The Northern Way

Grimm's Teutonic Mythology

Chap. 7 Sup.

Page 1

CHAPTER VII. - WODAN.

p. 131. ) The name of the highest god, whom the other gods serve as children their father (Sn. 23), often occurs in OHG., like Herrgott much later, as a man's name: Wotan, Schannat 312, Woatan 318, Wuotan 342. 386-9. Langobardic glosses have Odan and Godan, Hpt Ztschr. 1, 557; conf. Godán 5, 1. 2. In the Abren. we find Woden; perh. Wedan too is OS. (Suppl. to 154); on Wodan conf. Lisch Meckl. Jb. 20, 143. AS., beside Wôden, has Othan (Sup. to 5); Oðon, Sal. and Sat. 83; Eowðen (p. 161 n.). Nth Fris. Wede, Wedke, Müllenh. 167. Wedki taeri! Landesk. 4, 246. For Norse Oðinn, once Oddiner, conf. Munch on Odd's Ol. Tr. 94. Audon, Yngl. c. 7, Does Audun in Norw. docs. stand for Oðin? Oden in Östögtl. = hin onde, Almqvist 371a. In the Stockh. Adress-calender för 1842, p. 142, are actually two men named Odin. Rask, Afh. 1, 377-8, takes the Lett. Vidvut for the Vodan of the Vides (Lettons), while Vogt 1, 141 makes Widewud, Waidewud a Prussian king. With Vut in the Grisons, conf. Vuodan in the Valais, of whom M. C. Vulliemin relates in his La reine Berte et son temps, Laus. 1843, p. 3: 'Un jour on avait vu Wuodan descrendre le Rhône, telle était du moins la croyance populaire, l'épée nue dans une main, un globe d'or dans l'autre, et criant rigou haiouassou (fleuve soulève toi) ! et le fleuve s'élevant avait détruit une partie de la ville.' On my inquiring (through Troyon) if the name in the story was really Wuodan, the answer was distinctly Yes, and the town destroyed was Martigny. Carisch 182b has vutt idol, which some derive from vultus, voult, face, or portrait, others from votum; conf. magliavutts (Sup. to 35n.).

p. 132. ) Wuotan from watan, like qeoj from qeein, Sansk. vâdanas, Schleicher in Kuhn's Ztschr. 4, 399. He stands closely conn. with weather, OHG. wetar, aër, aether, and wind (Sup. to 115); he is storm, byr, furia, wild hunter, uma, Ymir, Jumala, spirit; he is also called Ofnir, Vafuðr, Vafþrûðnir. But why in Sæm. 3b does Oðinn give önd, and Hoenir ôð, when surely Oðinn should give ôð? The Bav. wueteln is known to H. Sachs: das es aufwudlet grün in grün (of herbs) v. 377d. wudelt das kraut auf, v. 378c; conf. Wuotilgôz, Wôdelgeát, p. 367 n., and Wôden's relation to Geát, p. 164-5. We can put him on a par with Zeus, Indra, Loptr: ahr, on au tij onomaseie kai Dia, Meineke's Fragm. com. 4, 31. Æschylus in Eum. 650 says of Zeus: ta d alla pant anw te kai katw strefwn tiqhsin, ouden asqmainwn menei. Zeus merely touches, breathes upon Io, and she conceives Epaphos (the touched), Æsch. Prom. 849-851. ex epafhj kux epipnoiaj Dioj, Æsch. Suppl. 18. 45. efaptwr 312. qeiaij epipnoiaij pauetai 576. Ducange sub v. Altanus has a peculiar gl. Aelfrici: Altanus Voden, quae vox saxonice Wodanum seu Mercurium sonat (conf. p. 162 n.). In Wright 17b 'Altanus þoden,' otherw þoden is turbo; altanus auster is a wind. On Woldan see Hpt Ztschr. 5, 494.

p. 132. ) With Otfried's gotewuoto conf. a Schlettst. gl. of the 9th century: 'sub tyranno, under themo godowôden.' Der wüeterîch, Servat. 2853. ein tobender w., Barl. 254, 21; conf. gwyth, p. 150 n. In the Eifel the wild host is called Wodes-heer, and a savage monster of a man Wuodes-woor, Schmitz 1, 233. In the Wetterau band of robbers was one Werner Wuttwuttwutt, Schwenker 574. Pfister 1, 157. 162.

p. 133. ) It is not Svîðr, gen. Svinns, but Sviður ok Sviðrir, gen. Sviðurs, in Sæm. 46b. Sn. 3. 24. 195. ----- Beside valfaðir, herfaðir (p. 817), Oðinn bears the names Herjann, Herteitr, Gunnarr, Lex. myth. 641a; conf. Herjans dîs, Sæm. 213b. fleygði O. ok î folk umskaut 5a. valr lâ þar â sandi vitinn enum eineygja Friggjar faðmbyggvi (ibi caesi in arena jacuere, dedicati unoculo qui Friggae amplexibus delectatur), Sn. 1848, 236.

