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Das Rheingold ( pronunciation ( help · info ) The Rhinegold), WWV 86A, is the first of the four music dramas that constitute Richard Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen, (English: The Ring of the Nibelung). It was performed, as a single opera, at the National Theatre Munich on 22 September 1869, and received its first performance as part of the Ring cycle at the Bayreuth Festspielhaus, on 13 August 1876.
Wagner wrote the Ring librettos in reverse order, so that Das Rheingold was the last of the texts to be written it was, however, the first to be set to music. The score was completed in 1854, but Wagner was unwilling to sanction its performance until the whole cycle was complete he worked intermittently on this music until 1874. The 1869 Munich premiere of Das Rheingold was staged, much against Wagner's wishes, on the orders of his patron, King Ludwig II of Bavaria. Following its 1876 Bayreuth premiere, the Ring cycle was introduced into the worldwide repertory, with performances in all the main opera houses, in which it has remained a regular and popular fixture.
In his 1851 essay Opera and Drama, Wagner had set out new principles as to how music dramas should be constructed, under which the conventional forms of opera (arias, ensembles, choruses) were rejected. Rather than providing word-settings, the music would interpret the text emotionally, reflecting the feelings and moods behind the work, by using a system of recurring leitmotifs to represent people, ideas and situations. Das Rheingold was Wagner's first work that adopted these principles, and his most rigid adherence to them, despite a few deviations – the Rhinemaidens frequently sing in ensemble.
As the "preliminary evening" within the cycle, Das Rheingold gives the background to the events that drive the main dramas of the cycle. It recounts Alberich's theft of the Rhine gold after his renunciation of love his fashioning of the all-powerful ring from the gold and his enslavement of the Nibelungs Wotan's seizure of the gold and the ring, to pay his debt to the giants who have built his fortress Valhalla Alberich's curse on the ring and its possessors Erda's warning to Wotan to forsake the ring the early manifestation of the curse's power after Wotan yields the ring to the giants and the gods' uneasy entry into Valhalla, under the shadow of their impending doom.
Downloading the binary
Current recommendation is Real Player 8. It can be found at: Real Legacy Software Archive.
When Installing Real Player 8, you should run via the pe.exe command.
After installing Real Player, open up the setting dialog and turn off the following features
Common problems and workarounds
Debugging Real Player problems under Odin is no different than any other app. You are probably going to have to install a debug build and work with someone that can interpret the resulting large log files.
Mimir (pronounced “MEE-mir” Old Norse Mímir, “The Rememberer”  ) is an exceptionally wise being and a counselor of the gods. From the surviving sources for information on Norse mythology, it’s impossible to tell whether he was considered to be an Aesir god or a giant.
Mimir’s home seems to be a well called Mímisbrunnr, which is probably identical to the Well of Urd.  Odin famously sacrificed an eye to Mimir in exchange for a drink from Mimir’s well.
Mimir was killed and beheaded by the Vanir during the Aesir-Vanir War. Upon seeing the severed head, Odin embalmed it with special herbs and chanted magical songs over it to preserve it. He consulted the head in times of need, and it continued to dispense incomparable advice.
As sparse as our present-day knowledge of Mimir is, these roles seem to suggest that the Vikings thought of him as the being who helped the gods retain the wisdom of ancestral tradition, which served as an invaluable guide for their actions.
Looking for more great information on Norse mythology and religion? While this site provides the ultimate online introduction to the topic, my book The Viking Spirit provides the ultimate introduction to Norse mythology and religion period. I’ve also written a popular list of The 10 Best Norse Mythology Books, which you’ll probably find helpful in your pursuit.
 Simek, Rudolf. 1993. Dictionary of Northern Mythology. Translated by Angela Hall. p. 216.
 Bauschatz, Paul C. 1982. The Well and the Tree: World and Time in Early Germanic Culture.
Odin & Mime - History
The Chronicle of the Kings of Norway: The Ynglinga Saga
Heimskringla: A History of the Norse Kings
Originally written in Old Norse, app. 1225 A.D., by the poet and historian Snorri Sturluson. English translation by Samuel Laing (London, 1844).
1. OF THE SITUATION OF COUNTRIES.
It is said that the earth's circle which the human race inhabits
is torn across into many bights, so that great seas run into the
land from the out-ocean. Thus it is known that a great sea goes
in at Narvesund (1), and up to the land of Jerusalem. From the
same sea a long sea-bight stretches towards the north-east, and
is called the Black Sea, and divides the three parts of the
earth of which the eastern part is called Asia, and the western
is called by some Europa, by some Enea. Northward of the Black
Sea lies Swithiod the Great, or the Cold. The Great Swithiod is
reckoned by some as not less than the Great Serkland (2) others
compare it to the Great Blueland (3). The northern part of
Swithiod lies uninhabited on account of frost and cold, as
likewise the southern parts of Blueland are waste from the
burning of the sun. In Swithiod are many great domains, and many
races of men, and many kinds of languages. There are giants, and
there are dwarfs, and there are also blue men, and there are any
kinds of stranger creatures. There are huge wild beasts, and
dreadful dragons. On the south side of the mountains which lie
outside of all inhabited lands runs a river through Swithiod,
which is properly called by the name of Tanais, but was formerly
called Tanaquisl, or Vanaquisl, and which falls into the Black
Sea. The country of the people on the Vanaquisl was called
Vanaland, or Vanaheim and the river separates the three parts of
the world, of which the eastermost part is called Asia, and the
(1) The Straits of Gibraltar.
