Saturday, February 16, 2013

Rack & Rune

Welcome to Abbott’s Inn Nordic Rune Corner 11!  We’re certainly glad you could make it!  Do be sure and check out the other Abbott’s Inn Nordic Rune Corner groups on the Internet.  The Rune system we will be discussing is the Elder Futhark Runes.  So you see, the Runes really are Nordic.  There are several other Rune systems, such as the Anglo-Saxon Futhorc and the Frisian Runes, but the Elder Futhark is the one that is best known, and the one that the most books are written about.  The earliest Runic inscriptions date from about 150 CE.
 It is thought that as the Germanic wave of the Indo-Europeans moved west and north, they became acquainted with the ancient alphabets such as Etruscan, and that the  Runes are a derivative of those alphabets.  The Younger Futhark developed into the long branch Runes, called Danish (even though they were also used by the Norwegians and Swedes) , short branched or Rok Runes and stavesyle Halsinge staveless, further into Marcomannic Runes, the Medieval Runes (1100-1500 CE) and the Dalecarlian Runes (1500-1800 CE).  There are similarities between the Runes and Ogham.  There is also a Runic script in Turkey, although we are not familiar with it.  Stephen Says it’s because there were Norse mrecenariesin Turkey as well as other places, but Tegwedd isn’t so sure. 
Books on the Runes are myriad.  There is Freya Aswynn’s Northern Mysteries & Magick (formerly Leaves of Yggdrasil), The Little Giant Encyclopedia of Runes by Sirona Knight, and Nordic Runes by Paul Rhys Mountfort, to name but a few.  Authors such as Edred Thorsson  have written many books on the Runes.  Tegwedd owns a copy by Thorsson titled the Elder Futhark, but that’s only the first of many.  We think it’s cool the way that Barrett put the Runes on the Trumps the way he did.  Try to find info on Clive Barrett on the Internet, will you?  All we could find is that he is the author of two Tarot decks; the Norse Tarot and the Ancient Eqyptian Tarot (of which Tegwedd has 2 copies;  she gave one to Doc, which she inherited with his demise). 
The Turkish script, as engraved on the Orhon standing stone in Mongolia, certainly resembles Runes superficially, although that may only be the straight lines that per force must be present in order to carve them in stone. The modern system of Runic divination is based, according to the Wikipedia, upon Hermeticism, classical Occultism, and the I Ching. Could someone please explain to us please what Runic divination has to do with the I Ching?  The only thing they have in common is that they are both examples of sortilege, the drawing of lots (if one does the yarrow   stalks version of the I Ching)systems of divination.  The cultures are completely different from each other.  Wikipedia is not the last word, but since Tegwedd keeps getting Bing junk every time she tried to look something up in the Paganpedia, it’ll have to do for now.  She’s tried to remove Bing at least 3 times with Len’s help, but Bing keeps popping up.  She did have the satisfaction to telling Microsoft that “Bing sucks out loud.” when she removed it, and Microsoft asked why.  Bing is the worst search engine in the world.  Do contribute your thoughts On Runes. 
The Elder Futhark is divided into three sections called aetts, which, coincidentally, have eight runes each.  The first aett is Freta’s aett.  The second is Hagal’s aett, and the third is Tyr’’s aett.  In the Norse tradition, like the Chinese, eight is one of their most important and auspicious numbers. 
How did the Runes originate?  The current is that as the Germanic and Gothic  waves of the Indo-European emigrants moved west and north around 1000-600 BCE, they passed through northern Italy and became acquainted and entranced with the Etruscan alphabet, and they sought to recreate it in their writing, as they became a literate people.  Okay, other scholars will tell you that they became acquainted with other Italic alphabets as well, but we believe that it was the Etruscan which was the main contributor.   For more information on the history of the Runes, go to either Wikipedia or Paganpedia.  Google the history and origins of the Runes.  According to the Havamal, Odin sacrificed Himself to Himself on Yggdrasil, and stabbed Himself in the side with His spear.  The drops of blood from both His empty eye socket and the wound in His side solidified into the Runes as they fell at the foot of Yggdrasil.  But such scholars and authors as Donald Tyson aver that the blood was really menstrual blood, and and the Runes were originally a women’s mystery.  So it was the women who copied down the Etruscan script, and developed the Runes from that.  Tegwedd maintains that yes, Odin gave the Runes  to men, but the women had them first, and Stephen agrees with her. 
Clive Barrett created the Norse Tarot and the Ancient Egyptian Tarot.  He put a Rune on each Trump card.  Stephen and Tegwedd each own a copy of this deck.  She took it off the shelf to study for this posting.  She plans on using it this coming week for the Tarot card portion of the daily Omens in the Gloamin’.
Do reply with any comments or questions you may have about this post or Runes in general.