The sumbel (sumbl in Old Norse) is a solemn ritual in which the participants sit together and participate in drinking, speech-making and gift-giving, in many ways similar to the toast in a very formal dinner today. Paul Bauschatz, in The Well and the Tree, briefly describes the ritual in the context of the Norse and Germanic cosmology:
489-90 Site nu to symle ond onsŠl meoto, Sit now at the symbel, and let loose your thoughts, sigehre secgum, swa ■in sefa hwette. [speak of the] glory of men, as your spirit encourages. Beowulf
If we gather to honor men, should we not, as anciently, also honor the gods, and the noble dead? Honor them as they themselves have sat and honored those who came before them and who met with them in holy assembly.
2 Ů˙ scalt ßsom opt sumbl gora. Thou shalt often prepare sumbel for the Ăsir. Hymisqvia