From Iceland — Gods Of Iceland: Bragi, The Harp Playing Hipster

Gods Of Iceland: Bragi, The Harp Playing Hipster

Published October 27, 2020

Gods Of Iceland: Bragi, The Harp Playing Hipster
Photo by
Nils Blommér

Superpowers: Eloquent as fuck.
Weaknesses: May actually not have been a God at all.
Modern Analogue: Hosts weekly poetry slams at the local book shop.

Bragi was the God of Poetry, a hipster with a harp, the son of Odin (who wasn’t?) and the husband of famous Insta Star Iðunn. His job was to sit in Valhalla and regale the dead with poetry about badass warriors and kings. And when said badass warriors and kings entered Valhalla themselves, he’d welcome them with songs about how great they were. Except Loki. Bragi didn’t like Loki, and when Loki first tried to enter Valhalla, Bragi forbade him. Odin overruled this decision and Loki, being the petulant child he was, greeted all the gods and goddesses in Valhalla, bar Bragi. Bragi offered a peace gift of his sword, horse and arm ring, but Loki refused them, calling him a coward. Ever the pacifist, Bragi’s response was to tell Loki that, had they been outside the great hall, he would have had his head. But they were inside, and “it would be rude to behead anyone within the walls of Valhalla, so let’s just leave it at that, shall we?”

It’s debated that Bragi may not have been a god at all, but a mere mortal poet. Some suggest that he was famous bard Bragi Boddason, whose poems were so artful and moving that Odin appointed him court poet of Valhalla when he died. Either way, he thought a lot of himself, and loved the sound of his own voice. Oh, and he had runes carved into his tongue. These runes would be shaved off and mixed with mead, which would inspire anyone who drank it to become poets themselves, thus raising an army of silver-tongued poets to fill the world with beautiful words. Super romantic.

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