Norse Mythology Research Paper

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Mischief: Sanity, Hope, Entertainment Throughout Norse mythological literature, there is a penetrating theme of tragedy. Norse mythology is riddled with instances where mischief, deceit, and intervention from outside forces scramble the normal progression of events. From the deception of Thor at Utgarda-Loki to Sigurd drinking the ale of forgetfulness in The Saga of the Volsungs, we see mischief dominate the plotlines of this society’s religion and moral system (Snorri 57, Byock 78). The troublemakers Loki, Odin, Grimhild, and Brynhild served imperative functions to the Germanic tribes. These antagonizing human and divine troublemakers provide relatability, comic relief, hope, and excitement both to the plot lines of mythological literature and to the Germanic tribes who believed in and passed on these myths and sagas. Loki, “the source of deceit,” the “disgrace of all gods and men,” is the foremost agent of mischief in Norse literature (Snorri 28). What is interesting about the character of Loki is that he is not what modern society would consider a “bad guy.” Certainly, he is not depicted as so in Marvel’s Avengers where Loki is portrayed as someone who commits fatal acts but is also capable of…show more content…
It seems that events will go well and that Sigurd will eventually return to marry Brynhild when Grimhild wipes away his memory of her with a forgetfulness potion, leading to his marriage to Gudrun (Byock 79). Grimhild’s potion completely altered the course of events in this saga. Previously, the audience was led to believe that Sigurd and Brynhild would find their way back to each other and marry. However, being a Norse tale, the tragic thematic element of star crossed lovers seeps into the storyline. In the Saga of the Volsungs and Prose Edda, there are a number of other couples who find their love cut short by the doings of others: Hjordis and Sigmund, Svanhild and Randver, and, also, Gudrun and

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