Hodr is the god of winter and darkness in Norse mythology, son of Odin and Frigg, twin brother of Baldr. His name means "war". He has several half-brothers, including Thor, Vidar and Váli. Being blind, he judges not by outward appearance but by inner values.
Hodr is very strong, beautiful and sensitive, but blind. He is easily influenced, and while he was under Baldr's influence, he was liked by everyone. But when he is in the company of Loki and Gullveig (Angrboda), he does many things that he later regrets bitterly.
Not least when Loki makes him shoot the mistletoe arrow at Baldr, which causes his death. Frigg had previously made all living creatures swear never to harm Baldr, but missed the mistletoe, which she considered too tender/insignificant. So the mistletoe was the only thing that could harm the otherwise immortal Baldr.
Even though it was Loki who deceived Hodr, Odin punished him with death. Odin and the giantess Rindr procreated Vali, who grew up in a day and killed Hodr. Hodr could influence the emotions of others. With his song, accompanied by a lute, he could evoke joy, sorrow, sympathy and hatred.
He also excelled in sport, being among the best in boxing and swimming, as well as in the shooting of various weapons. It was believed that one should be careful about invoking Hodr, as he no longer blindly dispensed his support. In the underworld (Helheim), the brothers are reconciled and return to their new home of the gods after Ragnarök.
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