Lore Tome: Odin

🦉 I’m currently updating this post, so if anything looks a bit messy, that’s why. But don’t worry! I should be done soon.


Welcome, weary wanderer! This post is called a Lore Tome. It contains every primary source reference to Odin (ON: Óðinn, ᚢᚦᛁᚾ) that I have stumbled upon so far.

Knowledge-seeking wanderers can use these Lore Tomes to learn more about the Old Norse gods, whether by trusting my brief summaries or by delving into the source material for themselves (using the citation information accompanying each entry).

Table of Contents

  1. Odin in the Poetic Edda
  2. Odin in the Prose Edda
  3. Odin in the Fornaldarsǫgur
  4. Odin in Heimskringla
  5. Odin in the Íslendingasǫgur

Odin in the Poetic Edda ^

In compiling this Lore Tome, I have used Carolyne Larrington‘s translation of the Poetic Edda. Instead of citing with pages, though, I have used stanza and line numbers to make it easier to reference various translations (since not everyone has the same edition). If you don’t have an edition yet, feel free to refer to the free online (illustrated) edition available through the Viking Society for Northern Research, which was translated by Olive Bray.

Vǫluspá (The Prophecy of the Seeress)

  • Stanza 1, line 3: Odin is addressed as “Father of the Slain” and he is asking for the Seeress to recount ancient history.
  • Stanza 4, line 1: Odin is included among “the sons of Bur” mentioned here.
  • Stanza 17, line 1: Although it doesn’t say who the ‘three gods’ here are, it is known to be Odin, Hænir, and Lodur. It is in this stanza that Ask and Embla are found.
  • Stanza 18, line 3: Odin gives Ask and Embla breath.
  • Stanza 22, line 3: When referring to Valhalla as “the High-One’s hall.”
  • Stanza 25, line 1: Odin charges into war against the Vanir with his spear.
  • Stanza 28, line 4: Mentions the “Father of the Slain’s pledge,” probably referring to what happens in the following stanza.
  • Stanza 29: Odin is mentioned throughout this stanza. At first, his is described as “the old man” and “the Terrible One.” The rest recounts how Odin gave his eye for knowledge at Mimir’s Well.
  • Stanza 30, line 1: As the “Father of Hosts,” Odin gives the Seeress? many gifts.
  • Stanza 31, line 5: This stanza is about the valkyries, but Odin is likely being referred to here as ‘General’ when the poem refers to them as “the General’s ladies.”
  • Stanza 32, line 2: When referring to Baldr as “Odin’s child.”
  • Stanza 33, line 4: When referring to Baldr as “Odin’s son.”
  • Stanza 42, line 2: When referring to Valhalla as the “Father of Hosts’ hall.”
  • Stanza 45, line 4: Odin speaks with Mimir’s head.
  • Stanza 51, line 2: Odin battles against Fenrir.
  • Stanza 52, line 1: When referring to Vidar as the “Victory-father’s son.”
  • Stanza 53, line 2: When referring to Thor as “Odin’s son.”

Hávamál (The Sayings of the High One)

  • 98.1
  • 110.1
  • 138.3 [regarding his own hanging]
  • 143.1 [regarding his knowledge of runes]
  • 109.2, 111.6, and 164.1 [as High One (Hávi)].

NOTE: Although Odin is not directly mentioned in much of Hávamál, a great deal of this poem is about him, and thus worth considering in full.

Vafþrúðnismál (The Lay of Vafthrudnir)

  • 5.1
  • 52.3, 54.3, 55.5
  • 2.1 [as Father of Hosts]
  • 4.3 and 53.1 [as Father of Men]

NOTE: Odin is a speaker throughout this entire poem, although, like Hávamál, he is not directly mentioned in all of the verses. He also goes by Gagnrad through this poem. Consider this poem in full.

