6

Perhaps fifty foot long I can actually only think of one other real dragon in "proper" mythology: Nidhögg, which is clearly a cosmological beast and should really not be used as a measure, and if we do, he would have to be taken to be immense: in the final verse of Völuspá he "carries the dead" into the world that has been purified after Ragnarök. If we ...


6

What you are referencing is the oldest english translation of the Volsunga Saga, by Magnusson and Morris (1870), and it is very outdated. More modern versions (Finch 1965, Grimstad 2005) render Garðakonungi as "the king of Gardariki", i.e. the Varangian-Russian kingdom founded in the 9th century. Also, in Grimstad 2005, the sentence is translated ...


5

One has to remember that the northern mythology is not based on morality (like Abrahamic religion) and interactions between gods and men (like those in Greek myths) are rare; Odins interest in the world of men is not to promote "good" behavior, it is to harvest strong warriors that will ultimately fight for him in Ragnarök. For Odin, it is better if Sigi is ...


4

I've always taken the answer to this to fall somewhere in between, on the one hand, the fact that Óðinn [Odin] is a trickster figure and, on the other hand, the apparent cultural expectation of the Norsemen that the most desirable way to die would be in battle in order to spend one's afterlife with Óðinn in Valhalla, training for the Ragnarök. Óðinn's ...


4

Chapter 3 of the Volsungs Saga: The tale tells that great fires were made endlong the hall, and the great tree aforesaid stood midmost thereof, withal folk say that, whenas men sat by the fires in the evening, a certain man came into the hall unknown of aspect to all men; and suchlike array he had, that over him was a spotted cloak, and he was bare-foot, ...


3

The long pregnancy is probably to underline how unnatural the whole thing was: Völsung's father Rerir made several failed attempt to impregnate his wife, but only succeeded after being given a magical apple from the gods to eat. There is likely no special significance to the exact timespan.


3

To answer your question we take a look at the context of the Ferryman outside of this specific instance. In Hárbarðsljóð: "Hárbarðr" is the name of the ferryman. Hárbarðr means "Grey beard," and is another kenning for Odin. Hárbarðr repeatedly boasts of his conquests of giantesses, as does Odin in Havamal. While many scholars still may disagree on it, ...


3

My high-level response would be that one motivation is to display his courage in not fearing a potential curse by the Dragon. It's an interesting point that he only reveals his identity after being called out by Fafnir, with the implication Sigurd withholds his identity out of fear. (The reason I don't think it has to do with Sigurd wanting to be seen as ...


2

I'm no expert in the Völsungs, but my overall sense from the body of the sagas is that killing is not necessarily a capital crime (blood money and the ostracism of outlaw status as opposed to execution.) Many of the heroes of the sagas will commit seemingly random, senseless acts of violence (although there is usually an insult or slight that incites it, ...


2

No. Outside of the brief description of her, she is never given a name.


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