Irminsul Ættir

Heathen Calendar

By Jörmundur Ingi

Following are the calendar extracts that I have already translated into English. All the dates / weekday correlation are 1828, these correspond also to 1996, as the calendar repeats itself every 28 years (Solar Age) with reference to the Common Calendar.

It must be taken into account that this is a 18th and 19th century reconstruction of the original calendar from the Viking age and must therefore be taken with a grain of salt. The whole thing is in Latin and this is not a scientific or accurate translation. The real base for this calendar is Pagan (Asatru) Lexicon, which has not been translated. The basic theory of the author is to show that all Christian holidays are originally Pagan (In Iceland, Asatruar) and where adopted to Christianity according to the decree of the Pope (Gregorius the great as far as I remember)

I don't know how this will come out when sent on the e-mail but here are a few explanations. The calendar is based on the assumption that originally there where 5 days to the week 72 weeks in all plus the 73rd which would then be outside the year (I take this to be the day of the winter solstice plus the two days before and after). The numbers followed by a V means week and indicates the number of the week according to the New-Year here used. The numbers followed by F mean a five day period, the name for each period (Fimmt) is from the Eddas and are the names of the dwarfs counted there, these stanzas he considers to be a calendar. There is also a name for each moon, these are the names of the Valkyries. You will notice that instead of Wednesday there are names of Odinn, which are then the names of that week, but all weeks start with Thursday.

Quite a number of things are different in this calendar as compared to the one used today and I lack knowledge to judge which is more correct but this will push me to investigate. We tend to use the standard version as it is printed in most calendars published in Iceland along side of the Christian or Common Calendar. The great thing with this is that he tries to find a common, Pagan Indo-European, denominator for all the seasonal celebrations. This will all have to be double-checked before it can be suggested as a common calendar for all Pagans, which would be a grand idea and go a long way to establish solidarity.
Month 10, Sviğur - Autumn - God: Forseti - House Glitnir (Virgo) {Skadi-Şrimheim} Tvímánuğur (double month), Harvest month, Fishing month, Anglo Saxon: Hærfæstmonağ, Halegmonağ (Holy month).
Aug. 24. 1. Wash-day
This is the beginning of autumn in Denmark and Germany. In Iceland this was the time of weddings and the blessing of the newlywed by Freyja and Forseti. Danish name Brydestrå (straw breaker, autum winds break the grain) or Bukkekniv (a knife to slaughter goats for the blot, from now the bucks are inedible). In Sweden Slåteröl (the reapers ale) with dancing and merrymaking into the night. In Iceland "slagsauğur" a sheep slaughtered for the harvest feast.
25. 2. Sun-day
The first of the iron-nights, frost nights.
26. 3 Moon-day
[The procession of the Roman Matrons (housewives) to the Temple of Venus carrying Phalluses. Also called Phallologia.]
27. 4. Tıs-day
[In Rome Volturnalia and Vortumnalia. In the Eleusian Mysteries the effusion of the mystic water (the water of life?)]
28. 5. 55.F. Hárbarğur
[In Rome The sacred festivities of the Sun and Moon. Eleusian Mysteries concluded with gymnastics. In Persia celebration of the great Goddess (Athena)].
29. 40.V 6. Thors-day
Now be careful not to cut trees with iron or plough the Earth.
30. 7. Freys-day
[Mundus of Ceres opened in Rome]
31. 8. Wash-day
[The celebration of Ceres]
Sept. 1. 9. Sun-day
The Millstone Wind foretells the future the of water-flow, necessary to grind the grain. {The Christian saint Egidus (An.Sax. Giles) is made the patron saint against draught.} In Norway the bees no longer collect honey.
2. 10. 56.F Moon-day
Norway; the bears collect leavs and moss for their winter-lair.
3. 11. Tıs-day

4. 12. Sviğur

5. 41.V 13. Thors-day

6. 14. Freys-day
[The Erebo-Feast in Rome, (Feast of Black and White Sheep).]
7. 15. 57.F Wash-day

8. 16. Sun-day
In Germany Mostmesse, the Feast of the Mead; also Habersnit, Feast of the Goat. [In Rome Meditrinalia, the drinking of the first Mead.]
9. 17. Moon-day