(2) Northern Africa.
(3) Saharan and sub-Saharan Africa.
The country east of the Tanaquisl in Asia was called Asaland, or
Asaheim, and the chief city in that land was called Asgaard. In
that city was a chief called Odin, and it was a great place for
sacrifice. It was the custom there that twelve temple priests
should both direct the sacrifices, and also judge the people.
They were called Diar, or Drotner, and all the people served and
obeyed them. Odin was a great and very far-travelled warrior,
who conquered many kingdoms, and so successful was he that in
every battle the victory was on his side. It was the belief of
his people that victory belonged to him in every battle. It was
his custom when he sent his men into battle, or on any
expedition, that he first laid his hand upon their heads, and
called down a blessing upon them and then they believed their
undertaking would be successful. His people also were
accustomed, whenever they fell into danger by land or sea, to
call upon his name and they thought that always they got comfort
and aid by it, for where he was they thought help was near.
Often he went away so far that he passed many seasons on his
Odin had two brothers, the one called Ve, the other Vilje, and
they governed the kingdom when he was absent. It happened once
when Odin had gone to a great distance, and had been so long away
that the people Of Asia doubted if he would ever return home,
that his two brothers took it upon themselves to divide his
estate but both of them took his wife Frigg to themselves. Odin
soon after returned home, and took his wife back.
4. OF ODIN'S WAR WITH THE PEOPLE OF VANALAND.
Odin went out with a great army against the Vanaland people but
they were well prepared, and defended their land so that victory
was changeable, and they ravaged the lands of each other, and did
great damage. They tired of this at last, and on both sides
appointed a meeting for establishing peace, made a truce, and
exchanged hostages. The Vanaland people sent their best men,
Njord the Rich, and his son Frey. The people of Asaland sent a
man called Hone, whom they thought well suited to be a chief, as
he was a stout and very handsome man and with him they sent a
man of great understanding called Mime. On the other side, the
Vanaland people sent the wisest man in their community, who was
called Kvase. Now, when Hone came to Vanaheim he was immediately
made a chief, and Mime came to him with good counsel on all
occasions. But when Hone stood in the Things or other meetings,
if Mime was not near him, and any difficult matter was laid
before him, he always answered in one way -- "Now let others give
their advice" so that the Vanaland people got a suspicion that
the Asaland people had deceived them in the exchange of men. They
took Mime, therefore, and beheaded him, and sent his head to the
Asaland people. Odin took the head, smeared it with herbs so
that it should not rot, and sang incantations over it. Thereby
he gave it the power that it spoke to him, and discovered to him
many secrets. Odin placed Njord and Frey as priests of the
sacrifices, and they became Diar of the Asaland people. Njord's
daughter Freya was priestess of the sacrifices, and first taught
the Asaland people the magic art, as it was in use and fashion
among the Vanaland people. While Njord was with the Vanaland
people he had taken his own sister in marriage, for that was
allowed by their law and their children were Frey and Freya.
But among the Asaland people it was forbidden to intermarry with
such near relations.
5. ODIN DIVIDES HIS KINGDOM: ALSO CONCERNING GEFION.
There goes a great mountain barrier from north-east to south-
west, which divides the Greater Swithiod from other kingdoms.
South of this mountain ridge it is not far to Turkland, where
Odin had great possessions. In those times the Roman chiefs went
wide around in the world, subduing to themselves all people and
on this account many chiefs fled from their domains. But Odin
having foreknowledge, and magic-sight, knew that his posterity
would come to settle and dwell in the northern half of the world.
He therefore set his brothers Ve and Vilje over Asgaard and he
himself, with all the gods and a great many other people,
wandered out, first westward to Gardarike, and then south to
Saxland. He had many sons and after having subdued an extensive
kingdom in Saxland, he set his sons to rule the country. He
himself went northwards to the sea, and took up his abode in an
island which is called Odins in Fyen. Then he sent Gefion across
the sound to the north to discover new countries and she came to
King Gylve, who gave her a ploughgate of land. Then she went to
Jotunheim, and bore four sons to a giant, and transformed them
into a yoke of oxen. She yoked them to a plough, and broke out
the land into the ocean right opposite to Odins. This land was
called Sealand, and there she afterwards settled and dwelt.
Skjold, a son of Odin, married her, and they dwelt at Leidre.
Where the ploughed land was is a lake or sea called Laage. In
the Swedish land the fjords of Laage correspond to the nesses in
Sealand. Brage the Old sings thus of it: --
"Gefion from Gylve drove away,
To add new land to Denmark's sway --
Blythe Gefion ploughing in the smoke
That steamed up from her oxen-yoke:
Four heads, eight forehead stars had they,
Bright gleaming, as she ploughed away
Dragging new lands from the deep main
To join them to the sweet isle's plain.
