In Norse mythology, Loki must be the most complicated character. Nobody could ever predict which side he would take or what he was going to do next. Ever in a battle, Loki was the least trustworthy man because we couldn’t know whether he was truly battling for the gods or for the giants. The family background of Loki was also a controversy as his parents were the giants but he could earn a seat in Asgard land of Gods. Loki created many troubles to Norse gods and other creatures in Norse mythology. Most of the times, Loki creating troubles added more flavor to the myth. However, there was a time that Loki had to pay a great deal for Loki’s biggest trick. It was the Death of Baldur Odin’s son.
Loki’s biggest trick: Baldur’s Death
Baldur was the son of Odin the Viking Supreme god and Frigg the Aesir chief goddess. Baldur was the god of Light. He was so beautiful that even the most beautiful things in the cosmos had to bow down to him. The beauty of Baldur overwhelmed everything whenever he appeared. But unlucky thing befell the god. When he became an adult, Baldur dreamt of his own death. It would have been nothing if Frigg Baldur’s mother hadn’t dreamt of anything. But mother and son had the same dreams. Plus, Frigg was the seer in her blood. This made everyone afraid the fate would bring Baldur away. So upset was Frigg that she decided to call for help. She travelling around the cosmos and asked all creatures to swear not to harm her son. The only one thing that was missed out was the mistletoe. Though Baldur became invincible, the only thing that could harm him was the mistletoe.
As Loki learnt of this, he set out to make a mistltoe arrow. But Loki didn’t throw the arrow by himself. Rather, he guided the blind god Hodr to throw the arrow for him. And there Baldur fell. The arrow thrusted into Baldur’s chest and brought him away.
Why Baldur’s death was Loki’s biggest trick?
We know that Loki created many troubles to Norse gods. But in fact, no trouble could compare with Baldur’s Death. It was associated with the life of a god, the relationship between sons and father (Hodr and Baldur were the twin brothers sons of Odin). More importantly, the Death of Baldur was the first sign of Ragnarok the destructive events that all creatures wanted to rid of.
If there was a time when Loki cut the hair of Thor’s wife, he could travel to Svartalfheim to ask the dwarves to create beautiful hair. This time of Baldur’s death, even Odin couldn’t retrieve his son back from the Hel the Queen of Death.
The Death of Baldur was the last straw that Norse gods couldn’t tolerate Loki. They could no long put up with the mischievous deeds of Loki. This was Loki’s biggest trick and he should pay the most severe punishment. What could be the most severe punishment? It should be death, shouldn’t it? But death was too simple for this crime so the Gods punished Loki by the venom of the snake. Loki was bound to the rock by the entrails of his son. The snake above his head dripped the venom onto his face. Whenever the venom touched Loki’s face, he shook violently, creating the earthquakes to Midgard.
Was Loki’s trick intentional?
It is hard to tell whether this Loki’s biggest trick was an intentional act or not. Because the sources of Norse myth we have today are not completely cohesive. The viewpoints upon this question vary from people to people.
A group of Norse readers believe that Loki intentionally killed Baldur. Because he was jealous of the God of Light. Loki was the Norse creature that embodied the qualities of fire. He was powerful and a basic element for civilisation but he was also impulsive and destructive. However, whether Loki embodied the characteristic of fire or not remained a mystery. And don’t mistake Loki for Logi the giant of fire in Norse myth.
There was theory that Loki envied Odin for Odin’s ability to create. Loki always tried to involved himself into creating something but all he got couldn’t rival Odin’s. Loki created an eight-legged horse Sleipnir which I believe was an awesome character. But things terribly went wrong when he fathered Fenrir, Jormungand, and Hel. Meanwhile, Odin fathered powerful sons and had awesome grand children. Thor, Heimdall Asgard’s Guardsman, Baldur God of Light were sons of Odin and Magni the strongest god was Odin’s grand child.
Other people don’t agree with this theory. Because they claim that there weren’t enough materials to conclude whether Loki was deliberate or not. Norse myth just simply told the story and theory is just the modern fabriacation.
Anyway, Loki’s biggest trick or Baldur Death was among the most complex riddles that we cannot see through completely.