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Myths of the Norsemen From the Eddas and Sagas

Page: 97

Unloved Divinities

Ægir, as we have seen, ruled the sea with the help of the treacherous Ran. Both of these divinities were considered cruel by the Northern nations, who had much to suffer from the sea, which, surrounding them on all sides, ran far into the heart of their countries through the numerous fiords, and often swallowed the ships of their vikings, with all their warrior crews.

Other Divinities of the Sea

Besides these principal divinities of the sea, the Northern nations believed in mermen and mermaids, and many stories are related of mermaids who divested themselves for a brief while of swan plumage or seal-garments, which they left upon the beach to be found by mortals who were thus able to compel the fair maidens to remain on land.


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