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Jord Image

EARTH From the ‘Gods of England’ Series – Thorskegga Thorn

Thorskegga has started a series of paintings depicting the gods worshipped by the Anglo-Saxon and Norse settlers in England. Black and white versions of these pictures have been used for the covers of Thunder and the Wain.

The goddess Earth appears in the Norse myths as Jord the mother of Thor. Jord seems to be a memory of the ancient middle eastern fertility goddess, the mother of all creation symbolised by corn, snakes, birds, lions and swastikas. There is no evidence that Jord was worshipped in the late Viking Age but her ancient importance and strong connections with the thunder god are frequently shown in Norse poetry.

The poppy as mentioned in Thunder 7 (thunder flowers of England) is sacred to both the earth goddess and the thunder god. The rowan is the sacred tree of the Lapp earth goddess Ravdna and is also sacred to Thor. Crosses made of rowan are also mentioned in the Anglo-Saxon field blessing which invokes the fertile union of god and goddess, possibly harking back to the heathen swastika symbol of Thor.

In the Norse myths the serpent Jormungandr encircles the earth with its tail in its mouth, until Thor destroys it during his famous fishing trip (see Thor and the Serpent)

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