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Classic Myths

Page: 6

"And now, Hilda, these three, Woden, Thor, and Frigga, still live upon our earth and are bound by loving ties. Strange to say, however, they can never meet again, for only one comes to earth at a time. At midnight, Woden, the father, leaves, and Thor, his son, stays with us till another midnight. Then Frigga, the mother, comes for a single day, but she never can see again her son nor her husband.

FRIGGA, THE MOTHER OF THE GODS

"Does Hilda guess what my story means?"

"I am not quite sure, mother; help me a little bit."

"In my story, Hilda, I told for whom three days of our week are named. Can you tell which days?"

"Why, mother, is that it? I know one, that is Woden's day, or Wednesday. Yes, there is Thor's day, or Thursday, but what is the other?"

"Didn't I tell you the mother never could see again her son or her husband? Do you see the meaning now?"

"Oh, I know! Friday is beautiful Frigga's day."

"Yes, you have guessed the three, Hilda. Now, do you see that Thor's day comes when Woden's day goes? And as soon as Thor's day is over, then comes Frigga's day. They come to earth, but never meet."

"Why, how queer it all is! When I say the names of the days of the week, it will seem as if you were telling me the story again."

"And now a little more, Hilda. Do you remember the colors of the robes that Frigga wore?"

"You said she wore green or white robes, or sometimes scarlet and gold. Her dresses must have been very beautiful."

"Look out of the window Hilda. What color is the lawn?"

"Why, the grass makes it green."

"What color will it be in winter?"

"Why, white with snow, of course."

"And in the fall, Hilda?"

"Oh, I know now what you mean by Frigga is the ground, isn't she?"

"Not the ground, but the earth. Woden, with his one all-seeing eye and his mantle of blue and gray, is the sky, and Thor, with his streaming red beard and his crashing hammer, is the thunder."

"Oh, mother, how strange it is that such a story should come just from the word Wednesday! I am glad that I am a Norwegian."


JUPITER, GOD OF THE SOUTHERN SKY

Roman

"Why do they call the eagle Jupiter's bird, Miss Folsom?"

"Where did you ever hear it called that, Mary?"

"It was in a book from which our teacher was reading a story to-day. She let me take the book and there was a fine picture of an eagle on the first page and it was marked 'Jupiter's bird.' I never knew exactly who Jupiter was. Was he a real person, Miss Folsom?"

"He was one of the three great gods whom the Romans used to believe in, Mary. They thought he ruled the sky and everything in it, and all living things on earth, both the gods and the men. His bird was the eagle, which carried the lightning in its claws. At Jupiter's command thunderbolts dashed against the hardest rocks and broke them into powder. No one dared to disobey him but his wife, Juno, and sometimes even she had to suffer for doing so.


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