Goddesses of the Day: Valkyries

Since I posted a lovely picture of the Valkyries from Twitter yesterday, I thought I would follow that up with some more information about these goddess. Our English use of the word "Valkyrie" comes from the Old Norse word valkyrja, which is a compound that means choosing (kyrja) those slain in battle (valr). The Valkyries bring their chosen warriors to dwell in Valhalla ("hall of the slain"), which is located in Asgard, the kingdom of the gods ruled over by Odin. You can find out more about the Valkyries at Wikipedia. The Wikipedia article contains excerpts from the Eddas and other ancient testimony about the Valkyries.

Here is a painting of a Valkyrie as imagined by the 19th-century Norwegian artist Peter Nicolai Arbo:

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