quotes / Norse Mythology

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I know a charm that can cure pain and sickness, and lift the grief from the heart of the grieving.
I know a charm that will heal with a touch.
I know a charm that will turn aside the weapons of an enemy.
I know another charm to free myself from all bonds and locks.
A fifth charm: I can catch an arrow in flight and take no harm from it.
A sixth: spells sent to hurt me will hurt only the sender.
A seventh charm I know: I can quench a fire simply by looking at it.
An eighth: if any man hates me, I can win his friendship.
A ninth: I can sing the wind to sleep and calm a storm for long enought to bring a ship to shore.
For a tenth charm, I learned to dispel witches, to spin them around in the skies so that they will never find their way back to their own doors again.
An eleventh: if I sing it when a battle rages it can take warriors through the tumult unscathed and unhurt, and bring them safely back to their hearths and their homes.
A twelfth charm I know: if I see a hanged man I can bring him down from the gallows to whisper to us all he remembers.
A thirteenth: if I sprinkle water on a child’s head, that child will not fall in battle.
A fourteenth: I know the names of all the gods. Every damned one of them.
A fifteenth: I had a dream of power, of glory, and of wisdom, and I can make people believe in my dreams.
A sixteenth charm I know: if I need love I can turn the mind and heart of any woman.
A seventeenth, that no woman I want will ever want another.
And I know an eighteenth charm, and that charm is the greatest of all, and that charm I can tell to no man, for a secret that no one knows but you is the most powerful secret there can ever be.
The Eighteen Charms of Odin, the Gallows God

There are more serpents beneth the World Tree than a fool would know.
— The Song of the Masked One

Do you wish to know more?

Friends die, foes dies, and so you yourself shall die. But one thing I know that never dies: The memory of great deeds! Friends die, foes dies, and so you yourself shall die. But one thing I know that never dies: The judgement of a dead man.

Grim howls Gram roars from Gnipahellir
The fetter shall break
The wolf shall be free!
Much I know of ancient lore
Far ahead I see
To the Ragnarök of the victory Gods
Bitter fate of the gods
Brother shall strike brother and both fall
Sister's children their kinship rewoke
Hard is it in the world
An age of whoredom
Axeage, Swordage
An age splintered shields
A windage, The time of the wolves
Before the world comes crashing down
None shall spare another
The children of Mim are aroar
destiny like a fire rages under the lights of Gjallarhorn
Heimdall blows his mighty horn
Odin discusses with Mimir's head
Yggdrasil shakes, the erected ash, groans the old trunk
the giant is loose; all shake on Hel's way
Before he is swallowed by Surt's kin!
What of Æsir? What of elves?
Jötunheimr groans, the Aesir are in council
The dwarves moan before their door of stone
wise ones of the mountain
Do you wish to know more?
Grim howls Gram roars from Gnipahellir
The fetter shall break
The wolf shall be free!
Rym comes from the east
On his arm is the shield, in anger the World Serpent turns
The snake whips the waves and the eagle screams, pecks the dead
Pale is the beak
and Naglfar is loose
The ship comes from the east
Over the ocean the Muspell horde shall come
And Loki is at the helm
The kin of beasts comes with the wolf
With them Byleist's brother follows
Surtr from south fares
The sword shines of the sun of the victory-Gods
The mountains trembles and giantess falls
Mankind walks the road to Hel and the heavens fall
A further woe falls upon Hlin
When Odin goes to face the wolf
And the slayers of Bjele goes against Surt
Then Friggs second sorrow shall come
Grim howls Gram roars from Gnipahellir
The fetter shall break
The wolf shall be free!
Then the victory-father's son comes,
The mighty Vidarr, to fight the beast of the field of the slain
Plunges his sword in the heart of Hvedrung 's son
The father is avenged
Now comes the son of Hlódyn, comes Odins's son, fiercest of warriors
To fight the serpent
In rage the protector of Midgard strikes the ensnarer of the earth
Dead men leaves their homes
But nine steps the son of Fjorgyn takes before he falls
Wounded by the serpent
Black turns the sun
The earth sinks in the sea
The stars falls from the sky
Flaming stars steam makes and fire burns
The heat plays high unto the heavens

"The Norse myths are the myths of a chilly place, with long, long winter nights and endless summer days, myths of a people who did not entirely trust or even like their gods, although they respected and feared them. As best we can tell, the gods of Asgard came from Germany, spread into Scandinavia, and then out into the parts of the world dominated by the Vikings — into Orkney and Scotland, Ireland and the north of United Kingdom — where the invaders left places named for Thor or Odin. In English, the gods have left their names in our days of the week. You can find Tyr the one-handed (Odin's son), Odin, Thor, and Frigg, the queen of the gods, in respectively, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday... History and religion and myth combine, and we wonder and we imagine and we guess, like detectives reconstructing the details of a long-forgotten crime. There are so many Norse stories we do not have, so much we do not know. All we have are some myths that have come to us in the form of fokltales, in retellings, in poems, in prose. They were written down when Christianity had already displaced the worship of the Norse gods, and some of the stories we have came to us because people were concerned that if the stories were not preserved, some of the kennings -- the usages of poets that referred to events in specific myths -- would become meaningless; Freya's tears for instance was a poetic way of saying "gold"...It is, perhaps, as if the only tales of the gods and demigods of Greece and Rome that had survived were of the deeds of Theseus and Hercules."
Neil Gaiman, Norse Mythology, Pages 12-14.


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