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SIEGFRIED: TRAILER FOR AN IMAGINARY FILM

Tonight, I teach my final class for the semester on Wagner's "Ring of the Nibelungen" & +Norse Mythology. Two weeks ago, I introduced the "Siegfried" opera by showing this trailer for Alex Alice's "Siegfried" movie. Unfortunately, the film doesn't actually exist.

There have been on-again, off-again announcements for several years about the production status of the animated film based on the work of Alice, the French graphic novelist. What we do have is his brilliant "Siegfried" series of comics, which mix Wagner, Norse myth & Alice's own ideas. You can find them online in French & English.

Why doesn't Monsieur Alice start a Kickstarter campaign to get the film made? If lack of funds are holding back production, I think many of us would be willing to kick in to get this amazing project finished.

Watch the trailer. It's unbelievably epic, intense & emotional. It also has a perfect soundtrack – the powerful music of Wagner's "Ring." I truly hope this project will eventually be completed.

Click here to watch the trailer: Alex Alice's SIEGFRIED - North American Trailer

For more on Richard Wagner, follow the Wagner Project at facebook.com/RichardWagnerProject

For more epic movies, subscribe (free) to NorseTube, The Norse Mythology Channel – youtube.com/user/NorseTube
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TALKING ABOUT THOR ON TALK RADIO

My appearance on Chicago Public Radio is now online. +WBEZ's Tony Sarabia split the interview in two: half on my work performing & writing music, half on my work teaching & writing on +Norse Mythology. Listen at soundcloud.com/morningshiftwbez/acclaimed-jazz-bassist
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Fantastic.  I didn't know you were a musician too.  I really enjoyed both halves of this interview as I'm a bass player too.  Thanks!
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VIKING WOMEN IN IRELAND

National Museum of Ireland has created a nice video series about Vikings in Ireland. This one features Maeve Sikora of the museum's Irish Antiquities Division. She displays several beautiful objects found buried with women & discusses what they can teach us about the lives of Viking women in Ireland.

Click here to watch the video:
Viking Ireland 4 - Viking Women in Ireland

All the Viking Ireland videos are now posted on The Norse Mythology Channel. Subscribe (free) to NorseTube at youtube.com/user/NorseTube
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A HORRIFYING HATE CRIME...
AND CNN'S PROBLEMATIC REPORTING
wildhunt.org/2014/04/cnn-ties-accused-white-supremacist-killer-frazier-glenn-cross-to-odinism.html

Our friend Jason Pitzl-Waters of The Wild Hunt contacted me last night about the awful murders in Kansas on Sunday. The accused was apparently targeting Jewish people & has declared his attachment to Odinism in the past (as well as to monotheism, atheism, etc). I wrote a statement denouncing racism & anti-semitism in heathenry - but also one criticizing CNN's sensationalistic reporting of the story.

Check out Jason's article, which quotes many heathen voices speaking out against the killings & their supposed connection to heathen beliefs. Jason also clearly details the faults in CNN's coverage.

Note: CNN is now in the process of quietly editing their original post on the story, adding quotes from heathens and linking to Jason's article - and even changing the post's title. Why didn't CNN do it's research BEFORE printing the story?

Here's the Wild Hunt piece: wildhunt.org/2014/04/cnn-ties-accused-white-supremacist-killer-frazier-glenn-cross-to-odinism.html
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CNN is ridiculous. I live in the general Boston area... We all remember what happened here a year ago, right? CNN was jumping on the story and making absolute fools of themselves over the bombing. They're fear-mongering, money-grubbing, ridiculous people. 
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VIKING IRELAND: WEAPONS – THE AXE

National Museum of Ireland has created a nice video series about #Vikings in Ireland. This first one features Dr. Andy Halpin of the Irish Antiquities Division discussing 3 Viking battle-axes discovered in Summer 2013. Click the video & start learning, y'all!

All the Viking Ireland videos are now posted on The +Norse Mythology Channel. Subscribe (free) to NorseTube at youtube.com/user/NorseTube
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Have them in circles
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VIKING GOLD IN ISLE OF MAN TREASURE TROVE
Article reposted from IOM Today

A rare Viking gold ingot was one of four discoveries of Norse treasure in the Isle of Man recently.

