Chapter 3: From Iron-Age Warlord to Medieval Ruler
Chapter 4: Lord of the Mead Hall
Chapter 5: Lord of the Dead
Chapter 6: Lord of Inspiration
Chapter 7: Worker of Magic, Reader of Runes
Chapter 8: Warlord
Chapter 9: Healer
Chapter 10: Conclusion
All-father, warlord, runemaster, kingmaker, healer—manifold aspects, numerous stories. This book brings together the written and physical evidence for the god called Woden or Óðinn (Odin) in his many guises spanning more than a thousand years. Drawing on the latest interpretations of literary evidence and recent archaeological discoveries, Pollington assembles an impressive array of data to cast a fresh light on the origins and later history of the enigmatic god of war, magic, death, and secret wisdom.
Sources discussed range from Greco-Roman works to early runic inscriptions, Lombard origin tales to conversion narratives, genealogies to charms to Eddic poems, runestones and picture stones to armor and funerary furniture. With source texts provided in their original languages and in English translations, this book serves as an invaluable guide to a dynamic religious tradition practiced across large parts of northern Europe in the Iron Age and for centuries after.
‘Pollington has written a rich and wonderful introduction to the sources pertaining to Woden. This bountiful book places the reader in command of a treasure-hoard of precious material.’
– Rolf H. Bremmer Jr., Leiden University
‘Written in an engaging and accessible style, Pollington’s Woden illuminates an enormous array of visual and literary sources. Readers will learn much from this wide-ranging book.’
– Francis Leneghan, University of Oxford
Woden, Óðinn, Mythology, Runes, Viking
About the Author
STEPHEN POLLINGTON has been writing about the history of early mediaeval Europe for more than thirty years on topics as diverse as weapons and warfare, the medical tradition, aspects of religion, kingship, writing systems and linguistics, using literary, archaeological and comparative sources. Many of his books have become standard works for their subjects and he has also contributed to reference works such as the ‘Oxford Companion to Military History’. He teaches Old English language and literature with the City Literary Institute, London, and gives presentations on a wide range of related topics.