Huginn and Muninn

Huginn ("Thought") and Muninn ("Memory") are the two ravens of Odin. They are attested in Grímnismál:

Hugin and Munin
fly each day
over the spacious earth.
I fear for Hugin,
that he come not back,
yet more anxious am I for Munin.

Snorri Sturluson says in Gylfaginning:

The ravens sit on his shoulders and say into his ear all the tidings which they see or hear; they are called thus: Huginn and Muninn. He sends them at day-break to fly about all the world, and they come back at undern-meal; thus he is acquainted with many tidings. Therefore men call him Raven-God.

The raven frequently appear together engraved on picture-stones. In literature however, Huginn is mentioned more often, particularly in eddic poetry. He appears as Hug(r) in Hrafnagaldr Óðins ("Odin's Ravens' Song"). In skaldic verses Muninn appears as a poetic term or heiti for "raven." The twelfth-century Icelandic priest and skald Einarr Skúlason sang:

He who gluts the Gull of Hatred,
Our precious lord, could govern
The sword; the hurtful raven
Of Huginn's corpse-load eateth.


But the King's heart swelleth,
His spirit flushed with battle,
Where heroes shrink; dark Muninn
Drinks blood from out the wounds."

In Skáldskaparmál both names appear in a list of kennings for ravens, along with others such as Blood of Mood, Yearly Flier, Year-Teller, and Flesh-Boder.



  • Grímnismál, 20.
  • Gylfaginning, 38.
  • Hrafnagaldr Óðins, 3.