Non humile obscurumve genus, non funera plebis

Pluto rapit vilesque animas, sed fata potentum

Implicat, et claris complet Phlegethonta figuris,
Saxo Gram. 36. ---- The boar's head in the Alamann order of battle is expressly acknowledged by Agathias 2, 8 (Stälin 1, 160).

p. 134. ) With Paul the Deacon's account conf. the older setting in the Prol. leg. Rotharis in Hpt Ztschr. 5, 1. There Wodan and Frea remind you altogether of Oðinn and Frigg in the Grîmnismâl. O. is called Sigr-höfundr, Egilss. 640, and his dwelling Sigtûnir, Yngl. 5. Sn. 15.

p. 136. ) On name-giving, ON. nafn-festi, see GDS. 153-4. With Hliðsciâlf conf. Valaskiâlf, p. 817n. Does OHG. Bughenscelp belong here? Cod. Lauresh. no. 2597. The Gl. Sletst. 15, 7 have scelb fornice, also those in Hpt Ztschr. 5, 196. scelp fornix, Graff 6, 479. biscilbit in clida, Diut. 1, 342; and clida belongs to hlið, OHG. hlit, operculum. The Lex. myth. 434 explains Hliðskiâlf as porta coeli tremens.

p. 136-7 n. ) God's chair means also the rainbow (p. 733); God's little chair, among the Lausitz Wends, the corpse-bird (p. 1134). The German märchen of the Tailor who climbs the Lord's chair, of iron-booted Ferdinand, of faithful John and strong Francis, who arrive at a heaven with many doors (conf. Wolf's Deut. mär. u. sagen no. 5, KM. no. 3, 35, Müllenh. mär. no. xii.), resemble the Greek notion of Zeus's throne and the several doors through which he attends to the prayers, vows and offerings of men, Lucian's Icaromenippus, c. 25-6.

p. 138. ) Wunsch, wish, seems akin to Sansk. vângksh, vânch opto, desidero, Bopp Gl. 315a. Pott 1, 235, which Bopp thinks identical with Welsh gwanc, desire. Wish in O.Fr. is souhait (p. 951n.) and avel, pl. aviaux, Ren. 25131, 26828. plus bel lui nestuest souhaidier, Ogier 1, 140. Wunsch is god of bliss and love, who wishes, wills and brings good to men. We still speak of God as the giver of all good, all gifts, Kl. Schr. 2, 327-9. Wünschen is to romance, exaggerate, imagine: sam ez gewünschet waere, Rab. 240. ob ieman wünschen solde, Nib. 281, 3. 780, 1. und der nu w. solde, Ecke 202 (Hagen). Also to wish into being, create, Wigal. 327. 887. 5772. so viel nur immer Gott Vater w. kann, Zingerle 2, 64. mit wunsch, by divine power, Tit. 347; and conversely verwünschen to annihilate. wünschen lernen, to learn conjuring, Müllenh. 395. 402. (Of wunsch as the Ideal, a page and a half of examples is here omitted.)

p. 141. ) Wish personified appears most freq. in Hartmann, which is the more remarkable, as he got no prompting from his French original. The last line on p. 138:

der Wunsch het in gemeistert sô, Greg. 1097. Er. 2740.
only reminds us partially of a French poet, Thib. de N. 95:

beneet soit le maistre

qui tele la fist naistre;
while Chrestien's Erec has nothing similar, either here, or in describing the horse (Hartm. Er. 7375), or the palace and twenty ladies (8213-77); and where Hartm. boasts of his Enite:

man sagt daz nie kint gewan

ein lîp sô gar dem Wunsche glîch, Er. 330,
Chrestien's Erec 407 has merely:

que tote i avoit mis s'entente

nature, qui faite l'avoit (conf. vv. 415. 425).
Presently, however, in his:

ich waene Got sînen vlîz

an si hâte geleit

von schoene und von saelekeit, Er. 338,
where Chrestian had said, v. 429:

onques Dex ne sot faire miauz

le nes, la bouche, ne les iauz,
Hartm. draws nearer to his prototype again. His Wunsches gewalt often occurs in later writers:

beschoenen mit Wunsches gewalte, Flore 6927.

ir lîp aller wolgestalt

gar in des Wunsches gewalt, Meleranz. 8768.