Now when Odin heard that things were in a prosperous condition in
the land to the east beside Gylve he went thither, and Gylve
made a peace with him, for Gylve thought he had no strength to
oppose the people of Asaland. Odin and Gylve had many tricks and
enchantments against each other but the Asaland people had
always the superiority. Odin took up his residence at the
Maelare lake, at the place now called Old Sigtun. There he
erected a large temple, where there were sacrifices according to
the customs of the Asaland people. He appropriated to himself
the whole of that district, and called it Sigtun. To the temple
priests he gave also domains. Njord dwelt in Noatun, Frey in
Upsal, Heimdal in the Himinbergs, Thor in Thrudvang, Balder in
Breidablik to all of them he gave good estates.
6. OF ODIN'S ACCOMPLISHMENTS.
When Odin of Asaland came to the north, and the Diar with him,
they introduced and taught to others the arts which the people
long afterwards have practised. Odin was the cleverest of all,
and from him all the others learned their arts and
accomplishments and he knew them first, and knew many more than
other people. But now, to tell why he is held in such high
respect, we must mention various causes that contributed to it.
When sitting among his friends his countenance was so beautiful
and dignified, that the spirits of all were exhilarated by it,
but when he was in war he appeared dreadful to his foes. This
arose from his being able to change his skin and form in any way
he liked. Another cause was, that he conversed so cleverly and
smoothly, that all who heard believed him. He spoke everything
in rhyme, such as now composed, which we call scald-craft. He
and his temple priests were called song-smiths, for from them
came that art of song into the northern countries. Odin could
make his enemies in battle blind, or deaf, or terror-struck, and
their weapons so blunt that they could no more but than a willow
wand on the other hand, his men rushed forwards without armour,
were as mad as dogs or wolves, bit their shields, and were strong
as bears or wild bulls, and killed people at a blow, but neither
fire nor iron told upon themselves. These were called Berserker.
Odin could transform his shape: his body would lie as if dead, or
asleep but then he would be in shape of a fish, or worm, or
bird, or beast, and be off in a twinkling to distant lands upon
his own or other people's business. With words alone he could
quench fire, still the ocean in tempest, and turn the wind to any
quarter he pleased. Odin had a ship which was called
Skidbladnir, in which he sailed over wide seas, and which he
could roll up like a cloth. Odin carried with him Mime's head,
which told him all the news of other countries. Sometimes even
he called the dead out of the earth, or set himself beside the
burial-mounds whence he was called the ghost-sovereign, and lord
of the mounds. He had two ravens, to whom he had taught the
speech of man and they flew far and wide through the land, and
brought him the news. In all such things he was pre-eminently
wise. He taught all these arts in Runes, and songs which are
called incantations, and therefore the Asaland people are called
incantation-smiths. Odin understood also the art in which the
greatest power is lodged, and which he himself practised namely,
what is called magic. By means of this he could know beforehand
the predestined fate of men, or their not yet completed lot and
also bring on the death, ill-luck, or bad health of people, and
take the strength or wit from one person and give it to another.
But after such witchcraft followed such weakness and anxiety,
that it was not thought respectable for men to practise it and
therefore the priestesses were brought up in this art. Odin knew
finely where all missing cattle were concealed under the earth,
and understood the songs by which the earth, the hills, the
stones, and mounds were opened to him and he bound those who
dwell in them by the power of his word, and went in and took what
he pleased. From these arts he became very celebrated. His
enemies dreaded him his friends put their trust in him, and
relied on his power and on himself. He taught the most of his
arts to his priests of the sacrifices, and they came nearest to
himself in all wisdom and witch-knowledge. Many others, however,
occupied themselves much with it and from that time witchcraft
spread far and wide, and continued long. People sacrificed to
Odin and the twelve chiefs from Asaland, and called them their
gods, and believed in them long after. From Odin's name came the
name Audun, which people gave to his sons and from Thor's name
comes Thore, also Thorarinn and also it is sometimes compounded
with other names, as Steenthor, or Havthor, or even altered in
Odin established the same law in his land that had been in force
in Asaland. Thus he established by law that all dead men should
be burned, and their belongings laid with them upon the pile, and
the ashes be cast into the sea or buried in the earth. Thus,
said he, every one will come to Valhalla with the riches he had
with him upon the pile and he would also enjoy whatever he
himself had buried in the earth. For men of consequence a mound
should be raised to their memory, and for all other warriors who
had been distinguished for manhood a standing stone which custom
remained long after Odin's time. On winter day there should be
blood-sacrifice for a good year, and in the middle of winter for
a good crop and the third sacrifice should be on summer day, for
victory in battle. Over all Swithiod the people paid Odin a
scatt or tax -- so much on each head but he had to defend the
country from enemy or disturbance, and pay the expense of the
sacrifice feasts for a good year.
Njord took a wife called Skade but she would not live with him
and married afterwards Odin, and had many sons by him, of whom
one was called Saeming and about him Eyvind Skaldaspiller sings
"To Asa's son Queen Skade bore
Saeming, who dyed his shield in gore, --
The giant-queen of rock and snow,
Who loves to dwell on earth below,
The iron pine-tree's daughter, she
Sprung from the rocks that rib the sea,
To Odin bore full many a son,
Heroes of many a battle won."
