BRAGI

Real Name: Bragi

Identity/Class: Asgardian god

Occupation: God of Poetry

Group Membership: Asgardian gods (Aegir, Balder, Frigga, Idunn, Loki, Odin, others)

Affiliations: Aegir, Balder the Brave, Frigga, Idunn, mermaidens, Odin, Lady Sif, the Warriors Three (Fandral, Hogun, Volstagg)

Enemies: Dwarves, Grey Gargoyle (Paul Duval), Loki (Loki Laufeyson), mountain giants

Known Relatives: Idunn (wife), Odin (father), Gunnlod (presumed mother), Balder, Hermod, Heimdall, Hoder, Thor, Vidar (half-brothers), Loki, Roger "Red" Norvell (adopted brothers), Bor (grandfather, deceased), Bestia (grandmother, deceased), Ve, Vili (uncles, deceased), Buri (paternal great-grandfather, deceased), Bolthorn (maternal great-grandmother, deceased), Iwaldi (father-in-law), Freya (mother-in-law), Frey (brother-in-law), Njord (grandfather-in-law), Gaea (grandmother-in-law), Nertha (great aunt-in-law), Frey (uncle-in-law), Hnossa (half-sister-in-law), Nanna, Syn, Sjofn, Sigyn, Solveig, Lofn, Var, Snotra (sisters-in-law)

Aliases: Bard of the Aesir, the God of Poetry, Master of Poets; "Gentle Bragi" (nickname from Odin), "Man" (nickname from Fandral)

Base of Operations: Asgard

First Appearance: Marvel Fanfare I#13 (March, 1984)

Powers/Abilities: Bragi had the ability to shapeshift, at least into the form of an eagle if not other forms, and presumably had the same superhuman physical attributes and longevity that all Asgardians possess. He was also very knowledgeable in several millennia's worth of Asgardian songs, verses and poetry, and was quite capable of writing his own music. When performing, Bragi either sung or used his preferred instrument, a harp.

Height: 6'1" (by approximation)
Weight: 450 lbs. (by approximation)
Eyes: Green
Hair: White (originally brown)

History: (Norse myth) - Having runes carved onto his tongue, the poet bard and son of Odin Bragi regaled celebrated heroes upon their entrance into Valhalla and was married to Idunn, the goddess of immortality. At some point, Frigga complained about not having a son as brave as Balder to force Loki to fight for his life. When Loki attempted to enter the hall of Asgard, Bragi was the first to forbid him from entering but Odin overruled him. Welcomed into the hall by Odin, Loki greeted all of those present in the hall excepting Bragi, who attempted peace by offering Loki his sword, horse and arm ring. Despite these offerings, Loki accused Bragi of cowardice, prompting Bragi to announce that if they were outside, he would have Loki's head. Repeating the accusation, Loki then accused Bragi's wife Idunn of embracing her own brother's killer. Bragi later discussed poetry with the giant Aegir, whom he told the origin of how Odin obtained his personal mead, and when Odin heard of the arriving dead king Eric Bloodaxe to Valhalla, Bragi questioned how Odin knew of Bloodaxe's arrival and why Odin had let such a king perish.

(Marvel Fanfare I#13/2 (fb) - BTS) - After being tasked with reciting poetry at Odin's Great Mid-Summer Celebration, Bragi sought to find a new poem to present to Odin. Venturing  into dwarf territory, Bragi asked for a lyric to sing at Odin's feast but the dwarves refused, suggesting Bragi seek verses amongst the branches of Yggdrasil the World-Tree. Bragi continued his search into the mountains but was once more told to seek songs at the foot of Yggdrasil. Bragi also visited a third place, a lake housing several mermaidens, where he sought more verses for the Celebration. The mermaidens were unable to provide him a lyric, as their songs had no melody on dry land, and Bragi was once more advised to seek out Yggdrasil. Exasperated, Bragi eventually transformed himself into an eagle and flew to Yggdrasil, hoping to find inspiration but his eagle wings were caught in Yggdrasil's branches. When Bragi did not return, his wife Idunn ventured into the forest to find her husband.

