ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Grim Tale of Baldur the Beautiful

Updated on September 25, 2014
Baldur the Beautiful
Baldur the Beautiful | Source

What Bleakness Befell Baldur, the Shining One?

Apart from Baldur's beautiful appearance and a certain fondness for chamomile when he couldn't sleep, we know very little about this ancient Nordic God. It's his death that made the headlines.

There's an association with mistletoe too, but to find out any more, we just have to wait till Ragnarok.

Let's hope that's a long time coming.

How could something bad happen to Baldur?

Baldur was the son of Freya (or Frigga) and Odin All-Father.

Legend tell us that Baldur was beautiful, so much so that all the white blossoms on the earth were called by his name, and every song from every bird was sung in praise to him. Handsome and noble, he was the God of Light, of all things Right and Good, the best loved among all the Aesir.

He lived in the Peace Stead, in a palace called Breidablik, where no crime had ever been committed, no blood had ever been shed, and no falseness had ever been spoken.

What on earth could have happened to this bright and shining Hope of the World?

Baldur has Bad Dreams

One day a dire foreboding came to the Peace Stead. Baldur had a dream that filled him with fright.

He dreamed that Hel, Queen of the Underworld, had prepared a bed and a lordly chair for him.

Now it wasn't just in the world of men that dreams were taken seriously. In Asgard, Home of the Gods, such night visions were understood to be a very real portent of things to come.

Odin went at once to his Watchtower and sent his ravens, Huginn and Muninn, to fly around the worlds and pick up all that was happening. Horrified when his ravens confirmed the dream, Odin rode out himself to meet Hel. Roughly he woke her and asked what guest she expected.

"For Baldur, Odin's son, is the bed prepared and the seat left empty. Now let me go back to my sleep with the Dead." was the grim answer.

All things swear not to harm Baldur

Baldur's mother felt the fear that Odin had felt - then she heard the birds sing in the Peace Stead and knew that none of all the things in the world would harm her son

Just to make sure, she went to all the things that could hurt him and from each of them she took an oath that it would not injure Baldur, the Well-Beloved. She took an oath from fire and from water, from iron and from all metals, from earths and stones and great trees, from birds and beasts and creeping things, from poisons and diseases. Very readily they all gave the oath that they would work no injury on Baldur.

But one thing was overlooked. One thing that was so small and so weak that it was passed by. After all, what could the Mistletoe, the rootless Mistletoe, do against Baldur?

Loki finds out!

By trickery and guile, not to mention a little shape-changing, Loki, the Sly One found out about the mistletoe.

Loki hurried to where a great oak tree flourished, and from out of a branch grew a little bush of Mistletoe. He broke off a spray and tucked it into his tunic.

Away he crept and fashioned a small, but sharp, spear from the twig.

Then off he went to the Peace Stead, in his hand the only weapon in all of the nine worlds that could injure Baldur the Beautiful.

Why did Loki do this? What was he thinking? Perhaps it was just jealousy taken to extremes, but such an act went well past his usual pranks, this was deadly serious.

Blind Hodor
Blind Hodor | Source

Loki Tricks Hoder

As he neared the lovely home of Breidablik, Loki heard much glee and playfulness.

All of the Aesir, in company with the Dwarves and the friendly Giants were having a great game hurling sticks, stones and spears at Baldur. Everthing bounced off without doing any harm

Loki turned to Hoder, the blind brother of Baldur and asked why he wasn't joining in the game. The answer was fairly obvious. Hoder couldn't see!

"Take this twig of Mistletoe and throw it," said Loki. "I will guide your hand"..

He put the twig of Mistletoe in Hoder's hand and guided that hand for the throw. The twig flew toward Baldur, struck him on the breast and it pierced his heart.

And that was how Baldur was killed by a little bit of Mistletoe.

Baldur is Slain with Mistletoe

That's not the end of the story

It didn't end there of course. Loki was soon discovered to be the instigator behind the death of Baldur the Beautiful.

He was hunted, captured and punished and you can find out what happened in Loki's own story.

Who was Loki?

Loki the Trickster from Scandinavian Stories

In the old Scandinavian Mythology you will come across Loki, the Trickster, a puzzling and complex character. You either love him or hate him

Baldur will return at Ragnaraok

So Baldur now sleeps in Nifelheim with the rest of the Dead. (He's not in Valhalla, for Baldur was never a warrior)

He will return at Ragnarok, the Twilight of the Gods, when the world will end.

© 2013 Susanna Duffy

Carve a Rune for poor Baldur

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Ask_Me 

      5 years ago

      So that's where the mistletoe/bad luck story started!

    • mariacarbonara profile image

      mariacarbonara 

      5 years ago

      @Glendame: Yeah a real mummys boy

    • profile image

      Glendame 

      5 years ago

      Poor Baldur! Do you think his mother mollycoddled him?

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)