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Rune Web Vitki remains an independent Northern Tradition website aimed at supporting the solo rune practitioner with accurate up to date information and as far as possible support the historical heathen worldview around the time runes came into being in Northern Europe about a thousand years ago.  It is hoped to rekindle the “Old Ways” through critical thinking and practical application of what we know about Northern magic as well as give new insight to rune workings in a renewed flame of light.   All are welcome regardless of personal political views who wish to support this website with their research on Northern Tradition articles, points of view, news or interests matters in raising folklore awareness about the true origins and usage of historical runes.   This is an ongoing task to dispel 19th Century German Occultism impact on modern day rune magic or the influence of New Age ceremonial magic but it is hoped to correct many of the general misconceptions about the ancient worship of the Old Gods and Goddesses of the North and the true language of the fuÞark elder runes encoded within these symbols. Heathenry has been described as the pre-Christian religion of the ancient Germanic peoples whilst it’s later day definition into the modern suggest the 21st century reconstruction of that religion firmly based on the actual beliefs or interpretations of perceived religions within specific pre-Christian cultures. It is my hope that this site provides a fresh outlet for such pioneering vanguards who dare question their faith but are also willing to share their views with the common folk so that we may all grow with real knowledge of the Northern Gods and Goddesses and truly grasp the life runes

138. Veit ek at ek hekk Oδinn, I know that I was hanging
vindga meiði á on a windswept tree
nætr allar níu nine whole nights
geiri undaðr gashed with a spear
ok gefinn Óðni and given to Oδinn
sjálfr sjálfum mér ---myself to myself---
á þeim meiði on that tree
er manngi veit of which no one knows
hvers hann af rótum renn from roots of what it originates

139. Við hleifi mik sældu Oδinn, They did not hearten me with a loaf
né við hornigi or a horn of ale
nýsta ek niðr I peered down --- prying
nam ek upp rúnar I caught up runes
œpandi nam crying out in triumph I caught them
fell ek aptr þaðan Back I fell from beyond

140. Fimbulljóð níuOδinn, Nine powerful lays
nam ek af inum frægja syni I learned from the famous son
Bölþórs Bestlu föður of BolÞorn, Bestla’s father,
ok ek drykk of gat and a drink I procured
ins dýra mjaðar of the priceless mead
ausinn Óðreri ---I, irrigated with Oδrerir!

141. Þá nam ek frævask Oδinn, Then I began to be fertile
ok fróðr vera and fruitfully wise
ok vaxa ok vel hafask and to grow and feel good
orð mér af orði Word from word
orðs leitaði sought a word from me
verk mér af verki deed from deed
verks leitaði sought a deed for me

142. Rúnar munt þú finna You will find runes,
ok ráðna stafi and staves full of meaning
mjök stóra stafi very tall staves
mjök stinna stafi very stiff staves ---
er fáði fimbulþulr which the powerful sage painted
ok gørðu ginnregin and the vast gods devised
ok reist Hroptr rögna and Hroptr of the ruling gods engraved

143. Óðinn með ásum Oδinn, among the Ǽsir,
en fyr álfum Dáinn and for the elves Dàinn,
ok Dvalinn dvergum fyrir Dvalinn for the dwarfs
Ásviðr jötnum fyrir Ásviðr for the giants
ek reist sjálfr sumar I carved some myself

144. Veiztu hvé rísta skal? Do you know how one must carve them?
Veiztu hvé ráða skal? Do you know how one must construe them?
Veiztu hvé fá skal?  Do you know how one must tint them?
Veiztu hvé freista skal? Do you know how one must test them?         
Veiztu hvé biðja skal? Do you know how one must supplicate?

Veiztu hvé blóta skal? Do you know how one must sacrifice?
Veiztu hvé senda skal? Do you know how one must send off the soul?
Veiztu hvé sóa skal? Do you know how one must stop up the breath?

Hàvamàl The Poetic Edda Volume III Mythological Poems II 2001 pgs 30-31 Ursula Dronke     


The Valkyrie Sigrdrifa addresses Sigurd Fafnesbani with these words after he has wakened her from her sleep on Hindarfjell. Sigrdrifa is better known under another name, Brynhild, and her magic sleep was a punishment of Othinn, her father according to the prose version of the story. She had disobeyed her father’s will and he stung her with a magical thorn, which made her sleep. Othinn put a shield-wall around her and stated that no one who was acquainted with fear could pass this and wake her up. Sigurd Fafnisbani heard this story from the deadly wounded dragon and headed towards Hindarfjel for the maiden. His meeting with the valkyrie is told in Sigrdrífumál, belonging to the Eddic poems and the cycle of the Völsungar.  