10. 18. Tıs-day
In Norway the last day of harvesting.
11. 19. Sviğrir

12. 42.V 20. 58.F Thors-day

13. 21. Freys-day

14. 22. Wash-day

15. 23. Sun-day
End of the ficical year for Icelandic farmers during the middle-ages, in preparation for the authum thing see Aug.25.
16. 24. Moon-day
In Sweden; the rounding up of the sheep, this day and the next.
17. 25. 59.F Tıs-day
Moon: Randgríğ. This day was the old equinox. The beginning of the Authum-Thing in Iceland. The Danes belive that Stags ejaculate their seemen which is Ginnar collected as foam on rivers.
18. 26. Yggur

19. 43.V 27. Thors-day

20. 28. Freys-day

21. 29. Wash-day
(On this day King Olaf Tryggvason of Norway initiated a Christian seremony on this day to replace a former Pagan one JI).
22. 30. 60.F Sun-Day

Month 11, Sviğrir - God: Njord - House Noatun (Libra) {Baldur - Breiğablik} Ice; Haustmánağur (Autum-m). Dan; Ridenaaned (Riding- or Running-m), Sademaanad (Seed- or Sire-m). Swe; Blotmonad, (Blot- or Blood-m). Ang. Sax; Seteoğamonağ (?), Vinterfullet
Sept. 23. 1. Moon-day
DÚRIN. In pagan times there was at this time a great sacrificial feast on the autumn equinox. Haustblót (Autumn Blot), called by some Álfablót or Dísablót (Elf-Blot or Nymph-Blot) a harvest feast with great merrymaking by the common people. At the advent of Christianity this seems to have been transferred to the feast of the Archangel Michael which now seems to precede over the Temples and Sacred Places of Njörd, the powerful God that returns to his Nether World (air and water). From the ancient Pagan sacrifices this month was called by the Anglo-Saxons called Haligmonad (holy month) and by the Swedes Blot-month or Blood-month (see also under Aug. 24 and Sept. 29 ). In Rome the eternal horse-race founded by Dionysus. The ancient Persians worshipped Mithras the god of Libra which controls the actions of mankind with his two spears.
24. 2. Tıs-day

25. 3. Şundur
On this day the Saxons celebrated their victory over the Thyringians with a great feast (Communio, Sumbl or communal drinking, (see Sept. 1., Sept. 29. and Oct. 6.) [The Romans celebrated the feast of Saturnus and Mania; in memory of ancient human sacrifices].
26. 44.V 4. Thors-day

27. 5. 61.F Freys-day
[On this day the Romans celebrated the feast of Venus, Genetrix and Fortuna Rdux.] In India the feast of Ganesa they perform the sacred play of the Nıi boy Krishna, which sought refuge in the Moon because of evil persecution.
28. 6. Wash-day

29. 7. Sun-day
In the Danish rune-calendars, Icelandic, Faeroes and Norwegian sources this day is called The mass of Michael and marked in the calendars with a horn (trumpet) or scales (Libra) both the symbol of the equinox, sometimes also market with an angels head..... In Mainz in the year 813 this day was proclaimed a principal feast probably so that Pagan equinox celebrations which had been held on this day (this was shortly after the introduction of Christianity) would be converted into a Christian feast without incident. In this manner the Archangel Michael became the fighter of evil forces instead of Thor (in the Lex. Mythol. there are examples of many Pagan equinox rituals which were Christianised among the Danes, Norwegians, Anglo-Saxons, Germans, Scots and many others. So it can be said of the first Christian Danes that drank to Michael for victory when they made a solemn promise (in the year 994) to go to war with Anglia (in the same manner as they used to drink to Odin and Thor). In Sweden and to some extent in Denmark fires are lit. Such fires are lit on the first day of each quarter, the others are; Yule, Spring equinox and the Summer solstice or Midsummer (these are described on the relevant dates). In this time of the year the Pagan Saxons held a three day festival (see Sept. 25 and Oct. 1). In Germany this feast is called Mihiltag and the Anglo Saxons celebrated Micelmot. The English eat gees on this day. (In Rome this was the Mithraca, celebration of the Persian (?) Sun God.] In India the celebrations of Durga (Goddess of victory /Greek Nike)
30. 8. Moon-day