To Saeming Earl Hakon the Great reckoned back his pedigree. This
Swithiod they called Mannheim, but the Great Swithiod they called
Godheim and of Godheim great wonders and novelties were related.
Odin died in his bed in Swithiod and when he was near his death
he made himself be marked with the point of a spear, and said he
was going to Godheim, and would give a welcome there to all his
friends, and all brave warriors should be dedicated to him and
the Swedes believed that he was gone to the ancient Asgaard, and
would live there eternally. Then began the belief in Odin, and
the calling upon him. The Swedes believed that he often showed
to them before any great battle. To some he gave victory others
he invited to himself and they reckoned both of these to be
fortunate. Odin was burnt, and at his pile there was great
splendour. It was their faith that the higher the smoke arose in
the air, the higher he would be raised whose pile it was and the
richer he would be, the more property that was consumed with him.
Njord of Noatun was then the sole sovereign of the Swedes and he
continued the sacrifices, and was called the drot or sovereign by
the Swedes, and he received scatt and gifts from them. In his
days were peace and plenty, and such good years, in all respects,
that the Swedes believed Njord ruled over the growth of seasons
and the prosperity of the people. In his time all the diar or
gods died, and blood-sacrifices were made for them. Njord died
on a bed of sickness, and before he died made himself be marked
for Odin with the spear-point. The Swedes burned him, and all
wept over his grave-mound.
Events in the life of Njör› "the Rich" of Vanaland
event 1 .
·a priest of the sacrifices, and became Diar of the Asaland people
event 1 .
·succeeded Odin as the sole sovereign of the Swedes
† death 1 .
·Njord died on a bed of sickness, and before he died made himself be marked for Odin with the spear-point.
·The Swedes burned him, and all wept over his grave-mound.
event 1 .
·given Noatun as a domain by Odin
event 1 .
·a good ruler, and in his days were peace and plenty, and such good years, in all respects, that the Swedes believed Njord ruled over the growth of seasons and the prosperity of the people
event 1 .
·the best man of the Vanaland people, whom Odin attacked but could not subdue, and so Njord was offered as hostage in exchange for peace between those of Vanaland and those of Asaland
event 1 .
·was there when all the diar or gods died, these diar being the temple priests that had journeyed from Asaland with Odin, and blood-sacrifices were made for them
event 1 .
·"had taken his own sister in marriage, for that was allowed by their law"
Odin & Mime - History
Identity/Class: Unrevealed ( Uncertain connection to Asgardian cosmology see comments)
formerly Siegfried (a mortal incarnation of Thor Odinson)
Enemies: Alberich, Fafnir (as holder of the Ring of Power) , Siegfried, Odin
Known Relatives: Alberich (brother), Hagen (nephew, deceased)
Siegfried (godson could be considered his adoptive son, as Mime raised Siegfried from infancy to adulthood)
possibly others I'll sort out as I finish the profiles from this story arc ( for example, I have his son Hagen listed as: son of Alberich and an immortal woman, half-brother of Gunther and Gutruna )
Base of Operations: Unrevealed
formerly Nibelheim (terrestrial subterranean caverns)
First Appearance: (Wagner's Mime) Das Rhinegold (The Rhinegold), the first of four parts in the opera "Der Ring Des Nibelung" (The Ring of the Nibelung) opera (September 22, 1869)
(Marvel's Mime) Thor I#295 (May, 1980)
Powers/Abilities: Mime had no superhuman abilities on his own. He was a skilled craftsman, experienced in swordmaking. He also had some experience in using poisons.
Mime could forge powerful magic items, including creating the helmet Tarnhelm, transforming the Rhinegold into the Circlet/Ring of Power.
Mime carried a short sword (full-sized for him) and used a walking stick on journeys.
Height: Approximately 3'
Weight: Approximately 100 lbs. ( assuming human body density, see comments )
Hair: Gray (bald on top)
(Thor I#295 (fb) - BTS) - Alberich forced his brother, Mime, to forge the Rhinegold into the Circlet of Power and create the helmet Tarnhelm. Enslaving the other gnomes of the Nibelung in the caverns beneath Nibelheim, Alberich forced them -- including his brother, Mime -- to mine for gold.
(Thor I#295 (fb)) - As Mime pleaded with Alberich not to enslave him and their brother-gnomes, Alberich noted that power had no kith or kin and that soon the men of Midgard would break their backs laboring for him as well. As Thor, Odin, and Loki broke into the caverns, Alberich used Tarnhelm to turn invisible and assault/taunt Mime -- despite his calling Alberich master and exclaiming his smiting him unseen as unfair -- until discovering the invaders.
Ultimately the gods tricked Alberich into a position of weakness and forced him to surrender, after which they took him away and forced his surrender of the Circlet of Power, Tarnhelm, and gold horde (which the gods subsequently delivered to the giants Fafnir and Fasolt in exchange for returning the abducted goddess Idunn).
