Medieval texts colour our knowledge about Odin


Researchers disagree on the Viking Age conceptions of the god Odin. The source material is ambiguous and difficult to interpret.

Odin with his two ravens, Hugin and Munin (Illustration from a 19th century document. The Árni Magnússon Institute in Iceland)
Today, the general conception of Odin is that of the one-eyed chief of the Norse gods. However, when it comes to the general conception that was prevalent in the Viking age, researchers disagree.
Up until now, research history shows us that the method for understanding Odin has been wrong.
Annette Lassen says.
“Regarding medieval texts as a single, heathen text and extrapolating an image of Odin from this is not a viable option. The texts are very diverse,” she says.

According to Lassen, once the Christian way of thought has been identified, not much information is left about Odin in the old sources.

She says that while archaeologists and historians of religion may not necessarily agree with this, there is not likely to be anyone disagreeing that it is necessary to analyse the Christian additions, before starting to look into the original Viking Age conception of Odin.

“My aim with the book was to focus on the Medieval Odin figure, clarify the extent to which Christianity has shaped our ideas of heathenism and demonstrate that this calls for circumspection, but also to come up with a method that other researchers can use,” she says.

“Basing a thesis about the pre-Christian Odin on a series of elements from medieval texts about Odin presupposes an interest in whether those elements come from Christian ideas.

By: Irene Berg Sørensen

ScienceNordic

Whole Article: http://sciencenordic.com/medieval-texts-colour-our-knowledge-about-odin

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


Just click and read!

http://www.google.com/books?id=gjq6rvoIRpAC&lpg=PT138&ots=dpn8js0DCl&dq=Sm%C3%A5l%C3%A4ndsk%20folklore&lr&hl=sv&pg=PP1#v=onepage&q&f=false

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”

~
Latin:

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.

~
English:

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.

Halfdan’s Viking Mead Recipe


“Ale has too often been praised by poets.
The longer you drink, the less sense your mind makes of things.”

–Ancient Viking Hávamál Proverb

       Halfdan’s Viking Mead Recipe   

  Mead (Honey Wine) – 5 gallon recipe

 8-10 lbs pure raw honey (for light, delicate Mead) (or)
 12-13 " " " " (for medium sweet Mead) 
(or) 15-16 "" " " (for very sweet or alcoholic Mead)
 4-5 gallons purified spring water (not distilled)
 3 tsp. yeast nutrient (or 5 tablets)
 1 tsp. acid blend (combination malic/citric acid) 
5-7 oz. sliced fresh gingerroot (1 finger's length)
 1/4 tsp. fresh rosemary (optional, as desired) 
5-6 whole cloves (optional, asdesired) 
1-2 vanilla beans (optional, as desired)
 cinnamon/nutmeg (optional, as desired) 
lime/orange peels (optional, as desired) 
crushed fruit (peaches, strawberries, grapes, etc.) 
1 tsp. Irish Moss(to clarify Mead)
 1/2 tsp. clear gelatin (to clarify Mead) 
1 spotted newt's tail (optional, asdesired :) 
1 packet yeast (champagne or ale yeast) 

Heat spring water 10-15 minutes till boiling. Stir in honey, yeast nutrients, acid blend, and spices (rosemary, ginger, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, lemon peel). Boil for another 10-15 minutes, (overcooking removes too much honey flavor), skimming off foam as needed (2 to 3 times during last 15 minutes). After 15 minutes, add Irish Moss or clear gelatin to clarify. After last skimming, turn off heat, add crushed fruit, and let steep 15-30 minutes while allowing mead to cool and clarify. After mead begins to clear, strain off fruit with hand skimmer and pour mead through strainer funnel into 5 gallon glass carboy jug.

Let cool to room temperature about 24 hours. After 24 hours, warm up 1 cup of mead in microwave, stir in 1 packet “Red Star” Champagne, Montrechet, or Epernet yeast (or Ale yeast in order to make mead ale), and let sit for 5-15 minutes to allow yeast to begin to work. Add this mead/yeast mixture to carboy jug and swirl around to aerate, thereby adding oxygen to mead/yeast mixture.

Place run-off tube in stopper of bottle, with other end of tube in large bowl or bottle to capture “blow-off” froth. Let mead sit undisturbed 7 days in cool, dark area. After initial violent fermenting slows down and mead begins to settle, rack off (siphon off) good mead into clean sterilized jug, leaving all sediment in bottom of first jug. Attach airlock to this secondary carboy. After 4-6 months, mead will clear. During this time, if more sediment forms on bottom, good mead can be racked off again to another clean sterilized jug.

When bottling, in order to add carbonation, add either 1/4 tsp. white table sugar per 12 oz bottle, or stir in 1/2 to 1 lb raw honey per 5 gallons mead (by first dissolving honey with a small amount of mead or pure water in microwave).

Enjoy! Skål!Source: http://www.blue-n-gold.com/halfdan/meadrecp.htm