Mythical Monday: The Frost Giants by Mae Clair

When the world settles into the cold brittle grip of winter it’s easy to imagine a realm of frost and ice. I live in an area that experiences four distinct seasons, but I sometimes wonder what it would be like to reside in a climate where winter holds dominion most of the year. It’s a place I might like to visit under the right circumstances, but definitely not somewhere I’d want to have make a permanent address. I’m much more of a tropical girl. Yet when December snuggles in, moon rise comes earlier and the mercury plummets, I start thinking of snow and ice.

bigstock-Nordic-Winter-Forest-With-Lots-53205442Roll back the curtain to early Scandinavia when the first cosmic beings crawled from the ether. Among them was Ymir, father to the Frost Giants, also known as the Jotnar. Creatures who opposed the gods, these formidable beings had hair, beards and fingernails hewn from ice. Their eyes burned with glacial fire, and when they spoke, ice particles spewed from their mouths.

Despite their ongoing conflict with the gods, Frost Giants were related to them through numerous marriages. Some legends say that Odin, god of the Norse, was the great-grandson of Ymir. This, however, didn’t stop him from waging war against them. The battles were long and bloody with casualties on both sides.

In the end the gods were victorious, but even then they couldn’t destroy the race. A married couple among the Frost Giants managed to flee by sailing away on a sea of blood. They escaped to the Baltic where they gave birth to a new generation. Although these new Frost Giants thrived for a time, they ultimately perished in a final battle against the gods bringing an end to their race. Now, they are only than a memory.

Or are they?

When winter is brutal, punishing us with a deluge of cold and ice, I sometimes wonder if a shadow of the Frost Giants doesn’t still exist. In a time when we’re getting ready to bid goodbye to an old year and usher in a new, it might be good to recall some of our forgotten legends…

If only for sharing around a warm fire. 🙂

21 thoughts on “Mythical Monday: The Frost Giants by Mae Clair

  1. I often think of the film 30 Days of Night where for one month every year in a small Alaskan town there is no daylight, just darkness and snow and cold. I couldn’t imagine living like that.

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    • Alaska intrigues me. I could never live there and exist so long without daylight, but I think it would be a cool place to visit to experience that just once. I’d also love to see Norway or Iceland…then promptly pack up and come home, LOL!

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  2. Oh wow, I love the idea of the Frost Giants. We don’t get the white winters down here, and that may be why I am so drawn to the sheer power of the cold season. Nowadays, it seems we don’t get as much spring and autumn as in “days of yore.” (meaning when I was a child lol) Thank you for dwelling on the Frost Giants. Your posts are so descriptive and lovely!

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    • Aww, thanks, Flossie. 🙂 I always enjoy coming up with a Mythical Monday topic. My husband frequently talks about moving south. Whenever we’re shivering in the cold we’ll look to see what the temps are in Florida. I think he could easily do without a cold season. I enjoy winter for the month of December, but once Christmas and New Year’s are over, I’m ready for spring. I have to chat with the Frost Giants about not lingering so long 😀

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  3. You know, there have been times during the hot summer months, when I have been baking out here in the southwestern desert, that I would have gladly welcomed a visit from the mythical frost giants… 🙂 I love your posts Mae!

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    • Thanks so much, Debbie! It’s always a pleasure to see you here 🙂

      I’ve only ever been southwest once and that was in April when (I’m sure) the temperatures were far from what they’re like in the summer months. I have to admit the desert fascinates me. It’s like an entirely different world. I was amazed at how “vast” everything felt when we visited Arizona and Nevada. Perhaps you need to have a chat with the Heat Giants, and then we can swap them for a short time 🙂

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  4. Mae – Do you think it could have been one of your ‘Frost Giants’ that took my hard drive away? I’m certainly ready for them to bring me one that’s ready to plug in and get me operational again.
    Due to winter being my favorite season of the year, somehow I like to think I would have gotten along with the Frost Giants. You know I’ve never believed in fangs, blood and gore but everything I’ve seen lumbering their way through dense snow has been pretty slow. As our climate warms, what will happen to these fellows?

