42 episodes

What makes Norse mythology "norse"? Why does Thor kill giants? What do the myths tell us about Loki's gender identity? The world of popular media is always happy to provide a modernized re-telling of ancient stories with a heavy scoop of creative license, but on "Norse Mythology: The Unofficial Guide", we'll dive into the original tales directly from the sources and learn together from experts in the field about what these stories really mean and how they would have affected the lives of the ancient people of the pagan north.

Contact me any time at waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com!

Norse Mythology: The Unofficial Guide Wælhræfn

    • History
    • 5.0 • 3 Ratings

What makes Norse mythology "norse"? Why does Thor kill giants? What do the myths tell us about Loki's gender identity? The world of popular media is always happy to provide a modernized re-telling of ancient stories with a heavy scoop of creative license, but on "Norse Mythology: The Unofficial Guide", we'll dive into the original tales directly from the sources and learn together from experts in the field about what these stories really mean and how they would have affected the lives of the ancient people of the pagan north.

Contact me any time at waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com!

    Episode 36 - Blue as Hel

    Episode 36 - Blue as Hel

    Time for another deep dive! This time into the mysterious origins of the one called Hel: the daughter of Loki and the sister of two giant monsters. Who does she own upon death? The answer may not be quite as simple as you think.

    Sources:


    “Dictionary of Northern Mythology” by Rudolf Simek, 2007


    “Gesta Danorum” transl. by Karsten Friis-Jensen and Peter Fisher, 2015


    “Norse Mythology: A Guide to the Gods, Heroes, Rituals, and Beliefs”, by John Lindow, 2002


    “The Road to Hel” by Hilda Roderick Ellis, 1968


    “Worlds of the Dead” by John Lindow and Anders Andrén in Pre-Christian Religions of the North volume II, 2020


    “The Poetic Edda”, transl. by Carolyne Larrington, 2014


    “The Prose Edda”, transl. by Anthony Faulkes, 1995



    Contact:


    Write in: waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com
    Join the Discord: ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠https://discord.gg/Nvw5hmkRsW⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Music:

    Celebration by Alexander Nakarada (www.serpentsoundstudios.com) Licensed under Creative Commons BY Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

    • 31 min
    Episode 35 - Volsunga Saga Part III: The Fearless Heart

    Episode 35 - Volsunga Saga Part III: The Fearless Heart

    In our final installment of Völsunga Saga (for now), it's what you've all been waiting for: We finally cover the tale of Sigurðr, the most famous of all Norse heroes who slew the dragon Fáfnir, and his tragic love with the valkyire Brynhildr. There's fire, murder, mayhem, and one ring to curse them all. Don't miss it!

    Sources:


    “Dictionary of Northern Mythology” by Rudolf Simek, 2007
    “The Saga of the Volsungs”, transl. by Jesse Byock, 2004, supplemented by some of my own translations from the source text
    “The Poetic Edda”, transl. by Carolyne Larrington, 2014
    "The Prose Edda", transl. by Anthony Faulkes, 1995

    Contact:


    Write in: waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com
    Join the Discord: ⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠https://discord.gg/Nvw5hmkRsW⁠⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Music:

    Celebration by Alexander Nakarada (www.serpentsoundstudios.com) Licensed under Creative Commons BY Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Episode 34 - Volsunga Saga Part II: To Serve the Boatman

    Episode 34 - Volsunga Saga Part II: To Serve the Boatman

    Story time continues with our second installment of the Saga of the Volsungs wherein another character goes to Valhöll without dying in battle, a valkyrie causes countless deaths for her own gain, and Sigmund's magic sword finally receives a name. Don't miss it!

    Sources:


    “The Saga of the Volsungs”, transl. by Jesse Byock, 2004, supplemented by some of my own translations from the source text
    “The Poetic Edda”, transl. by Carolyne Larrington, 2014
    "The Prose Edda", transl. by Anthony Faulkes, 1995

    Contact:


    Write in: waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com
    Join the Discord: ⁠⁠⁠⁠https://discord.gg/Nvw5hmkRsW⁠⁠⁠⁠

    Music:

    Celebration by Alexander Nakarada (www.serpentsoundstudios.com) Licensed under Creative Commons BY Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

    • 32 min
    Episode 33 - Volsunga Saga Part I: The Sword in the Tree

    Episode 33 - Volsunga Saga Part I: The Sword in the Tree

    It's story time again! And this time we're digging into what might be the most famous legendary saga ever to come out of Scandinavia: The Saga of the Vǫlsungs. As we dig in, it'll become clear how all of the principles we've talked about on the show so far come together to produce a story with a distinct Norse flavor, and one that has inspired tropes that have been repeated in story after story for the last thousand years. It's a long one this time, and I hope you enjoy it!

    Sources:


    “The Saga of the Volsungs”, transl. by Jesse Byock, 2004, supplemented by some of my own translations from the source text
    “The Poetic Edda”, transl. by Carolyne Larrington, 2014
    "The Prose Edda", transl. by Anthony Faulkes, 1995

    Contact:


    Write in: waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com
    Join the Discord: ⁠⁠⁠https://discord.gg/Nvw5hmkRsW⁠⁠⁠

    Music:

    Celebration by Alexander Nakarada (www.serpentsoundstudios.com) Licensed under Creative Commons BY Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

    • 56 min
    Episode 32 - Associated with Fire

    Episode 32 - Associated with Fire

    How many times have you heard in the past that Loki is associated with fire? It's true, in fact, but how many people who told you Loki was associated with fire ever provided any examples of that association? In this episode, we'll dig in to why your answer to that last question is "none of them", and what this association with fire really means. By the way, are you familiar with the Ash Lad?

    Sources:


    “Loki, the Vätte, and the Ash Lad: A Study Combining Old Scandinavian and Late Material”, by Eldar Heide, 2011
    “The Poetic Edda”, transl. by Carolyne Larrington, 2014
    "The Prose Edda", transl. by Anthony Faulkes, 1995

    Contact:


    Write in: waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com
    Join the Discord: ⁠⁠https://discord.gg/Nvw5hmkRsW⁠⁠

    Music:

    Celebration by Alexander Nakarada (www.serpentsoundstudios.com) Licensed under Creative Commons BY Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

    • 40 min
    Episode 31 - Read Saxo with AtiWati

    Episode 31 - Read Saxo with AtiWati

    Our special guest today, AtiWati, has academic chops but prefers to keep his anonymity online. He currently moderates the r/Norse subreddit which is one of the largest academically-oriented internet communities focusing on Norse history and mythology. Today we'll be diving into Ati's specialty: the criminally under-discussed work Gesta Danorum by Danish author Saxo Grammaticus. We'll be talking about some of its unique stories, how it reinforces other Norse mythological sources, what Saxo sought to achieve when writing it, and why you should definitely not skip out on reading it.

    Disclaimer:

    Digital piracy may be illegal where you live. Don't do it.

    Contact:


    Write in: waelhraefn (at) gmail (dot) com
    Join the Discord: ⁠https://discord.gg/Nvw5hmkRsW⁠

    Music:

    Celebration by Alexander Nakarada (www.serpentsoundstudios.com) Licensed under Creative Commons BY Attribution 4.0 License http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

    • 52 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
3 Ratings

3 Ratings

Zara8686 ,

Fascinating !!

As someone who has always loved norse mythology and didn’t know where to start, this is such an amazing resource !! The way the stories are told and information is given is so digestible and engaging (also kudos for always citing the sources!)

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