iamthewoodendoor

One of the larger rocks of Nordic Bronze Age petroglyphs in Scandinavia, the Vitlyckehäll, is located in Tanumshede in Sweden.

In total there are thousands of images called the Tanum petroglyphs, on about 600 panels within the World Heritage Area. These are concentrated in distinct areas along a 25 km stretch, which was the coastline of a fjord during the Bronze Age, and covers an area of about 51 hectares (126 acres or 0.5 km²).

Scandinavian Bronze Age and Iron Age people were sophisticated craftsmen and very competent travelers by water. (Dates for ages vary with the region; in Scandinavia, the Bronze Age is roughly 1800 to 500 BCE) Many of the glyphs depict boats of which some seem to be of the Hjortspring boat type carrying around a dozen passengers. Wagons or carts are also depicted.



Other glyphs depict humans with a bow, spear or axe, and others depict hunting scenes. In all cases the pictures show people performing rituals. There is a human at a plough drawn by two oxen, holding what might be a branch or an ox-goading crop made of a number of strips of hide.

The rock carvings are endangered by erosion due to pollution. To the dismay of some archaeologists, some have been painted red to make them more visible for tourists.

daughter-of-odin

Abstract

These are the words of the great god Ódinn, cautioning against drunkenness and unrestrained drinking. And yet the drinking of alcoholic beverages was a prominent feature of Scandinavian life in the Viking Age.

Unfortunately, while there are many passing references in Old Norse literature and occasional bits of evidence in the archaeological record, there is far from a complete picture of Viking Age brewing, vintning, and drinking customs. In the course of this paper, evidence from several Germanic cultures will be presented to help fill out the evidence and provide a more complete view of this topic. Although the culture of other Germanic peoples was not exactly like that of the Norse, many similarities exist. In the case of drinking and rituals associated with drinking, the Old English materials seem to present the best detailed view of this activity, which further enlightens the materials surviving from Norse culture.

grumpylokeanelder

smcdwer:

I wanted to share another great project currently undertaking research on Old Norse sagas and manuscripts. Stories for all time: The Icelandic fornaldarsögur is a project at the University of Copenhagen, an institution with a very long history of studying Scandinavian manuscripts. I’ve met a number of the people involved in the project, which is headed by Matthew Driscoll, and the work they are doing is really worth a look, if you’re at all interested in Icelandic sagas, manuscripts, editing, or the digital humanities. Part of the project is dedicated to producing electronic editions with multiple levels of transcription, complete with manuscript images.

From the the project website:

natural-magics

Scandinavian tales and creatures

Skogsrån (watchers of the forest) are mysterious women who guard the forest and all its creatures. Seen from the front they are unearthly beautiful, but their backs are hollow like old and rotten trees, and they often have the tail of an animal. To protect the forest, they seduce and sleep with woodcutters and then steal their souls, leaving them empty husks of their former selves.

Scandinavian tales and creatures

Skogsrån (watchers of the forest) are mysterious women who guard the forest and all its creatures. Seen from the front they are unearthly beautiful, but their backs are hollow like old and rotten trees, and they often have the tail of an animal. To protect the forest, they seduce and sleep with woodcutters and then steal their souls, leaving them empty husks of their former selves.
daughter-of-odin

Anonymous asked:

Do you have any info on Freya that you would be willing to share? :) Like what offerings to gove her, and what to do with the offerings after? Also, is it okay to have two altars in the same room? (My husbands and mine, diff gods)

natural-magics answered:

Freyja is the Norse goddess of beauty, love, sex, fertility, seiðr (Old Norse magic practiced in the Late Scandinavian Iron Age), battle, and death. Along with being a goddess, she is the leader of the Valkyries. In myth, Freyja and the Valkyries would have first choice of the fallen warriors on battlefields. Those chosen would go to Freyja’s hall, Sessrúmnir, in her realm of Fólkvangr. The other half would be claimed by Odin and go to Valhalla, in Asgard. A folk belief was that the Aurora Borealis was the result of light flickering off the armor of Freyja and the Valkyries as they rode to their missions. Freyja’s chariot is pulled by two large cats (thought to be gray).

The daughter of the god Njörðr and the twin sister of Freyr, Freyja was born a member of the Vanir. After the war between the Æsir and the Vanir, Freyja and her kin were accepted by the Æsir (click here for more information). She married the god Odr, who she loved dearly and grieved for when he left her to wander the world. She used a cloak made of feathers to transform herself into a bird (usually a raven or falcon, depending on variation) to search for him. She wept tears of gold (another version states that her tears turned into amber when they fell into the sea).

In Thrymskviða, one of the best known poems from the Poetic Edda, the giant Thrymr steals Thor’s hammer, Mjölnir. Thrymr demands Freyja as his bride in exchange for Mjölnir. Instead of sending the goddess, Thor is dressed up as her for the “wedding” and travels to Jötunheimr with Loki, who poses as his bridesmaid. During the ceremony, Mjölnir is placed into Thor’s hand, which he uses to strike down the giants.

Offerings and associations:

  • honey
  • fruit
  • roast pork
  • amber
  • gold, gold coated/plated items
  • roses
  • primroses
  • delphinium
  • cowslip
  • pearls
  • sweet wines and berry liqueurs
  • mead
  • strawberries
  • votives/depictions of: cats (gray), horses, boars, falcons, and ravens
  • Danziger Goldwasser (alcoholic beverage) would be fitting, as it has flakes of gold in it

As for disposing of offerings, some people choose to bury them, burn them or consume them. It really depends on personal preference and on one’s relationship with their deity, as well as the type of offering. Here is a post discussing Heathenism and consuming offerings. This post discusses various ways of disposing non-food offerings.

References and resources:

(generally, it’s fine to have two altars in the same room, but it really depends on the deities and the pantheon(s). the best way to figure it out would be if you and your husband were to approach your deities and consult them regarding the altars.)