Ramsund Stone: Story of Sigurd the Dragon Slayer

Ramsund stone was among the most famous picture Viking stone for many people called it Sigurd stone. The Ramsund stone vividly told the story how Sigurd won the dragon Fafnir with his sword.

In fact, there were up to eight Sigurd stones which were seven rune stone and one picture stone. The Ramsund stone more resembled the picture stone rather than rune stone.

The Ramsund carving didn’t appear on the stone. Instead, it appeared on a flat rock close to Ramsund Eskilstuna Municipality, Sodermanland, Sweden According to the archaeologists, the artists must have carved the stone around the year of 1030.

Ramsund stone was carved on the flat rock
Ramsund stone on the flat rock

In Norse mythology, there was a hero whose name was Sigurd who bravely fought with a giant dragon with his own sword. The story went back to the journey of the gods to Svartalfheim land of the dwarves. Gods’ team included Thor, Hoenir, and Loki. Loki deliberately killed an otter (a son of the dwarf king, Otr, shapeshifted) that made the king angry and demanded a ransom.

Then Loki took the treasure of the dwarf whose name was Andvari and brought the gold to the dwarf king. Andvari the dwarf loved his treasure so much that he couldn’t leave it for a second. When Loki took his beloved away, the dwarf cursed that whoever possessed the gold would meet their end very soon.

The dwarf king then possessed the cursed gold and met his demise. His son, Fafnir, became greedy and wanted the gold for himself only. He killed the father and brought to gold into the woods. There, he changed himself into a dragon guarding the hoard.

Fafnir the Dragon became greedy and illnatured
Fafnir turned himself into a dragon and guarded the treasure of himself

Another son of the dwarf king, Regin, also became greedy. He made a brave man named Sigurd his foster son. When the time had come, Regin ordered Sigurd to find and kill Fafnir inside the wood. As the bravest man of the clan, Sigurd managed to kill Fafnir with his blade. When he cook the heart of Fafnir, he happened to burn himself which made him put his finger to his mouth immediately. As his finger had the blood of the dragon, he happened to gain the ability to know the bird’s song. Three birds told him that Regin his foster father planned to kill him so he had to do something first. And the warrior Sigurd slew Regin before the dwarf could do any harm to him.

This story of Sigurd the Dragonslayer was vividly told on the Ramsund stone.

The picture on the Ramsung stone that tells the story of Sigurd the Dragon
The picture on the Ramsung stone that tells the story of Sigurd the Dragon
  1. Sigurd was cooking the heart of Fafnir and he unintentionally burnt his finger. From that moment on, Sigurd had the ability to know bird’s songs.
  2. The birds telling Sigurd about Regin’s plan to kill him.
  3. Regin was dead as Sigurd beheaded him with his powerful sword
  4. The horse of Sigurd, Grani, was laden with the treasure including the cursed gold.
  5. Sigurd killed Fafnir when he was hiding behind the rock. And when Fafnir appeared, Sigurd wielded his own sword and thrust from above of the dragon.
  6. Many scholars believed that this detail was actually otter who was Otr a son of the dwarf king.

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