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NameProto-GermanicOld EnglishOld Norse
"lake"/"leek""ocean, sea""water, waterfall"
ShapeElder FutharkFuthorcYounger Futhark
Runic letter laukaz.svg
Position in

*Laguz or *Laukaz is the reconstructed Proto-Germanic name of the l-rune , *laguz meaning "water" or "lake" and *laukaz meaning "leek". In the Anglo-Saxon rune poem, it is called lagu "ocean". In the Younger Futhark, the rune is called lögr "waterfall" in Icelandic and logr "water" in Norse.

The corresponding Gothic letter is 𐌻 l, named lagus. The rune is identical in shape to the letter l in the Raetic alphabet.

The "leek" hypothesis is based not on the rune poems, but rather on early inscriptions where the rune has been hypothesized to abbreviate *laukaz, a symbol of fertility, see the Bülach fibula.

Rune Poem:[1] English Translation:

Old Norwegian
Lögr er, fællr ór fjalle foss;
en gull ero nosser.

A waterfall is a River which falls from a mountain-side;
but ornaments are of gold.

Old Icelandic
Lögr er vellanda vatn
ok viðr ketill
ok glömmungr grund.
lacus lofðungr.

Water is eddying stream
and broad geysir
and land of the fish.

Lagu byþ leodum langsum geþuht,
gif hi sculun neþan on nacan tealtum
and hi sæyþa sƿyþe bregaþ
and se brimhengest bridles ne gym[eð].

The ocean seems interminable to men,
if they venture on the rolling bark
and the waves of the sea terrify them
and the stallion of the deep heed not its bridle.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Original poems and translation from the Rune Poem Page Archived 1999-05-01 at the Wayback Machine.