Odin & Odin’s Ravens - Huginn and Muinn

Odin & Odin’s Ravens - Huginn and Muinn

Odin has two ravens that are said to always be with him. The Odin’s ravens names were Huginn and Muinn. The names of these two ravens mean thought and memory, respectively. Huginn represents Odin’s thought, which means that he is the source of Odin’s knowledge and wisdom. Muinn is known as Odin’s memory, and he remembers things that he sees or hears.

Nowadays the Ravens' names are often spelled Hugin and Munin

About Odin

Odin was a great Norse God who ruled in Asgard. He was known for his wisdom, power, and courage. He would often be portrayed on the front of war banners and shields. Odin is also believed to be one of the most famous Norse Gods in popular culture today. Odin’s wife was Frigg, who was the queen of Asgard. Odin had two brothers, Vili and Ve, who ruled with him in Asgard.

Odin’s father was Bor, who was a famous Norse God. Bor was known for his knowledge, wisdom, strength, and courage. The history of Odin is believed to date back to the Stone Age. However, Odin’s story became more popular when the Vikings were exploring new places and creating new kingdoms in Europe in the 700s and 800s. As people began to discover new cultures, they began telling stories about the Gods and goddesses they worshiped. As a result, many people believe that the tales of Odin have been passed on from generation to generation for thousands of years.

Odins Ravens in Ancient Literature

There are a few myths written about the ravens Huginn and Muinn. The Poetic Edda poem “Gylfaginning” is the most well-known poem that tells the story of Huginn and Muinn. This Poetic Edda was written down in Iceland around 1270. According to this poem, Odin, the Viking God, had two ravens that he would send out to fly around the world, gathering information and bringing it back to him. These two ravens were very important in helping Odin with his growth of wisdom.


The other myth that shows Odin's ravens Huginn and Muinn is the poem “Sigrdrifumal,” which was written down in Germany during the 13th century. This poem tells the story of how Odin would send out his personal ravens, Huginn and Munin, to bring back messages from Valhalla when he was absent from this place. The ravens were believed to give the bearer of these messages courage and strength in battle. If a person wants to reach Valhalla, they must prove themselves in battle by being brave and courageous.

Huginn and Muinn Helping Odin

It is said that Odin’s Ravens helped him with his growth of wisdom. For example, if the two ravens found out about information or knowledge in the world, they would fly back to let Odin before he consumed this information. The one raven Huginn (thought) helps Odin by bringing back news, while the other raven Munin (memory), helps Odin by reminding him of important things when he forgets. It is also believed that the two ravens were also helpers in battle.

It is said that the two ravens would sit on Odin’s shoulders and tell him of the outcome of battles. If they were flying in battle, they were seen as a sign of victory. However, if they were sitting down and silent, it was seen as a sign of defeat.

Archaeological Records


There are only a few records of Huginn and Muinn, but many artifacts have been found with Odin’s ravens' names engraved on them. In addition, the image of the ravens Huginn and Muinn were also found in several places, such as in shields, weapons, tombstones, and other manuscripts. The Odin’s Hammer, a special symbol of Odin, has two ravens engraved on its handle. The image is sometimes engraved on the front and back of the weapon. 


Another place where Huginn and Muinn were found is on helmets and pieces of armor. Some Viking helmets have miniature images of these two ravens. The ravens are also carved on many pieces of metal, such as the hilt of a sword. It was believed that if one was to find these two ravens on their sword or weapon, then this meant that the weapon owner had been graced by Odin. Till today, many people believe that the ravens Huginn and Muinn were good luck symbols. There are also historical accounts that Vikings put raven feathers on their helmets so that Odin would give them victory in battle.

The Viking Ravens

During the Viking era, ravens were very common, and there is a lot of information about these types of ravens. The Viking ravens were considered to be a messenger from the Gods. The Vikings really believed in the almighty power of Odin, and they would do practically anything to please their God.

