Edward Pettit

Published On


Page Range

pp. 197-224

Print Length

27 pages

8. Lævateinn and the Maelstrom-Giantess

  • Edward Pettit (author)
Chapter 8 concerns ‘The Lay of Svipdagr’, an obscure Old Norse poem that Pettit likens to both ‘Skírnir’s Journey’ and Beowulf. This poem contains a similar quest to claim a sun-like maiden, as well as a giantess apparently analogous to Grendel’s mother that likewise guards a weapon, this called Lævateinn. This weapon is protected in a similar manner to the giant sword, and consequently Pettit juxtaposes Lævateinn’s apparent origins—plucked, almost certainly illicitly, from a radiant branch of the world-tree by Loki—to those of the giant sword as another stolen solar weapon. Pettit concludes the chapter by citing comparable giantesses in other Old Norse sagas.


Edward Pettit