(Marvel Fanfare I#13/2) - When a distressed Idunn ran into the Warriors Three during their hunt, she explained to the Warriors about Bragi's disappearance and the Warriors split up to locate the poetry god. When each of the Three were told that Bragi had been sent to Yggdrasil, the trio regrouped at Yggdrasil, where they found Bragi, still in the guise of an eagle, tangled in the World-Tree's vines about to be eaten by a large snake. After Volstagg accidentally knocked the snake unconscious, Hogun freed Bragi from Yggdrasil's entanglements and Bragi flew free, transforming back to his normal Asgardian form and thanking the Warriors Three for their assistance. Upon hearing the trials that the Warriors Three had went through in their search for him, Bragi admitted his shame and explained his search for new poems. Struck with inspiration at the Warriors Three's heroics, Bragi announced that he would sing the "Ballad of the Warriors Three" before Odin's court. Later that night, Bragi indeed sung his newly-written song and played its melody on a harp before Odin. Pleased by Bragi's song, Odin commended Bragi on coming up with such poetry out of thin air. Bragi responded by bowing, thanking Odin for his words and remarking that when one had rhymed and versified as long as he, one never lacks inspiration.

(Thor III#620.1) - When the Asgardians celebrated Thursebolt, the feast of Thor, Bragi was introduced to the assembled Asgardians by Balder the Brave, who proclaimed Bragi Bard of the Aesir. To commemorate the occasion, Bragi announced that he would recite a new verse written from the Voluspa, the epic saga of the Asgardians. Before he could fully begin, "Gravelmir of Jotunheim" arrived and presented a stone statue of Thor for the celebration. Balder commended Gravelmir on the statue and bid Gravelmir to sit and enjoy the tales about to be told about Thor by Bragi. Gravelmir soon revealed himself to be the Grey Gargoyle after turning many of the celebrating Asgardians to stone, including Bragi himself. The stone statue of Thor was eventually revealed as a transformed Thor himself, who took down Grey Gargoyle before being once again affected by the Grey Gargoyle's stone touch. When the other Asgardians regained their mobility, Balder commented that it had been a more memorable Thursebolt than usual and Sif remarked that when Thor regained his own mobility in a few moments, he would likely sit and enjoy the celebration with the others.

Comments: Created by Alan Zelenetz and Charles Vess.

Interestingly enough, despite myth & Marvel Fanfare I#13 stating that Bragi was Idunn's husband, Idunn's marital status in her 1980s Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe sub-entry (as part of the Asgardians) was listed as single.

Another thing of note: In Marvel Fanfare I#13, Bragi is shown with brown hair but in Thor III#620.1, he is shown as somewhat aged and with white hair. Being that he is known to shape-shift, it's very possible that he only appeared to be younger and brown-haired in Marvel Fanfare I#13 due to his own desire to seem young and adventurous. Then again, it is also possible that when he was resurrected after one of Asgard's many Ragnarok events, he was resurrected in a much older form...then of course, it could just be artistic expression. Given that his feathers were white when in eagle form, I'm more inclined to think that Bragi's hair is white and that his brown-haired form was merely a shape-shifting to make himself appear younger or more heroic.

Please forgive me if the family tree of Bragi seems confusing. In Norse myth, it did not appear to be clarified who exactly Bragi's mother was, though it was suggested to be Gunnlod. It had also been less suggested that his mother was Frigga but that information was speculative given Frigga's insulting of Bragi's bravery. Without a clearly explained mother, Bragi's known relatives is subject to interpretation and I did the best I could, not being a Norse theologist.

Profile by Proto-Man.

CLARIFICATIONS:
Bragi has no KNOWN connections to:


images: (without ads)
Thor III#620.1, p4, pan5 (Bragi, main image)
Thor III#620.1, p6, pan1 (Bragi, headshot)
Marvel Fanfare I#13, p28, pan3 (Bragi in eagle form)
Marvel Fanfare I#13, p31, pan3 (Bragi in original form)


Appearances:
Marvel Fanfare I#13 (March, 1984) - "Ballad of the Warriors Three" story - Alan Zelenetz (writer), Charles Vess (art), Allen Milgrom (editor)
Thor III#620.1 (May, 2011) - Dan Abnett, Andy Lanning (writers), Mark Brooks (art), Ralph Macchio (editor)


Last updated: 03/06/16

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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