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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Freyr

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Of House-Gods and the Pork King

In the West Telemark Museum in Eidsborg, Norway, you can see numerous small wooden figures of “house-gods.”

Some of them date from antiquity, discovered, anaerobically preserved, in bogs.

Some are more recent.

In Norway's remote, rural Telemark region, house-gods such as these were kept at certain farms well into the 19th century. Associated with a specific farm and with the family that lived there, they were regarded not so much as gods, but as heirlooms, talismans that warded off misfortune and ensured good harvests and many offspring both to the family and its livestock.*

They say that one such house-god was called the Pork King. At holidays, it was customary to anoint this figure with lard or butter. At Yule, before the family took their traditional pre-Yule baths, the first to be bathed in the purifying waters was the Pork King himself. Only the mistress of the farm was permitted to be present for the bathing of the Pork King. Not even the farmer himself could witness this sacred ablution.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
In Search of the Tusked God

 Caput apri defero,

cum ingenti priapo.


The Yule-analogous holiday of Terry Pratchett's Discworld is, of course, Hogswatch.

And the—really, what else can one call him?—patronal god of Hogswatch is, of course, the Hogfather.

Like the wild boar that he originally was, the Hogfather (of the BBC series, anyway) wears tusks.

In Norse, one might say: Hogfather = Frey. Tusk-Frey, one might kenningly call him.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    I do enjoy ham at Yule-time.
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    On the Franconian side of the family, the custom is to serve pork and sauerkraut at the New Year, but never chicken. That's so you
  • Mark Green
    Mark Green says #
    And happy Hogswatch to you as well, Steven! I've really enjoyed your writing this year.
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Much obliged, Mark, and wishing you a New Year of prosperity, health, and good reading.
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    My recollection is that Snorri says, "an antler," which strongly suggests a weapon in hand (in place of the sword he gave to Skirn
The Pagan Experience: Personal Practice

After some prodding by Himself and some encouragement from friends, I'm taking a stab at the Pagan Experience Project. I'm not necessarily going to do every prompt all the time, but if the prompt elicits good thinky thoughts, I'll share them. I've decided to start with week two's prompt on personal practices.

Loki's not a terribly formal Deity, and and so many of my practices are not either; I share morning coffee with Him every day; I meditate once a day; ideally I do yoga, but that practice is a work in progress.

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  • Lizann Bassham
    Lizann Bassham says #
    I do love your writing
  • Heather Freysdottir
    Heather Freysdottir says #
    Thank you! I enjoy your work as well!


Please note that this is not a treatise on how all Gods are One God/dess— in Norse myth or otherwise. Norse myth contains distinct deified ancestors, locally-specific Gods and many other members of the pantheon such as Njordh, Mani, Baldr and Thor.

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  • Shirl Sazynski
    Shirl Sazynski says #
    And Simek's Dictionary of Norse Mythology, where relevant.
  • Douglas Lange
    Douglas Lange says #
    Can't wait to see more of this piece. This article is kinda like being invited to read someone's notes on their personal practices
  • Shirl Sazynski
    Shirl Sazynski says #
    Thank you, Douglas. I'll be using primary sources from The Tain to the Eddas, and work from Hilda Ellis Davidson, Jan Puhvel, some
  • Beth Wodandis
    Beth Wodandis says #
    While it is true that this is only an introductory post (and she stated as much), I think it might have gone over a little better
  • Amarfa
    Amarfa says #
    I look forward to seeing more on this. I am ashamed at my peers for pointing out so much to correct in what is only an introductor
A Winter Solstice Prayer to Ingvi-Freyr, the Yule King

A Prayer to Ingvi

Because I could not kiss your lips
I kissed my lover instead;
Because he never danced with me
I dance with you instead,
here on the far side of midnight
where sun hides
and moon cannot be jealous.

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Love & vulnerability in Norse myth: Freyr and the wooing of Gerda in Skirnismal

We stereotype the peoples of Northern Europe as aggressive, looting, sea-faring warriors, hauling back pillaged booty or trade goods from abroad. We stereotype Odin (blame Wagner and his Victorian romanticism for this) as the stern, grim king: father of war. Thor as big-hearted, lustily drinking smiter of evil. While attitudes have recently begun changing, portraying the Vikings' "softer side", that aggressive image sticks-- both inside and outside of Heathenry.

It ignores that there is a third strong image of masculinity, from a triad of Gods honored at the ancient temple of Upsala, Sweden: Odin, Thor and Freyr.

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  • David Carron
    David Carron says #
    But it's not peace it's Frith. Folks assure that it's the same, but it's more like détente.

Americans still haven't celebrated our secular harvest holiday yet (Thanksgiving)-- which marks the unofficial change from autumn to winter, even if the official shift falls on the Solstice. So I think it's still appropriate to honor Freyr, especially at lower latitudes.


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