Grímnismál (The Lay of Grimnir)

  • prose
  • 3.2
  • 7.3 ff. [in particular, see stanzas 7, 8, 14, 19, 48, and 53]
  • 19.2, 25.1, and 26.1 [as Father of Hosts]
  • 38.2 [as All-father]
  • 46.1 [as Wanderer (Gangleri)]
  • 46.1 and 47.4 [as Mask]
  • 46.2 [as General and Helm-wearer]
  • 46.3 [as Known and Third]
  • 46.4 [as Hell-blind]
  • 47.2 [as High (Hár) and War-merry]
  • 47.3 [as Flame-eyed and Weak-eyed]
  • 47.4 [as Masked One (Grímnir) and Much-wise]
  • 48.1 [as Broad-beard, Broad-hat, Victory-father, and Wanderer]
  • 48.2 [as All-father, Burden-god, and Father of the Slain]
  • 49.6 [as Equal-high]
  • 53.1 and 54.1 [as Terrible One (Ygg)]

Skírnismál (The Lay of Skirnir)

  • 21.1, 22.2, 33.1

Hárbarðsljóð (The Lay of Harbard)

  • 9.2, 24.3, 56.5

NOTE: Odin is disguised as a man named Harbard throughout this poem. Consider it in full.

Lokasenna (The Flyting of Loki)

  • prose, 9.1 [regarding a blood-bond between Odin and Loki], 22.1, 45.3, 58.4

Helgakviða Hundingsbana I (The First Lay of Helgi the Hunding-Slayer)

  • 12.3
  • 38.2 [as All-father]

Helgakviða Hundingsbana II (The Second Lay of Helgi the Hunding-Slayer)

  • prose
  • 34.3 [regarding Odin’s causing of misfortune by his casting of runes]
  • 43.2
  • 50.2

Reginsmál (The Lay of Regin)

  • prose [Otter’s ransom]

Sigrdrífumál (The Lay of Sigrdrifa)

  • 2.3 [a reference to Odin’s casting of sleep-runes on Brynhild]
  • prose

Guðrúnarkviða I (The First Lay of Gudrun)

  • 19.2

Helreið Brynhildar (Brynhild’s Ride to Hel)

  • 8.4 [regarding why Odin was mad with Brynhild]

Oddrúnargrátr (The Lament of Oddrun)

  • 16.2

Atlakviða (The Lay of Atli)

  • 30.3 [as Victory-god (Sígtýr)].

Baldrs draumar (Baldr’s Dreams)

  • 2.1
  • 3.3 [referred to as the “father of magic” in 3.2]
  • 4.1 [regarding Odin’s revival spell, in which he brings back to life a Seeress]
  • 8.4 ff.
  • 6.1 and 13.1 [as Way-tame (Vegtam)]

Hyndluljóð (The Lay of Hyndla)

  • 2.1, 44.4

Vǫluspá (from Hauksbók)

  • 18.3, 30.1, 40.4, 47.2, 49.3
  • 1.3 [as Woe-father]
  • 27.3 [as High (Hár)]
  • 34.2 [as Father of Hosts]

Odin in the Prose Edda ^

In accordance with Anthony Faulkes’ translation:

  • Prologue:
    • 3-5 [as Woden, a king in Asia]
  • Gylfaginning:
    • (8), 11 [birth], 13, 17, 20 [residence], 21 [summary], 23, 24, 26, 29, 31-34, 49-51 [at Baldr’s burial], 54-55 [at Ragnarok].
  • Skáldskaparmál:
    • 59, 61, 62-64 [the mead of poetry], 66-79 [various kennings], (80), 81, 83-87, (89), 90, 95-97, (98), 99-100 [otter’s ransom], 106, (114), 117-119, 121-124, (128, 132-133, 137, 139-140, 145), 151, 156-157, (160).
  • Háttatal:
    • (168, 173, 186, 196-200).

