THE SYMBOLISM of Viking Jewellery

THE SYMBOLISM of Viking Jewellery

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The most famous Ring nowadays is undoubtedly the one of Tolkien's film trilogy, ("The Lord of the Rings"). But this ring is not from these films, nor from Tolkien's imagination, his symbolism is as old as the world and finds its great and true origin in the Ásatrú religion. The God Odin is the bearer of the greatest ring in the universe, and undoubtedly of the most beautiful, so is the symbolism of this ring and like its bearer: he is divine. The ring, whether it is a ring or a bracelet, has always marked a link, an attachment. It is the magical symbol of an alliance, a community, or an associated destiny. In a couple who get married, the ring is the expression of the covenant and the vow between a man and a woman, it connects, it knot, it unites two beings who swear loyalty to each other. The ring is the linker par excellence, a sacred term, because even the Gods are often called "binders". But the ring is not only the one that unites the love of a couple, it unites at all relational levels. The ring is a magical link surrounding a part of the body, it locks it up by its natural power and prevents it from acting in the outside world while protecting it from the same outside world. In this context, the symbolism of the ring is strongly linked to that of the circle, which also encloses and protects against external influences. This kind of ring linked to a sacred place is the one that keeps a secret or a treasure. To seize such a ring is in a way the equivalent of opening a door, entering a castle, a cave, and appropriating the virtues of its secret. In this way, one accepts the gift of another, as an exclusive or reciprocal treasure.

The power ring that binds the human being to the forces of the earth is also the theme of the Germanic myth of the Nibelungen ring. The latter are Dwarves who are masters of underground wealth. They are thirsty for gold and power, they constantly seek to dominate the elements and men. Like all the Dwarves of the pagan tradition of the Germans, the Nibelungen are in close contact with the Chthonian forces, those who came from the bowels of the earth. It is not for nothing that Dwarves live most of the time underground or in the mountains. One day, by the magical power of the Gungnir spear, the Odin God seized the Nibelungen ring. The latter is a symbol of the link to power and dominating power. Later, the solar hero Siegfried and the Valkyrie Brünhilde rejected the ring to the river from where it came. They thus mark the renunciation of this will of power in order to reintegrate the normal cycle of destiny. But this religion and tradition has another ring, which is very famous and very rich in symbolism. This is the golden ring Draupnir that the God Odin has. It was also forged by the Dwarves, two Dwarves named Brokkr and Sindri. Draupnir is a magic ring that has the property of reproducing. Every 9th night, Draupnir gives the day to 8 new rings. These two figures are closely linked to the design of cycles and their renewal. The 8 represents a completed cycle while the 9 is the number of the new cycle. It is no coincidence that in many European languages the name of the number 9 is constructed on the same linguistic root as the word "new" (nine). It can therefore be said that Draupnir is the sacred ring that is handled through natural cycles. By possessing this ring, the God Odinn thus becomes capable of having control over the natural evolution of cosmic cycles. Fans of Tolkien's great trilogy, Lord of the Rings, will have recognized more than one feature of Sauron's ring. The pagan myths of this article, along with those of Gyges and Polycarp are the ones that forged the profile of Tolkien's ring. But we must remember above all that the ring is mainly the one that unites and submits. For those readers who intend to get married soon, remember that the ring you will put on the finger of your loved one is much more than just a ring. It is a sacred religious object that comes from the depths of time and unites us to our most distant past.

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