Definitions

Norn

Skuld (Norn)

Skuld (possibly "debt" or "future") is a Norn in Norse mythology. Along with Urðr (Old Norse "fate") and Verðandi (possibly "happening" or "present"), Skuld makes up a trio of Norns that are described as deciding the fates of man. Skuld appears in at least two poems as a Valkyrie.

Poetic Edda

Skuld is mentioned in Völuspá, a poem collected in the 13th century Poetic Edda:
Sá hon valkyrjur
vítt um komnar,
görvar at ríða
til Goðþjóðar.
Skuld helt skildi,
en Skögul önnur,
Gunnr, Hildr, Göndul
ok Geirskögul.
She saw valkyries
come from far and wide,
ready to ride
to Goðþjóð.
Skuld held a shield,
and Skögul was another,
Gunnr, Hildr, Göndul
and Geirskögul.

Prose Edda

Gylfaginning

In the Prose Edda book Gylfaginning, Snorri informs the reader that the youngest Norn, Skuld, is in effect also a valkyrie, taking part in the selection of warriors from the slain:
These are called Valkyrs: them Odin sends to every battle; they determine men's feyness and award victory. Gudr and Róta and the youngest Norn, she who is called Skuld, ride ever to take the slain and decide fights."

Nafnaþulur

In the Nafnaþulur addition to Snorri Sturluson's Prose Edda the following sections reference Skuld:

Mank valkyrjur
Viðris nefna.
Hrist, Mist, Herja,
Hlökk, Geiravör,
Göll, Hjörþrimul,
Gunnr, Herfjötur,
Skuld, Geirönul,
Skögul ok Randgníð.
Ráðgríðr, Göndul,
Svipul, Geirskögul,
Hildr ok Skeggöld,
Hrund, Geirdriful,
Randgríðr ok Þrúðr,
Reginleif ok Sveið,
Þögn, Hjalmþrimul,
Þrima ok Skalmöld.
I will recite the names
of the valkyries of Viðrir (Odin).
Hrist, Mist, Herja,
Hlökk, Geiravör
Göll, Hjörþrimul
Gunnr, Herfjötur
Skuld, Geirönul
Skögul and Randgníð.
Ráðgríðr, Göndul,
Svipul, Geirskögul,
Hildr and Skeggöld,
Hrund, Geirdriful,
Randgríðr and Þrúðr,
Reginleif and Sveið,
Þögn, Hjalmþrimul,
Þrima and Skalmöld.

Notes

References

  • Orchard, Andy (1997). Dictionary of Norse Myth and Legend. Cassell. ISBN 0 304 34520 2

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