The ingot, along with a collection of silver coins, a gold ring and a silver seal were the subjects of three treasure trove inquiries before coroner John Needham.

The items were all declared treasure trove, meaning ownership is vested in the Lord in Man and the items will be placed in the custody of Manx National Heritage, with compensation paid both to the finder and the landowner.

Coroner John Needham said the issue was to decide if the items were treasure trove according to the criteria in the Treasure Trove Act of 1586.

Metal detectorist Robert Farrer said he found the ring buried around four inches deep in a stubble field in Michael, near the course of the old railway line. A silver seal was found buried about eight inches deep by fellow metal detectorist Andrew Falconer on the other side of the railway track.

Curator of archaeology for Manx National Heritage Allison Fox said the gold ring, dating from 1200 to 1250 and the seal, dating from 1315 to 1330 could have been part of a single hoard buried for safekeeping as late as the 1500s and later bisected by the railway line.

A stash of 119 silver coins found last year by metal detectorist Lee Morgan in a field in Braddan were also deemed treasure trove.

Miss Fox said the coins dated from 1272 to 1327 and included one contemporary forgery with a lower silver content. Two previous finds from the same area in 1978 and 1980 were probably all part of the same hoard, she said.

The final item, a gold ingot, was discovered buried around three inches deep in a stubble field about 150 yards from the road side in Maughold – again by a metal detectorist, John Crowe. A rare item of Viking age gold, the ingot probably dates from 950 to 1050AD.

Curator of archaeology for Manx National Heritage Allison Fox said the gold ingot was rare as most Viking finds to date were silver. The ingot, which is 92 per cent pure gold, would have been a valuable item when first produced. It is 38mm wide and weighs 26.8 grammes.

Miss Fox said the ingot did not pre-date coins as currency and the two trading methods had existed alongside one another.

Ingots were used in place of coins as payment but were often cut down in size to create smaller value tokens for trading. A similar ingot was found in Norfolk and was thought to date from 950 to 1050AD. A high value item like the ingot was likely to have been concealed for safe-keeping and could be part of a larger collection which could come to light later. The collection of silver coins, which date from the reigns of Edward I and II, is not the first to be discovered all at the same Braddan location. Finds date from the 1870s and total well over 350 coins so far. As metal detector technology improves, more finds come to light.

To be declared treasure trove an item must have been concealed with a view to retrieval, rather than lost, it must be precious metal – gold or silver – and the owner must be impossible to trace. The find should be promptly reported and searches should have been done with the agreement of the land owner.

Source for article (with video): iomtoday.co.im/news/isle-of-man-news/viking-artefacts-are-treasure-trove-1-6573226

Photo source: 500px.com/Heathcliffe
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Great find ! Hopefully more will come later.
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HITLER HATED HEATHENS

Monday's CNN article about the disgusting hate crimes of last Sunday quotes a 1998 Southern Poverty Law Center article stating that Odinism "was a bedrock belief for key Third Reich leaders, and it was an integral part of the initiation rites and cosmology of the elite Schutzstaffel (SS), which supervised Adolf Hitler's network of death camps."

The man arrested & accused of committing these awful murders is a great fan of Adolf Hitler. I wonder if this avowed white supremacist knows that (even as the Nazis used Nordic imagery for propaganda purposes) his hero Hitler thought those interested in the Old Way were moronic left-wing peaceniks?

In his memoirs, Nazi architect Albert Speer quotes Hitler on his disdain for SS leader Heinrich Himmler's interest in pagan mysticism & his own support for Christian Charlemagne's butchering of heathen Saxons:

"What nonsense! Here we have at last reached an age that has left all mysticism behind it, and now [Himmler] wants to start that all over again. We might just as well have stayed with the church. At least it had tradition. To think that I may some day be turned into an SS saint! Can you imagine it? I would turn over in my grave...

"Himmler has made another speech calling Charlemagne 'the butcher of the Saxons.' Killing all those Saxons was not a historical crime, as Himmler thinks. Charlemagne did a good thing subjugating Widukind and killing the Saxons out of hand. He thereby made possible the empire of the Franks and the entry of Western culture into what is now Germany."

