Who Embodied Fire in Norse Mythology?

Posted by Ms Elly on

Who Embodied Fire in Norse Mythology?

To the Vikings, fire was as terrible as the ice and winter. Scandinavia at that time suffered from bitterly cold winters. Active volcanoes also posed a threat to the Vikings which made them regarded fire and lava as something fearsome. 

In Norse mythology, there were three characters that were associated with fire - one of the most important elements for this cosmos. 

Surtr the giant of fire and lava

Surtr was one of the most powerful giants in Norse mythology. However, he only played a small role and appeared a few times in mythology. 

Surtr meant "black" which probably referred to his appearance burnt by the fire and lava. His home was in Muspelheim the very first world in Norse mythology. When the lava from Muspelheim and the ice from Niflheim met, it caused the first giant Ymir in this cosmos - that's the story began. 

Norse giant Surtr the giant of fire in Norse mythology

God Freyr with an antler as his weapon facing Surtr the Giant in the last battle

Surtr was the ruler of Muspelheim. And in the final battle of Ragnarok, Surtr led the army of the giant to fight against the gods. He killed Freyr the God of Summer and would wield his firing sword and set the whole cosmos on fire, putting an end to Ragnarok. 

Loki the Norse Trickster

Loki was a complicated character. He made us like him for his funny jokes but he also made us hate him for his unacceptable deeds, for example, killing the son of Odin. 

Although Loki wasn't the god of fire, he somehow embodied the qualities of the fire.

No one could deny the fact that Loki was creative and intellectual though his creativity was used to cause trouble. However, Loki could always think of the new solutions to help other people out of their trouble. Through the whole course of the myth, Loki managed to keep his own fire of creativity. Fire was the symbol of both creation and destruction, so was Loki.

Loki Norse Mythology


He attempted to create something new, but he always ended up messing everything up. From his children to his action, he could never achieve anything as good as Odin did. And the flame of creativity inside Loki finally led everything into disaster, destroying the Pantheon and pushing the cosmos into darkness. 

But it was also this fire that unfolded a new chapter of the cosmos. 

Logi the giant of fire

Logi only appeared once in Norse mythology. He was the one that competed with Loki in the eating contest. Whoever finished the table full of meat first would be the winner. 

Loki was proud of himself whenever it came to his eating skills. But in this contest, he lost to the hand of Logi. When Loki finished the meat on the table, Logi finished the meat, the bone, and generally everything on the table. 

Logi and Loki in the eating competition

Logi and Loki in the eating competition

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