( Thor I#297 (fb) ) - Mime found Sieglinda -- after Brunnhilde the Valkyrie transported her, pregnant with the son of Siegmund (a mortal incarnation of Thor), to Earth -- lying by a tree, in labor. Mime was surprised to see the maiden, but when she begged him for help, he took her to his nearby hut and cared for her.
( Thor I#297 (fb) - BTS) - Mime delivered Sieglinda's son, but could not save her life. Before dying, Sieglinda told Mime to name the baby Siegfried.
She also gave Mime Siegmund's shattered sword, telling him its name was Needful, that it had been shattered by a god, and that when Siegfried grew up Mime should give it to him.
( Thor I#297 (fb) ) - Holding the newborn in his arms, Mime told him how his mother had told him to name him Siegfried.
( Thor I#297 (fb) - BTS) - At some point, Mime resolved to use Siegfried to recover the treasure of the Nibelung from the lair of Fafnir, who had transformed into a dragon.
( Thor I#297 (fb) ) - At some point, Odin appeared before Mime, telling him only a man who had never known fear could forge needful anew.
( Thor I#297 (fb) ) - Mime raised the child, who grew up straight, tall, and strong.
( Thor I#297 (fb) - BTS) - Forging a series of swords for Siegfried, Mime grew increasingly frustrated as the youth broke the swords, requiring another forging.
( Thor I#297 (fb) ) - As Mime angrily forged a new sword and cursed the "vile boy" for which he did so, he was startled to hear a sound outside seconds before the wall of his hut was smashed in by a battle between Siegfried and an immense bear. As he wrestled the bear, Siegfried teased "old Mime," telling he had brought the bear to see his new sword or to speed Mime along if he was not yet done. Begging Siegfried not to let the bear near him, Mime assured Siegfried the sword was done, after which Siegfried defeated the bear (stunning it before planning to carry it back to the woods). Mime asked why Siegfried brought live bears to him, and Siegfriend told him it was for want of better company than Mime. The gnome advised Siegfried that he should show more honor to the one who brought him up by hand, but Siegfried instead insisted to see the sword instead.
Mime proudly displayed the razor-sharp sword, but Siegfried considered its steel untrue after he shattered it by striking its flat against Mime's anvil. As Siegfried angrily grabbed him and accused him as a bungler planning to use him for some undevined purpose, Mime insisted he loved Siegfried as if he were his own son. To prove this, Mime showed Siegfried the shattered Needful, telling its origins and that no mere mortal would be able to defeat it when it was welded together again.
Rather than be appreciative, Siegfried insisted Mime immediately reforge his rightful sword, which he accused Mime of keeping from him all these years. As Mime melted the sword in the forge, he asked why the urgency, and Siegfried told him he had decided to leave Mime's hovel forever. Blanching at these words -- as this would foil Mime's plot to use Siegfried to obtain the Nibelung treasure -- Mime nonetheless continued to forge the sword, but when he shattered the sword anew while trying to hammer into shape, Siegfried angrily announced that "a dunderhead like" Mime could not be trusted to the task, and that he would forge it himself. Though Mime reminded Siegfried that he had never learned swordsmanship, Siegfried said he could not know less than Mime, it seemed, and instructed Mime to stay and advise him.
Recalling Odin's instructions, Mime realized Siegfried had likely never known fear, and he plotted anew. After Siegfried had completed re-forging Needful and demonstrating its strength, Mime told him he had everything he needed to be a warrior, except one thing he had neglected to teach him before: he needed to learn fear, without which he would never be a mighty warrior. With Siegfried eager to learn, Mime advised that the dragon Fafnir could teach him if they journeyed to his Hate-Cavern, which was due east of their home.
( Thor I#297 (fb) - BTS / Thor I#298 (fb) - BTS) - Mime prepared food and drink for their journey, including some poisoned wine, prior to their departure.
As they approached the cavern, they glimpsed the fleeing Alberich, who had also sought to reclaim the Nibelung treasure but who had fled when Fafnir emerged from his cavern, spewing flames. As Fafnir approached, Mime clung to Siegfried's leg in terror, advising Siegfried that he would swiftly learn fear by looking into Fafnir's eyes. Fafnir agreed that he would teach Siegfried Mime's lesson, but that Siegfried would not live long enough to profit from it.
( Thor I#298 (fb) ) - Terrified, Mime was barely able to blurt out that the dragon's heart was in the same place as in any other beast, after which he fled to seek shelter.
( Thor I#298 (fb) - BTS) - Siegfried slew Fafnir and claimed the Circlet of Power, which shrunk to fit his finger as the Ring of Power.
( Thor I#298 (fb) ) - Mime watched as Siegfried entered the Hate-Cavern, plotting to kill Siegried and claim the ring and the treasure of the Nibelung.
Alberich approached Mime, asking him what devious act he had caught him in, and Mime bragged that he would convince the young warrior to turn over the Ring to the man who had raised him like the son. Alberich countered that he would rather the Ring went to a mangy dog than Mime, whom he said would never possess it. However, when Mime warned that if Alberich was to attempt theft, he would call to Siegfried, who would punish him. Though calling Mime's threats empty, Alberich apparently fled with his Nibelung allies.