Here are some key quotes from Hitler's "Mein Kampf" ("My Struggle," Hitler's autobiography & statement of beliefs), in which he clearly states what he thinks of those who follow the Old Gods.

On use of ancient terminology:

"It is entirely out of harmony with the spirit of the nation to keep harping on that far-off and forgotten nomenclature which belongs to the ancient Germanic times and does not awaken any distinct association in our age. This habit of borrowing words from the dead past tends to mislead the people into thinking that the external trappings of its vocabulary are the important feature of a movement. It is really a mischievous habit; but it is quite prevalent nowadays."

On scholars of mythology:

"I had to warn followers repeatedly against these wandering scholars who were peddling Germanic folk-lore and who never accomplished anything positive or practical, except to cultivate their own superabundant self-conceit. "

On those more interested in peacefully studying ancient practice than joining his anti-Communist fight:

"It is typical of such persons that they rant about ancient Teutonic heroes of the dim and distant ages, stone axes, battle spears and shields, whereas in reality they themselves are the woefullest poltroons imaginable. For those very same people who brandish Teutonic tin swords that have been fashioned carefully according to ancient models and wear padded bear-skins, with the horns of oxen mounted over their bearded faces, proclaim that all contemporary conflicts must be decided by the weapons of the mind alone. And thus they skedaddle when the first communist cudgel appears. Posterity will have little occasion to write a new epic on these heroic gladiators."

On those who study folk-lore vs. those who fight for his vision of a German State:

"I have seen too much of that kind of people not to feel a profound contempt for their miserable play-acting. To the masses of the nation they are just an object of ridicule; but the Jew finds it to his own interest to treat these folk-lore comedians with respect and to prefer them to real men who are fighting to establish a German State. And yet these comedians are extremely proud of themselves. Notwithstanding their complete fecklessness, which is an established fact, they pretend to know everything better than other people; so much so that they make themselves a veritable nuisance to all sincere and honest patriots, to whom not only the heroism of the past is worthy of honour but who also feel bound to leave examples of their own work for the inspiration of the coming generation."
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Yes. I believe from the studies that I have done that he had a great heart for Muslims too even though he was raised a catholic. PS, I like your page. Very nice.
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MORE VIKING GOODNESS IN THE UK

First the British Museum opens its epic Vikings exhibit. Now there's this fantastic event at University of Birmingham:

Midlands Viking Symposium
Saturday 26th April 2014

The Universities of Birmingham, Nottingham and Leicester are proud to announce the tenth Midlands Viking Symposium, an event designed to bring together academics and enthusiasts in Viking Studies.

Speakers

Dr Christina Lee (Nottingham): Sick Vikings

The paper will look at what we know about responses to illness - in the Viking Age but much more through what later sagas tell us about attitudes towards disease and illness.

Dr Chris Callow (Birmingham):  Did the Vikings sacrifice their slaves?

There is an account by the traveller-scholar Ibn Fadlan of the Viking community in eastern Europe performing an elaborate funeral ritual in which a slave girl is killed. As a result many scholars cite this and archaeological evidence in support of the idea of so-called ‘slave burials’, for the deliberate killing of slaves to be interred with their masters. This talk reviews the evidence of some of these gruesome and not-so-gruesome-looking graves to consider the question afresh across the Viking world.

Dr Philip Shaw (Leicester): A glove in hood’s clothing? Hrólfs saga kraka and Beowulf, once more with humor

The Old English poem Beowulf and the Old Norse Hrólfs saga are two of the most important stories in their respective languages. Scholars have often pondered the apparent similarities between parts of each story. In this talk it will be argued that the overall pattern of three monster fights found in Beowulf is retold as a kind of joke in Hrólfs saga when Bo̢ðvarr encounters Ho̢ttr at Hrólf’s hall and he fights with a dragon-like monster. This interpretation has implications for our understanding not only of how this particular Old Norse saga originated but for the nature of story-telling in the Viking Age.

