THE VALKYRIOR

Membership: Axe, Brunnhilda, the Fatal Sisters (Hilda, Mista and Sangrida), Freya, Friagabbi, Geirahod, Goll, Grimgerta, Gunna, Helmviga, Herfjotur, Hildegarde, Hlokk, Krista, Leita, Mist, Danielle Moonstar, Ortlinda, Pruda, Radgrid, Randgrid, Reginleif, Rossveissa, Rota, Siegrina, Sigurdrifta, Skeggjold, Skuld, Sygnet, Valtrauta, others

Purpose: Choosers of the Slain, Warriors

Affiliations: The Asgardian Gods, Eilif Dragonslyer, Greyval Grimson, Thor
Lilith (alleged kinswoman)

Enemies: The Avengers (Ant-Man (Scott Lang), Captain America, Hawkeye, Iron Man, Scarlet Witch), Casiolena, Dragon of the Moon, Hela, Malekith, Moondragon, X-Statix (Anarchist, Dead Girl, Doop, Orphan, Venus Dee Milo, Vivisector)

Base of Operations: Valhalla (Odin's Hall in Asgard)

First Appearance: Journey into Mystery I#92 (May 1963)

Powers/Abilities: The Valkyrior possesses the conventional attributes of the Asgardian gods including superhuman strength (Class 40), stamina, resistance to injury and long life enchantments. They have inherent mystical powers allowing them to perceive supernatural phenomenon, especially to see astral spirits (ghosts) and sense when mortal beings are near death; a perception that appears as a glow around the form of a person about to die. Beyond Asgard, they appear only as shades (astral forms). They are extra-ordinary warriors wielding swords and shields and usually transport themselves aloft on winged horses which attain an astral form with them beyond Asgard.

History: (Scandinavian/Germanic Myth) - The Valkyrior (Valkyries) are the daughters of Odin, Chieftain of the Asgardian Gods, and the earth-goddess, Nertha, designated as warrior-goddesses who brought the honored dead to Valhalla, Odin's hall in Asgard. Although instructed to collecting the honored dead, they often went against Odin's whims to select favorites. However, Asgard has undergone several cycles of Ragnarok and the Valkyries have possibly survived several incarnations. It is not sure just how many of these previous claims and assertions are accurate.

(X-Force/Cable Annual 1997 (fb)) - Odin granted the Valkyrior the ability to traverse the nine realms unhindered by physical boundaries that they might ferry the spirits of the noblest warriors into Valhalla.

(Thor I#296 (fb)) - In an account told by the Eye of Odin, the Valkyrie (including Brunnhilda) came to collect fallen Viking warriors after a battle.

(Marvel Graphic Novel#15: The Raven Banner) - The Valkyries cleared away the dead following a war between the Asgardians and Storm Giants. Among the fallen was the bearer of the Raven Banner Grim Magnus, whose son Greyval was to marry the Valkyrie Sygnet. Sygnet and Grevyal were wed, but he had to embark upon a quest for the Raven Banner for the good of Asgard. In another skirmish with the Storm Giants, Greyval bore the Raven Banner and perished; Sygnet spirited him to Valhalla after his death.

(Thor I#133/2) - After the barbarian warrior Harokin fell in battle with Thor, Hela and the Valkyrior came to escort him from Asgard, setting him astride the Stallion of Doom. As they neared Valhalla, Hela departed, and the Valkyries led Harokin the rest of the way to Valhalla, there to join the Einherjar.

(X-Men: First Class II#8) - A band of Valkyries were transported by a distortion in reality to the Florida Everglades swamp of the Man-Thing, site of the Nexus of Realities. They briefly clashed with the X-Men before being transported back to Asgard.

(Thor Annual#5) - After a war between the gods of Asgard and Olympus, the Valkyrie came to collect the fallen Asgardians for Valhalla.

(Journey into Mystery I#91) - Odin sent the Valkyrie to deliver Thor's belt of strength to him in his confrontation with Sandu.

(Defenders I#95) - The Valkyries, Valtrauta and Hildegarde, called upon Brunnhilda to come to Asgard to lead them to battle, but she turned them down to remain loyal to the Defenders against the Six-Fingered Hand.

(Thor I#311/2) - When Odin learned that Hela had begun an invasion of Valhalla, he sent Hugin and Munin to bring the Valkyrie to him. When Brunnhilda refused to attend, Odin named Valtrauta the new leader of the Valkyrior. They were sent out to recruit a new member of the Valkyrie, and ultimately received a willing volunteer-- Hildegarde's sister Krista.

(Thor I#312/2-314/2) - The Valkyrie rode into Valhalla to combat Hela's forces, with Odin following in their wake. The Valkyrie were overcome by the warriors of Valhalla led by Harokin, all corrupted by Hela's influence. By the time Odin arrived, all of the Valkyrie had been slain. Hela and Odin ultimately came to a truce, Hela returned to her own realm, and the slain Valkyrie returned to life.

