Njord

From Academic Kids

Njord (Old Norse Njǫrðr) is one of the Vanir and the god of seamanship and sailing in Norse mythology. He is son of Yngvi husband of Skadi (Skadhi) but previously the father of Yngvi-Freyr and Freya (by his sister: apparently the Vanir, unlike the sir, were allowed to practice sibling incest). His dwelling is said to be Noatun 'Ship-town'. Njord is also a god closely associated with fertility, as are the Vanir in general.

Njord and his children joined the sir as Vanir hostages after the sir/Vanir war.

Njord is the Old Norse equivalent of the goddess Nerthus described by Tacitus. It has been suggested by Hilda R. Ellis Davidson in Gods and Myths of Northern Europe (1964) that there was possibly originally a male and female pair of deities, Njord and Nerthus, with Freyr later replacing Nerthus. She also makes the point that there were other male/female pairings of Norse gods of whom little is known but their names, e.g. Ullr and Ullin.

The comparative mythologist Georges Dumzil developed the idea introduced by Jacob Grimm that the hero Hadding in Saxo Grammaticus' Danish History, Book I, might be an euhemerized version of Njord. This suggestion was used by science-fiction/fantasy writer Poul Anderson in his War of the Gods.

In Viktor Rydberg's idiosyncratic and increasingly accepted reconstruction of Norse mythology Njord was also known as "Fridlief", the Lover of Frith. With Hodur, he undertook a mission of peace to Weland and Egil, which they refused. He rescued his son Freyr from the giants later on. During the war between sir and Vanir, he led the attack on Asgard and won. While he was gone from Vanaheim, Loki tried to take over there, but Njord defeated him in battle and routed him.

How Njord met Skadi The sir regretfully killed Skadi's father, Weland-Thjazi, who had inflicted the Ice Age on the world. She put on her skis and skied all the way to Valhalla. The gods agreed that they would have to repay her in some way. She would be able to choose any of the males as her husband, but she was only allowed to look at the feet as she chose. She looked long at all of the feet, and she chose the cleanest pair, thinking that it must belong to Baldur. It wasn't Baldur, however, but Njord, whose feet were washed clean by the sea. Although they loved each other very much, their marriage wasn't the best. Skadi lived in a land of winter, but Njord didn't like being woken up all the time by the wolves, and he could hardly sleep anyway because it was so cold. Skadi couldn't take living in a spring forest, being woken early by the birds. And she thought it was a little too warm. But they decided to live a week at each place, and it worked well for them.


Other names

  • Njord
  • Njrd
  • Njrdh
  • Njrðr
  • Njǫrðr (most accurate)

Template:NorseMythology

Template:Mythological king of Swedenda:Njord de:Njrd eo:Njrr nl:Njord ja:ニヨルド no:Njord pt:Njord fi:Njord sv:Njord

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