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In Norse mythology, a fylgja (Old Norse, literally "someone that accompanies,"[1] plural fylgjur) is a spirit who accompanies a person in connection to their fate or fortune. Fylgjur usually appear in the form of an animal or a human and commonly appear during sleep, but the sagas relate that they could appear while a person is awake as well, and that seeing one's fylgja is an omen of one's impending death. However, when fylgjur appear in the form of women, they are then supposedly guardian spirits for people or clans (ættir).

Both Andy Orchard and Rudolf Simek note parallels between the concept of the hamingja—a personification of a family's or individual's fortune—and the fylgja.[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kellog, various (2001:745).
  2. ^ Orchard (1997:73) and Simek (2007:129).