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Viktor Rydberg's Investigations into Germanic Mythology Volume II  : Part 2: Germanic Mythology
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90) According to Gregory of Tours (Historia Francorum II, p. 29) the gods Mars and Mercury of the Franks were magicis artibus praediti.
91) Cf. Alex. Haggarty Krappe, Etudes de mythologie et de folklore germaniques p. 38: the reason for Othin's being identified with Mercury is that he was . . . . un intellectuel, qu'il l'était déjá au premier siécle de notre ère.
92) This may have taken place in some parts of the Germanic world already in an earlier period; when according to Tacitus Ann. XIII, 57 in the war between the Chatti and the Hermunduri the defeated army was devoted to Mars and Mercury, the god of death is so closely associated with the war-god that in course of time a fusion into each other seems inevitable. The same holds good with regard to the information of Gregory of Tours cited above. If the supreme hero of the Goths whom Jordanes, Get. XIV, 79 calls Gapt, possibly a mistake for Gaut, really should be the same as Wödan, he could have been conceived as such in his character of god of the dead and it is not at all necessary to suppose him to have been a god of war; the same may be said with regard to the Anglo-Saxon belief that Wödan was the god de cujus stirpe multarum provinciarum regium genus originem duxit, as Bede styles it (Hist. Eccl. I, 15).
93) See G. Neckel, Walhall, Studien fiber germanischen Jenseitsglauben (Dortmund 1913).
94) As early as 1822 a German scholar H. Leo wrote a very confused paper "Über Odins Verehrung in Deutschland", in which he tried to prove that the tribes of Alemans, Franks and Burgundians had never worshipped Othin, but that he had been introduced into the Teutonic world by an invading people come from Eastern Europe and influencing particularly Saxons, Goths and Langobards. This is a quite opposite view from that accepted by modern scholars.
95) See Chantepie de la Saussaye, The Religion of the Teutons p. 222 ff.
96) See S. Bugge, Aarbøger etc. 1905 p. 318 where he mentions the word ti, tiu explained as the vocative for the name Týr. This is an assertion which it is difficult to prove. More important is the fact that the runic character T, called Týr in the runic alphabets is sometimes used in a magical sense; on bracteate Nr. 57 from Sjælland even in the significant form Triple Týr Rune explained by M. Olsen as a threefold invocation of the god (o. c. p. 286), by Marstrander however as a crystalized cornear (hesitatingly in Norsk Tidsskrift for Sprogvidenskap III, p. 137).
97) The runic stones of Glavendrup (þur uiki þasi runaR), of Virring (þur uiki þisi kuml) and of S. Kirkeby (þur uiki runaR), all belonging to the 10th century. This is, however, in my opinion no genuine heathen custom. Just as the hammertoken of Thor is put on the stones in imitation of the Christian cross-symbol, so too the name of this god was sometimes added under the same Christian influence.
98) Altgermanische Kukturprobleme p. 59.
99) He follows in this the hypothesis of Von Friesen, Röstenen i Bohuslän p. 45 ff, which has been accepted by several scholars, recently even by S. Agrell, Rökstenens chiffergåttor p. 98 although it seems [74] hard to reconcile it with his own theories about the origin of the runic art. It seems, however, to me that the hypothesis of the Herules rests upon rather shaky foundations as we know too little about this tribe to ascribe to it the spreading of such cultural goods as the runic art.
1oo) Spaltung, Schichtung and Mischung im germanischen Heidentum (Ehrismann-Festschrift 1925) p. 15 ff.
101) After having written this passage I read the paper of Carl Clemen, Südöstliche Einflüsse auf die nordische Tradition? in the ZfdPhil. LV (193o) p. 148 ff and cannot but approve of this sound criticism with regard to the above named far reaching hypotheses, in the upbuilding of which the way from the possible to the probable and thence to the certain is a rather short one.
102) The reasons, why I reject the opinion that Wodan is the leader of the Wode, this word being the name for the furious host of spirits, will be given below.