Oct. 1. 9. Tıs-day
Krims (initiation), the first day oft he great three-day Saxon feast started of with the blowing of horns. In Wolfbaringen the populace goes to the square in the in the middle of the town where seven linden-trees grow. This place is called Mahl (Frankish: Mallus). In the centre, under one of the trees there is a big rock surrounded by four smaller ones (Malberg: Pagan Altar, Icel: Stallur) on the Altar there is placed Mead, which is drunk reciting sacred formulas. Young men and maidens dance around the Alter and then all present partake from the mead (samanburğaröl / symbl). The day ends in merrymaking and dancing.
2. 10. 62.F Vakur
Second day of the Saxon festivities.
3. 45.V 11. Thors-day
Third and last day of the Saxon festivities. Processions with horses and much decorations and flags. A sheep is fetched from the fields, brought to the Altar where the young people dance around it before it is slaughtered (sacrificed) and in the evening eaten in a common meal. Nut and berries are collected and spoiled (sacrificed).
4. 12. Freys-day
Sacrifices to Njord, the god of seafarers and commerce. On this day the 10th century Danes brewed mead with fruits.
5. 13. Wash-day

6. 14. Sun-day
The Saxons begin seven day festivities (die heilige Gemein Woche) also called communibus and continued into Christian times.
7. 15. 63.F Moon-day
Called mid-autumn. Now the bears hibernate.
8. 16. Tıs-day

9. 17. Skilfingur
(The name Skilfingur is taken to be equivalent to Dionysius) (In Athens the Bacchanalia)
10. 46.V 18. Thors-day

11. 19. Freys-day
Some Germans now hold the feast of the Mead, see Nov. 11.
12. 20. 64.F Wash-day

13. 21. Sun-day
[In Rome Fontinalia, the feast of Jove the Liberator]
14. 22. Moon-day
In Scandinavia the beginning of winter, celebrated with many Pagan customs (unspecified).
15. 23. Tıs-day
[In Rome the celebrations of Mercury, by the merchants] In the North Njord is the protector of merchants.
16. 24. Vafuğur
On this day a sheep is sacrificed and used for prophecies. The fishing-nets are hung up for storage (now the fish belongs to Njord the god of the sea). [In Rome a horse is sacrificed to Mars]
17. 47.V 25. 65.F Thors-day

18. 26. Freys-day
[In Rome Sun-games? The arms are sanctified. Around this time the Persians and Indians]
19. 27. Wash-day

20. 28. Sun-day

21. 29. Moon-day

22. 30. 66.F Sun-day

Month 12, Vidrir - God: Vidar - House Landvidi (Scorpio) {Heimdallur - Himinbjörg} Ice; Gormánağur. Dan; Slagtemaaned (Slaughter-m) Vinter-m (Winter-m).
Oct. 23. 1. Hroptatır
In Iceland this marks the beginning of the Winter-nights (the last nights /days/ before the beginning of winter). Freys- (Ull-)blot or Dísarblót (Nymph-blot) or Álfa-blot (Elf-blot), see Oct. 25. and 26. With the advent of Christianity this was changed into a autumn feast, but the Pagan customs associated with it resulted in the King to forbidding all dancing and feasting in the 18. century, because of the "immoral and unrestricted living" associated with this feast. In Pagan times, (and well into Christian times as) all farm-owners where obligated to hold samdrykkur (Symbl) at this time and brew a quantity of mead or ale for this feast. The farmers wives where also obligated to brew separately. See also Halloween Oct. 31.
24. 48.V 2. Thors-day
Around this day a sheep is slaughtered and the gore used in prophecies (this is still practised in modern Iceland JI).
25. 3. Freys-day

26. 4. Wash-day
This is the first day of winter, according to the ancient Icelandic calendar.
27. 5. 67.F Sun-day

28. 6. Moon-day

29. 7. Tıs-day

30. 8. Gautur

31. 49.V 9. Thors-day
In Scotland Halloween (holy-wake) with fires, Halloween Blaze. Prosessions of Feries go around and make men mad and steal them away, a similar prosessions of horse-riding Dísir are reported in Iceland in the beginning of winter. (The American Halloween refers most likely to the old new year, which was celebrated around this time. Then the space between the ordinary world and the supernatural one is specially small so that the ancestors and spirits have a clear way to mingle with the living. In Icelandic and Scandinavian tradition this has been transferred to the New-years eve JI) In Germany young lads proclame the beginning of winter in the same manner as the beginning of spring on Feb. 28.
Nov. 1. 10. 68.F Freys-day
In Denmark All Hollows. On this day fires are lit and some say that fire-walking is practised as is the custom with the spring-fires. The Scottish Highlanders celebrate the beginning of winter.
2. 11. Wash-day
In Germany special breads are made and stamped with simbols called Seelenweche or Zukker-sele.
3. 12. Sun-day

