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Who inhabits the world?

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Our story takes place in the mists of time when many different races inhabited the earth. There were the gods, the giants, the dwarfs, Valkyries, water nymphs and mortals – plus several characters of mixed race.

Gods

The Gods are the noblest and highest race, and dwell first in the mountain meadows, and, by the time our story starts, in the palace of Valhalla.

The Gods in our story are: Wotan (pronounced with a ‘V’ – Votan); Loge (as in Yoga); Freia (as in Fish ‘Fryer’); Fricka (like Wicker – but with an F); and Erda (pronounced a bit like a cockney ‘Hairdo’ – ie without the ‘H’).

 

Giants

The giants are a great and strong race, but lack wisdom; they hate what is noble, and are enemies of the gods. They live in caves near the earth’s surface. The chief giants are the brothers Fafner (pronounced more or less as it’s written – ‘Faff – na’) and Fasolt (who we don’t need to bother about because he doesn’t actually appear in our version of the show – suffice to say that once the giants get the gold and the ring, they fight over it and Fafner kills Fasolt).
  Dwarves       Humans & Gods,                                    Giant                                   

Dwarfs

The dwarfs, or nibelungs, are an uncouth lot: they hate anything good; they hate the gods; they are crafty and cunning; and they dwell in the bowels of the earth. They can also breathe (and sing) underwater.

The chief dwarfs are the two brothers Alberich (pronounced ‘Alba – rick’) and Mime (pronounced, confusingly, to rhyme with ‘seamer’). You will also meet Alberich’s son (with a mortal) Hagan (pronounced like the ‘Haagen’ of the famous ice cream – but not nearly as nice).

 

Water Nymphs

The Water Nymphs, or Rheinmaidens (as you will most frequently hear them referred to) are pure, innocent creatures of the water tasked with looking after the gold.  

In our story they live, under the water, in the River Rhein – the great river that runs through Switzerland, Austria, Lichtenstein, Germany, France and the Netherlands.

In our story you will meet three ‘Rhein-maidens’ Flosshilde, Woglinde, and Wellgunde (the latter two names are pronounced with an initial ‘V’).

 

Valkyries

The Valkyries (as in the ‘Ride of the ..’ – pronounced Val – ker – rees) are daughters of the gods, but mingled with a mortal strain; they gather dead heroes from the battle-fields of the world and carry them to Valhalla.

There are nine Valkyrie, of whom Brunnhilde is the leading one. Their most important task is to carry out Wotan's wishes. They must assemble an army, large enough to win the battle at the end of time; Ragnarok.

 

Heroes and Mortals  

The heroes are children of the gods, but also mingled with a mortal strain; they are destined to become at last the highest race of all, and to succeed the gods in the government of the world.

The most notable of these is Siegfried (pronounced ‘Zeeg – freed’ - as in the senior vet in All Creatures Great and Small).

There are various mortals from various clans – most notably from the clan of the Gibichungs – these include Gunther (pronounced as in Billy ‘Bunter’ – but with a Yorkshire accent) and Gutrune (pronounced Goo- trooner).