21 June 2011

Winter Solstice

is today for us in the southern hemisphere, which means that for our northern hemisphere friends it is the Summer Solstice - the longest day of the year.  For Vikings today is a:

Celebration of the Summer Solstice, when the power of the Sun is at its height.  It was at this time that most foreign trade was conducted, as well as shipping, fishing expeditions, and raiding.  Thus, Midsummer was the festival of power and activity.  It was not without its dark side as well.  Midsummer was recognized as the longest day of the year; thus, the year began to age after this time and the days grow progressively shorter.  The god Baldur is said to have been sacrificed at this time, but is reborn at Jul; the hero Sigurd was also said to have been slain by treachery at Midsummer by his blood-brothers Hagan and Gunthur (Gundahar).

 Wherever you are, its a good excuse for feasting, merriment and mead!