Old Stories


Rik Pfaelzer / Wolf Song of Alaska Volunteer

A long time ago when I was young, my grandmother would tell me stories from the "Old Country" to make me sleepy. I enjoyed and remember them all. They were very special times for me. Here are a few of those stories:

It was once told that Odin and his brothers created the world. In loneliness while traveling, Odin created the First Wolves, Geri and Freki, to accompany him in his travels and to be partners in the hunt. The wolves became Odin's special companions. Wherever Odin went, the wolves went with him.

Odin traveled all over the world with the wolves. This explains why there are wolves in so many places in the world. As they traveled with Odin, Geri and Freki left their grown offspring behind to enjoy the riches of the New World. Geri and Freki cured Odin's loneliness. The way the wolves celebrated life filled Odin with joy.

Odin also created two Ravens, Hugin and Munin to help scout ahead as they traveled. Hugin and Munin were very good at finding game and were always hungry, giving meaning to the word "ravenous."

Hugin and Munin were not able to take game by themselves, but teamed up with Geri and Freki they were well fed. To this day, you will often find ravens in the company of their friends the wolves. The ravens still scout out the game for the wolves and the wolves leave a share of the meal for the ravens in thanks.

hen Odin created the humans Embla and Ask (from whom all humans sprang), he instructed them to learn from the wolf The wolf could teach them how to care for their family, how to cooperate with each other in the hunt for food, and how to protect and defend their families.

The wolf gave much wisdom and skill to the early humans. In the old times the wolf was respected. To be Wolf Clan (Ulfhednar) was a great honor. A Wolf Brother.

Odin was said to have sired part human children known as the Volsungs/Wulfsungs (the double meanings in Old Norse/Old Germanic are Wolfs Young and Wolf's Song) who were great warriors. There are entire sagas of their lives.

The Volsungs were also said to be shape shifters. They were able to turn into wolves in battle and use this to their advantage, or at times to run with the wolves in the forest for the sheer joy and freedom of being a wolf. These are the Volsungs of the legends.

It is said that Odin's death was caused by a wolf, and that this death was the payment for oaths broken and deceptions done. This was an honorable death that Odin would have liked.

These are some of the old stories that relate to wolves, as told to me by my grandmother when, as a young child, I told her of my interest and good feelings toward wolves and their kind.