103) Cf. Flateyjarbók 1, p. 249. - The question as to whether this oathformula is really genuinely heathen (as it was generally accepted, cf. Heusler, Das Strafrecht der Isländersagas p. 34) has lately peen raised by Helmut de boor in Deutsche Island-Forschung 1930 p. 137 note 9o; he thinks it probable that this formula is a learned invention and that the adjective allmáttugr betrays Christian influence. In my opinion the argument of the lack of evidence for this formula in sources older than the thirteenth century, has but little value, as it is merely ex silentio. The correspondence between the heathen and the Christian oath-formulas may be explained by the Christianization of a pagan example. How can we be sure that the heathen Teutons did not know a god, who punished a broken oath, as Von Amira [75] (Grundriss des germanische Rechts 3, p. 270) asserts? And finally as in the meaning of the word allmáttugr that of máttr "magic power" is the original one, I do not believe that it is only to be restricted to the sphere of giants and demons (as De boor o. c. p. 98 says), but that it belongs as well to the god of all magic arts, i. e. Othin. So I consider this to be again a proof for my conception that hinn allmátki 'ass is not Thor but Othin.
104) This is a well-known fact; for the classical peoples see S. Eitrem. Opferritus and Voropfer der Griechen and Römer (Videnskapsselskabets Skrifter 1914, Nr. 1 p. 422) and R. Farnell, The Cults of the Greek States I, p. 69 and III, p. 74. Cf. also Helgakv. Hundingsbana II, 31, where an oath is made at inoliósa Leiptrar vatni, and as Leiptr is a river in the underworld this may be compared with the Greek oath by the Styx.
105) See Snorri's Heimskringla (ed. F. Jónsson) I, p. 187
106) So I do not agree with E. Wessén, Nordiska Namnstudier (Uppsala Univers. Årsskrift 1927) p. 81 who considers Thor to be the real 'ass. I lack here the space to criticise all his arguments, but I may make a choice. In the mythological poems all gods are called Æsir; so it is not strange that the vigour and the anger of Thor, by which the Æsir are defended, are called ásmegin and ásmóðr. If Thor bears the name ásabragr, Othin does so likewise. If Ásgarðr is found only in two poems (Hymiskviða and Þrymskviða) treating about Thor, this may be explained by the late origin of this name for the heavenly abode of the gods. (See moreover for the the young character of the Þrymskviða my paper in the Tijdschrift voor Nederl. Taal- en Letterkunde XLVII (1928) p. 251-322). - On the other hand in [76] many poems Othin is represented as the chief of the Æsir.
107) Get. XIII, 78.
108) C. J. S. Marstrander has in the Norsk Tidsskrift for Sprogvidenskap IV, p. 321 asserted that the latinized form ansis can not denote a Gothic word ansus but must be a rendering for *anseis, nom sg. of a wordstem *ansija- which means "born from the Æsir". This opinion is based on, the supposition that ansis is a singular, which it clearly is not, if we have to take Jordanes' text as it stands. For then it is only to be taken as a plural, and may be as well a rendering of *ansius as of *ansios, in my opinion even more likely the former than the latter.
109) If this conception is right, then the word ásmegir for the inhabitants of Hell is easy to understand and we need not recur to Falk's explanation of this use (Festskrift Kjær p. 6-7).
110) Heimskringla I, p. 81.
111) For the well established fact of a close connection between Othin and the horse, it is superfluous to give further evidence, cf. S. Agrell, Rökstenens Chiffergåtor, Vetensk. Samf. i Lund Årsberattelse 1929-1930 p. 22.
112) See f. e. W. Steller, Zeitschrift fir Volkskunde, Neue Folge II, p. 64 ff.
113) The Origin of the English Nation p. 178.
114) Cf. Frazer, The Golden Bough V, p. 292 ff.
115) Mannhardt strongly affirms (Mythologische Forschungen p. 165) that the horse which appears in different agricultural rites (Schimmel, Fastnachtspferd, Wooden horse, Hobbyhorse) is nothing but the vegetationhorse and not a representation of Wodan. Celander, Folkminnen och Folktankar VII (1920) p. 99 is of the same opinion.
116) Cf. my paper on "Hunebedden en Hunen" in the Tijdschrift voor Nederlandsche Taal- en Letterkunde XLIX (1930), especially on p. 91.
117) Cf. K. Helm, Altgermanische Religionsgeschichte I, p. 261 note 47
1 18) Cf. S. Feist, Etymologisches Wörterbuch der gotischen Sprache p. 436. C. C. Uhlenbeck, Theologisch Tijdschrift XXXVII (1903) p. 252 accepts the same etymology; his conclusion that Wodan must have been a windgod although the word has nothing to do with "wind" seems to be under the impression of the general opinion about the character of this pagan deity, which prevailed in the beginning of our century.
