stav with maddy elruna   

The runes are the foundation of my life, they shapes how I perceive world. most of my understanding of the runes comes through a tradition called Stav, this is a starting point for exploring rune-lore and Stav.

I struggle to write about Stav for various reasons.

#1 Its such a big topic I don’t know where to start.

#2 I know so little, there are so many others with far more experience and knowledge than me- I worry about doing justice to the wisdom.

#3 Its personal. Most of my understanding comes from my own personal journey.


So I’m going to try- to share my personal take on Stav (none of which is definitive), and to link to others that share elements of Stav.

No Stav journey can start with out a link to the Heimbu Page- here you will find information shared by Ivar, it is his family tradition which I was so blessed to be able to step into.


Stav is a wisdom tradition based on the 16 runes of the younger Futhark. Each of the runes has a focused movement (a little like tai-chi), a name, sound, at least one deity associated with it. You can find a YouTube demonstration of the stances here. 

Fun as programmes like The Vikings and The Last Kingdom may be- reading the Edda's and Saga's for yourself (or listening to them on audio-book) is a great way to connect to the tales. 


If you are looking for great places to start I recommend; Norse Mythology, by Neil Gaiman, The Poetic Edda (Jackson Crawford has a great translation), and The Volsung Saga. I know some would disagree- but The Lord of The Rings is  a great Nordic inspired tale as well. 

I translated the Old Norse and Icelandic (in italic) rune poems  myself. As with everything I have written it is not definitive- it works for me. But do check and see how other people have translated them. Here you will find the 16 runes of the younger futhark, the sound of the rune and the main deity/s associated with the rune.

Frey (fe)  f

Wealth causes strife amongst kinsmen

The wolf lives in the wood.


Wealth- source of discord amongst kinsmen

And fire of the fsea

And path of the serpent


Vidar (ur)  u

Dross is from bad iron

Oft runs the reindeer on the hard snow


Shower- lamentation of the clouds

And ruin of hay harvest

And abomination of the shepherd.



Thor (tor)  j

Thor causes the monthly sickness of woman

few are aroused at this time.


Thor- torture of woman

And cliff dweller

And husband of giantess



Odin (oss) o

Estuary is the way of most journeys

But the sheath is that for the sword



God- aged gautr

And prince of Asgard

And Lord of Valhalla



Hel (rei)  r

Riding it is said is worst for horses

Reginn forged the best sword



Riding- joy of horsemen

And speedy journey

And toil of the steed



Loki (kreft)  l

Ulcer is the curse of children

Death makes a man pale



Ulcer- disease fatal to children

And painful spot

And abode of mortification


Heimdal (hagl)  h

Hail is the coldest of the grains

Christ (crystal?) formed the world in ancient times



Hail- cold grain

And shower of sleet

And sickness of serpents



Urd, Verdandi, Skuld (nud)  n

Need makes for a difficult situation

The naked freeze in the frost



Constraint- grief of the bond-maid

And state of oppression

And toilsome work


Skarthe (is)  i

Ice we call the broad bridge

The blind need to be led


Ice- bark of rivers

And roof of the wave

And destruction of the doomed


Jord (ar)  a

A good harvest is the profit of men

I say the Lord was generous


Plenty- boon to men

And good summer

And thriving crops


Balder & Forseti (sol)  s

The sun is the light of the lands

I bow to the holiness

Sun- shield of the clouds

and shining ray

and destroyer of ice



Tyr (tyr)  t

Tyr is the one handed among the Aesir

The smith has to blow often.


Tyr- god with one hand

And leavings of the wolf

And prince of  temples


Frigg (Bjork)  b

Birch tree is the limb greenest with leaves

Loki brought the luck of deceit



Birch- leafy twig

And little tree

And fresh young shrub


Freya (mann)  m

Mankind is the increase of dust

Mighty is the talon span of the hawk.


Man-delight of man

And augmentation of dust

And adorner of ships


Njord (laug)  l

Waterfall is that which falls from the mountain as a force

But gold objects are costly things.


Water- eddying stream

And broad geyser

And land of fish.



Ull (ull)  y

Yew is the greenest of wood in the winter

There is usually, when it burns, crackling


Yew- bent bow

 and brittle iron

And giant of the arrow