God of the North Wind
King of Kvenland
Fornjotur ‘Fornjotur’, ‘Fornjótr’ “King of Kvenland” (160 – 250)
Frosti ‘Jøkull’ “King of Kvenland” KARASSON (240 – 274)
Kári is believed to have been born 189 AD – 240 AD.
Kári is mentioned in one of the thulur as a term for wind. Otherwise this personage appears only in the Hversu and Orkneyinga saga accounts where Kári appears to be the heir to his father’s kingdoms as in the Hversu Kári’s descendants emerge also as rulers of Finland and Kvenland. Kári is father of a son who is named Frosti (‘frost’) according to the Orkneyinga saga but named Jökul (jǫkull: ‘icicle, ice, glacier’) according to the Hversu. This son in turn is the father of Snær the Old (Snærr inn gamli ‘Snow the Old’).
Kári [Kah-ree] is the Norse God of winter, frost, snow and the Northwind – or rather – he IS the Northwind itself. Like hardly any other God Kári represents the harshness of the Northern climate and overall life in Scandinavia and Germany. Fathered by the frostgiant Fornjotr he is brother to Loki (fire) and Aegir (water). On 18th century German paintings he is sometimes depicted as a youth in a spring setting and as an old man in winter settings; an indication that he changes and ages with the seasons.
The only mention of Kári in the Eddas is in one of Snorri’s thulur (rhymes) but traces of him can also be found in the Finnish Hversu (as the ruler of Finland) and Orkneyinga Saga. It is unclear whether Kári is father of one son named Frosti (frost) according to the Orkneyinga Saga or whether his name is Jökull according to the Hversu or whether these are two different sons. By Frost’s son Snaer, however, he is great-grandfather to Fon (snowfall), Drifa (snowdrift), and Mjöl (powder).
Although he is often accompanied by reindeer or depicted as riding a reindeer, being a God of the air and sky he is also associated with Northern birds such as the snow goose, snow owl, robin and it is also from thence that he started being regarded as the ‘patron’ of singers, bards and those who otherwise use their voice artistically or professionally. In spring Kari’s own voice is the gentle breeze caressing the first buds and leaves, but in winter his song is more of an eerie howl or screech as he haunts the North with blizzards and snowstorms, bemoaning his own age and approaching “death”. Alas, he will be born again in the ever-repeating cycle of the seasons.
|Stephen Robert Kuta|