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18.05.2021

Volund

Völund is a mythical smith-god of the Scandinavian and Germanic peoples, whose shocking and violent tale of vengeance is conveyed in "Völundarkvir," a poem in the Poetic Edda. It is closely related to Weyland (also spelled Weyland, Veland and Watland), the blacksmith god of the Anglo-Saxon religion, who was brought with the Saxon settlers from Britain, although the exact connection with the Nordic version (whether by direct extrapolation or syncretism) is unclear.

Nordic mythology is known for its rich tapestry of colorful stories, memorable characters, heroic sacrifices and epic battles. In the history of northern Europe, this collection of tales has carried meaning and purpose to both the Scandinavian peoples and the Nordic Germanic tribes for many centuries. Although the spiritual lore of Norse mythology, like virtually all human history, is characterized by violence, glorifying war and human sacrifice, today this region has become a leader of peace and disarmament on the international stage.

As a figure in the Norse mythic corpus, Völund belonged to a complex religious, mythological and cosmological belief system common to the Nordic and Germanic peoples. This mythological tradition, from which the Scandinavian (and especially Icelandic) subsets are best preserved, developed from the first manifestations of religious and material culture around 1000 B.C. to the Christianization of the region, which took place mostly between 900 and 1200 B.C. The tales recorded in this mythological corpus tend to show a unified cultural emphasis on physical prowess and military might.

Within this framework, Norse cosmology postulates three separate "clans" of deities: the Aesir, the Vanir and the Jotun. The distinction between the Aesir and the Vanir is relative as these two deities are believed to have made peace, exchanged hostages, intermarried and ruled together after a long war.In fact, the main differences between these two groups lie in their spheres of influence: the Aesir represent war and conquest, while the Vanir represent exploration, fertility and wealth. The Jotuns, on the other hand, are considered a generally evil (though wise) race of giants, who represented the main adversaries of the Aesir and Vanir.


Völund, in a semi-eponymic tale from the Poetic Edda, is an intriguing character. On the one hand, he appears to be a (rather immoral) man who exacts bloody revenge on his tormentor. On the other hand, the mythical and archaeological evidence contains some elements ( which suggest a divine origin. In any case, he is one of the most ambiguous (and therefore intriguing) characters of Scandinavian myth

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This piece of bronze was found near the south wall of the hall. It was most likely part of a larger object, perhaps decorating a wooden box. It is possible that the figurine depicts Völund, a master smith with magical powers. In the 9th-century Norse collection of mythical poems Eddan, Völund is captured but manages to escape with the help of wings that he made himself.

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