Freya Ottar and
War of the Gods
Alvíssmál or "Ballad of Alvís": The dwarf Alvis wants to marry Thor's daughter, Thrud. He ends up in a contest of knowledge and is outwitted by Thor, who keeps the dwarf up until the sun comes up, thereby turning Alvis into stone.
Baldrs Draumar or "Balder's Dream": Balder has nightmares so Odin rides to the underworld to talk to a volva to find out what Balder's dreams mean. The volva says they portend the fall of the gods, beginning with the death of Balder.
Grimnismál or "Sayings of Grimnir": Agnar and Geirrod are brother princes and foster sons of Frigg and Odin. Geirrod the younger tricked his brother so he could be King. Frigg gets Odin to visit his favorite, Geirrod, accusing Geirrod of inhospitality, a most heinous crime. However, she also appears to Geirrod, and warns him to beware of a visitor. Odin arrives at Geirrod's in disguise, saying his name is Grimnir. Geirrod binds Grimnir between two fires for eight days. Odin avenges himself by prophecying that the king will perish by his own sword. Geirrod draws his sword, but startled when Odin suddenly transforms himself into his godly form, falls on his own sword and dies, thus fulfilling the prophecy.
Hárbarthljód or "Lay of Hárbarth": Thor, on one side of the river and Odin (as Harbarth the ferryman) at the other "play the dozens", a contest of verbal abuse and bragging of their accomplishments.
Hávamál or "Sayings of Hár": "The Ballad of the High One" - Odin as Har, "the High One", gives advice on proper behavior, talks about women, how he obtained the mead of poetry, and gives a list of charms. It contains the Runatal , the story of how Odin obtained the runes. Click here to see the Bray translation of the Hávamál.
Hymiskvida or "Lay of Hymir": Thor and Tyr go to the giant Hymir's in search of a kettle large enough for Aegir to brew ale in for the gods' feast. While with the giant, they go fishing for their breakfast. Hymir catches two whales and Thor hooks the Midgard Serpent. Hymir, fearing that the boat would sink and he would become its breakfast, cuts the line and lets it drop back into the sea.
Hyndluljód or "Lay of Hyndla": Freya rides her lover Ottar (in boar form) to Hyndla's and gets the wise woman to state Ottar's ancestory.
Lokasenna or "Loki's Mocking": Loki crashes a party of the gods at Aegir's hall and insults and slanders all.
Rigsthula or "Rig's Song": Heimdall (Rig) journeys about middle-earth fathering the ancestors of the three social classes of man: slave, freeman, and noble.
Skirnismal or "Sayings of Skirnir": Frey falls in love with Gerd so he has his servant Skirnir go woo her for him. As anticipated, Gerd plays hard to get.
Voluspa or "Prophecy of the Wisewoman": Odin brings back to life a volva, who chants about the cosmos. The Voluspa gives a striking picture of paganism by describing events from the history of the world, past, present, and future. Auden & Taylor translation. Hollander translation.
Thrymskvida or "Lay of Thrim": The giant Thrym steals Thor's hammer and says he would give it back only if he can marry Freya. Freya will have no part in the bargain so Thor dresses in drag, pretending to be Freya going to her wedding feast, with Loki as his handmaiden. As soon as he gets his hands on the hammer, Thor uses it on the assembled giants.
Vafrúdnismál or "Sayings of Vafrúdnir": No sooner has Odin obtained a drink from Mirmir's well than he goes to Jotenheim (as Gagnrath) to battle wits with Vafthrudnir, the most learned of the giants. He almost loses.
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