Valkyrie´s battle-axe (71cm)
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The origin of the Valkyries is not documented in the existing texts, but many of the best-known Valkyries had mortal parents. Today it is believed that the original Valkyries were the priestesses of Odin who officiated the ritual sacrifices, in which the prisoners were executed (- taken to Odin-). By the time the poetic Edda was compiled, at the end of the 12th or early 13th century, these rituals had begun legends about supernatural warrior maidens who took an active part in human conflicts, deciding who should live and who to die.
In the mythological poems of the poetic Edda the Valkyrie were supernatural deities of unknown ancestry. They are described as squire maidens who ride in the ranks of the gods or serve drinks in the Valhalla; they are given meaningful names, such as Skǫgul / Skögul (-fight, fury-), Hlǫkk / Hlökk (-stuff battle-) and Gjǫll / Göll (-screw of battle-).
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