ullr god symbol
In addition, Ull’s name appears as part of many Swedish and Norwegian place-names. Early skis, or perhaps sleds, might have been reminiscent of shields. But since swearing an oath on a symbol of divinity – any divinity, regardless of that deity’s connection with justice and law – was a common practice in heathen Germanic society, this episode alone is insufficient to establish that Ullr had anything in particular to do with these attributes. Ull, Old Norse Ullr, in Norse mythology, a god associated with skis and the bow, according to the Icelandic poet and historian Snorri Sturluson in his Prose Edda. (1.15" dia.)

Like so many other aspects of pre-Christian Germanic religion, the information we have on Ullr is fragmentary and insubstantial, but, what is even more frustrating, tantalizingly so. Snorri's note that a shield can be called Ullr's ship is borne out by surviving skaldic poetry with kennings such as askr Ullar, far Ullar and kjóll Ullar all meaning Ullr's ship and referring to shields. In turn a shield can be called Ullr's ship. This suggestion is corroborated by the medieval Danish historian Saxo Grammaticus, who tells us that Ullr (whose name is here Latinized as “Ollerus”) assumed the leadership of the gods during a period when their usual chief, Odin, was in exile. In particular, he is the god of bow hunting and skiing. The second element, -þewaz, means "slave, servant". The Old Norse Language and How to Learn It, The Swastika – Its Ancient Origins and Modern (Mis)use. In the mainland North Germanic languages, the modern form is Ull. [5] This placement suggests a position of particular prominence for Ullr relative to other deities. While the origin of this kenning is unknown it could be connected with the identity of Ullr as a ski-god. The name Ýdalir, meaning "yew dales", is not otherwise attested. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). His father, Egill, was the greatest archer in the mythology, and Ullr follows in his father's footsteps. Ullr is the god of sports. His father, Egill, was the greatest archer in the mythology, and Ullr follows in his father's footsteps.

(For a possible nickname *Ringir for Ullr see under the name Ringsaker. References to him in Old Norse literature are sparse and tell us little to nothing about his personality or role in pre-Christian religion and mythology. This speculation, therefore, is nothing more than a speculation, for which and against which it is impossible to persuasively argue. In The Retrospective Methods Newsletter, December 2010.

All rights reserved. Translated by Angela Hall. Rydberg also postulates he also ruled over the Vanir when they held Ásgarðrduring the war between the Vanir and the Æsir, however Rudolf Simek states "this has no basis in the sources whatso…

“Ullr’s ship” is a kenning for “shield,” which indicates that there was a tale of his traveling across the ocean on a shield, but if so, this tale has been lost. p. 339. Announcing our NEW encyclopedia for Kids! The points of this rendition are terminated with the open "Trishulas" of the triple goddess. The first element owlþu, for wolþu-, means "glory", "glorious one", Old Norse Ullr, Old English wuldor. Again we seem to find Ullr associated with some sort of ceremony, this time that of swearing an oath by a ring, a practice associated with Thor in later sources. In early Germanic paganism, *Wulþuz ("glory") appears to have been an important concept, perhaps personified as a god, or an epithet of an important god; it is continued in Old Norse tradition as Ullr, a god associated with hunting and archery. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Uller is a handsome man with red hair and beard. So, in the end, we know just enough about Ullr to infer that he was once a deity of prime importance, but we have no idea who he really was or what made him so important to the ancient Scandinavians. Edited by Helen F. Leslie and Mathais Nordvig. 1993. An Ullr medallion or Ullr ski medal, depicting the Scandinavian god Ullr on skis holding a bow and arrow, is widely worn as a talisman by both recreational and professional skiers as well as ski patrols in Europe and elsewhere. The medieval Norse word was Latinized as Ollerus. Breck Ullr Fest was first held in 1963. Old English wuldor and the Gothic wulþus), possibly in reference to the god, is attested on the 3rd century Thorsberg chape (as owlþu-), and there are many placenames in Ullr and a related name, Ullinn, but medieval Icelandic sources have only sparse material on the god Ullr. p. 184. These two liked winter, snow, frozen landscapes, and skiing, and as they had much in common, they lived in perfect harmony. [1] Turville-Petre, E.O.G. The name of Ullr is also common in warrior kennings, where it is used as other god names are. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. Many of these names are combined with elements such as hof, “temple,” which indicates active worship of Ullr during the early Viking Age and possibly later as well. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. Tyr was, amongst other things, a god of law and justice. Snorri informs his readers that Ullr can be called ski-god, bow-god, hunting-god and shield-god. In the book Hammered, third book in The Iron Druid Chronicles, Ullr makes an appearance when the main character and his five man team raid Asgard. The last reference to Ullr in the Poetic Edda is found in Atlakviða: Both Atlakviða and Grímnismál are often considered to be among the oldest extant Eddic poems. [3] The Poetic Edda.

