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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Ragnarokr

(Divine twilight), in Norse mythology, is the final destruction of the world, which threatens the Scandinavian deities, the Asas, their treasures, their creations, and also the earth and its inhabitants. The Edda gives the following description of it:

"There will come a winter, called Fimbulweter, in which snow will fall from all sides, with a severe frost and rough winds, whereby the warmth of the sun will be destroyed. Three such winters will succeed each other without a summer intervening. But previous to these there will be three years of bloody war over the whole earth. Brothers will slay each other, and even parents will not spare their children. Then the wolf Skoll will devour the sun, another wolf, Hati, the moon. The stars will disappear from the heavens, the earth will reel, the trees will be torn out by their roots, the mountains fall, and all chains and bands burst asunder. The Fenriswolf will tear himself loose, the sea boil, because the Midgard-snake will seek the shore. Then also, the ship Naglfar will become loose. It is made out of the nails of human beings. The giant Hryvner is pilots The wolf Feunris precedes it with open mouth. The Midgardsnake vomits poison, which contaminates the air and the water. In this tumult the heavens will burst, and Mnspel's sons come riding, led by Surtur, who is surrounded by fire, and whose sword shines brighter than the sun. When they ride over Bifrfst (rainbow bridge) it will collapse. Muspel's sons will come to Fenris aid the Midgard-snake. Loke, Itrymer, and all Hrymtuuses will join them. Muspel's sons will have their own order of battle. Then Heimidal will blow into the Giallar horn and wake up all the gods. Odin will ride to Mimer's well to get advice for him and his. The ash-tree Ygdrasil will fall, and everything be full of fear in heaven and earth. The Asas will prepare themselves with the Einheriars anid proceed to the plain. Before them will ride Odin with a golden helmet, a good armor, and the never-failing spear Gungna. He will battle against Fenris. Thor will fight at his side against the Midgard-snake. Freir will combat against Suirtur, and will fall. The cause is the lack of a good sword, which hie gave to Skirner. The dog Gramr will tear himself loose, causing much misery. He will combat Tyr, and the two kill each other. Thor will slay the snake, but fall, poisoned by the snake's venom. The wolf will devour Odin, but Vidar will renud open his law and pull Odin out. After all this, Surtur will throw fire and burn the whole earth. But then there shall arise out of the sea a beautiful green earth, in which corn will grow. Vidar and Vali will live on the Ida-plain where fomerly Asgamrd lay. There Thor's sons also, Magni and Modi, will appear with the hammer, Miolner. Hodur, Baldui, and Hel will also be there. There will likewise be two human beings, Lif and Lifthirasir, who will become the progenitors of the new race of men."

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.

Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Ragnarokr'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/r/ragnarokr.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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