Old Norse religion in long-term perspectives: Origins, Changes, Interaction

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By: Anders Andrén,Kristina Jennbert,Catharina Raudvere

Chant of the Templars – Salve Regina


Medieval Chant of the Templars. Era of the Crusades.
Title: “Antiphona: Salve Regina”.
This is part of the chant (first 10 minutes out of approximately 15).
Performers: Ensemble Organum, Director: Marcel Peres
Album: “Le chant des Templiers”


Salve, Regina, mater misericordiae,
vita, dulcedo et spes nostra, salve.
Ad te clamamus, exules filii Hevae.
Ad te suspiramus gementes
et flentes in hac lacrimarum valle.
Eia ergo, advocata nostra, illos tuos
misericordes oculos ad nos converte.
Et Jesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui,
nobis post hoc exsilium ostende.
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria.

Ora pro nobis, sancta Dei Genitrix.
Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.


Hail, holy Queen, Mother of Mercy,
our life, our sweetness and our hope.
To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve;
to thee do we send up our sighs,
mourning and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate,
thine eyes of mercy toward us;
and after this our exile,
show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.

Pray for us O holy Mother of God,
that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Crucem sanctam subiit – Le Chant des Templiers


A jewel! This is a fragment of the beautiful medieval antiphona: “Crucem sanctam subiit”, performed by “Ensemble Organum”. This piece has been found in a rare medieval manuscript from the mid XIIth century, found in the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, and that’s why it’s linked to the Templar Knights.

“…Lapidem quem reprobaverunt aedificantes, hic factus est in caput anguli” = “The stone that the architects rejected became the cornerstone”.

Music From The Time Of the Crusades (2 of 2)


This is a genuine 800 year old Troubadour song, arranged here for solo lyre, & written by Walther Von Der Vogelweide called “Palästinalied”. Here are some interesting details about the song from Wikipedia:

“Palästinalied was written in connection with the Fifth Crusade (1217-1221). Although it is a political-religious propaganda song describing a crusade into the Holy Land, it is atypical for a song of this kind in that it also recognizes the claim of all Abrahamic religions to the Holy Land, although finally asserting that the Christian cause is the “right one” in the last strophe:

Kristen juden und die heiden
jehent daz dis ir erbe sî
got müesse ez ze rehte scheiden
dur die sîne namen drî
al diu werlt diu strîtet her
wir sîn an der rehten ger.
reht ist daz er uns gewer

This strophe can be translated as follows: Christians, Jews and Heathens claim this to be their heritage. God has to assign it in the right way, for His three names. The whole world is coming battling here – our cause is right. It is right that He is granting it to us.”

Despite all the pointless religious intolerance (as the words to this song certainly testify!), and the sheer bloody brutality of the Crusades, at least they resulted some amazing, utterly timeless melodies, like this!

Music From The Time of the Crusades (1 of 2)


This is a genuine 800 year old Troubadour song, arranged here for solo lyre, & written by King Richard the Lion Heart, whilst imprisoned during the Crusades! The song he wrote, over 800 year ago, is called “Ja Nus Hons Pris”…

“Ja nus hons pris ne dira sa reson
Adroitement, s’ensi com dolans non;
Mes par confort puet il fere chancon,
Moult ai d’amis, mes povre sont li don;
Hont en avront, se por ma reancon
Or sai je bien de voir certainement
Que mors ne pris n’a ami ne parent,
Quant hon me lait por or ne por argent.
Moult m’est de moi, mes plus m’est de ma gent,
Qu’apres ma mort avront reprochier grant,
Se longuement sui pris.”

Here the English translation:

No prisoner ever tells his story objectively;
rather, it is cloaked in sorrow.
To comfort himself, however,
he may write a song:
I have many friends, but their gifts are few.
Dishonor will be theirs if I remain in prison
these two winters; my ransom unpaid.

My men and my barons,
from England, Normandy, Poitou, and Gascony,
know that I would never forsake
even the least of my friends.
I do no say this as a reproach.
Still… I remain a prisoner.

Despite all the pointless religious intolerance and bloody brutality of the Crusades, at least they resulted some amazing, utterly timeless melodies, like this! Indeed, it was upon hearing the late great David Munrow’s arrangement of this tune performed on medieval Gemshorn, (which I happened to find by chance, on an utterly obscure tape cassette I found in WH Smith when I was just 14, waaaay back in 1982!) which is what got me hooked on ancient music in the first place…whilst my peers were all buying the latest “Bananarama” LP, I was “geeking out” to THIS! ;o)

Richard was imprisoned by the Duke of Austria who he had insulted while on Crusade. Traditionally he was discovered by his minstrel Blondel. It was his mother Eleanor of Aquitaine and the officials he left in charge of England, who raised the 150,000 Marks from the common people, that secured his release in February 1194.

