In Norse meethologie, Freyja (Auld Norse the "Lady") is a goddess associatit wi love, brawnie, fertility, gowd, seiðr, war, an daith. Freyja is the awner o the necklace Brísingamen, rides a chariot pulled bi twa cats, awns the boar Hildisvíni, possesses a cloak o falcon feathers, an, bi her husband Óðr, is the mither o twa dochters, Hnoss an Gersemi. Alang wi her brither Freyr (Auld Norse the "Lord"), her faither Njörðr, an her mither (Njörðr's sister, unnamed in sources), she is a member o the Vanir. Stemmin frae Auld Norse Freyja, modren forms o the name include Freya, Frejya, Freyia, Frøya, Frøjya, an Freia.
Freyja rules ower her heivenly efterlife field Fólkvangr an thare receives hauf o those that dee in battle, whareas the ither hauf go tae the god Odin's haw, Valhalla. Athin Fólkvangr is her haw, Sessrúmnir. Freyja assists ither deities bi allouin thaim tae uise her feathered cloak, is invokit in matters o fertility an love, an is frequently soucht efter bi pouerful jötnar who wish tae mak her their wife. Freyja's husband, the god Óðr, is frequently absent. She cries tears o red gowd for him, an searches for him unner assumit names. Freyja haes numerous names, includin Gefn, Hörn, Mardöll, Sýr, Valfreyja, an Vanadís.
Freyja is attestit in the Poetic Edda, compiled in the 13t century frae earlier tradeetional sources; in the Prose Edda an Heimskringla, baith written bi Snorri Sturluson in the 13t century; in several Sagas o Icelanders; in the short story Sörla þáttr; in the poetry o skalds; an intae the modren age in Scandinavie fowklear, as well as the name for Friday in mony Germanic leids.
Scholars hae theorisit aboot whether or no Freyja an the goddess Frigg ultimately stem frae a single goddess common amang the Germanic fowks; aboot her connection tae the valkyries, female battlefield chuisers o the slain; an her relation tae ither goddesses an figurs in Germanic meethologie, includin the thrice-burnt an thrice-reborn Gullveig/Heiðr, the goddesses Gefjon, Skaði, Þorgerðr Hölgabrúðr an Irpa, Menglöð, an the 1st century CE "Isis" o the Suebi. Freyja's name appears in numerous place names in Scandinavie, wi a heich concentration in soothren Swaden. Various plants in Scandinavie ance bore her name, but it wis replacit wi the name o the Virgin Mary durin the process o Christianisation. Landwart Scandinavies continued tae acknawledge Freyja as a supernatural figur intae the 19t century, an Freyja haes inspired various wirks o airt.
Table o contents
Etymologie[edit | edit source]
The name Freyja is in fact a teetle meanin "lady", frae Proto-Germanic *frawjōn, cognate wi Wast Frisie frou, Dutch vrouw, Law German Fro, Fru, German Frau. The theonym Freyja wis thus an epithet in oreegin, replacin a personal name that is nou unattestit. The connection wi an possible earlier identification o Freyja wi Frigg in the Proto-Germanic period (Frigg an Freyja oreegin hypothesis) is a matter o scholarly debate.
Like the name o the group o gods tae which Freyja belangs, the Vanir, the name Freyja is no attestit ootside o Scandinavie, as opposed tae the name o the goddess Frigg, who is attestit as a goddess common amang aw Germanic fowks, an whose name is reconstructit as Proto-Germanic *Frijjō. Proof for the existence o a common Germanic goddess ance kent as *Fraujon does no exist, but scholars hae commentit that this mey simply be due tae lack o evidence.
Regardin a Freyja-Frigg oreegin hypothesis, scholar Stephan Grundy comments that "the problem o whether Frigg or Freyja mey hae been a single goddess oreeginally is a difficult ane, made mair so bi the scantiness o pre-Viking Age references tae Germanic goddesses, an the diverse quality o the sources. The best that can be done is tae survey the arguments for an against their identity, an tae see hou well each can be supportit."