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    • Oh no! The Frost Giants must be playing at mischief if they snatched your hard drive. Hopefully, they’ll come to their senses and return it — before the thaw! 🙂

      I’d forgotten how much you enjoy this season, Sheri. Judging by the weather map lately, the Frost Giants have been doing a lot of visiting across the country. I guess it’s recess for them before the climate warms and they melt away!

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  5. That’s about what Toronto looked like. An ice storm of the century. Luckily we managed to avoid it. We’ve visited the far north, but not in winter. It’s fasincatedly beautiful with many brightly coloured flowers, as small as your nail. The weather forbids anything larger.

    and Happy New Year 😀

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    • Wow! New England had one of those too, lots of people losing power and now they’re bracing for a snow storm. I’m glad you were able to avoid what hit Toronto. Far too much snow for me.

      Your descriptions of the far north sound beautiful! And a Happy New Year to you too, Sue! 😀

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  6. Great topic, Mae! I have to say, from what I’ve heard and read in your comments, it’s a big snow year already for everyone. I can vouch for northern Michigan – we already have snow banked up over five feet just around our driveway. I noticed it doesn’t stop our neighbors who are always having big barrel fires out their backyard. Maybe they have the right idea, and like you, share legends. I love this concept, but I think they are most likely just drinking Bush LIght. LOL

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    • LOL! I love your sense of humor, Cd. 😀 And it sounds like you’re going to need it based upon all the white stuff the Frost Giants dumped in your neighborhood. Yikes! Our last squall blew on by without doing anything, although we’ve got a larger one on the radar for tomorrow. Hmmm….’twill be the fist of 2014 if it materializes. Happy New Year!

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      • Yeah, the guy who plays him is just soooo cool it’s hard not to like him just a little bit. LOL! He’s a loveable scamp of a villain. And when he needs to be put in his place, there’s always the Hulk to pound him into the floor…or his brother. 😀

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  7. What an interesting post. I just learned about the Frost Giants when I saw Thor for the first time. (Yes, I know, I’m sadly behind times.) I’m pretty sure they’re here in Michigan, bombarding us with snow and ice. Before Christmas, they brought an ice storm that put thousands of people in the dark for days, some over a week. Icemaggedon, as a friend affected calls it.

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    • Hi, Diane. So lovely to see you here 🙂 So you’re in Michigan too? I don’t envy you all that ice and snow. Icemaggedon sounds awful! We had one of those several years ago but were only without power for 3 days and that was awful enough. I can’t imagine those poor people who were without it for over a week. YIKES! BTW, I love Thor, LOL!

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      • Diane and Mae – I had to jump in here. I saw Thor on Sat nite for the first time and learned of these Frost Giants then here you pop up on Mystical Monday talking about them. Just like Diane I had never heard of them until the movie. Although living on the Canadian prairies in Saskatchewan I am quite familiar with their work!

        Two days ago it was -40C with the windchill. Today it was barely -10C but the snow and blowing snow were so blustery it was like a fog outside – I couldn’t even see my neighbors house through the kitchen window! And now it is turning colder again with A FOOT OF SNOW on my driveway. Not sure which is worse – COLD cold or warmer snow!

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      • Hi, Heather, so great to see you here! 🙂
        The movie Thor and the frost giants are really getting a workout lately, LOL! Your descriptions of winter in your part of the world sounds downright frigid and blustery. Those guys must be playing havoc with the weather. We woke up to 4F this morning, positively dreadful, but thankfully, no driving winds. Stay warm up there!

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  8. Add me to the crowd that just saw Thor for the first time this past week (although I have been lusting after Chris Hemsworth for ages — and now have a MAD CRUSH on Tom Hiddleston!) Maybe this group movie viewing gave the Frost Giants the idea that we liked them. Aaaugh! I’m with you, Mae — after December, we should be done with winter and scootch into the next season. I’m definitely ready!

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    • Isn’t Tom Hiddelston awesome? Don’t get me wrong….love Chris Hemsworth, but I’m right there with you mad crushing on Tom. Glad you finally caught up with the Thor crowed. Oh, and met the Frost Giants. 🙂 Now if they’d just take the hint, pack up and move on until next December. I guess we just have to keep counting down to spring! Stay warm and think of flip-flops 😀

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