( Thor I#298 (fb) - BTS) - After donning the Tarnhelm and exiting the Hate-Cavern, a bird spoke to Siegfried (having gained the ability to understand the bird from exposure to Fafnir's blood), warning him that Mime plotted treachery against him. After Mime delivered Siegfried's helmet (dropped in the battle with Fafnir), the warrior placed it atop the Tarnhelm, and the two apparently (and without any ado) merged into the classic winged helmet of Thor. Learning Siegfried had failed to learn fear from Fafnir, Mime suggested that Siegfried must be thirsty and offered him some of the wine he had brought. Thanking Mime for revealing himself as a murderer and plotting to steal his treasures, Siegfried tore the flagon open, spilling the wine. Mime pulled his short sword in hopes of killing Siegfried directly, but the warrior easily swatted him aside. Mime landed in a puddle of Fafnir's blood he swallowed some and soon felt it "seizing his throat like a thing alive" and choking him. Mime cursed Siegfried as he collapsed in the blood and died.
Comments: Created by Richard Wagner
adapted by Roy Thomas, Keith Pollard, and Chic Stone.
Mime was based on the character from Richard Wagner's Das Rheingold (The Rhinegold), the first of four parts in the opera "Der Ring Des Nibelung" (The Ring of the Nibelung) opera. You can Google it for more information.
The Ring of the Nibelung comes, in a very general way, from the old Norse/Germanic legend of the Nibelungenlied ("The Song of the Dwarves"). Mime is apparently based on the dwarf Reginn (aka Regin and Regan) from that story.
- In Thor I#294, Alberich looked like a normal-height, but kyphotic human, and he was referred to as a mortal by the Rhinemaidens.
- He calls himself a gnome of the Nibelung clan. If you just read this story, you might think he was using the term "gnome" in the sense that meant "small, ugly person."
- The art team was the same throughout, but I wonder if there was a communication breakdown in the drawing of #294, which was corrected for the subsequent issues.
- The narrative by the Eye of Odin said they were called gnomes by men (as if they were not human) and Nibelungs by the gods.
- We know he changed forms while he held the Tarmhelm, but the "over the years" thing makes it seem as if he might be trying to explain why he looks different than he did in #294. Or not.
- When Thor, Odin, and Loki depart Nibelheim with Alberich, they seem travel from underground to a mountain a short distance away. When they leave the mountain and travel to Asgard, they are clearly seen leaving Earth and traveling through space to the realm of Asgard.
In Thor I#297, the Eye of Odin names Mime as a descedent (and again, specifically as a son) of Alberich. and Alberich even calls him his sire. but they call each other brothers in #295 and #298, and the Eye calls them brothers in #298.
In Wagner's Ring of the Nibelung, Mime and Alberich are brothers. We'll go with that. Roy Thomas stopped writing the series after #297 because he needed to focus on his editing, and I'm guessing he might have been stretched a bit thin prior to that.
Between the last panel of #297 and the first panel of #298, Mime apparently pulled his helmet out of his napsack and put it on.
These stories were among those told to Thor by the Eye of Odin, and the events therein, particularly the origins of the current Odin incarnation, have been called into question.
- Nonetheless, Fafnir the Jotun appeared in Thor I#486-488, wherein Thor recognized him from their previous encounters.
- An earlier issue (#288 per my notes) described how Fafnir of Nastrond was named after Fafnir the Storm Giant, and both Fafnir and Fasolt appeared in a Giants of Jotunheim Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe entry.
- Further, the Oversword, formed from the Rhinegold, exists in the modern era, and it was formed from the Rhinegold from which the Ring of Power had been composed.
- Around Marvel Team-Up I#116, Thor and Brunnhilde the Valkyrie regarded their past lives when her mortal incarnation loved Siegfried (Thor's mortal incarnation).
- I think the simplest explanation is that the events happened, but they may have been distorted somewhat by Eye of Odin. Perhaps some of it represents events from an even earlier cycle of Asgardians.
