Balmung In Norse mythology, a magical sword forged by Völund the Smith (Wayland the Smith). Balmung appears in the sagas relating to the adventures of the Norse Sigmund, called Siegfried in Germanic myth. The sword was placed in the Branstock tree by Odin, chief of the gods. Odin said that the weapon would belong only to the warrior who could pull it out of the tree. The sword then would assure its owner victory in battle. Nine Volsung princes and others tried to remove the sword and failed. Sigmund, the 10th and youngest, laid a firm hand on the sword’s hilt and easily removed it from the Branstock tree.

The episode is vividly recreated in William Morris’s narrative poem Sigurd the Volsung and the Fall of the Niblungs. According to other sources, Balmung was later destroyed by Odin, restored, and used by Sigurd (Siegfried) to kill the dragon Fafnir


Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow-Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante

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