4. 13. Moon-day

5. 14. Tıs-day

6. 15. 69.F Jálkur

7. 50.V 16. Thors-day
[In Rome, Mundus opened and the inhabitants of the nether-world worshipped.]
8. 17. Freys-day

9. 18. Wash-day

10. 19. Sun-day
On this day there is an acent custom of killing a goos and eating it at a feast dinner (the goos is the bird sacred to Afrodite, hence Freyja JI). Many pepole also eat a pig on this day (the pig is also a sacraficial animal of both Freyr and Freyja JI)
11. 20. 70.F Moon-day
On this day there is a ritual fight between two wild boars (the boar Gullinbursti was the atribute of Freyr, as the Sow vas the atribute of Freyja. In the Viking age boars where even used in battle as can be seen from the name Hildisvín /Battle-pig. JI) The Germans hold now the feast of the new Mead, Herbsttrunk (Autumn-drink). This feast was in Christian times dedicated to St. Martin and Olaf Tryggvason king of Norway instructed his pepole to drink on this day to the saints and God instead of Thor Odin and the other Æsir.
12. 21. Tıs-day

13. 22. Ofnir
Cleansing (sanctifying) of the arms by the Anglo-Saxons in the year 1002.
14. 51.V 23. Thors-day

15. 24. Freys-day

16. 25. 71.F Wash-day

17. 26. Sun-day

18. 27. Moon-day

19. 28. Tıs-day

20. 29. Sváfnir

21. 52.V 30. 72.F Thors-day
This was the ancient beginning of the year celebrated with a three-day sacrificial-feast, later turned into a Christian celebration.
this day is outside the Icelandic calendar.
Month 1, Jalkur - God: Ullur- House Ydalir (Sagittarius) {Freyja - Fólkvangur} İlir - Frermánağur (Frost-m) - Wintermaanad - Blotmonağ - Jóla-(Yul)-m - Arra Geola- Fruma Juleis (before Yul) - Heilagsmonat.
Nov. 23. 1. Freys-day
Vertrarblót (Winter-blot) according to the old calender. [In Rome and Byzans the mid-winther-blot, the equinox was on this day]
24. 2. Wash-day

25. 3. Sun-day
Moon Hirst
26. 4. Moon-day

27. 5. 1.F Tıs-day

28. 6. Grímur

29. 1.V 7. Thors-day

30. 8. Freys-day

Des. 1. 9. Wash-day

2. 10. 2.F Sun-day

3. 11. Moon-day
In India the Pongol festivites start (the Pongol is a similar feast as Yul JI).
4. 12. Tıs-day

5. 13. Gangleri
[Faunalia held by roman farmers]
6. 2.V 14. Thors-day
In Germany die erste Polterbend / Klöpfins-Nacht / Anklopferleinstag / Knecht Ruprecht. (The Elves, monsters in the form of goats and all sorts of hidden beings appear and do mischief JI) Sinter (Sindri, the dwarf that made Thors Hammer JI) the people go around and bang on doors and windows with small hammers. In Norway the Yule "monster" Guru Rysserova appears, in Scotland Cyre Carling and in Germany die Goor. (In Iceland and in the Faeroe-islands this Yule being is called Grıla and appears in the form of a gigantic goat. In the other Scandinavian countries this being has been split in two Gyre and the Julbock (Yule-buck) I believe this to have been originally the goat Heiğrún which lives in the world tree Yggdrasil and "milks" great quantities of the holy mead. Gerdur, the bride of Freyr also seems to be connected to the goat and the mead. Here we have a classical case of a "dark" goddess (symbolising Winter) that Christianity turns into a monster, to the extent that the devil is pictured in the form of a goat.. Note that the goat Julbock is made from the last corn of the harvest and therefore represents the God, or as the case may be, Goddess of the grain and hence the Ale, an indispensable "sacrament" at all blots. It is also interesting to note that in Sweden on ore around this day there appears a beneficial being Lusia with crowned with candles and said to represent St. Lusia, one more form of the same Yule-spirit, as Guru / Grıla / Gyre is also named Lussy and both she and the Yulbock appear with candles on their horns. So the whole thing is simply one more attempt by the Christians to corrupt, and at the same time take over pagan Gods and festivities. JI)
7. 15. 3.F Freys-day

