Forseti: The God of Justice

Forseti is the god of justice. Son of Baldur and Nanna, he is the best arbitrator and the embodiment of …

Forseti is the god of justice. Son of Baldur and Nanna, he is the best arbitrator and the embodiment of reconciliation.

Short Facts

Tribe: Aesir

God of: fairness, justice, law, peace and reconciliation

Son of: Baldur and Nanna

Forseti responsibilities

Judgment, justice, mediation, laws, reconciliation, truth, settling disputes

Associated Animals with Forseti

A gray wolf and a hawk

Forseti weapon/domain of power

A golden, double-headed axe, Glitnir

The judge

Forseti is the god of justice and ruling. He is the son of Baldur and Nanna. His name means ‘the presiding one’ in Old Norse. Forseti lives in Glitnir (the one that shines) and presides over disputes among gods and mortals. His marvelous hall is the seat of justice in Asgard and in it Forseti ends all disputes and reconciles foes. Glitnir has pillars made of gold and a roof of silver that emits such a bright light it can be seen from a great distance; a symbolism that Justice stands strong.

Mentions

A painting of Forseti.
Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

In the Prose Edda, Snorri Sturluson refers to Forseti as the best of courts that reconciles all those who come before him. He is considered the opposite of Tyr, the god of war, who divides men. Forseti stills all strifes and ends all disputes by the proper and undeniably right use of the law.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Is Forseti a major Aesir god?

A. Despite the very little information about the god of justice, Forseti is one of the important deities in the Norse pantheon and that is clearly shown by the importance of his role as a law speaker and a judge among mortals and gods.

Q. What is the difference between Forseti and Baldur?

A. Like father like son. Baldur’s role was to reconcile and settle disputes just like Forseti. Baldur however was more of a joyous type of a god, preferring to make gods and mortals happy than preside over them in a trial. That is where his son, Forseti came in to assume this part, especially after Baldur’s tragic death.

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Vasilis Megas

Vasilis Megas (a.k.a. Vasil Meg) lives in Athens, Greece. He is a Greek- and Norse Mythology enthusiast. Vasilis has written and published 16 books - mostly fantasy and science fiction - and he is now working as a content writer, journalist, photographer and translator.