There’s a thread about the Greek/Roman gods going on, so here’s one for their sweater, more dangerous, northern counterparts.
My favorite Norse god would have to be Tiw. (One of a million spellings) The god Tuesday is named for and the kind of serious hardass who would stick his hand in a wolf’s mouth on an honor pledge. Not just any wolf. A wolf that would someday eat the moon. A seriously dangerous wolf. Of COURSE he got it bitten off, but that just makes him cooler, like it did for Bruce Cambell.
How about Ratatosk, the squirrel who lived in the branches of Yggdrasil, the World Tree? His main function was to carrying abusive language from the dragon Nidhog at the bottom of the tree to the eagle at the top, and vice versa.
Not much of a god, perhaps, but squirrels aren’t exactly spoiled with a wide range of deities to choose from.
According to “What makes Cecil Adams the world’s greatest reference librarian?” (Paul S. Piper, American Libraries, February, 1995) – “How did [Cecil] get to this profession? Reportedly it was a divine calling, with the archetype of Cecil, a relative of the Norse god Odin, coming to him to ‘take the helm’.”
So I vote for that unnamed relative of Odin who talked Cecil into beginning his sacred mission.
Great, I messed up the quote. The corrected version, with the earlier omitted words in italics, is:
“How did [Cecil] get to this profession? Reportedly it was a divine calling, with the archetype of Cecil, a relative of the Norse god Odin, coming to him in a dream, and commanding him to ‘take the helm’.”
All the other gods have cool toys and powers: Odin has a couple of ravens, a six-legged horse, a spear, etc, Thor has his hammer, Baldur has his beauty and is invulnerable to everything except mistle-toe and so on. What does Magni get? He’s a big, strong guy with a boot. Aw, yeah. Come get some.
I’ll have to go with Thor, because back in the 70s when I was young and impressionable, he had a really cool cartoon show. Granted, it was the Marvel comic book version, but it still affects my choice to this day.