8. 16. Wash-day

9. 17. Sun-day
The Danish fetch water for brewing the Yule-Ale. In Norway the ritual cleaning of all garments. (After Christianity took over cleanliness, which had been highly regarded in Scandinavia was frowned upon, probably because of ritual bathing and the insistence of the Church that all attention to the body was ungodly and had to be avoided. The Yule bath and general cleaning and purification of all things where however never abolished and where finally acknowledged by the Church and characteristically proclaimed the Christmas cleaning to be a Christian ritual. JI)
10. 18. Moon-day

11. 19. Tıs-day

12. 20. 4.F Herjan

13. 3.V 21. Thors-day
Germany der Zveite Polterbend / die Bürger-Klöphlins-Nacht. Das Wüthende Heer / Wodens Jagd. (All this refers to the Wild Hunt of Odin and his Army which appeared at this time of the year. This probably refers to the coming Ragnarök, end of the world, which seems to come ever closer as the Sun grows weaker and the darkness stronger. JI) This is the proper day for the Swedish Lusia feast. This is the old Solstice. [Persian Garlic-feast to ward off evil spirits.]
14. 22. Freys-day

15. 23. Wash-day

16. 24. Sun-day
[In India the festivities of Indra, dedicated to the animals.]
17. 25. Moon-day
[In Rome the beginning of Saturnalia and the appearance (Epiphania) of Mithra (the Persian Sun-God JI)]
18. 26. 5.F Tıs-day
[The Persians worship painted effigies and the burn them.]
19. 27. Hjálmberi

20. 4.V 28. Thors-day
In Germany der dritter Polter abend, die Herrn-Klöphinsnacht, see Des. 6.,12.
21. 29. Freys-day
Now all the Elves, trolls and spirits are out. In Iceland Jólasveinar (the Yule-lads) / in the Orkneys, trows beings which bring mischive and demand gifts (sacrafices?) during the twelfe days of Yule (In Iceland also twelve days before Yule). Now the Yule-Ale is made (for the 25th).
22. 30. Wash-day
Solstice (in 1827 at the preparation of the almanac). The new (Solar) year begins during the night. Called Hökunótt (possably the night of the Goat JI) also Hogmenay or Haguinete. In Britain Mother-night. The feast of Freyr as the Sun, starts with Bragarfull (drunck with one hand on a boars head JI) Yule-fieres (the Yule-log JI). [In Persia the night of the firewalkers. In Rome the end of Saturnalia and beginning of Lara]
Month 2, Alfağir - God: Freyr- House Álfheim (Sagittarius) {Freyja - Fólkvangur} Mörsugur (marrow-sucker) - Hrútmánağur (Stag-m) - Midvinter-m - Geola-aftera.
Des. 23. 1. Sun-day
Yule, the first day of yule. All Germanic peoples had a Solstice selebration on this day in pre-christian times. The Yule is selebrated with a "masquerarade" women put on animal heads, horse and stag and men dress as women. On this day is also belived that the elves and othe such creaturea mowe as on all other "New -Year-ewes".[In India the Pongol celebration (rejuvenation of the Gods)]
24. 2. Moon-day
The second day of Yule. Pictures of horses, pigs and sometimes goats are stamped on bread or cakes, part of these are kept until the sowing in spring. They are then eaten by the field-workers and horses and the crumbs sprinkled over the field. Everywhere there are fires lighted or candles and in many places these are kept lit throughout the twelve days of the Yule celebrations. Sacrifices of food are offered to the Elves and "spirits" and all animals are given abundant amounts of feed. Sacred baths are also practised. In Sweden green trees are erected outside the houses but the Danes and Germans have smaller trees inside and decorate them with golden apples and small effigies made of straw.

Irminsul Ættir