Sunday, 12 March 2017

Storm Clouds And Ravens

"Storm clouds fly, and ravens gather."
-SM Stirling, The Protector's War (New York, 2006), Chapter Thirteen, p. 359.

I see that ravens have already had good coverage on the blog. Poul Anderson writes about Odin who is accompanied by ravens. Odin's descendants display his raven emblem on their sails.

Ravens are important at the Tower of London. See here. For this reason, Bryan Talbot, writing and drawing an anthropomorphic animals alternative history, Grandville (and see here) has the Tower guarded by large, armored ravens.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

And I've seen mention of how ravens and other carrion birds would GATHER together when armies marched. Because that was a sign good feasting would soon await them!


David Birr said...

Paul and Sean:
*Raven's Wind* was the title of a historical novel by Victor Canning about Viking raids. I've seen the term, or possibly just "Raven Wind," used in the same context elsewhere, though I can't recall where and have found no other matches online. The Raven's Wind — Kipling anachronistically called it "Viking's Wind" in a poem about Saxons raiding after the Romans left Britain — brought the raven-sailed ships stooping upon their British prey.

I DID find that among the Tlingit people of the Pacific Northwest Coast, the term "Raven Wind" refers to weather changing drastically, and for the worse, in an unusually short time.

Whether it was Tlingit or inhabitant of Britain saying it, the Raven Wind meant bad news.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, DAVID!

Raven Wind? That I had not known about! I was thinking of how ravens came to be seen as a sign of war and battle.