As the goddess of affection and romance Sjofn’s main task is to instigate love among people. She is a dedicated companion of Frigga. Sjofn is also the protector of betrothal.
Goddess of: Affection, betrothal, communication, law, love, lust, marriage, missives, passion, peace, romance, and safety
Other names: Gefjon, Sjovn, Sjufn
Old Norse: Sjǫfn
Directing people’s minds to fall in love, frith-making, guarding betrothals and marriages, handmaiden and messenger of Frigga, passion, peace, protecting children and families, safety, security, and strengthening bonds between partners and family members
Sjofn associated animals
Two wood ducks
Sjofn weapon/domain of power
Affection, the power to make people love each other, and safeguarding the unities between family members and romantic partners
The love longing goddess
Sjofn is one of the twelve handmaidens of Frigga, the queen of the gods. She is the goddess of affection, love and romance. Sjofn’s purpose is to push people in the right direction and make them meet. Not only that, but she drives them to fall in love and subsequently join them in marriage. Sjofn’s name means ‘affection’ in Old Norse.
Not much is known about Sjofn, who watches over matters of commitment such as the institution of engagement and wedlock. She is the protector of relationships either between romantic partners or between family members. Sjofn is the guardian of attachments, keeping them safe and supporting them when needed. From her name comes the Old Norse word ‘sjafni’ meaning ‘love’.
In the old texts
In the Prose Edda, in the Gylfaginning book, Sjofn is listed as the seventh Asynjur (high Aesir goddess). She is briefly described as the one who ‘directs people’s minds to love, both women and men.’
Sjofn is mentioned in the Skaldskaparmal book as well.
Sjofn is a caring and protective goddess. She sits by Frigga’s side and sees to bring people together. Her mission is none other than Love. If she can make two individuals fall for each other and become betrothed then she has succeeded. She also conveys harmony in relationships and secure bonds when they are in danger of breaking. Unfortunately, very little is known about this obscure yet loving goddess.
Featured Image Credit: Francesco di Giorgio, via Wikimedia Commons