Alberich should be distinguished from:
- MURDEROUS MIMES ( ) - criminals led by General, sought to terminate Spider-Man--Peter Parker: Spider-Man I#21
- DOCTOR MIME ( ) - First Line, full body suit (dark), full face mask, yellow highlights, grey cape--Marvel: Lost Generation#11
images: (without ads)
Thor I #295, pg. 8, panel 6 (smote by invisible Alberich)
#297, pg. 8, panel 4 (tending Sieglinda)
panel 6 (with young Siegfried)
pg. 9, panel 1 (full body)
panel 3 (forging sword)
pg. 13, panel 6 (face)
#298, pg. 11, panel 8 (with helmet and sword, challenging Siegfried)
pg. 12, 2 (dying)
Thor I#295 (May, 1980) - Roy Thomas (writer/editor), Keith Pollard (penciler), Chic Stone (inker), Jim Shooter (consulting editor)
Thor I#297 (July, 1980) - Roy Thomas (writer/editor), Keith Pollard (penciler), Chic Stone (inker), Mark Gruenwald (assistant editor)
Thor I#298 (August, 1980) - Ralph Macchio (writer), Keith Pollard (penciler), Chic Stone (inker), Jim Salicrup (editor)
First Posted: 07/22/2017
Last updated: 07/22/2017
Thor Vol 1 298
You needn't do that, Blondhair, for gladly will I show you why all who live fear the Dweller of the Hate-Cavern. -- Fafnir
Archaeological record [ edit ]
References to or depictions of Odin appear on numerous objects. Migration Period (5th and 6th century CE) gold bracteates (types A, B, and C) feature a depiction of a human figure above a horse, holding a spear and flanked by one or more often two birds. The presence of the birds has led to the iconographic identification of the human figure as the god Odin, flanked by Huginn and Muninn . Like Snorri 's Prose Edda description of the ravens, a bird is sometimes depicted at the ear of the human, or at the ear of the horse. Bracteates have been found in Denmark, Sweden, Norway and, in smaller numbers, England and areas south of Denmark. ⏁] Austrian Germanist Rudolf Simek states that these bracteates may depict Odin and his ravens healing a horse and may indicate that the birds were originally not simply his battlefield companions but also "Odin's helpers in his veterinary function." ⏂]
Vendel Period helmet plates (from the 6th or 7th century) found in a grave in Sweden depict a helmeted figure holding a spear and a shield while riding a horse, flanked by two birds. The plate has been interpreted as Odin accompanied by two birds his ravens. ⏃]
Two of the 8th century picture stones from the island of Gotland, Sweden depict eight-legged horses, which are thought by most scholars to depict Sleipnir : the [[Tjängvide image stone|Tjängvide image stone]] and the Ardre VIII image stone. Both stones feature a rider sitting atop an eight-legged horse, which some scholars view as Odin. Above the rider on the Tjängvide image stone is a horizontal figure holding a spear, which may be a valkyrie, and a female figure greets the rider with a cup. The scene has been interpreted as a rider arriving at the world of the dead. ⏄] The mid-7th century Eggja stone bearing the Odinic name haras (Old Norse 'army god') may be interpreted as depicting Sleipnir . ⏅]
A pair of identical Germanic Iron Age bird-shaped brooches from Bejsebakke in northern Denmark may be depictions of Huginn and Muninn . The back of each bird features a mask-motif, and the feet of the birds are shaped like the heads of animals. The feathers of the birds are also composed of animal-heads. Together, the animal-heads on the feathers form a mask on the back of the bird. The birds have powerful beaks and fan-shaped tails, indicating that they are ravens. The brooches were intended to be worn on each shoulder, after Germanic Iron Age fashion. ⏆] Archaeologist Peter Vang Petersen comments that while the symbolism of the brooches is open to debate, the shape of the beaks and tail feathers confirms the brooch depictions are ravens. Petersen notes that "raven-shaped ornaments worn as a pair, after the fashion of the day, one on each shoulder, makes one's thoughts turn towards Odin's ravens and the cult of Odin in the Germanic Iron Age." Petersen says that Odin is associated with disguise, and that the masks on the ravens may be portraits of Odin. ⏆]
The Oseberg tapestry fragments, discovered within the Viking Age Oseberg ship burial in Norway, features a scene containing two black birds hovering over a horse, possibly originally leading a wagon (as a part of a procession of horse-led wagons on the tapestry). In her examination of the tapestry, scholar Anne Stine Ingstad interprets these birds as Huginn and Muninn flying over a covered cart containing an image of Odin, drawing comparison to the images of Nerthus attested by Tacitus in 1 CE. ⏇]
Excavations in Ribe, Denmark have recovered a Viking Age lead metal-caster's mould and 11 identical casting-moulds. These objects depict a moustached man wearing a helmet that features two head-ornaments. Archaeologist Stig Jensen proposes these head-ornaments should be interpreted as Huginn and Muninn, and the wearer as Odin. He notes that "similar depictions occur everywhere the Vikings went—from eastern England to Russia and naturally also in the rest of Scandinavia." ⏈]
A portion of Thorwald's Cross (a partly surviving runestone erected at Kirk Andreas on the Isle of Man) depicts a bearded human holding a spear downward at a wolf, his right foot in its mouth, and a large bird on his shoulder. ⏉] Andy Orchard comments that this bird may be either Huginn or Muninn . ⏊] Rundata dates the cross to 940, ⏋] while Pluskowski dates it to the 11th century. ⏉] This depiction has been interpreted as Odin, with a raven or eagle at his shoulder, being consumed by the monstrous wolf Fenrir during the events of Ragnarök . ⏉] ⏌]
