In Norse mythology, Muspelheim (Old Norse: Múspellsheimr), also called Muspell (Old Norse: Múspell), is a realm of fire. This realm is one of the Nine Worlds, ruled by Surtr with his consort Sinmara in some accounts. The denizens of Muspelheim were usually referred to as the Eldjötnar (or Eldthursar, Eldþursar—"fire giants") in Norse tradition, though they were also identified by other epithets in Eddic poetry, such as the Múspellssynir (or Múspellsmegir—"sons of Muspell"; altn. Múspellmegir, Múspellsynir) and the Rjúfendr (from rjúfa—"to break, tear asunder", Destroyers of Doomsday). Both of these terms sometimes described an entirely separate mythological species that dwelled alongside or in place of the eldjötnar within this fiery realm.
Muspelheim was the first elemental world to emanate from the primordial void of potentiality Ginnungagap; and the land to the North, Niflheim was the second. The two mixed and gave rise to Ymir The sun and the stars originate from Muspelheim.
In the midst of this clash and din the heavens are rent in twain, and the sons of Muspell come riding through the opening. Surtr rides first, and before him and after him flames burning fire. He has a very good sword, which shines brighter than the sun. As they ride over Bifrost it breaks to pieces, as has before been stated. The sons of Muspel direct their course to the plain which is called Vigrid.... The sons of Muspel have there effulgent bands alone by themselves.
In popular culture
- The realm of Muspelheim appears as 'Muspel' in Gene Wolfe's book series, The Wizard Knight. It is inhabited by the dragon 'Setr', as a close parallel to Surtr.
- In the Marvel Universe, Muspelheim is the home of Surtur, who is based on Surtr. A glimpse of Muspelheim is seen in the Marvel Studios film Thor: The Dark World. In the sequel Thor: Ragnarok, Thor travels to Muspelheim to battle Surtur, in an attempt to prevent Ragnarok.
- Múspellsheimr also gives its name to "Muspel," a place in David Lindsay's A Voyage to Arcturus.[original research?]
- In the video game Fire Emblem Heroes, Askr is at one point attacked by the kingdom of Muspell, led by King Surtr.
- In the 2018 Marvel film, Thor: Ragnarok, the titular character travels to Muspelheim and kills its leader as part of a ploy to prevent Ragnarok from happening.
- In the 2018 video game God of War, Muspelheim is an explorable realm, presenting the game's challenge mode; the final challenge is to face the Valkyrie Göndul.
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- "Court poetry, vol. I.", pg. 183; "Court poetry, vol. II", pg. 472, s.v. "Demon World-Destroyers"
- Germanic Lexicon Project: http://lexicon.ff.cuni.cz/html/oi_cleasbyvigfusson/b0501.html
- "Muspelheim | Norse mythology". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 2017-08-12.
- Tilton, Theodore (1897). The complete poetical works of Theodore Tilton in one volume: with a preface on ballad-making and an appendix on old Norse myths & fables. London: T. Fisher Unwin. p. 705. Retrieved 2013-01-05.
- Vigfússon, Guðbrandur; Frederick York Powell (1883). Corpus poeticum boreale: Court poetry, vol. II. Oxford: Clarendon Press. p. 471. Retrieved 2013-01-05.