Idunn takes a walk in the snow by Callego (print image)

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The Norse goddess Iğunn, ladies and gentlemen. After having this pic on DeviantArt for a month or two I finally found an opportunity to put it up on my blog: [link]

We don't know much about this goddess, though she apparently holds the secret to the eternal youth of the gods. In Snorri's version this consists of apples, which I drew as normal apples, rather than the golden apples that they seem to be in a reference in the poem "För Skírnis" (Skirnir's Journey). Her name seems to mean something like "ever young", and while it is difficult to reconstruct reliable nature myths from the late medieval sources that we have left over, it's pretty easy to see Iğunn as a goddess of spring, fertility, and agricultural prosperity. It is pretty tempting to take the myth of her abduction and then recovery as a Winter>Spring myth, though by the time it is written down we would have to take it as primarily significant in the context of the state of negative reciprocity between the gods and the giants (cf Margaret Clunies Ross' -Prolonged Echoes- vol. 1)-- but more on that later, when I have a chance to actually illustrate that myth.

A student of mine requested a picture of Iğunn, and since my larger sketch of this goddesses only full myth is going to take a while, I thought I'd do a quick portrait. Ended up more manga-like than I planned, and turned into more of an exercise/experiment. Hair and face and some of the shading didn't turn out quite as I'd like, but the apples and the background were a fun experiment. Well, all I have time for at the moment, so this will have to do.
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