Wednesday, January 10, 2007

I decided this morning that it was too cold out and the chickens were staying in today. Yes the sun is out but the water was frozen in the big bowl and the will be slim pickin's out in the yard anyway. This decision did not make me popular this morning. As a matter of fact, Steve really read me out about it but, I have a heat lamp in there and she will be happier for that little bit of heat, in the long run.

I have decided to study the Vikings. I got interested in them, I suppose because of the Scandinavian Knitting I have been doing. Then I got this lecture series of the history of the Vikings and it is pretty thrilling stuff, so far. They really went everywhere including across open ocean to the New World. And their mythology of the world is fascinationg too. One of my favorite characters is Loki, a trickster god. He wasn't a very nice guy but he sure was interesting. Trickster gods are often entertaining!

This picture is from an 18th century Icleandic manuscript:

Loki Laufeyjarson is the mythical being of mischief in Norse mythology, a son of the giants Fárbauti and Laufey, and foster-brother of Odin. He is described as the "contriver of all fraud". He mixed freely with the gods for a long time, even becoming Odin's blood brother. In mythological terms, Loki is not a god, as he has no cult or followers (no evidence has ever been found or even referenced such), rather he is a mythological or mythical being. The thing he is holding in this picture is a fish net which he is credited as having invented and given to humans.

Like Odin (though to a lesser extent), Loki bears many names : Lie-Smith, Sly-God, Shape-Changer, Sly-One, Lopt, Sky Traveller, Sky Walker and Loftur among others.
The composer Richard Wagner presented Loki under an invented Germanized name Loge in his opera Das Rheingold--Loge is also mentioned, but does not appear as a character, in Die Walküre and Götterdämmerung. The name comes from the common mistranslation and confusion with Logi (a fire-giant), which has created the misconception of Loki being a creation of fire, having hair of fire or being associated with fire, like the Devil in Christianity.

I am also reading the Prose Edda by Snorri Sturluson. The Prose Edda, known also as the Younger Edda or Snorri's Edda is an Icelandic manual of poetics which contains many stories from Norse mythology. Its purpose was to enable Icelandic poets and readers to understand the subtleties of alliterative verse, and to grasp the meaning behind the many kennings that were used in skaldic poetry.
The work was written by the Icelandic scholar and historian Snorri Sturluson around 1220.
The first part, the Gylfaginning, or Beguiling of Gylfi, is an epitome of Odinic mythology, cast in the form of a dialogue between Gylfi, a legendary Swedish king, and the triune Odin.
Snorri, though a Christian, tells the old pagan tales with obvious-relish, and often, in the enthusiasm of the true antiquary, rises to magnificent heights. He fortifies his narrative with citations from the Poetic Edda, the great treasure-house of Scandinavian mythological and heroic poetry.

Great stuff so far.

Oh and I started knitting a cardigan for my husband. It is knit from Cottage Craft 2 ply yarn in a nice tweedy blue called Quoddy Blue. The company is out of Canada and I will need a couple more skeins to finish it I think. Now the trcik is to get them to reply to my email!

The cardigan is in the Interweave Knits Holiday issue Charcoal Ribbed Cardigan, page 48 by Kate Kuckro. It is knit in a nice kind of mistake rib. Should be a very useable sweater, I hope.

Talk to you soon,

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