(Thor Annual#10) - The Valkyrior appeared at Nanna's funeral, claiming her spirit and escorting it to Valhalla. 

(Thor I#343) - The Valkyrie gave their steed Cloud-Rider to Elief Dragonslayer so that he could join Thor in battle against the dragon Fafnir. After Eilif fell in battle, the Valkyrie came to carry him to Valhalla.

(Defenders I#144) - Brunnhilda called upon the other Valkyrior to aid her against her comrade Moondragon, who had become possessed by the Dragon of the Moon. Moondragon ultimately retreated.

(New Mutants Special Edition#1) - When the mutant Danielle Moonstar was lost in Asgard, she discovered the winged horse Brightwind, and it accepted her as its master. She soon encountered the Valkyrie Mist, who brought Moonstar back their home. One day, Moonstar overheard the Valkyrie arguing over her and whether she was worthy of being a Valkyrie. One noted that it didn't matter how they felt because the Norns had already chosen Moonstar's destiny. Afraid of what they were referring to, Moonstar left the Valkyrior's company.

(Uncanny X-Men Annual I#9) - The Valkyrior were called upon by Danielle Moonstar of the New Mutants to defy Loki attempting to remake Ororo Munroe (Storm) into an erstwhile ally and Thor substitute. When Loki forced the New Mutants to lose their Asgardian gifts, Mist of the Valkyrior reminded Loki that Odin had granted the winged horse Brightwind as a gift to Moonstar, but the young mutant gave up Brightwind anyhow to return to earth. 

(New Mutants I#79-80, 82-85) - Hela took possession of the Valkyrior with a spell that also subjugated Moonstar and led them to seize Asgard while Odin was in his Odinsleep. The New Mutants followed Moonstar into Asgard and led the Asgardians against Hela and broke her hold over the Valkyrior.

(X-Force/Cable Annual 1997) - The Valkyrior were taken hostage by Malekith working for Hela, the death-goddess. He began by draining off their life-energies and unique Valkyrie-powers for Hela, but Brunnhilda escaped and imparted part of her life-force to Danielle Moonstar. A former Valkyrie herself, Moonstar brought Cable and X-Force composed now of former New Mutants to Asgard (at the time vacated by the Asgardians as the Lost Gods) to defeat Malekith and restore the Valkyrior to full power.

(Defenders II#4) - The Valkyrior aided the Defenders against Pluto and his army.

(X-Statix#25) - Three members of the Valkyrior known as the Fatal Sisters swooped down into a battle between Thor and Doop, a member of the fledgling group of heroes known as X-Statix. Believing Asgard to be under siege, the Fatal Sisters engaged the Avengers, Thor's comrades-in-arms, but when X-Statix arrived to stand by Doop, the Fatal Sisters stood down rather than be overwhelmed by the heroes and returned from whence they came.

(Thor II#80) - The Valkyrior appeared in Ymir-Krul in Nidavellir to honor the memory of Eitri, the leader of the dwarves who had lent a part in the creation of Mjolnir.

(Thor II#83 (fb) - BTS) - Brunnhilde passed chiefdom of the Valkyrior to Sif to guide them against Loki's forces laying siege against Asgard.

(Thor II#85) - The Valkyrie rose up against Surtur in Vanaheim as Thor severed the threads woven by the Norns to put an end to the recurring incarnations of Asgard. The Valkyrior were struck down by Surtur just before Asgard's finally destruction.

(Thor I#610) - The Valkyrie assisted in the rebuilding of Asgard after the events of the siege.

Comments: Adapted by Robert Bernstein, Stan Lee and Joe Sinnott

This entry only describes the Valkyrior as a group rather than each of their singular appearances. The majority of the Valkyries described here will be getting their own bios eventually in the Appendix. It is unrevealed if the Hildegarde and Mist seen previously in the MU are the same Hilda and Mista of the Fatal Sisters. I'd also like to note that that Sangrida is an unusual name for a Valkyrie; it's Spanish for "blood." 

Nertha is a real goddess, sister of the sea-god Njord who has a bio here. In Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe #4, Nertha is described as an alias of Gaea, Mother Earth, as is Jord, who is credited as mother of Thor. This would make Thor a direct sibling of the Valkyries, but since Jord is also credited as mother of Frigga, it would seem to suggest that Gaea just used her name on occasion and there were actual other goddesses with those names, at least in the Marvel Universe.

For the sake of this entry, I'm considering "Valkyrior" the definitive name of the group although mythologically, it is also spelled  "Valkyriur" and "Valkyrjyr." "Valkyrie" would be the singular designation with "Valkyries" only used in the adjective sense, but all terms are acceptable.

According to myth, the Valkyrior also often appeared riding wolves or taking the form of ravens. Some German writers claimed there were two kinds of Valkyrior: nine who were of divine birth and the rest were half-mortal, usually called "vaetter-maidens." Three such mortal Valkyrior named Olrun, Alvitr and Svanhit appear in myth as lovers of the blacksmith Weyland and his brothers, Egil and Slagfinn. 

