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Ragnarok

Ragnarok

A term meaning "rain of dust," derived from an ancient Scandinavian legend of a titanic conflict between gods and giants. It was also the title of a book by the Minnesota congressman and senator Ignatius Donnelly (1831-1901). More than a century before Immanuel Velikovsky 's bestselling Worlds in Collision, Donnelly's book speculates that a comet passed close to or struck the earth in ancient times, causing cataclysmic changes dimly remembered in mythologies and scripture history.

Donnelly was an original thinker, and although some of his ideas may not stand up to modern scientific scrutiny, the theme of catatrophism has remained a persistent if minority opinion in contemporary science.

Sources:

Donnelly, Ignatius. Ragnarok: the Age of Fire and Gravel. 1883. Reprint, New Hyde Park, N.Y.: University Books, 1970.

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"Ragnarok." Encyclopedia of Occultism and Parapsychology. . Retrieved August 24, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/ragnarok

Ragnarok

Ragnarok

According to Norse* mythology, the world will end at Ragnarok, a time of great destruction when the gods will wage a final battle with the giants and other evil forces. Ragnarok has not yet arrived, but the events leading to it have already been set in motion.

Before Ragnarok begins, the world will suffer a terrible winter lasting three years. During this period the sun will grow dim, evil forces will be released, and wars will rage among humans. The trickster Loki will gather the frost giants and sail to Asgard, the home of gods. The wolf Fenrir, the serpent Jormungand, and Hel, the goddess of the dead, will break free and join Loki and other evil characters in a battle against the gods.

On the morning of Ragnarok, the god Heimdall will sound his mighty horn, summoning the gods to battle. During the terrible struggle that follows, all the great godsincluding Odin* and

trickster mischievous figure appearing in various forms in the folktales and mythology of many different peoples

* See Names and Places at the end of this volume for further information.

Thor*will be killed. Loki and the monsters, giants, and other evil beings will also perish. The earth will be set on fire, the sun and moon will be destroyed, the sky will fall, and the world will finally sink beneath the sea and vanish.

Ragnarok will not be the end of everything, however. The World Tree Yggdrasill will survive, and two humansLif and Lifthrasirand some animals will be sheltered among its branches. New land will rise from the oceans, and a fresh green earth will emerge. Lif and Lifthrasir will repopulate the world. Some of the godsincluding Balder*will also return and rebuild Asgard, ushering in a new golden age. Giants and other evil beings will not reappear but will fade as a distant memory.

See also Fenrir; Giants; Heimdall; Hel; Loki; Monsters; Norse Mythology; Odin; Serpents and Snakes; Thor; Yggdrasill.

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Ragnarök

Ragnarök in Scandinavian mythology, the destruction or twilight of the gods; the final battle between the gods and the powers of evil, in which gods and men will be defeated by monsters and the sky will grow dark, the Scandinavian equivalent of the Götterdämmerung. The original Old Norse form is ragna rök, from ragna ‘of the gods’ + rök ‘destined end’, but the variant Ragna rökr (rökr ‘twilight’), which occurs in the prose Edda, has influenced understanding of the name.

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"Ragnarök." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. 24 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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Ragnarok

Ragnarok (räg´nərŏk´), in Norse mythology, the doom of the gods. According to prophecy the end of the world would follow a severe ice age, in which human civilization would be destroyed. Then the gods of Asgard, led by Odin, would clash with the devastating forces of evil and chaos, led by Loki and the giants. After a fierce battle the universe itself would be destroyed by fire and a new golden age would appear, ruled by the surviving gods, including Balder. See Germanic religion.

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"Ragnarok." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 24 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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Ragnarök

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