Óðinn og hans ulydige valkyrjer
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionReligionsvidenskapeligt Tidsskrift. 2022, 74 (1), 356-370. https://doi.org/10.7146/rt.v74i.132111
The article presents an overview of the Valkyrie motif in Old Norse sources. The Valkyries have their origins in various religious beliefs and overlap with other female mythological beings. It is moreover clear that Valkyries have a great ability to adjust to changing societal conditions. That Valkyrie motifs can be quite different from one another can be understood against this background. In the most common motifs, Valkyries are presented as Óðinn’s women whom he sends to the battlefield to select those who are to die. It is argued that those Valkyries who appear in contexts where they disobey Óðinn are more closely related to the Norns that to him. Valkyries who disobey Óðinn encapsulate a question that must have been especially pertinent in Late Norse times when the Christian idea of one almighty God was known: Who constituted the highest power in life, the Norns or Óðinn?