Nerthus - Earth And Fertility Goddess: It was believed that Nerthus intervened in human affairs and rides through the lands of her people.
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Nerthus - Earth And Fertility Goddess - The Goddess - The White Goddess

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Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Nerthus - Earth And Fertility Goddess

Nerthus - Earth and Fertilty Goddess

It was believed that Nerthus intervened in human affairs and rides through the lands of her people. She has a sacred grove on an island. She is carried by a chariot drawn by female cattle.

Tacitus Germania - A. R. Birley translation:

By contrast, the Langobardi are distinguished by being few in number. Surrounded by many might peoples they have protected themselves not by submissiveness but by battle and boldness. Next to them come the Ruedigni, Aviones, Anglii, Varini, Eudoses, Suarines, and Huitones, protected by river and forests. There is nothing especially noteworthy about these states individually, but they are distinguished by a common worship of Nerthus, that is, Mother Earth, and believes that she intervenes in human affairs and rides through their peoples.

There is a sacred grove on an island in the Ocean, in which there is a consecrated chariot, draped with cloth, where the priest alone may touch. He perceives the presence of the goddess in the innermost shrine and with great reverence escorts her in her chariot, which is drawn by female cattle. There are days of rejoicing then and the countryside celebrates the festival, wherever she designs to visit and to accept hospitality. No one goes to war, no one takes up arms, all objects of iron are locked away, then and only then do they experience peace and quiet, only then do they prize them, until the goddess has had her fill of human society and the priest brings her back to her temple.

Afterwards the chariot, the cloth, and, if one may believe it, the deity herself are washed in a hidden lake. The slaves who perform this office are immediately swallowed up in the same lake. Hence arises dread of the mysterious, and piety, which keeps them ignorant of what only those about to perish may see.

Nerthus

[Image: Emil Doepler 1905]

Spectators watch as the processional wagon of the Germanic goddess Nerthus moves along, inspired by Tacitus' description of the Germanic custom in his first century AD work Germania.

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Pantheon: Teutonic
Abode: Sacred Grove
Animals: Cattle
Colours: -
Consort: -
Day: -
Direction: -
Element: -
Incense: -
Musical Instrument: -
Offerings: -
Planet: -
Plant/Tree: -
Symbols: Chariot
Tarot Card: -
Time: -

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