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Thread: Pagan/Heathen/All Father

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    Pagan/Heathen/All Father

    I read that the words pagan, heathen and All Father were all created/used by Christians to describe the norse people. Furthermore, apparently All Father comes from christianity.

    Can someone confirm this ?
    If this is true, then we need new words to describe norse/germanic peoples of past and present. I don't want to use words that christians used.

    How did the germanics refer to themselves and to Wotun/Odin ?

    Thanks for any help

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    I don't believe anyone knows the answer to this.

    It's the same with the Cathars, who were only given this name later on by Christian historians but never referred to themselves as such.

    I'm sure there were many other groups too for whom the Christians invented their own (often disparaging) term.

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    Can not talk for the word pagan, alto the Nederlands Etymologisch Woordenboek van de Jan de Vries under the heading of heiden that paganus came up in the second half of the fourth century. So speculative it was probably used by Christians who referred to those who still maintained the old rites and beliefs (and those mostly lived in the country side). And therefore could serve as an example for the meaning of the word haithina, but that it might have been adopted by the ancient Germanics to separate themselves from the Christians. And thus not as an insult created by the Gaelileans.

    For the All Father as one of the names of Wodan the only thing I could find so quickly is in his Altgermanische Religionsgeschichte in which he quotes an other researches who think that Váfuthr with Viking Romanticism, alto it is not completly clear what is meant with it in this context. Of course it the cult of Odin was in Northern Germanic countries mostly linked with the upper classes and the poets (skalds), and they probably referred to him as such.
    The sense of honor is of so fine and delicate a nature that
    it is only to be met with in minds which are naturally noble or
    cultivated by good examples and a refined education.
    - Sir Richard Steele

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