Wunsches gewalt hân, Berth. 239. 240.

hie Wunsches gewalt, hie liep âne leit

in immerwerender sicherheit, Heinr. Suso in Die ewige weisheit.
But the phrase becomes more and more impersonal:

si hât an ir wunsch gewalt, Altsw. 98.

an im lît der wunschgewalt, Dietr. drach. 41b.

drîer wünsche gewalt, MS. 2, 145b (KM.-3- 3, 146-7).

geben mit alles wunsches gewalt, Pass. 298, 1.

aller wünsche gewalt, Uhl. volksl. 1, 21.
conf. exousiaj tucein para tou Dioj aithsasqai otou epiqumei, Athen. 3, 24. (Another page and a half of examples is here omitted.)

p. 143 n. ) Even Wolfram in Wh. 15, 7 has 'des Wunsches zil'; and des Wunsches paradîs actually occurs in Barl. 52, 8 and in the Rudolf. Vilmar p. 64.

p. 143. ) Wish is the meting, moulding, casting, giving, creating (p. 22, 104n. 139), figuring, imaging, thinking, faculty, hence also imagination, idea, image, figure. There is about Wish something inward, uttered from within: der Wunsch tihtet, Troj. 3096, ûz tiefer sinne grunde erwünschet mit dem munde 2960. Apart from the passage in the Iliad, carij answers to wunsch, not only in Lucian's Pro Imag. c. 26 p. 52: komhn taij carisin apeikase, but, as God imparts wishing, it is said of Hermes: oj ra te pantwn anqrwpwn ergoisi carin kai kudoj opazei, Od. 15, 319. Beside des Wunsches aue and heilwâc, we have also a wunschsee and wunschbrunne, Pröhle's Unterharz. s., no. 345; a Wünschberg in Panzer's Beitr. 1, 116, Wenschenborch in Hpt Ztschr. 1, 258, Wunschilburg in Henricus Pauper 115, Wünschelburg a village near Glatz. 'Joannes Wunschelberg doctor vixit circa an. 1400,' Flacius cat. test. verit. 782, in Zarncke's Univ. Leipzig 764 an. 1427, 888 an. 1438. A Wünschmichelbach, Baader's Sagen no. 345; a Wünschensuhl near Marksuhl, Thuringia; a 'super Wünsche' and Wunscheidorf, Rauch 2, 198. 200.

p. 143-4. ) Förstemann has no name Wunsc, Wunscio, which would mean wisher, adopter, but Karajan quotes Wensco and Sigiwunh (for Sigiwunsc, conf. Sigtýr), and Sigewnses-holz about Eichstadt (for Sigiwunsces-holz), MB. 31, 363, year 1080. ---- The Oskmeyjar are called nunnor Herjans, Oðins meyjar, Sn. 212a. Oskopnir might be connected with it and explained as 'stragem, campum electionis aperiens' from opna aperire, of which the Völs. saga c. 18 makes uskaptr. Beside the Wûscfreá of Deira, a later one is mentioned by Beda 138, 19. 153, 5.

p. 145. ) As Wuotan sends wind and weather, and stills the stormy sea, it is said of the christian God: daz er uns alle tage dienet mit weter ioch mit wint, Diemer 89, 18. In Parzival, Feirefiz ascribes it to Juno that she daz weter fuocte, fitted 750, 5; dem Juno ie gap segels luft 757, 7; segelweter fuogte 767, 3. ----- If yggr be terror, yggdrasill means the horse of dread, the storm-courser, perhaps the rushing god himself, as we know that Oðinn bears the surname Yggr, and is always figured as the rider in the air, the furious hunter. In that case Yggdrasils askr (Pref. li.) is the stormful god's ash. Oðinn is also Hrôptr, alte clamans, conf. OHG. hruoft, clamor, Graff 4, 1137: Hrôptr glaðr, Hpt Ztschr. 3, 154; Hrôptatýr, p. 196. And the surname Farma-týr, Farma-guð may not be out of place here, as deus vecturarum nauticarum, from farmr, onus nauticum. Mefîngr, Sæm. 272a is perh. conn. with mafr, seamew. Other by-names are Fengr, Sæm. 184a. Völs. saga c. 17, p. 157; Svâfnir, Sæm. 93a; Fiölnir, Sæm. 10a. 46b. 184a. Völs. saga c. 17, p. 157 and conf. 136. 193. 200. 323. He is 'inn reginkunngi baldur î brynjo,' Sæm. 272b.

