Vidar dieu viking de la vengeance

Vidar: God of Vengeance in Norse Mythology

Vidar is far from the best known god in Norse mythology. He is the god of revenge and silence . His presence in mythological texts is less, since he appears only briefly in the texts. It is said that the god Vidar is independent, and eager for freedom .

His palace is also located in a thick forest of Asgard, and the god lives there alone in the middle of greenery and trees. Although he is discreet, he nevertheless reveals himself as one of the major gods of Nordic mythological history .

Who is the god Vidar in Norse mythology?

Vidar and his family

The god Vidar is the son of Odin and the giantess Grid , and he belongs to the Aesir. He is one of the most powerful gods, alongside Thor, but is quite discreet in the mythological texts. Indeed, his most important role takes place during the prophetic battle, Ragnarök . He is also one of the few to survive this end of the world and to participate in the renewal of the Cosmos.

The characteristics of the god Vidar

Described as a very calm man, the god Vidar often appears in texts and illustrations as very tall, strong and handsome .

Chapter 29 of the Gylfaginning describes him as such: “ There is another called Vidar, the silent Ase. He has a thick shoe. He's almost as strong as Thor. From him the gods receive great assistance in all trials. »

The symbols of the god Vidar

Symbols of the god Vidar

According to the Edda of Snorri, Vidar would indeed possess a horse , a sword , as well as a pair of very powerful shoes … even magic!

According to some, these shoes were made of iron and had been given to him by his mother, a giantess. The latter knew the prophecy of Ragnorök and knew that her son would need it when the day came. According to others, these shoes were made of leather . Every day, Vidar added leather to his shoes to make them incredibly strong. Shoemakers even set aside unused leather for Vidar to retrieve.

But other specialists believe that these shoes with great powers would be a pure invention of Snorri. He would have in fact over-interpreted the texts explaining that Vidar splits the mouth of the wolf Fenrir thanks to his shoe .

The god Vidar and his role during Ragnorök

Vidar during Ragnarök

Very little seen in the texts until then, Vidar is however suddenly during the transcription of Ragnarök.

In this prophetic battle , the giants and monsters led by Loki fight the Gods on the plain Vigrid. Blood flows in floods during this confrontation which leads to the end of the Cosmos.

Vidar vs Wolf Fenrir

And the majority of the gods perish there. Except Vidar. The latter does indeed take part in the battle with the others, but his rage saves him . Driven by his deep desire for revenge , he attacks the wolf Fenrir who has just taken Odin's life . Vidar then rips out the jaws of the gigantic animal and pierces its heart with his sword.

The Poetic Edda had already mentioned it several times. “The wolf will swallow up Odin, and such will be his death. But immediately, Vidar will step forward and put a foot on the wolf's lower jaw . On this foot, he wears the shoe whose material has been assembled from all eternity: these are the pieces of leather that men trim at the toe and heel of their shoes, and this is the reason why any man who wants to come to the aid of the Aesir must throw away these clippings.

Vidar kills Fenrir

With one hand he will seize the upper jaw of the wolf and tear its mouth open : such will be the death of the wolf”, was it written in chapter 51 of the Gylfaginning.

Vidar, at the origin of the new world after Ragnarök

After the battle is over, Vidar and other gods and men take part in the renewal of the universe . The Edda specifies that the two brothers Vidar and Vali now dwell in Idavoll , where Asgard once stood.

Other gods accompany them: Modi, Magni, Baldr and Höd. As well as the human couple Lif and Lifthrasir. All rebuild the world and create a new pantheon.

The moral of the god Vidar: never underestimate the power of silence

In the poem Lokasenna, the Gods are gathered at a banquet. Loki is chased there, but, stubbornly, he returns and demands that he be served a drink. To calm him down, Odin asks Vidar to serve him and give him his place. But the deceitful god launches into a verbal contest, by means of insults, with the gods. All intervene, in turn. Except Vidar, who, in his corner, remains silent. And if he is in this legend, Vidar is in absolutely all those where he appears. We never hear him speak . And yet...

Silence is in no way synonymous with ignorance, or even vulnerability. Quite the contrary. If in all the mythological texts the god Vidar is described as silent, he still appears as the one who avenges both Odin and all the Gods by surviving Ragnarök and rebuilding the world of After. Vidar's silence is thus ultimately revealed as the most deafening noise in Norse mythology.

In some societies, moreover, silence appears to be a real power, in the same way as physical force. This is the case among the Indians, among others. As with the Romans.

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1 comment

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