The 11th century Ledberg stone in Sweden, similarly to Thorwald's Cross, features a figure with his foot at the mouth of a four-legged beast, and this may also be a depiction of Odin being devoured by Fenrir at Ragnarök . ⏌] Below the beast and the man is a depiction of a legless, helmeted man, with his arms in a prostrate position. ⏌] The Younger Futhark inscription on the stone bears a commonly seen memorial dedication, but is followed by an encoded runic sequence that has been described as "mysterious," ⏍] and "an interesting magic formula which is known from all over the ancient Norse world." ⏌]
In November 2009, the Roskilde Museum announced the discovery and subsequent display of a niello-inlaid silver figurine found in Lejre , which they dubbed Odin from Lejre. The silver object depicts a person sitting on a throne. The throne features the heads of animals and is flanked by two birds. The Roskilde Museum identifies the figure as Odin sitting on his throne Hliðskjálf , flanked by the ravens Huginn and Muninn. ⏎]
Various interpretations have been offered for a symbol that appears on various archaeological finds known modernly as the valknut . Due to the context of its placement on some objects, some scholars have interpreted this symbol as referring to Odin. For example, Hilda Ellis Davidson theorises a connection between the valknut , the god Odin and "mental binds":
For instance, beside the figure of Odin on his horse shown on several memorial stones there is a kind of knot depicted, called the valknut, related to the triskele. This is thought to symbolize the power of the god to bind and unbind, mentioned in the poems and elsewhere. Odin had the power to lay bonds upon the mind, so that men became helpless in battle, and he could also loosen the tensions of fear and strain by his gifts of battle-madness, intoxication, and inspiration. ⏏]
Davidson says that similar symbols are found beside figures of wolves and ravens on "certain cremation urns" from Anglo-Saxon cemeteries in East Anglia. According to Davidson, Odin's connection to cremation is known, and it does not seem unreasonable to connect with Odin in Anglo-Saxon England. Davidson proposes further connections between Odin's role as bringer of ecstasy by way of the etymology of the god's name. ⏏]
Thor Vol 1 297
Brunnhilda hath defied me - aye, and in so doing, hath made it mine own Hand that did slay my mortal Son. Verily, beyond all imagining shall be her Punishment when I have o'ertaken her! -- Odin
Wotan takes leave of Brunhild (1892) by Konrad Dielitz
The god Odin has been a source of inspiration for artists working in fine art, literature, and music. Fine art depictions of Odin in the modern period include the pen and ink drawing Odin byggande Sigtuna (1812) and the sketch King Gylfe receives Oden on his arrival to Sweden (1816) by Pehr Hörberg the drinking horn relief Odens möte med Gylfe (1818), the marble statue Odin (1830) and the colossal bust Odin by Bengt Erland Fogelberg, the statues Odin (1812/1822) and Odin (1824/1825) by Hermann Ernst Freund, the sgraffito over the entrance of Villa Wahnfried in Bayreuth (1874) by R. Krausse, the painting Odin (around 1880) by Edward Burne-Jones, the drawing Thor und Magni (1883) by K. Ehrenberg, the marble statue Wodan (around 1887) by H. Natter, the oil painting Odin und Brunhilde (1890) by Konrad Dielitz, the graphic drawing Odin als Kriegsgott (1896) by Hans Thoma, the painting Odin and Fenris (around 1900) by Dorothy Hardy, the oil painting Wotan und Brünhilde (1914) by Koloman Moser, the painting The Road to Walhall by S. Nilsson, the wooden Oslo City Hall relief Odin og Mime (1938) and the coloured wooden relief in the courtyard of the Oslo City Hall Odin på Sleipnir (1945–1950) by Dagfin Werenskiold, and the bronze relief on the doors of the Swedish Museum of National Antiquities, Odin (1950) by Bror Marklund.
Works of modern literature featuring Odin include the poem Der Wein (1745) by Friedrich von Hagedorn, Hymne de Wodan (1769) by Friedrich Gottlieb Klopstock, Om Odin (1771) by Peter Frederik Suhm, the tragedy Odin eller Asarnes invandring by K. G. Leopold, the epic poem Odin eller Danrigets Stiftelse (1803) by J. Baggeson, the poem Maskeradenball (1803) and Optrin af Norners og Asers Kamp: Odin komme til Norden (1809) by N. F. S. Grundtvig, poems in Nordens Guder (1819) by Adam Oehlenschläger, the four-part novel Sviavigamal (1833) by Carl Jonas Love Almqvist, the poem Prelude (1850) by William Wordsworth, the canzone Germanenzug (1864) by Robert Hamerling, the poem Zum 25. August 1870 (1870) by Richard Wagner, the ballad Rolf Krake (1910) by F. Schanz, the novel Juvikingerne (1918–1923) by Olav Duun, the comedy Der entfesselte Wotan (1923) by Ernst Toller, the novel Wotan by Karl Hans Strobl, Herrn Wodes Ausfahrt (1937) by Hans-Friedrich Blunck, the poem An das Ich (1938) by H. Burte, and the novel Sage vom Reich (1941–1942) by ans-Friedrich Blunck.
Neil Gaiman's novel American Gods (2001) features Odin as "Mr. Wednesday," traveling across the United States in a clash between old gods and new ones. Ian McShane plays Mr. Wednesday in its 2017 television adaptation.
Several characters from J. R. R. Tolkien's fiction were inspired by the god Odin. The appearance of the wizard Gandalf was particularly inspired by Odin's "wanderer" guise, whereas other aspects of the god directly influenced other characters, such as Saruman, Sauron, Morgoth, and Manwë.
Music inspired by or featuring the god include the ballets Odins Schwert (1818) and Orfa (1852) by J. H. Stunz and the opera cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen (1848–1874) by Richard Wagner.
In the comic book series The Wicked + The Divine, Odin under the name Woden appears in the 1830's Occurrence in the body of author Mary Shelley.
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