Finnish mythology: Väinämöinen, main hero of the Kalevala

Finnish mythology: Väinämöinen, main hero of the Kalevala

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Väinämöinen is a demigod, hero, and the central character in Finnish mythology, and the main character of the national epic: the Kalevala. He is described as an old and wise man, who possessed a powerful and magical voice.

The first mention of Väinämöinen It is found in a list of Tavastian gods by Mikael Agricola, made in 1551.

Both he and other authors, described Väinämöinen as the god of songs, songs and poetry.

In many stories it is the central figure in the birth of the world, and in the Kalevala we find that it speaks of its birth in the course of the history of creation from its beginning.

Väinämöinen in the Kalevala

Väinämöinen is the hero and main character of the Kalevala, and son of Luonnótar or Ilmatar, the creator of the world according to Finnish creation myth.

Is he sage who brings order to ChaosPossessing a powerful voice, he is the eternal runoya, capable of enchanting all nature with his song, accompanying himself with the kantele made by him with the bones of a sob. When he lost this one, he created another one out of birch wood, the gold and silver spilled as a cuckoo sung and a lock of a teenage girl's hair.

When the son of the virgin Marjatta is born, Väinämöinen walks away defeated, saying that many generations later they will need him and will call him to bring the exiled joy back to the world. And there he is, between the last folds of the sky, although he left his people, Kalevala, his kantele.

Väinämöinen as an inspiration for JRR Tolkien

Väinämöinen was identified as one of the sources for the creation of gandalf, one of the central characters in the novel by JRR TolkienThe Lord of the rings”, But also of Tom bombadil, character created for the poem “The Adventures of Tom Bombadil”.

In this play the similarity of the central character with Väinämöinen is clearer, because both one and the other are the most powerful beings in the world, both are ancient and natural beings in their environment; and they both trust in the power of song and tradition.

In the case of "The Lord of the rings”, Väinämöinen is also identified in Treebeard, and with the Ents in general.

It may interest you: List of deities of Finnish mythology.

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