In the beginning was Ginnungagap.
So begins one of Snorri Sturluson’s Norse creation stories from the Elder Edda.
In the beginning was Ginnungagap, the great void. Then Niflheim, the primordial land of ice, and Muspelheim, the primordial land of fire, collided. Thus the world began.
It’s one of my students’ favorite stories, and as I approach marriage to a midwestern farm-boy of hardworking Scandinavian origin, it’s how this Mississippi girl with whimsical Hibernian origins tends on occasion to think of her relationship—a collision of the hard land of ice and the roiling land of fire.
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