Young (1964). Both gods were apparently more prominent in Norse religion at one time than they were by the time Old Norse literature was written, but this does not in and of itself establish a connection between the two, either. [4], Elsewhere in the poem, Odin, who is entrapped between two fires, promises the blessings of “Ullr and all the gods” on whomever will rescue him. 1964. p. 339-340. Myth and Religion of the North: The Religion of Ancient Scandinavia. [7], The prevalence of place names derived from “Ullr” throughout Sweden and eastern Norway further attests to Ullr having once been an exceptionally prominent figure amongst the Scandinavian gods. [6] Probably Ullr’s name also can be read in the former Finnish municipality Ullava in Central Osthrobotnia Region. In chapter 31 of Gylfaginning in the Prose Edda, written in the 13th century by Snorri Sturluson, Ullr is referred to as a son of Sif (with a father unrecorded in surviving sources) and as a stepson of Sif's husband; the major Germanic god Thor: In Skáldskaparmál, the second part of the Prose Edda, Snorri mentions Ullr again in a discussion of kennings. The episode of swearing an oath on Ullr’s ring in the Atlakviða could indicate that Ullr was likewise appealed to as a patron of law and justice. He is considered to be one of the eldest gods in the Norse pantheon, and because of that, much of the mythology surrounding him is lost to the ages. I’ve also written a popular list of The 10 Best Norse Mythology Books, which you’ll probably find helpful in your pursuit. Dictionary of Northern Mythology. [12] Ellis-Davidson, Hilda Roderick. p. 182-183. Dictionary of Northern Mythology. Translated by Angela Hall. This page was last edited on 18 October 2020, at 13:10. The Icelandic form is Ullur. Another strophe in Grímnismál also mentions Ullr. p. 182-183. It may not be a coincidence that they are the only ones to refer to Ullr. [4] Some of the Norwegian placenames have a variant form, Ullinn. Looking for more great information on Norse mythology and religion? Grímnismál, stanza 5. The Thorsberg chape (a metal piece belonging to a scabbard found in the Thorsberg moor) bears an Elder Futhark inscription, one of the earliest known altogether, dating to roughly AD 200. p. 105-106.

1993. Ullr's name appears in several important Norwegian and Swedish place names (but not in Denmark or in Iceland). He typically wears green clothing and no armor. Snorri Sturluson ; translated by Jean I. The English versions shown here are by Thorpe.

Ullr helped Svipdagr-Eiríkr rescue Freyja from the giants.

More fundamentally, however, any argument that assumes the Vanir were a distinct tribe is by that virtue alone open to considerable suspicion, because it’s highly debatable to what extent the Vanir were seen as being a distinct tribe of gods, if at all.[13]. Ull is said there to be the handsome son of Sif and the stepson of her husband Thor. [4] Turville-Petre, E.O.G. Ullr helped Svipdagr-Eiríkr rescue Freyja from the giants. p. 182. He resided at Ydalir (Yew Dales). Corrections? Niwajmariz means "well-honored". Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. Nevertheless, these passing references indicate that he was once a deity of considerable importance, even if we don’t know why. [8][9], The meaning and etymology of his name are uncertain, but some have suggested that it could be derived from a Germanic root that can also be found in Gothic wulþus, “glory,” and Old English wuldor (“glory, splendor, honor”).


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