After that she invokes the gods and the mighty fecund earth and beseeches them of “eloquence and native wit and healing hands”, not only for herself but also for Sigurd, the one who never was acquainted with fear and whom she now is expecting to marry. The healing hands are completed with knowledge of magical power, spells and favourable letters, good charms and joyful runes. Sigrdrifa furthermore tells that the runes should be cut on the hands and marked on the nails in order to beguile a wife. Others were victory-runes cut on the sword, others to calm the sea; there were speech-runes, mind-runes and book-runes, which at the first glance would have very little to do with healing. Others are more accurate to this connection, like the helping-runes in childbirth:

The powerful runes of Sigrdrifa are an expression of the letter as holy in itself. The very word rúna meant “secret” and the letters were thought as originating from the gods to special persons, who were said to rá›a rúnom “to rule and to master the secret letters). The word rá›a thus implies a special knowledge, which means that the runes had to be understood by the magician or the healer. One famous example of this occurs in Egils saga Skalla-grimsonar. Egil Skalla-Grimson is visiting a peasant in Edskog in Sweden, who worries for his sick daughter Helga. She suffers from an unknown illness, never sleeps and seems to have lost her wits. Egil asks the peasant what they had done to cure her and gets the answer that a young man had carved runes in order to cure her, but this made it even worse. He investigates the bed and finds whalebone with runes under it. He reads them and cuts them away and burns the bone. Then he makes a poem about this event.

The necessary first step in rediscovering the nature of heathen thought in Scandinavia is to discover how much has been caught up and preserved in the literature we possess, and to assess carefully the extent of the wealth at our disposal before we trace out its origins.

http://vsnrweb-publications.org.uk/

Ref: The Road to Hel: A Study of the Conception of the Dead in Old Norse Literature  By Hilda Roderick Ellis, Hilda Roderick Ellis Davidson.

This web resource is for the purpose of keeping informed all those who wish to seek their ancestral ways via critical thinking based on the latest archaeology, primary and secondary sources. All true seekers are welcome.

The Golden Gallehus Runic Horns were made around the year 400 AD and were decorated with both Nordic and Roman motifs. The combined weight of the horns was nearly 7 kg. The long horn was found in 1639 at Gallehus, near Møgeltønder, in Southern Jutland. A few metres away the short horn was found in 1734. This bore the runic inscription ekhlewagastiR : holtijaR : horna : tawido, in English “I Lægæst, son of Holt (or “from Holt”) made the horn”. Both horns were stolen and melted down in 1802. The appearance of the horns is known solely from drawings dating to the 17th and 18th centuries. Therefore many details are uncertain. The long gold horn was discovered in 1639 by Kristen Svendsdatter, a poor orphan girl. The second, shorter horn was found in 1734 by Erich Lassen, a farmer. The two instruments were unearthed at locations only 15–20 meters apart despite being found almost a century apart. They were interpreted as musical instruments at the time, but were converted into drinking horns by the Danish King Christian

ᛖᚲᚺᛚᛖᚹᚨᚷᚨᛊᛏᛁᛉ᛬  ᚺᛟᛚᛏᛁᛃᚨᛉ᛬  ᚺᛟᚱᚾᚨ᛬  ᛏᚨᚹᛁᛞᛟ

ekhlewagastiz ˈ holtijaz ˈ horna ˈ tawido

I, Hlewagastiʀ Holtijaʀ made the horn

Her name was Sigrdrifa, meaning Victory-Granter, and she was a Valkyrie. She said that two kings had fought. One was named Helm Gunnar; he had grown old but was still the greatest warriors, and to him Oδinn had decreed victory. The other Agnar, Hauda's brother, who never had hopes of being favoured. Victory-Granter felled Helm Gunnar in battle. In revenge Oδinn pricked her with a sleep thorn and said that she should never there-after fight for victory but should be married. But, she said him, I in my turn bind myself by a vow to marry no man except one who knows no fear. Sigurd asked her to make her wisdom known to him, since she had knowledge of all the worlds, Sigrdrifa said :