Sometimes, Vikings would give full-sized ravens as gifts to other Vikings. They would do this because they believed that the ravens were created by Odin to help them in battles. In addition, the Vikings believed that the Norse Raven could be used as a messenger between the Vikings and their Gods. Ravens would carry messages from the Gods to the Vikings; this is possible because of their keen ability to hear and see things far away from their location.

In addition, Viking people would often sacrifice an animal for Odin and let it be taken by the ravens instead of themselves. The belief is that this showed respect for their God but also showed that they thought highly of Odin’s ravens, too. The Nordic ravens actually helped them fight battles. The Vikings honestly believed that the ravens could predict their outcomes in wars and battles. The Vikings also believed that if they had a Viking Nordic Raven flying overhead while they were fighting, they would win.

Huginn and Muinn in Odin's shamanic rituals

The ravens Huginn and Muinn have an important role in the Norse religion, especially in the shamanic rituals the followers performed. In these rituals, the raven symbol represents messages from the other world. Shamans are people who serve as intermediaries between the human and spirit worlds, and they use the symbol of Huginn and Muinn in their ceremonies.

In Norse mythology, it is believed that Odin uses the Raven totem Huginn and Muinn to communicate with his followers. In addition to this, Huginn and Muinn symbolize Odin sending the message of wisdom, strength, knowledge, and courage to those who are willing to listen. The images of Huginn and Muinn can also be seen in the gods' temples. 

The Ravens After Christianity

After Christianity spread throughout Europe in the early 1000s, the worship of Odin slowly fell out of practice. As many people turned away from their old Norse beliefs and culture and traditions changed, the worship of the two ravens, Huginn and Muinn, slowly died out. They were now replaced with angels, who are symbols of good deeds and of people’s faith in God. However, the two ravens have not completely disappeared. In modern times, Huginn and Muinn have appeared in several stories, movies, songs, and other art forms. The two Nordic ravens are also known to appear in modern-day tattoos as symbols of wisdom and knowledge.

Huginn And Muinn Symbols Meaning

There are several different meanings of the Huginn and Muinn symbols, but they all have one thing in common: they are symbols of wisdom, knowledge, and courage. Many sources claim that a raven is a symbol of wisdom and understanding. According to Norse mythology, Huginn and Muinn had the ability to understand human language. Therefore, the raven has many characteristics that represent the ability to know things. This symbol also represents strength and courage. 

The two ravens bring good luck, which is another common meaning behind the Huginn and Muinn symbols. People who are fans of Norse mythology claim that these birds bring luck to those who follow Odin and worship him. The wings on the raven symbol also represent freedom, which is another common theme in stories about Huginn and Muinn. The ravens have the ability to fly anywhere they want, which is why this bird is often associated with freedom and travel.

The Raven Symbolism in 20th Century and Beyond

Today, many people still have an interest in learning about the mythology of Huginn and Muinn and those who worship Odin. The Vikings have become more popular in modern culture, partly due to movies such as "Thor" and "The 13th Warrior," The raven symbol is very important and represents the values behind their myths. These valuable themes can be seen in a variety of modern-day stories, including books, movies, tattoos and other types of artwork. In fact, tattoo artists worldwide choose to use the Huginn and Muinn symbols in their artwork. This is because the raven feathers symbolize power, wisdom, knowledge, and courage for those who want to embrace Norse mythology.

The Huginn and Muinn images are also used in popular games such as the "God of War" series. The two ravens symbolize the main character's quest for revenge and his wisdom. In addition, they represent a connection with Odin while traveling through many different worlds, which is similar to a journey that Odin went on with his own ravens. In "God of War", Odin guides Kratos to find answers so that he can defeat his enemies and learn more about himself.


Odin's ravens have always been important symbols in Norse mythology. Many people today still want to understand the meaning behind these myths, which is why they are being recited in books, songs, movies, and other types of art. Today, the Huginn and Muinn symbols are also used to represent strength, wisdom, and knowledge. 

In fact, these types of birds are used to create tattoos that look like the two ravens Huginn (thought) and Munin (memory). Thus, these birds have different meanings for everyone who sees them.