In Norse mythology, Tyr is the god of war and justice, guarantor of contract, defender of oath, as well as the symbol of courage and the honor of heroism. As his name may be related to Tuisto (the sacred ancestor of the Germanic people) or shares the same origin with Dyeus (the lord god in Indo-European religion), he was believed to be the chief of all gods, but was later gradually replaced by Odin.
Who was Tyr’s father?
Tyr was the son of the Asgardian lord god Odin, but he was also said to be the son of primordial giant Ymir.
Tyr’s main responsibility
as the god of war, his main responsibility was triggering wars. Later, this responsibility was taken over by Odin, who was also associated with war. Besides, court was considered to be the battlefield of debates, and therefore he was also regarded as the god of law and justice. He always carried his sword and looked majestic, but there was little description about his combat. The ancient oath of sword was originated from the worship of Tyr. People often carved the “Tyr rune” (also known as “Tiwaz rune”) on the hilts before the battle, so as to pray to Tyr for victory.
What is the origin of Tuesday?
The English term “Tuesday” was originated from “Tiwesdæg” in Old English, which means “the Day of Tiw”; and “Tiw” was derived from “Tiwaz”, another name of Tyr.
how does tyr lose his hand
Loki secretly had three children with female jötunn Angrboda: Fenrir the wolf, the world serpent Jörmungandr, the death goddess Hel. Odin saw all this on his throne. Had known how evil the three bastards were, he sent Hel to the Helheim, threw Jörmungandr into the ocean, but brought Fenrir to Asgard. The deities were afraid of Fenrir; only Tyr dared to feed this wolf.
But Fenrir grew up quickly day by day, and so did his wild nature. The deities had to tie him up to avoid troubles in the future. The deities forged an iron chain named Laeding. They playfully asked Fenrir to help testing how strong the chain was, by tying him up. But Fenrir easily broke the chain with a violent effort.
The deities quickly made a stronger chain named Dromi.
They asked Fenrir to try it again, but the second chain could not withstand Fenrir’s force either.
Thereupon, the deities turned to the dwarves for a chain strong enough. The dwarves fashioned an invisible chain named Gleipnir with odd things such as the pace of cat, root of mountain, beard of woman, breath of fish, vigilance of bear and saliva of bird. All such things were all used to forge this chain and never existed any longer.
After that, the deities brought Fenrir to a small island in the middle of Lake Amsvartnir on Lyngvi Island, and asked him to try the third time. Fenrir had grown even stronger, but this time he was suspicious about this thin chain. He made it a condition that some deity must put an arm in his mouth, so that the deities were agreed to tie him up. Tyr came forward and put his right arm in Fenrir’s mouth. As a result, Fenrir was chained up, but Tyr lost his right arm.
The deities worried that the Gleipnir could not withstand long, so they used one more chain. Also, they tied this chain to a stone deeply buried under the ground, and put another rock on this stone, so as to make it firm enough. As furious Fenrir wanted to bite them, the deities put a sword in his mouth to hold his both jaws. As a result, the saliva coming out of his mouth became a river named Van.
Thus, Fenrir could never get free from the chain until the Ragnarök. And during the events of Ragnarök, he broke free from the chain, returned to Asgard and swallowed the All-father Odin, but he was soon killed by Odin’s son Vidar.
How did Tyr die?
During the Ragnarök, Tyr had a fierce fight with the hellhound Garm, and both of them died from the injury. The hellhound Garm charged towards Tyr, despite that he was still bleeding. In the end, he and Tyr killed one another in the battle.
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