How Days and Nights Occurred in Norse Mythology?

Posted by Ms Elly on

How Days and Nights Occurred in Norse Mythology?

Norse mythology had their own way to explain things in the cosmos. So if you have ever wondered how the days and the nights occurred, let Norse mythology be the guide to answer this typical question. In Norse mythology, you can also have many other natural phenomena explained

Because of the various sources we have in this day and age, we currently have two ways to explain how days and nights happened according to Norse mythology. 

Sol and Mani

Sol and Mani were the names of the guardians of the Sun and the Moon. Sol was female and Mani was male. 

When Sol and Mani existed on the planet, none of them knew what their responsibilities were until they met the gods. Then the gods arranged for them to take care of the Sun and the Moon. 

Sol and Mani drew the chariots of the Sun and the Moon across the sky

Sol and Mani were often chased by two wolves named Hati and Skoll. Until Ragnarok, the wolves finally caught the Sun and the Moon sending the world into blackness

Another source from Prose Edda by Snorri Sturluson mentioned a different story of Sol and Mani. They were sister and brother twin of human parents. The pair was so beautiful that everyone loved them. However, punishment befell the family when their father was so arrogant. For the beauty of the children, the father called Mani after the Moon and Sol after the Sun. To the gods, this was an insult and they were about to punish this family. As a punishment, they took away the beautiful twin and placed them up in the sky to draw the chariots carrying the sun and the moon across the sky. 

There we have the day and night. 

Dagr and Nott

Dagr and Nott were quite obscure figures in Norse mythology. Although they had certain roles in the myth, the popularity unintentionally overshadowed these figures' names. 

Dagr God of Day and Dawn

Dagr was the god of Day and Dawn in Norse mythology

Nott was the goddess of night and she was also grandmother of Thor. Nott was listed as a daughter of Norvi a god. Nott had three marriages: the first was Aud, the second was Annar and their daughter was Jord Thor's mother, and the third was Delling and their son was Dagr which later became God of Day and Dawn.

Nott the god of night

Nott the god of Night

In Poetic Edda, Odin asked a volva where the day and the night came from. Then the volva answered:

Delling hight he who the day's father is,
but night was of Nörvi born;
the new and waning moons
the beneficent powers created,
to count the years for men.

An easy to interpret is: Delling is the father of God of the Day (Dagr), God of the Night was born by Norvi, and there they had the days and nights which helped them count the year. 

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