Skadi (Skaði) in Norse Mythology

Skadi norse mythology
Skadi is a jötunn and the goddess of snowshoes, winter and bowhunting, daughter to the Giant Thiazi, and giant wife of the sea god Njörd.

Skadi is also referred to as Skaði, Öndurguð (Old Norse for ‘ski god’), and Öndurdís (Old Norse for ‘ski dís’), and anglicized as Skade.

The Story of Skadi

Wanting to avenge her father’s death (the giant Thiazi), Skadi took up arms and traveled to the legendary home of the gods: Asgard. She planned to attack the rival tribe of gods (the Æsir).

Norse mythology has it that the Æsir people had the good sense to be wary of the intimidating giantess. To appease her anger, they offered her a choice of any of their males for their husband.

But, she could only choose by looking at their legs or feet. Believing Njord (god of the sea) to be the fair god Baldr (also Balder or Baldur), she chose him.

A depiction of Skadi
A depiction of Skadi; (1901) by H. L. M.

Even though Norse mythology describes her as a giantess and not a goddess, Asgard’s gods accepted her after her marriage to the god Njord.

Skadi soon realized that she was mistaken. With Njord preferring to live by the sea and Skadi preferring the mountains of her father’s home (Thrymheim), their marriage failed.

What is Skadi the goddess of?

Sources suggest Skadi was named the goddess of snowshoes and the goddess of winter. Other sources indicate that Skadi was the goddess of the wilderness.

She hunts in the mountains on her skis with her father, the giant Thiazi.

*Read also about Ullr, a Norse god often associated with winter, skiing and snow sports.

What does Skadi Symbolize?

In Norse mythology, Skadi is a jötunn and goddess believed to symbolize winter, skiing, bowhunting, and the mountains.

As the snowshoe goddess, the legends say that she rules over the hardest of lands and feelings, including:

  • Winter
  • Wilderness
  • Revenge
  • Damage
  • Knowledge
  • Justice
  • Independence

Skadi is a passionate, independent, ruthless giantess, especially in her endless pursuit of justice. Despite marrying into the Æsir tribe, she would not be told by the Asgard gods how to live and does what she wants.

Norse mythology usually represents Skadi brandishing her skis, bows, and snowshoes. She is skilled in their use as a huntress and, when engaged in battle, these are her most mentioned attributes.

As the goddess of winter, it’s easy to see why Skadi symbolizes endurance, courage, and strength.

What Animals Represent Skadi?

As the chief goddess of hunting, winter, and winter weather, it’s no surprise that Skadi’s spirit animal is known to be the arctic fox.

What are Skadi’s Powers?

True to her association with winter, Skadi can conjure and manipulate elements associated with the weather; cold and ice.

When confronting the Gods for Thiazi’s death, she brought a fierce blizzard over Valhalla and beyond.

What Rune is Associated with Skadi?

The goddess Skadi represents the rune Isa (Ke in old Norse), a rune associated with ice and symbolizing self-control, stasis, stillness, identity, and focus.

Isa rune

As Skadi symbolizes endurance even in harsh circumstances, this Rune could be said to be a perfect match.

Is Skadi Good or Evil?

Unlike many Norse gods and goddesses, it is uncommon for the goddess Skadi to be depicted as cruel or brutal. Yes, in most Norse myths, she is uncompromising and harsh, but she is not portrayed as malicious.

Many sources describe her as not taking part in Ragnarök. This Scandinavian myth tells the series of battles, events, and catastrophes that culminate in the final battle between the gods, demons, and giants. The gods’ death and the end of the world ultimately ensue.

But Norse mythology suggests that Skadi was not part of the battle.

Did Odin Marry Skadi?

Originally, Skadi married Njord or Old Norse Njǫror, believing him to be the beautiful Baldr. Some sources suggest that Skadi’s married life with Njord ended.

They claim that she split up with Njord and later married the god Odin (also known as the god of war and death and the Allfather). Odin then sired her many children.

Does Skadi Survive Ragnarok?

Whether or not Skadi survived Ragnarök remains a mystery; sources suggest that she did not get involved with Ragnarok and did not fight on the side of Demons, giants, and evil.

As she did not get involved in this last Viking battle, it can be assumed that she might have survived.

Who Kills Skadi in Norse mythology?

Skadi’s fate in Ragnarök or the wider world remains a mystery, with some sources simply inferring that she was among the surviving gods of Asgard.


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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