Last modified on 31 July 2014, at 17:25

Dǫkkálfar

Old NorseEdit

EtymologyEdit

dǫkkr (dark) +‎ álfar (elves)

Proper nounEdit

Dǫkkálfar

  1. (Norse mythology) The "dark elves" who dwell down in the earth.
    • c. 1220, Sturluson, Snorri. Gylfaginning (The Fooling Of Gylfe):
      Margir staðir eru þar gǫfugligir. Sá er einn staðr þar, er kallaðr er Álfheimr. Þar byggvir fólk þat, er Ljósálfar heita, en Dǫkkálfar búa niðri í jǫrðu, ok eru þeir ólíkir þeim sýnum ok miklu ólíkari reyndum. Ljósálfar eru fegri en sól sýnum, en Dǫkkálfar eru svartari en bik.
      Rasmus Björn Anderson's translation:
      There are many magnificient dwellings. One is there called Alfheim. There dwell the folk that are called light-elves; but the dark-elves dwell down in the earth, and they are unlike the light-elves in appearance, but much more so in deeds. The light-elves are fairer than the sun to look upon, but the dark-elves are blacker than pitch.

Usage notesEdit

Whether the "Svartálfar" are the same beings as the "Dǫkkálfar" is unclear; whether either or each term is a kenning for "dwarves" is also unclear.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  • Wikisource:Prose Edda/Gylfaginning (The Fooling Of Gylfe) by Sturluson, Snorri, 13th century Edda, in English. Accessed Apr. 16, 2007
  • Gylfaginning in Old Norse ([1], accessed April 16, 2007)
  • Thomas Bulfinch, Bulfinch's Mythology (1834; republished in 1970 by Harper & Row, ISBN 0-690-57260-3), page 348
  • Mythology of All Races volume 2 : Eddic (1930, Marshall Jones Company), pages 220-221