Bjór færi ek þér, With ale I offer you 
brynþings apaldr, you warrior's apple tree
magni blandinn  filled with force 
ok megintíri, and powerful glory
fullr er hann ljóða galδr songs
ok líknstafa, and consoling words 
góðra galdra good galδr
ok gamanrúna and pleasure runes
Sigrúnar skaltu kunna, Victory Runes should you know
ef þú vilt sigr hafa, If you want to have victory
ok rista á hjalti hjörs, carve them on the sword's hilt
sumar á véttrinum, some on the sheath
sumar á valböstum, some on the blade
ok nefna tysvar ᛏ ᛏ Tý. name then Tiwaz twice
Ölrúnar skaltu kunna, Ale Runes should you know
ef þú vill annars kvæn to prevent another man's wife
véli-t þik í tryggð, ef þú trúir; from betraying your confident beliefs
á horni skal þær rista on the horn you shall write
ok á handarbaki and on the back of the hand
ok merkja á nagli ᚾ Nauð. and mark on your finger nail Nauþiz
Full skal signa Bless your cup
ok við fári sjá against deception and strategy
ok verpa lauki í lög; and then place the onion in the drink;
þá ek þat veit, Then I know 
at þér verðr aldri that you never will drink
meinblandinn mjöðr a poisoners mead
Bjargrúnar skaltu kunna, Aid Runes should you know
ef þú bjarga vilt If you will save lives
ok leysa kind frá konum; the foetus from child bearing woman;
á lófum þær skal rista write them in the palm of the hand
ok of liðu spenna take hold at the wrist
ok biðja þá dísir duga. and invoke the aid of the Alfars
Brimrúnar skaltu rista, Sea Runes shall you write
ef þú vilt borgit hafa if you will salvage 
á sundi seglmörum, ships at the sea;
á stafni skal rista write them on the stem
ok á stjórnarblaði and on the lead oar 
ok leggja eld í ár, Etch them in the oar with fire;
er-a svá brattr breki if the brakers are rising
né svá bláar unnir, and waves turn black
þó kemstu heill af hafi. then you will come alive from the sea
Limrúnar skaltu kunna, Limb Runes should you know
af þú vilt læknir vera, if you will be a healer
ok kunna sár at sjá; and know about wounds;
á berki skal þær rista carve them on the bark
ok á baðmi viðar, and carve them on twigs
þeim er lúta austr limar. where the twigs are pointing to east
Málrúnar skaltu kunna Speech Runes should you know
ef þú vilt, at manngi þér if the man you violated
heiftum gjaldi harm:should be prevented in his revenge;
þær of vindr, they will be wrap up
þær of vefr, They will be woven
þær of setr allar saman, they will be compounded
á því þingi, at the Thing where people
er þjóðir skulu in crowds go
í fulla dóma fara. and fully law courts are judges
Hugrúnar skaltu kunna, Thought Runes should you know
ef þú vilt hverjum vera if you will be wiser
geðsvinnari guma; than all other men;
þær of réð, they were recommended
þær of reist, they were carved
þær of hugði Hroptr they were devised by Hroptr (Oðinn)
af þeim legi, from the secrets
er lekit hafði which trickle out
ór hausi Heiðdraupnis of Heiddraupne's head
ok ór horni Hoddrofnis. and from Hoddrovne's horn
Þat eru bókrúnar, There are Book Runes
þat eru bjargrúnar There are Birth Runes
ok allar ölrúnar and all Ale Runes
ok mætar meginrúnar, and special Power Runes
hveim er þær kná óvilltar if they remain unspoiled
ok óspilltar and unsoiled (original form)
sér at heillum hafa; you may have them for your luck
njóttu, ef þú namst, enjoy them now if you can
unz rjúfask regin. until the Tivar are no more

They should be marked at the nails as protection and were obviously connected with the norns, something still existing in folk belief as practiced by the volvas of old, where small white dots under the nails are called “ marks of the norns”. The norns were a third group of collective elder goddesses, connected with fate and the borders of life and death. Their appearance at childbirth is noticed in The Lay of Fafnir in a stanza, usually translated as “those who choose children from the mothers”. The literal translation says, however, that “they choose the mothers from their sons”, which must be interpreted as meaning that they could appear as death goddesses for the women. This stanza is usually translated as meaning who should survive or not. If mother and child survived, they received a sacrifice of porridge called norne-grautar, something that resisted the change of religions for many centuries. The disir and the norns were thus deities invoked in spells and through runic magic; still the art of healing had to be learnt. The interaction between healing and magic is conspicuous, but not as the distinction made by Frazer where magic was a means to subdue even the divine. The gods, who ultimately decided fate of man, gave the healing hands and the magic galδr.