An earlier version of the Valkyrior seem to appear in the Hyborian Age controlled by the Grey God in Conan the Barbarian I#3. These goddesses are named Skalla and Hylda although they are assisted by ten others. It's unsure on how they might be connected to the modern Valkyrior, but my take is that the Grey God is Odin's father, Bor (Borri  being phonetically closer to Bor than to Buri) and that Asgard's cycles of Ragnarok predate the modern post-Hyborian Asgardians as well. If Odin is trapped in the cycles of his father, perhaps Tiwaz (Buri) lied about the recurring cycles to spare Thor from realizing he'd be repeating the actions of Odin.

The closest counterparts of the Valkyries in Greek/Roman mythology are the Erinnyes (Furies). The Banshees of Celtic Myth would be another analogue, but these beings are usually considered spirits themselves rather than deities in the godly sense.

Brunnhilda has a bio in the first Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe, the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe, the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe - Master Edition, the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe: Women of Marvel and the Guide to the Mythological Universe Website.

Although DC Comics hasn't dipped very often into the Gods of Asgard very often for characters, one Valkyrie named Gudrun appears as a member of the wartime Axis America, a group of Nazi-superhumans loosely parallel with the modern JLA with Gudrun as the Nazi version of Wonder Woman.

Some additional appearances were added by Chadman & Per Degaton.

Profile by: Will U and Prime Eternal

CLARIFICATIONS: The Valkyrior should not be confused with:


Images: (without ads)

Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe#14, page 10, top

Thor I#297, page 2, bottom panel

Thor II#80, page 9, middle panel


Appearances:
Journey into Mystery I#92 (May, 1963) - Robert Bernstein, Stan Lee (writers), Joe Sinnott (artist)
Thor I#133 (October, 1966) - Stan Lee (writer/editor), Jack Kirby (penciler), Vincent Colletta (inker)
Conan the Barbarian#3 (February, 1971) - Roy Thomas (writer), Barry Windsor-Smith (penciler), Sal Buscema (inker)
Thor Annual#5 (1976) - Steve Englehart (writer), John Buscema (penciler), Tony DeZuniga (inker), Archie Goodwin (editor)
Thor I#296 (April, 1980) - Roy Thomas (writer), Keith Pollard (penciler), Chic Stone (inker)
Defenders I#95 (May 1981) - J.M. DeMatteis (writer), Don Perlin (penciler), Frank Giacoia (inker)
Thor I#311-314 (September-December, 1981) - Mark Gruenwald, Ralph Macchio (writers), Keith Pollard (penciler), Gene Day (inker), Jim Salicrup (editor)
Thor Annual#10 (1982) - Alan Zelenetz (writer), Bob Hall (penciler), Rick Bryant, Joe Rubenstein, Andy Mushynsky, Al Gordon, Kevin Dzubian (inkers)
Thor I#343 (May, 1984) - Walter Simonson (writer/artist), Mark Gruenwald (editor)
Marvel Graphic Novel#15: The Raven Banner (1985) - Alan Zelenetz (writer), Charles Vess (artist), Ralph Macchio (editor)
Defenders I#144 (June, 1985) - Peter B. Gillis (writer), Don Perlin (penciler), Kim DeMulder (inker), Carl Potts (editor)
New Mutants Special Edition#1 (1985) - Chris Claremont (writer), Arthur Adams (penciler), Terry Austin (inker), Ann Nocenti (editor)
Uncanny X-Men Annual I#9 (1985) - Chris Claremont (writer), Arthur Adams (penciler), Alan Gordon, Michael Mignola (inkers)
New Mutants I#79-80, 82-85 (September, 1989-January, 1990) - Louise Simonson (writer), Geoff Isherwood, Bret Blevins (artists)
X-Force/Cable Annual 1997 - John Francis Moore (writer), Rob Haynes, Casey Jones (pencilers), Johnathan Holdredge (inker)
X-Statix#25 (September, 2004) - Peter Milligan (writer), Michael Allred (penciler), Nick Craine (inker)
Thor II#80 (August, 2004) - Daniel Berman, Michael Avon Oeming (writers), Andrea Di Vito  (artist)
Thor II#83 (November, 2004) - Daniel Berman, Michael Avon Oeming (writers), Andrea Di Vito  (artist)
Defenders II#4 (June, 2001) - Kurt Busiek & Erik Larson (writers), Ron Frenz (penciler), Scott Hanna (inker), Tom Brevoort (editor)
Thor II#85 (December, 2004) - Daniel Berman, Michael Avon Oeming (writers), Andrea Di Vito  (artist)
X-Men: First Class II#8 (March, 2008) - Jeff Parker (writer), Eric Nguyen (artist), Nathan Cosby (editor)
Thor I#610 (July, 2010) - Kieron Gillen (writer), Doug Braithwaite (penciler/inker), Ralph Macchio (editor)


Last updated: 10/08/10

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