Norse Creation Story and Myths Part 1

About the Norse creation story, history and origins of the world created by the gods including Odin.


In the very beginning of time . . . there was no Earth as we know it now: there was only Ginnungagap, the Yawning Void. In this moved strange mists which at length drew apart leaving an even deeper Gap, with Muspelheim, the Land of Fire, to the south of it, and Nifelheim, the Land of Mists, to the north of it. . .

Deep down in Ginnungagap lay the well of Life, Hvergelmir, from which flowed rivers which the cruel breath of the north froze into grinding blocks of ice.

As the ages passed, the grinding ice piled up mysteriously above the Well of life and became Ymir, the greatest of all Giants, father of the terrible Frost Giants, and of all the Giant kin.

Ymir grew into life, and with him appeared the magic cow Audumla whose milk was his food. And very soon the ice of Ymir broke off in small pieces and each became a Rime Giant--a father of witches and warlocks, of ogres and trolls.

Audumla herself needed food, and she licked the ice about her and found in it the slat of life that welled up from Hvergelmir.

On the 1st day the she licked the ice there came forth in the evenings the hair of a man; the 2nd day she licked, and in the evening there was a man's head showing; and by the ending of the 3rd day the whole man was there.

He was the 1st of the Aesir, and his name was Buri; he was tall and strong, and very fair to see. His son was called Borr, and this Borr married the giantess Bestla, and they were the mother and father of the Aesir who planted the World Tree, Yggdrasill, and made the Earth.

Borr had 3 sons called Odin, Vili, and Ve, and of these Odin, the Allfather, was the greatest and the most noble.

They fought against Ymir the great Ice Giant, and slew him, and the icy water gushed from his wounds and drowned most of the Rime Giants, except for one who was named Bergelmir. He was wise and clever, and for this reason Odin sparred him. For Bergelmir built himself a boat with a roof, and took shelter in it with his wife and children so that they escaped being drowned in the flood.

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