Odin in the Fornaldarsǫgur (Sagas of the Ancient Times) ^

  • Vǫlsunga saga (The Saga of the Volsungs):
    • Chapter 1
    • Chapter 2
    • Chapter 3 [thrusts Gram (sword) into Barnstock (tree)]
    • Chapter 8 [raven brings leaf to heal someone]
    • Chapter 10
    • Chapter 11 [breaks sword in battle with his spear]
    • Chapter 12
    • Chapter 13 [gives Sigurd a horse]
    • Chapter 14 [Otter’s ransom]
    • Chapter 17 [as Feng (Fengr), Fjolnir (Fjǫlnir), and Hnikar (Hnikarr)]
    • Chapter 18 [advises Sigurd about Fafnir]
    • Chapter 21 [punishes Brynhild and carves runes as Hropt]
    • Chapter 44
  • Hrólfs saga kraka (The Saga of Hrolf Kraki):
    • Chapter 4
    • Chapter 26 [as Hrani; tests Hrolf’s men]
    • Chapter 30 [as Hrani; tests Hrolf]
    • Chapter 33

In accordance with Seven Viking Romances, translated by Hermann Pálsson and Paul Edwards:

  • Ǫrvar-Odds saga (The Saga of Arrow-Odd):
    • Chapter 14 [in verse]
    • Chapter 17 [regarding conversion]
    • Chapter 23
    • Chapter 29 [in verse]
    • Chapters 19-23 [as Red-beard]
    • Chapters 24 and 29 [as Jolf]
  • Gautreks saga (The Saga of King Gautrek):
    • Chapter 1
    • Chapter 2
    • Chapter 7 [as himself in judgement]
    • Chapters  4 and 7 [as Grani Horsehair]
  • Hálfdanar saga Eysteinssonar (The Saga of Halfdan Eysteinsson):
    • Chapter 1 [in genealogy].
  • Bósa saga ok Herrauðs (The Saga of Bosi and Herraud):
    • Chapter 1 [in genealogy]
    • Chapter 12 [regarding a toast in his name]
  • Egils saga einhenda ok Ásmundar berserkjabana (The Saga of Egil One-hand and Asmund Berserker-slayer):
    • Chapter 8 [regarding a sacrifice]
    • Chapter 13 [as the Prince of Darkness]
  • Þorsteins þáttr bæjarmagns (The Tale of Thorstein Mansion-might):
    • Chapter 3 [regarding an eagle thought to have been sent by Odin]
    • Chapters 9-10 [regarding a toast in his name and a servant-boy sent by Odin to a certain man].

In accordance with The Sagas of Ragnar Lodbrok, translated by Ben Waggoner:

  • The Saga of Ragnar Lodbrok:
    • Chapter 9 [in verse]
    • Chapter 10 [in verse]
  • Sǫgubrot:
    • Chapter 7 ff. [as Bruni(?)].
  • The Tale of Ragnar’s Sons:
    • Chapter 5 [in verse].
  • Krákumál:
    • 12.7 [as Svolnir]
    • 25.3 [as Baldr’s Father, Fjolnir, and Vidrir]
    • 27.5 [as Vidrir (in a reference to his spear) and Herjan]

NOTE: I have not yet searched through all of the Fornaldarsögur, having only collected what I could with the collection I already have in my personal library. But no worries! I shall look through more in the future and add them at that time.


Odin in Heimskringla ^

In accordance with Heimskringla I, translated by Alison Finlay and Anthony Faulkes:

  • Ynglinga saga (The Saga of the Ynglings):
    • Chapters 2-9 [as a mortal chieftain]
    • Chapter 12 [as Odin the Old]
    • Chapter 25 [a king sacrifices his son to Odin in exchange for prolonged life]
    • Chapter 43 [regarding a sacrifice]
  • Hákonar saga góða (The Saga of Hakon the Good):
    • Chapters 14 and 17 [regarding  toast in his name].
  • Ólafs saga Tryggvassonar (The Saga of Olaf Tryggvason):
    • Chapter 27 [regarding a sacrifice and ravens]
    • Chapter 64 [as a hooded guest]

NOTE: There are several poetic references to Odin scattered throughout Heimskringla. I have yet to include them all, but plan to do this in the future.


Odin in the Íslendingasǫgur (Sagas of Icelanders) ^

  • Bárðar saga Snæfelsáss (Bard’s Saga):
    • Chapter 18 [briefly as Raudgrani].
  • Flóamanna saga (The Saga of the People of Floi):
    • Chapter 1 [in genealogy].

REMEMBER: This page is NOT complete. I have only added what I could from my personal library, but I will be taking time in the future to gather more resources for this page. However, this should be enough to get the project started!

Advertisements