Behind the names

Discover the meaning and etymology behind the names of the Norse pantheon, places and items. Additional details are also provided on their modern usage, overall popularity and cognate words.

Odin – also Odinn (“rage” or “inspiration”). The leader of the Aesir gods who is associated with war, wisdom and art.

Thor – the god of thunder. He’s the son of Odin and usually carried his hammer Mjolnir

Freya – also Freyja (“lady”). The goddess of beauty and death who brings the worthy dead to Valhalla.

Freyr – also Frey (“lord”). The god associated with rain, sunlight and fertility.

Loki – Aesir god known for being a trickster and can manipulate fire and magic. He was eventually confined to a stone by his fellow gods for being evil.

Baldr – also Balder (“prince”). The son of Odin and Frigg who was killed because Loki tricked Hoder into it.

Heimdall – the white god who presided over light and dawn. He is considered the guardian of Asgard

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