Check out my last article on Erlang Shen.
Fenrir, also known as Vanargand (Monster of the River), is the Norse wolf who will end the world at Ragnarok. He is massive and astoundingly strong. He is depicted on several runestones that have survived since the Viking age. He is the most notorious and feared wolf in Norse mythology.
Fenrir is one of three children between Loki and the Giantess Angrboda. They also have Hel, the Goddess of death, and Jormungand, the World Serpent. Loki also gave birth to Sleipnir, Odin’s eight-legged horse, making Sleipnir a brother to Fenrir, Hel, and Jormungand. Fenrir does have children. The two wolves of Odin, Hati (hatred) and Skoll (mockery). Once Fenrir was bound to a boulder, a sword was put in his mouth, and his foamy drool made the river called Expectation.
After his birth, Fenrir was taken from Jotunheim and raised with the Aesir Gods. Odin and the other Gods wanted to keep him on a tight leash (yep, you can tell me my pun is horrible, it’s ok), and the rate at which he grew was worrisome, so they chained him up. The Gods made it a game. The first two times, he broke free. Then, for the third time, they were armed with dwarven-made chains that were deceptive. They looked and felt light, like they would easily break. Fenrir didn’t want to play a third time. Something was off. When he finally said he would do it, it was with the condition that one of the Gods or Goddesses had to have their hand in his mouth. Suffice it to say, Tyr was the unlucky sot that lost his hand. Though props to Tyr for being willing to lose his hand, so Fenrir to be chained. To add insult to injury, as I said earlier, once he was chained to the boulder, a sword was put in his mouth to keep it open and thus caused the river.
The Aesir Gods didn’t treat Hel or Jormungard any better. Odin threw Jormungard into the sea, and he will be there until Ragnarok. Their sister Hel was sent to Niflheim, a realm of primordial ice and a frozen wasteland.
When Ragnarok is upon us, Fenrir will break free of those dwarven-made bonds and open his mouth, his lower jaw against the ground and upper against the sky. He will devour everything in his path. He will be the death of Odin. To avenge Odin and end Ragnarok, Odin’s son Vidarr will slay Fenrir. However, before that happens, Fenrir, Hel, and Jormungard get to have a family reunion play date.
Fenrir sounds absolutely ferocious, like Cerberus. What are your thoughts? Who would win in a fight? Fenrir or Cerberus? Let me know in the comments below. Until next time, have fun storming the castle!