How Loki was caught and punished by the Aesir

In Norse Sagas by Skjalden

After the death of Baldur, the Gods and Goddesses were very angry at Loki and wanted to confront him. But Loki had fleed from Asgard and was hiding on top of a mountain. There he had built a house with four doors so that he could look out from the house in all directions. During the day Loki would often shapeshift himself into a salmon and hid in the river called Franang’s Falls.

During the evening the Loki sat at the fire pit inside his house and thought about what the Aesir was up to, and wondered which plans they had to capture him. While he sat there, he entertained himself by making a fishing net with linen yarn.

Video how Loki was punished by the Aesir

One day Loki looked out from one of his doors and saw the Aesir traveling up the mountain. Odin had discovered Loki’s whereabouts from his high seat in Asgard called Hlidskjalf. Loki quickly jumped up and threw the linen net into the fire and ran down to the river.

When the Aesir arrived at the house, the first one to enter was Kvasir, he was the wisest of them all. Kvasir looked around the house and tried to find Loki, when he realized the house was empty he spotted something in the fire. It was an outline of the net in the ashes, and he realized it was a device for catching fish.

Kvasir told the Aesir about his findings, and they made a copy from what he had seen in the ashes. When the net was ready they went to the river and threw it into the waterfall. Thor held one end of the net and the other Aesir held the other end, and together they dragged the net through the river.

loki punished norse mythology

But Loki was hiding on the bottom of the river between two huge stones. The Aesir were unable to catch him on their first try, but they saw something moving deeper down in the river. So the Aesir went up to the waterfall again and threw the net out into the river again. This time they bound stones to the net, so it would sink to the bottom of the river.

While The Gods dragged the net through the river, Loki swam ahead of the net. When Loki saw that they were almost at the sea, he jumped up over the top of the net and swam back up to the waterfall. The Aesir saw this, and also returned back.

This time the Aesir split themselves into three groups, two of the groups walked at each side of the shore while Thor was walking in the middle of the river. They all pulled the net through the river all the way down towards the sea.

Loki now began to panic and realized that he now only had two options to escape, he could jump from the river into the sea which was very dangerous and it could cost him his life. Or he could once again try to jump over the net and swim back up to the waterfall.

Loki chose to jump over the net once again, but this time he would not be so lucky. Thor who was standing in the middle of the river caught Loki with one hand, but because Loki was so slippery he slipped back and forth between Thor’s hands until he finally managed to get a firm hold of the salmon near its tail. And that is the reason why salmons today are narrow towards its rear.

Now that the Aesir had captured Loki, they wanted to revenge Baldr’s death. So they dragged Loki to a cave, where they took three large flat stones and place them on their edges and made a hole through them.

Norse sagas punishment loki binding norse mythology
Loki and Sigyn

The Aesir then caught Loki’s sons, Vali and Narfi. They used magic and transform Vali into a wolf, who then ripped apart his own brother Narfi. The Gods then took his guts and used them to bind Loki who was then placed on top of the three stones. The Gods used magic yet again and the guts became as strong as iron.

Then Skadi took a poisonous snake and placed it above Loki so that its poison drips onto his face. Loki’s wife Sigyn loved him so much that she decided to stay with him, and Sigyn still sits to this day holding a bowl above Loki’s head to catch the poison from the snake.

Every time the bowl is full, she leaves to pour out the poison, and at that moment the poison drips onto Loki’s face. This makes him shake violently in pain, so the whole earth shakes, and that is the reason why we have earthquakes according to the Norse myths.