p. 145. ) Similar expressions for dying are: AS. Dryhten sêcean, Beow. 373. ON. kenna einom âttûnga brautir til Oðins landa, Sæm. 80b. far till Oden, Geyer 1, 123; conf. gefa Oðni, Landn. 5, 10. The miser collecting treasures is said in Sweden to tjena Oden, Geyer 1, 123. Kl. schr. 3, 197.

p. 145n. ) The conception of Oðinn as an evil being is clear in the ON. 'hvaða Oðins lâtum?' quid hoc mali est? shortened to 'hvaða lâtum,' quid hoc rei est? Wormius mon. dan. p. 11; lât is amissio, mors; conf. our 'was des teufels?' Fornm. sög. 3, 179 has 'ôfögnuðr sendr af Oðni,' mischief sent from O.; Oðinndœll 11, 151 periculosus, insociabilis, difficilis, is interpr. 'illr viðfângs' 12, 430; Oðinndœla 6, 374 periculum, infortunium, interpr. 'vandraeði, vandamâl, naudsyn' 12, 430. Dæll itself is mansuetus, affabilis.

p. 147. ) Oðin's outward appearance is alluded to in many other places; hinn eineygji Friggjar faðm-byggvir, Sn. 1848 p. 236. He is Hengikiaptr, labeo, cui pendet maxilla, Sn. 146 (p. 1075 n.); Harbarðr, Flaxbeard, from hör, linum; to Sigurðr appears the Longbeard, and helps him to choose Grani, Völs. c. 13. GDS. 688-9. To Saxo's 'Othinus os pileo obnubens' answers his surname Grîmnir larvatus, from grîma. As 'Grîmnir' he shows himself to men in the guise of a beggar to try them, e.g. to Geirröðr; as 'Gestr blindi' to Heiðrekr, as 'Gângrâðr' to Vafþrûðnir. Compare the German märchen of the old Beggar woman, KM. 150, whose clothes begin to burn, as Grîmni's did. In the case of Heiðrekr, Gestr guesses riddles for another, as the miller or shepherd does for the abbot, Schmidt 85-9. Again Oðinn appears as the one-eyed bôndi Hrani, and bestows gifts, Hrolf Kr. saga c. 39. 46 (Fornald. s. 1, 77. 94). The Fornm. s. 5, 171-2 says: 'hann var stuttklaeddr, ok hafði sîdan hatt niðr fyrir andlitit, ok sâ ôgerla âsjonu hans; skeggjaðr var hann;' conf. the blind (one-eyed?) Hatt, Sv. äfventyr 1, 363. GDS. 578. Swed. legend gives Oðinn a pointed hat, uddehatt, which agrees with the peculiar shape of certain tombstones, wedge-shaped, like a man-trap. But he is called hauga-drôttin, Vitterh. acad. handl. 14, 73. Now uddehatt is usu. a dwarf's hood or cape of darkness; hence also he appears as 'lord of dwarfs.' At the same time the hat is a wishing hat and Mercury's hat. He appears as an old man, or as a hunter on high horse with three hounds which he gives away to a youth; and a Småland story expressly names him Oden, Sv. folkv. 1, 212. Gammal gråman gives advice, but may not stay beyond cock crow, Arvidsson, 3, 3. Similar is the one-eyed witch, Norske event. 141-2. ------ In Germany too we can now find many traces of this divine apparition. A Graymantle, a Broadhat often turns up in nursery tales, see Haltrich p. 10. 39. 44; an old man fetches the children, p. 4. He appears as Old One-eye 45. 55, as Stone-goat 44, Wild-cat 63. God comes in the guise of an old beggar, stands godfather, and gives gifts, KM. no. 26; or as a grey-bearded mannikin, Frommann's Munda. 4, 328; conf. the old beggar woman, KM. no. 150; as One-eyed Flap-hat, Alsatia 1856 p. 131. A grey smith heals, Hpt Ztschr. 1, 103. In St. Martin's cloak and hood Simrock sees Wuotan's wishing cloak, Martinsl. xvii.

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