Skaði (sometimes anglicized as Skadi or Skathi) is the goddess of hunting, the wild, mountains, and skiing in Norse mythology. She was born a jötunn, daughter of the late Thjazi. She is the wife of Njörðr, whom she married as part of the compensation provided to her by the Æsir for killing her father. Her marriage to Njörðr was an unhappy one, however, ultimately ending in their separation, as Skaði then took the god Ullr (the stepson of Thor) for her lover. In addition to being Njörðr’s wife, Skaði is the stepmother of his twin children, Freyr and Freyja.
Marriage to Njörðr[change | change source]
The gods were celebrating their slaying of the giant (jötunn) Thjazi and the simultaneous return of the youth-giving goddess Iðunn when Skaði arrived, ready to avenge the death of Thjazi, her father. The gods were patient with the giantess, and convinced Skaði to ultimately accept a form of compensation instead of seeking vengeance. First, Odin took Thjazi’s eyes and cast them into the night sky, where they became stars. Second, the gods were to make Skaði laugh. After many feats were tried, none succeeded in bringing a smile to the jötunn's face. At last, Loki tied one end of a rope to a goat and the other around his testicles as he began a game of tug of war with the creature. Each screeched and howled in turn, until at last Loki fell over into Skaði's lap. The giantess couldn’t help but chuckle. Third, Skaði was to be given a god of her choosing in marriage, but she was to select him by the sight of his feet alone. She picked the fairest pair of feet she could see, thinking them to be those of Baldr. However, as it turned out, they were those of the sea god, Njörðr.