Who is Eir?

Goddess Eir by Nicole CadetEir is the healer of Asgard, the “Norse Hygeia” as some call her. Her name simply means “healer”. It is disturbing to some to see her listed among the handmaidens of Mengloth, a Jotun goddess. However, it is clear to me that Eir and Mengloth are colleagues, and when Eir comes to work at Lyfjaberg, she defers to Mengloth whose “practice” it is out of courtesy, as I’m sure that Mengloth would defer to Eir were she to come assist in Asgard. (I don’t know if that ever happens, but I suspect that healers in general are less likely to care about politics and wars than those with other jobs.)

Obviously, Eir’s world-energy is Asgard, the home of the warrior sky-gods … and it is not surprising that her specialty is surgery. The official healer of a warrior people would have to be skilled at healing battlefield wounds, gained in practice or otherwise. Eir knows how to open the body and do repair, to stanch blood, to heal massive injuries, to drag someone back from quickly approaching death due to physical trauma. She is the equivalent (and patron of) the ER surgeon who must face frightening wounds, and make on-the-spot judgments as to whether the patient can be saved. This is a different situation from making decisions about a longer, slower death from illness; Eir’s job is to make the snap decision in the moment between life and sudden death as the body lies bleeding out from the blow.

Eir’s color is the red of fresh blood (although some have seen her to like green as well), and a magic charm pouch should be made of red cloth with blood-stanching herbs such as Yarrow or Bistort. Comfrey is traditionally one of Eir’s herbs, and it is a famous wound healer that speeds tissue repair. Red stones are also appropriate – she seems to be fond of garnets.

If you or someone else is going in for surgery and you want to make sure that you or they do well, light a candle for Eir and then go to the Offerings page and make an offering.

Prayer for Eir by Nornorielinstruments

Physician of the Gods,

the Merciful One.

I ask you to speed medical healing,

to speed the recovery

of illness or injury.

I ask you to inspire the doctors

to do no harm,

and to do well in treating the one whom I pray for.

Inspire the doctors to have mercy,

as you have mercy.

Inspire the one whom I pray for

to be patient and hopeful.

Hail Eir,

Greatest Physician.



Plea to Eir

Maiden of Lyfja, Mengloth's Friend,

Healer of Open Hand,

Trace your runes

On the hand of the healer

The heart of the nurse

And the doctor's trail.

Grant weal to wounds,

Relief for pain,

Succor for sickness,

And wholeness for hearts.

All of Nine Herbs

Mix in your mortar,

Give to us mortals

Health in our days.

Eir, of all

The maidens mighty,

Near to our needs,

O hear our plea!

- This poem is in the Common Domain and may be freely distributed
provided it remains unchanged, including copyright notice and this License -

Artwork (c) by Nicole Cadet.