Monday, 20 June 2016


Poul Anderson, Hrolf Kraki's Saga (New York, 1973), p. 98.

As Helgi enters Uppsala, lur horns low. It is a big, sprawling, busy town with timber houses usually two stories high. The gloomy ways between are full of people and swine. On a hill outside the town, the biggest temple in Northern Europe has piled roofs with gold-sheathed gables and monster-headed beam-ends and tall wooden images of twelve high gods although Anderson names only seven and includes Aegir of the Sea who I thought was a giant although he clearly deserves honor as the equivalent of Lir or Poseidon/Neptune.

Four gods are accompanied by their symbol:

Odin with the Spear;
Thor with the Hammer;
Frey on his boar;
Heimdall with the Gjallar Horn.

Frey also has something else which I prefer not to mention. The other two gods are Baldr and Tyr.


  1. Kaor, Paul!

    The image of Uppsala Cathedral seen here is actually the second cathedral, building of which started in the 1270's. The first cathedral was built at a different location, the site of the pagan temple you mentioned. The original site was thought too small for the second cathedral.


    1. Sean,
      Interesting history.

    2. Kaor, Paul!

      But I forgot to find out what happened to the original site of the first cathedral, whether another church was built on the site.