Bride o the Odr[edit | edit source]
Freyja marriet a god cried Óðr. She deeply loves her husband, but he aften went awa on lang journeys, an Freyja cried red gowden tears for him. Her tears become gowd an lammer whan they fawl tae the Yird, tharefore gowd wis cried "Freyja's tears". They hae twa bonnie docters cried Hnoss an Gersemi.
Awner o the Gib-Cats an Brisingamen[edit | edit source]
Freyja aften rides in a chariot pulled bi big blue cats, or on a gowden battle boar. She is cried "The Fair One". In the meeths, thare wur three giants who wantit tae marry Freyja, but they wur aw killed bi Thor, the god o thunder.
Freyja haes a precious necklace cried Brisingamen (Jewelry o Fire). The god Loki ance stole this necklace, an Freyja haed tae ask the god Heimdall for help. Heimdall wan the fecht wi Loki an gave the necklace back tae Freyja. For this, Loki is cried "Thief o Brisingamen", an Heimdall is cried "Seeker o Brisingamen".
Whan Thrymr, the Keeng o the frost giants, tauld Loki tae ask Freyja tae become his wife, the goddess wis so angry that heiven wis shaken, an the necklace Brisingamen broke. The god Thor later borraeed the necklace an came tae the weddin, dressed up as Freyja. Thor killed Thrymr an aw his relatives.
Efter Ragnarok[edit | edit source]
Theories[edit | edit source]
Relation tae ither goddesses an figurs[edit | edit source]
In the Poetic Edda poem Völuspá, a figur bi the name o Gullveig is burnt three times yet is three times reborn. Efter her third rebirth, she is kent as Heiðr. This event is generally acceptit as precipitatin the Æsir-Vanir War. Stairtin wi scholar Gabriel Turville-Petre, scholars such as Rudolf Simek, Andy Orchard, an John Lindow hae theorisit that Gullveig/Heiðr is the same figur as Freyja, an that her involvement wi the Æsir somehou led tae the events o the Æsir-Vanir War.
Ootside o theories connectin Freyja wi the goddess Frigg (see etymologie section abuin), some scholars, such Hilda Ellis Davidson an Britt-Mari Näsström, hae theorisit that ither goddesses in Norse meethologie, such as Gefjon, Gerðr, an Skaði, mey be forms o Freyja in different roles an/or ages.
Receiver o the slain[edit | edit source]
Freyja an her afterlife field Fólkvangr, whaur she receives hauf o the slain, haes been theorisit as connectit tae the valkyries. Scholar Britt-Mari Näsström points oot the description in Gylfaginning whaur it is said o Freyja that "whainiver she rides intae battle she taks hauf o the slain," an interprets Fólkvangr as "the field o the Warriors". Näsström notes that, juist like Odin, Freyja receives slain heroes who hae dee'd on the battlefield, an that her hoose is Sessrumnir (which she translates as "filled wi mony seats"), a dwellin that Näsström posits likely fills the same function as Valhalla.
Modren influence[edit | edit source]
Freyja is mentioned in the first stanza ("it is cried auld Denmark an it is Freja's haw") o the ceevil naitional anthem o Denmark, Der er et yndigt land, written bi 19t century Dens poet Adam Gottlob Oehlenschläger in 1819. In addeetion, Oehlenschläger wrote a comedy enteetled Freyjas alter (1818) an a poem Freais sal featurin the goddess.
In late 19t century an early 20t century Northren Europe, Freyja wis the subject o numerous wirks o airt, includin Freyja bi H. E. Freund (statue, 1821–1822), Freja sökande sin make (paintin, 1852) bi Nils Blommér, Freyjas Aufnahme uner den Göttern (charcoal drawin, 1881) an Frigg; Freyja (drawin, 1883) bi Karl Ehrenberg, Freyja (1901) bi Carl Emil Doepler d. J., an Freyja and the Brisingamen bi J. Doyle Penrose (painting, 1862–1932).
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Grundy (1998:56–66).
- Grundy (1998:57).
- Simek (2007:123–124), Lindow (2002:155), and Orchard (1997:67).
- Davidson (1998:85–86).
- Andersen (1899:157).
- Simek (2007:91).
- Simek (2007:90).
- Wiberg, Wiberg, and Holleman (2001:1345).
Freemit airtins[edit | edit source]
- Freya, wi the references tae her in auncient leeteratur
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