Vidar, one of the Aesir (gods) in Norse mythology, was the son of Odin and the frost giantess Grid. Vidar rarely talked, earning him the nickname "The Silent God". He was very strong, only Thor, the Thunder God, was stronger.

In the legends, Vidar's mother, Grid, gave him a pair of magic shoes to wear for Ragnarok (Norse mythology's armageddon), and they saved his life. After the Fenrir wolf killed Odin, Vidar avenged his father by standing in Fenrir's mouth, and tearing its jaws apart with his bare hands.

Snorri Sturluson, author of the Edda, compared Vidar with Aeneas from Greek mythology because Vidar survived Ragnarok as Aeneas did when Troy fell.

There are three golden cockerels in the fraxinary worlds; Fjalar one is named, and Gullinkambi another. But the third has no name. These cocks do not crow at dawn; or rather, they await only one dawn, the last dawn of the first world, the day on which Surt has mustered his armies, the certain hour, Ragnarök.

The first of these is Gullinkambi; his home the ridge of Heimdall's house. When Heimdall hears Gullinkambi cry, he will know that the day is come when the ash will turn to ash, and he will wind the great Gjallarhorn, and call the gods to muster.

Second is the nameless rooster of Hel. He will be heard by the bleak goddess who shares the name of that bleak place, and she shall make her ship ready, Naglfar, which, filled with all the dead of all the world, shall sail forth to fight on the side of the giants and of destruction — daughter as she is of Loki and a giant.

Third and last is Fjalar, who roosts in Jarnvidr, the forest that is east of Midgård. This is a forest beset with ogres and with giants, but they are of no consequence, it is not for them that Fjalar crows. For deep in that dark forest sits Vidar on a throne of stone, waiting, and rarely does he leave it, for he has no part in this world. Some say that Vidar is the strongest of the gods; others that he is near as strong as Thor. On his right foot, he wears a heavy iron boot. On his right shoulder leans a long spear. His strength, his hard boot, his spear were all made for the same day; the day for which he, too, was made.

One fated morning Vidar will hear the third rooster crow; he will know that the red of sunrise is no lie this time; perhaps he will hear the long echo of the horn vouchsafe it. There will be no hesitation then. He will rise from his seat, glad with the end of long waiting; he will find the field of battle; there he will see the Fenris Wolf devour his father Odin. He will tread the Wolf in the jaw, and break it; he will thrust his sure spear into the Wolf's weak gullet, striking it in the heart, avenging his father. (For that is its only weak point.) After this, he will remain unharmed, for all the great of gods and giants will then be dead.

When the flames of the giant have consumed Valhalla, the World Tree and all the nine worlds, when the pyre of the gods has burnt out, when the earth has sunk and risen, when the new sun climbs in the sky, the field of Idavellir will spire anew with green grass and there will be Vidar, to be god over the new mankind. There in the grass he will find the same tafl-pieces with which the gods were used to playing, in days of past joy... Then will he break his silence, then will he no longer bide, but do; for Vidar's is the world to come.

* * *

There was an alternate belief, that Vidar's boot was made of leather; cobblers would throw out the scrap leather left over after making a pair of shoes, rather than trying to reuse it, so that Vidar could collect it and add it to the boot. It was important they do so, for, if he did not get leather enough, Vidar's boot would not be thick enough to withstand the Wolf, and on the long awaited day he would perish, leaving the wolf to vent his everlasting fury on the new world and the first children.

In the Völuspa, the forest is named Galgvidr, »Gallows-Wood«, but Vidar lives in the house of Odin; in the Gylfaginning it is stated that Odin's son (thus Vidar's brother) Vali will also survive the Doom of the Gods, as will the sons of Thor; but that is Snorre's Edda, and it is not so good in wisdom as the elder. Some say that Balder will be there with Vidar also, the gentle god, since the end of the world will also be the breaking of Hel; but I believe this is a contamination, an attempt to absorb the theology of the White God.

Log in or registerto write something here or to contact authors.