Did Loki Have Horns: Norse Mythology Vs. Marvel

loki horns
Findings from Norse mythology disagree with the Marvel Loki. He’s nowhere portrayed as having horns in all the drawings found by archaeologists. 

Whether Loki has horns mostly comes from watching too many Marvel movies, especially The Avengers.

One of the scenes in the Marvel movie The Avengers (2012) depicts Loki as having long horns or a helmet with long horns, and it’s somewhat hard to tell whether he has them or not.

So, is it true? Did Loki have horns in Norse mythology? Well, the ancient books are quite sketchy, and there is much debate on the origins and nature of this god of mischief.

Here is what the Vikings say about Loki.

Does Loki Have Horns in Norse Mythology?

Three stone carvings depict figures with horns or horned helmets, but no evidence it’s Loki.

In Marvel Comics, Jack Kirby only depicts Loki with a two-horned helmet for dramatic effect, not because the mythos supports it. The same thing with his son Neal Kirby on the Marvel TV series, the horns are for dramatic effects.

What Does Loki Look Like in Norse Mythology?

Loki, source: fanpop.com

Norse mythology describes Loki as able to change into many forms. 

The Vikings narrate Loki transforming himself into the following:

  • A salmon to hide from the Asgard gods whom he had insulted
  • A mare to fool Svaðilfari (a strong stallion) resulted in him becoming pregnant and giving birth to an eight-legged horse named Sleipnir
  • An old woman to deceive the Asgardian gods, and lastly, into
  • A fly

However, Norse mythology describes Loki as handsome with long blond hair. But, it doesn’t say anything about the red or green eyes portrayed in Marvel Comics or anime.

The Norse also describe Loki as having scarred lips after being sewn by a dwarf named Brok for tricking him.

Click here to see the stone image.

What Does Loki Look Like in Marvel Movies?

Marvel depicts Loki a little differently than he appears in Norse mythology. Tom Hiddleston does a good job of depicting the god of mischief that can take different forms (not animal forms, though).

The only difference from the Vikings mythology is Marvel depicts Loki with a horned helmet as his armor. They also don’t include the sewn lips Loki got from dwarf Brok.

What Do the Horns Mean on Loki?

According to Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), the horns symbolize sorcery, which agrees with the fact that Loki is known to have the ability to use magic that his mother, Laufey, taught him.

It’s also a symbol of royalty, as Odin also has a horned helmet.

Did Vikings Wear Helmets with Horns?

The Torslunda plates and Sutton Hoo plate stone carving show that the Vikings wore horned helmets. But they’re not for war. They were only ceremonial costumes.


Ana has always been interested in all things Norse mythology, Vikings and tales of ancient Germanic myths. An avid reader of books on Norse mythology, she also enjoys watching movies and TV shows based on Viking culture, and she secretly watched every Norse god-inspired MCU production as well!

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