The “Forn Sed” Blog




A very big part of the “Forn Sed ” blog is to by spreading historically correct information counteract all the viking idiocy that still festers in the modern mind:

  • Racist “aryan” poppycock.
  • Heavy Metal EEEEEAVIL vikings.
  • The “My ancestors where Klingons” complex (lame “neo-vikings”, what i call “vikingry”).
  • The belief that all Norse people worked as “vikings”.
  • The belief that “viking” is my (or other nordic peoples) ethnicity.
  • All Christianity influenced / modern ethnocentric interpretation of Heathenry.
  • The belief that all Asatruar / heathens dislike Christians (or Jews or Mulims).
  • The idea that all heathens do, or ever did historically, share opinions or methods.
  • The idea that there are no gay or transgendered heathens.
  • The idea that vikings where more fierce, braver, more savage or in other ways different than other mediaval Europeans.
  • The stupid and OH so incorrect idea that vikings or any other Germanic people kept to themselves trying to “preserve” something.
  • The naive idea that heathens take their mythology litterally.

and much, much more.

Norse history and culture (and most who read this will have Germanic heritage, even many African / Americans, and you read it in a Germanic language) is far too interesting to be made into fairy tales or hijacked by retards.

Västergötland (Westrogothia) Prehistory and middle ages

There are many ancient remains in Västergötland. Most prominent are probably the dolmens from the Funnelbeaker culture, in the Falköping area south of lake Vänern. Finnestorp, nearLarv, was a weapons sacrificial site from the Iron Age.

The population of Västergötland, the Geats appear in the writings of the Greek Ptolemaios (as Goutai), and they appear as Gautigoths in Jordanes‘ work in the 6th century. The province of Västergötland represents the heartland of Götaland, once an independent petty kingdom with a long line of Geatish kings. These are mainly described in foreign sources (Frankish) and through legends.

It is possible that Västergötland had the same king as the rest of Sweden at the time of the monk Ansgar‘s mission to Sweden in the 9th century, but both the date and nature of its inclusion into the Swedish kingdom is a matter of much debate. Some date it as early as the 6th century, based on the Swedish-Geatish wars in Beowulf epos; others date it as late as the 12th century.

Västergötland received much early influence from the British isles and is generally considered to be the bridgehead of Christianity‘s advance into Sweden. Recent excavations at Varnhem suggest that at least its central parts were Christian in the 9th century. Around 1000, King Olof Skötkonung is held to have received baptism in Husaby, near lake Vänern. However, the Christianization was met with heavy opposition in the rest of his kingdom, and so Olof had to restrict the Christian activities to Västergötland. The Christian faith spread, and by the time the provincial law Västgötalagen was written in the 13th century, Västergötland had 517 churches. The seat of the area’sdiocese seems to originally have been Husaby, but since 1150 the city Skara (just some 20 kilometers south) held that distinction.

From the election of Stenkil in the 11th century, Swedish and Geatish dynasties vied for the control of Sweden during long civil wars. For instance, the Swedish king Ragnvald Knaphövde was elected king by the Swedes, but when he entered Västergötland, he chose not to demand hostage from the powerful Geatish clans and was slain by the Geats near Falköping. Several times, Västergötland was independent from Sweden with kings such as Inge I of Sweden and Magnus the Strong. In later years the area was progressively tied more closely to the Swedish kingdom.

Being in peace with Sweden did not mean being in peace. Located along the when borders of Denmark (with the so called Scanian lands) and Norway (with Bohuslän), the area was often involved in armed disputes and invaded by hostile armies.

Some places and dates of early battles were the Battle of Älgarås (1205), the Battle of Lena (1208), the Battle of Hova (1275), the Battle of Gälakvist (1279) and the Battle of Falköping (1389). Thereafter Sweden was involved in the Sweden-Danish wars; some notable years 1452, 1511, 1520, 1566, 1612, 1676.

In 1658 the current borders of Sweden were established when Sweden annexed both the Scanian lands and Bohuslän. Västergötland became less exposed as it was further from the country borders. Seaside battles at the end of Scanian War in the 1670s was the last combat on Västergötland soil.