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Vili is a god of creation, along with his brothers Odin and Vé. He is depicted with a mighty helm like Odin’s, an axe like Vé’s, and a mace.

Vili was the middle of the triad of brothers. According to some accounts of their birth, Ymir was a giant who came into existence. Ymir got nourishment from a heavenly cow and giants sprang forth from him as he grew stronger. Eventually, the cow freed a god named Búri who had a son named Bor. Bor and Bestla bore three sons together: Odin, Vili, and Vé. When they grew old enough, the brothers attacked and defeated Ymir, king of the Frost-Giants. Odin used the pieces of Ymir’s body to create the earth. Together they gave life to the world’s first two humans Ask and Embla. According to the myth of Ask and Embla, Odin gave them souls, Vili gave them intelligence and touch, and Vé gave them sight, hearing, speech, and facial expressions. Vili is sometimes depicted with a mighty helm like Odin’s, an axe like Vé’s, and a mace. After Odin establishes himself as king of the gods, Vili and Vé are not mentioned again in the mythology.


Be sure to look at our lesson plans on the Norse myths!

Vili Quick Reference

Parents

Bor and Bestla


Notable Myths

  • The Creation Story
  • Ask and Embla
  • Frigg’s infidelity

Symbols

  • helm
  • mace
  • double-headed axe

Domain / Power

Creation


How Do I Use This?

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