Dr Slavica Rankovic (Leeds): Grettir’s Secret Formula

Grettir’s saga is one of the most intriguing of the Sagas of Icelanders, the major genre of saga that was written down in medieval Iceland. Through the centuries scholars have puzzled over how and why these stories came into being – at the same time as they look like folktales they look like sophisticated literary works. This talk will present some of the latest research on how the formulaic elements of the sagas ‘worked’ for medieval audiences. Grettir, the aggressive outlawed hero of this saga also famously expressed his ability to resist temptation through what might be called a ‘no reaction’ formula. The nuances of Grettir and his saga will be analysed to show how and why he emerges as one of the most complex characters in world literature.

Bernadette McCooey (Birmingham): The Viking Age farm

For all their reputation as marauders, the Vikings and their descendants had to feed themselves. This talk consider the Viking ‘colony’ in Iceland where the farm was the basic building block of society and the stage on which most of life’s events took place. The farm was also a unit of production that ensured the survival of the farm’s inhabitants. Livestock were an essential element of farm production, yet questions about how farms worked have been neglected. I hope to raise some of the issues concerning livestock and the daily management of the animals, and offer some insights into the routine of Viking Age Icelandic farm.

Cat Jarman (Bristol): Resolving Viking Age Repton? New techniques on old bones

One of the most famous Viking Age excavations in England was that around the church of St. Wystan in Repton, Derbyshire, between 1974 and 1993. It uncovered considerable evidence for the presence of the 873-4 AD Viking winter camp recorded in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle. Among the discoveries were a small fortification, ‘Scandinavian’ burials. Most strikingly there was a mound burial containing the disarticulated bones of at least 264 people. Were these the bones of the Viking army and their followers? This talk presents some of the first results of the scientific analysis of these human remains to determine the geographical origins and social status of those interred. 

Gareth Williams (Curator Viking exhibition, British Museum): Repton revisited: the Viking camps of the Great Army in the light of the Torksey and 'North Yorkshire' sites

The activities of the 'Great Heathen Army' of 865-78 represented an important new phase in Viking activity in England, and one which culminate in the settlement of much of northern and eastern England by the Vikings. This period, which also had parallels in Ireland and the Frankish kingdoms, was characterised by forces campaigning for years at  a time, choosing to over-winter in enemy territory rather than either returning home or (until the very end of the period) settling permanently in the territories they had conquered. This strategy depended on the development each year of so-called 'winter camps' as seasonal bases. Until recently, the only one of these bases to be investigated in any detail was Repton in Derbyshire, where a D-shaped enclosure around the existing monastery church has set a paradigm for what 'Viking camps' were like. Recent years have seen the partial investigation of two new sites, one at Torksey in Lincolnshire, the other in North Yorkshire. Although neither has been fully investigated, they have strong similarities, and suggest a very different scale and character of activity to that suggested in the traditional interpretation of Repton.

More information: birmingham.ac.uk/schools/historycultures/departments/history/events/2014/viking-symposium.aspx
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MIME FINDS THE MOTHER OF SIEGFRIED IN THE FOREST
from Siegfried by Richard Wagner
illustrated by Arthur Rackham
norsemyth.org/p/books.html

In the 1st act of the 3rd opera in Richard Wagner's Ring of the Nibelung, the dwarf Mime describes how he found Sieglinde (mother of the hero Siegfried). She was last seen fleeing from the wrathful Wotan (Odin) at the end of the previous opera. Mime tells Siegfried:

A woman once I found
Who wept in the forest wild;
I helped her here to the cave,
That by the fire I might warm her.
The woman bore a child here;
Sadly she gave it birth.
She writhed about in pain;
I helped her as I could.
Bitter her plight; she died.
But Siegfried lived and throve.

from The Ring of the Nibelung, Volume 2:
Siegfried & The Twilight of the Gods
The featured free eBook
at The Norse Mythology Online Library

Read the eBook online or download (PDF) at
norsemyth.org/p/books.html
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RECREATING NORDIC GROG
from archaeology.org/issues/132-1405/trenches/1976-juellinge-denmark-recreating-nordic-grog

The woman, dead at 30, was buried 1,900 years ago in an oak log near Juellinge, Denmark. Interred with her was a long-handled bronze strainer that still held residue of a fermented drink she may have been meant to enjoy in the afterlife.

