Days of the Week Named After Norse Deities

days of the week norse gods
In Nordic countries, Sunday and Monday are named after the sun and moon, but the rest of the days are named after Norse gods, except for Saturday.

The tradition of naming the days of the week after gods in Norse mythology was another way the Germanic pagans of the Viking Age refused to be completely converted to Christianity. As Christianity spread northward, the Norwegian, Swedish, Icelandic, and other Nordic peoples held onto their beliefs.

Naming the weekdays after Norse goddesses and gods was just one of the many ways they quietly kept their culture alive.

A Viking twist on the Roman days of the week

When the Christian conquerors brought the Latin days of the week northward, the Germanic peoples connected the Roman gods with their own Norse gods.

Later, the Anglo-Saxons would adapt the Nordic days of the week into Old English, which led us to the standard English pronunciations that we’re familiar with today. Some days, like the Roman god Saturn’s day, remained close to their Latin origins.

Days of the week named after Roman gods


Days of the week named after Norse gods

Monday (Mánadagr)Moon
Tuesday (Tysdagr)Tyr
Wednesday (Odinsdagr)Odin
Thursday (Thórsdagr)Thor
Friday (Frjádagr)Frigg and Freyja
Saturday (Laugardagr)Day of bathing
Sunday (Sunnudagr)Sun

Who are the Norse gods of the days of the week?

Sunday and Monday are named after the sun and moon, respectively. Tuesday is named after the god Tyr, Wednesday after Odin, Thursday after Thor, and the Norse goddesses Frigg and Freyja share Friday. The Old Norse word for Saturday is Laugardagr, which means “hot water day” and can also mean “day of bathing.” In Old Norse, “dagr” means day.


The Nordic days of the week start with the moon and end with the sun. Mánadagr is named after Mani, the personification of the moon in Norse mythology.

In Spanish, Monday is also the moon’s day, called Lunes.


Tuesday is the Norse god Tyr’s day. In Old English, Tyr is written as “Tiw.” Anglo-Saxons called this day Tiwesdaeg, which eventually led to the modern Tuesday.

Tyr is the Norse equivalent of the Roman god of war, Mars.

In Spanish, Tuesday is still named after Mars (Martes).


Wednesday is Woden’s day, which is the Old English version of Odin. The Roman god Mercury is Odin’s counterpart.

In Spanish, the word for Wednesday comes from Mercury (Miércoles).


Thursday is Thor’s day. The god of thunder is the Norse counterpart of the Roman deity Jupiter.

In Spanish, the word for Thursday (jueves) is derived from Jupiter’s name (Jove).


There is some discussion over which Norse goddess is the counterpart of Venus. Many scholars believe Friday was named after Æsir goddess Frigg, wife of Odin. But Venus is the Roman goddess of love, which is why some argue that Vanir goddess Freyja is the namesake of Friday.

Like the other weekdays, Spanish Viernes comes from Venus, a Roman goddess.


Saturday is named after the Roman god Saturn, but the Old Norse equivalent, “Laugardagr,” doesn’t follow the pattern of the rest of the days.

In Old Norse, “dagr” means day, and “Laugar” means hot water. Since these days of the week were influenced in part by Christianity, this name for Saturday in Old Norse makes sense. Since Sunday was the Sabbath, it was common for people in the early centuries to bathe the day before Church.


Sunday is named after Sol, who was the personification of the sun in the Roman and Norse myths. In Old Norse, Sol was also called Sunna. This led to the Old English Sunnandaeg, which means “Sunna’s Day.” Eventually, Sunna’s Day became Sunday.

In Spanish, Saturday and Sunday also split away from the standard naming convention. Sábado (Saturday) comes from Sabbath or the day of rest. Domingo (Sunday) means God’s day.

Does Loki have a day of the week?

Saturday (Laugardagr) is sometimes attributed to Loki. There’s a prevalent theory that Laugardagr was originally Lokesdagr or “Loki’s day.”

The modern Germanic Samstag (Sonnabend) owes its roots to Satertag, which was used as late as the 19th century. Satertag comes from the early Germanic words for trickery and deceit. This would connect the Norse god Loki to the origins of Saturday.

But why change it from Lokesdagr at all?

The answer is in Loki’s reputation. Of all the Norse gods, Christians considered Loki an evil god. Just like they sought to end paganism by destroying altars made to other Norse gods, changing the name from Lokedagr to Laugardagr would effectively erase Loki from significance.

This would also explain why Saturday is the one day of the week that deviates so wildly from the rest of the days of the week.


Vianna Arenas is an enthusiastic seeker of knowledge and history buff. When she's not writing about ancient religions and magic systems, you can find her camping and hiking with her family.

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