Thursday is Thor’s Day

Thursday, Thor’s Day, another weekday named after a Norse god.

Thor is the god of thunder and protects both the gods and men. Unlike Odin, Thor was well loved by the common person, as evidenced by the sheer volume of people who were, and are, named after him. Thora, Thorvald, Thorstein, Thorsen, Thorlief, and so on, are all names derived from Thor.

A Thor hammer found in Sweden.
A Thor hammer found in Sweden.

Archaeologists also find Thor hammers all over the place and in graves from all types of people. Thor controls the weather and storms, so the common person respected him and asked for his protection.

Thor carries the great hammer, Mjolnir, which can hit any target and always returns to Thor. Wielding Mjolnir, Thor is so strong he can flatten mountains! Like most of the Norse gods’ weapons, Mjolnir was made by the dwarves.

He travels in a chariot pulled by two goats: Tanngrisnir (teeth-barer) and Tanngnjostr (teeth-grinder). These goats are magical…Thor cooks them and eats them for his sustenance and then resurrects them with Mjolnir! The only caveat is they cannot have any bones broken. In one story Thor visited a peasant family and the boy-child broke one of the goat’s bones. When Thor resurrected the goat, he was lame.

Thor was a half-giant, red-haired and ruddy-faced (and, no, he did not look like the Marvel Comics Thor…at all). He drank a lot. In fact, in one story Thor was so upset that the god who brewed the god’s mead had run out of the drink, he sought out a magical cauldron that was a MILE DEEP. Of course, a giant owned it.

My favorite story of Thor’s involved him cross-dressing, but I’ll save that for a future Thorsday!

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