Ragnarok (judgment by the powers) In Norse mythology, the final battle between the gods and the giants that will bring about the end of the world. The battle will take place at Vigrith (field of battle). The destruction, however, will not be the complete end. The Prose Edda gives an account of a new “earth most lovely and verdant, and with pleasant fields where the grain shall grow unsown.” Some of the gods will return, such as Baldur and Hodur from Hel, the underworld, and a new couple, Lifthrasir and Lif (life), will repeople the land “and their descendants shall soon spread over the whole earth.” The Poetic Edda contains a description of the end in the poem Voluspa. Wagner’s last music drama in the cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen, titled Götterdämmerung, deals with the destruction of the gods.
Encyclopedia of World Mythology and Legend, Third Edition – Written by Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow-Copyright © 2009 by Anthony S. Mercatante