Fenrir The Wolf

Fenrir the wolf was brought to Odin along with his brother Jörmungand The Midgard Serpent, and its sister Hel. Odin had learned of a prophecy that the children of Loki and the giantess Angora would cause trouble for the Aesir.

Odin passed Judgement on the children of Loki.  He hurls Jörmungand into the sea surrounding Midgard.  Then he sends Hel into the land of the dead where she reigns until Ragnarok.  Odin had Fenrir raised among the Aesir. Týr was the only god among the Aesir brave enough to feed the growing beast. Fenrir got larger and stronger. The Aesir knew that he would eventually destroy them. They tried to chain him up. He twice breaks from the chains the Aesir tied him with.

Odin binds Fenrir

Odin sent Skirnir to the world of the dark elves, Svartalfheim. In those gloomy unlit grottoes, he found hundreds of twisted horrible dwarves, Nar, Nain and Nipling, Dain, Bifur and Bafar, Bombor and Nori, among them. They forged the chain Gleipnir (“deceiver” or “entangler”). Looking like a silken ribbon; they made it from six magical ingredients: the sound of a cat’s step, the beard of a woman, the roots of a mountain, bear’s sensibility, fish’s breath, and bird’s spittle.

The gods challenged Fenrir to break this chain as well. Fenrir saw how thin and well made Gleipnir was and thought it was a trick. He agreed to try and break the chain, but only if one of the gods would put his hand in the wolf’s mouth. He believed this would force them to free him if he could not break the chain. Only Týr was willing to put his hand in the wolf’s mouth. Fenrir tried to break the chain. The more he tried, the tighter the chain held him. When the gods would not free him, the wolf bit off Týr’s hand at the wrist.

Fenrir’s Fate

At Ragnarök, Fenrir will break free and join forces with the enemies of the Aesir, He will eat Odin and that will be the end of the All-Father, then Viðarr, Odin’s son, will slay Fenrir and avenge his father’s death.


Of Wolves and Men


Wolves and the Wolf Myth


Gods and Myths of Northern Europe

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