Now the ingredients and even the flavor of that drink, a “grog” made from local fruits, grains, and herbs mixed with grape wine from southern Europe, are becoming clearer. University of Pennsylvania archaeologist Patrick McGovern has applied biomolecular techniques to organic residue taken from four ancient Scandinavian artifacts, including the woman’s strainer, a clay jar, and pieces of Roman bronze drinking sets, dating to between 1500 B.C. and A.D. 200.

Using a method called solid phase micro-extraction, McGovern found volatile organic compounds that are biomarkers for ingredients such as lingonberry, bog cranberry, rye, barley, juniper, birch, pine, bog myrtle, and yarrow. Tandem mass spectrometry then showed the presence of tartaric acid, the biomarker for wine.

“This work is the first to prove that wine was being traded from the south to the north at this time,” says McGovern. It has also created a detailed, consistent picture of ancient Scandinavia’s preferred beverage of distinction. McGovern is working with Delaware’s Dogfish Head Brewery—as he has on previous concoctions based on ancient residues—to create a modern rendition of the sour, fruity, herbaceous grog.

Story by Katherine Sharpe
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+Christopher Allen Interesting, thanks for the information
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The Norse Mythology Google+ Page
Introduction
The Norse Mythology Google+ Page
by Dr. Karl E. H. Seigfried

Dr. Karl E. H. Seigfried writes The Norse Mythology Blog. A Norse mythologist and musician in Chicago, he teaches Norse mythology classes at Newberry Library. He has also taught Norse mythology at Loyola University Chicago and Norse religion at Carthage College, where he was founder & faculty advisor of the Tolkien Society.

Karl has been a featured writer and lecturer at the Joseph Campbell Foundation and the Wagner Society of America, and he is the author of all Ásatrú definitions in the Religion Stylebook of the Religion Newswriters Association. He's a member of the Society for the Advancement of Scandinavian Study, the Tolkien Society (UK), the Viking Society for Northern Research (UK) and the Religion Newswriters Association. He's also the Official Norse Mythologist of the Stephanie Miller Show.

2012, 2013 & 2014 Weblog Awards: Best Religion Weblog
Weblog Awards Hall of Fame: First religion blog to enter the Hall of Fame
Chicago Public Radio: "[Karl's] one of the country’s most respected researchers and lecturers on Norse mythology."
Chicago Humanities Festival: "Seigfried is a prolific chronicler of the world of Norse mythology."
Johan Hegg (Amon Amarth): "[Karl's] probably a better Guardian of Asgard than I am."
Jóhanna G. Harðardóttir (Ásatrúarfélagið): "Hér er rétti maðurinn á ferð til að kenna Norræna goðafræði í US."
Syracuse University iSchool: "This is an entertaining and enlightening blog to follow for anyone interested in Norse mythology."
Weaving Wyrd: "His questions are thought-provoking, and his scholarly bona fides are pretty impressive."
Bob Freeman: "Best Esoteric Website 2013: For anyone with an interest in Norse culture, myth, and magic, there is no better place to visit on the web."
The Wild Hunt: "If you aren’t already reading Dr. Karl E. H. Seigfried's amazing The Norse Mythology Blog, then you've been remiss. The blog is one of the most content-rich affairs for lovers of Norse mythology I’ve ever seen."
Tales of a GM: "This is an amazing resource for anyone interested in the history and culture of Northern Europe. The Norse Mythology Blog is such a brilliant combination of modern issues and ancient sources. If you have any interest in Norse culture or mythology, then you must visit Dr Seigfried’s site."
Vancouver Sun: "The best blog on faith and spirituality may be one about a so-called ‘dead’ religion, Norse mythology. The Norse Mythology Blog reflects deep knowledge of this ancient religion, along with an affable spirit. [Karl] knows everything one would ever want to know about Thor, Odin, Frey, Loki, Frigg, Freya and countless more Norse gods, goddesses and mythological hangers-on."
City Magazine (Serbia): "Ako vas je ikada makar malo zainteresovala istorija i kultura severne Evrope, a naročito njena istorija, ovde ćete naći mnogo više interesantnog štiva nego što biste se ikada nadali. Posebno je interesantno da uspeva da poveže savremene momente sa prastarim izvorima."

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Questions? Contact Karl through the Contact page at The Norse Mythology Blog.