119) o. c. p. 261.
120) Against this opinion of Lévy-Bruhl, Les Fonctions mentales dans les sociétés inferieures serious objections may be raised both on an ethnological (cf. O. Leroy, La Raison primitive) and on a linguistic basis (Cf. A. Trombetti, Introduzione agli Elementi di Glottologia).
121.) See Schmeller, Bayerisches Wörterbuch II, p. 861: wâdeshêr, p. 1056: wüethes hör (ms. of the 16th century) ; Martin-Lienhart, Wörterbuch der elsässischen Mundarten I, p. 367: wüetig heer.
122) H. Fischer, Schwäbisches Wörterbuch VI, p. 506. Cf. the word waüdi "märchenhaftes Ungetüm (Martin-Lienhart II, p. 790) and der woudi "der garstige, ungeschlachte" (Schmeller II, p. 861). In Mecklenburg he is sometimes called the Waur.
123) The names Frô Gôde, Ver Gode a. s. o. very likely have no connection with the name of Othin, as they belong to the same group as the Scandinavian names Góinn, Gói, Góa, Gjø, which Nils Lid has tried to explain in his book p. 271 as "spirits of the earth" (*go = Gr. chthon).
124) Cf. the Dutch Tijdschrift voor Volkskunde XXXIV,
p. 140.
125) Cf. Hægstad, Maal og Minne 1912 p. 80-85.
126) See his edition of the saga p. 293.
127) See my paper on Ginnungagap in Acta Philologica Scandinavica V, p. 41-66.
128) Cf. Mannhardt, Germanische Mythen p. 262.
129) Cf. U. Holmberg, Finno-Ugric Mythology p. 177.
130) Cf. Handwörterbuch des deutschen Aberglaubens I, c. 588.
131) Cf. J. E. Harrison, Prolegomena to the Study of Greek Religion (Cambridge 1908) p. 68.
132) o. c. p. 206.
133) Wuttke-Meyer, Deutscher Volksaberglaube (4) p. 294.
134) Cf. Germanisch-Romanische Monatsschrift XVII, p. 413.
135) Cf. Celander, Nordisk Jul I, p. 31
136) Cf. Celander, Nordisk Jul I, p. 32 -- Nils Lid p. 6o ff considers these Yule-spirits as a representation developed from original Yule processions, a view which I cannot fully approve. - The name Hoe may of course mean Gói, the vegetation-spirit.
137) In the periodical Rig 1920 p. 168-176. In this paper he tries to prove that the Yule-sheaf which is dedicated to the birds, was originally a sacrifice to Othin; the evidence, he adduces for his opinion, however, is very slight and questionable. At any rate the fact that with the same intention in some parts of Scandinavia corn is strewn for the geese, when they have alighted on the ground (Storaker, Naturrigerne p. 223) makes it probable that in these rites the birds represent the spirits of the dead.
138) Cf. the following sentence, quoted by Celander p. 175: och ther aff pläghar man än-nu seya at the tiena Odhenom, som många peningar och rijkedomar sammanslagga.
139) Cf. Hedenske Kultminder i norske Stedsnavne 1, p. 234.
140) The Juttish popular belief is, however, under the strong suspicion of being mainly due to an influence from North Germany cf. Olrik, Dania VIII, p. 165.
141) E. Wigström, Folkdigtning p. 145.
142) Arwidsson Nr. 2. Cf. also the Faroese ballad CCF 14 where in st. C 64 appears Æsakongur and in D 62 Nasagrái.
143) Cf. S. Bugge, Studier over de nordiske Gude- og Heltesagns Oprindelse I, p. 287 and especially R. Th. Christiansen, Die finnischen and nordischen Varianten des zweiten Merseburgerspruches, FFComm. Nr. 18, who defends with great acumen the opinion that this charm really goes back to a Christian original. I do not accept, however, this conclusion, see my provisional remarks in Het Sprookje (Brussels 1929) P. 128.
144) Cf. Aminson, Bidrag etc. IV, p. 74
145) To an analogous conclusion Kaarle Krohn has come in his Skandinavisk Mytologi p. 87 ff; if he extends his doubt to the reliability of the Swedish popular traditions about Othin in general, he goes, in my opinion, too far (see note 3).

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