The main armies that battled each other in Norse mythology were the Gods and the Giants. It seems that every god would have for themselves the sworn enemies from the giant tribe. Odin’s sworn enemy was Fenrir the Wolf who swallowed Odin in Ragnarok, Heimdal’s sworn enemy was Loki, Freyr’s sworn enemy was Surtr the fire giant, and Thor’s mortal enemy was Jormungand the Midgard serpent. Legend held it that there were two times that Thor and Jormungand encountered each other. The second time was in Ragnarok when the pair finally doomed each other. The first time happened when Thor went fishing. Then we have the tale of Thor fishing Jormungand.
Thor Fishing Jormungand
On one occasion, the gods were about to have a feast with the generous ocean giants Aegir and Ran. These ocean giants were to prepare the banquet while the gods would have to find a kettle large enough to brew the mead for all guests of the feast.
Gods knew that among the creatures in Nine Worlds, only the giant Hymir had a cauldron like that. So,Thor the brave and strong of the gods were volunteer to meet Hymir and asked him for the cauldron. Then off he went to the house of the giant.
On arriving there, Hymir slaughtered threebulls for Thor’s stay. However, Thor finished all the serves in his only sitting at the house of Hymir, which made Hymir dismayed and somewhat frustrated.
On the following day, Hymir decided that they should go fishing forthe food the next days. As they were about the set sail, Thor went to the pastures and killed the rest of Hymir’s bulls to make them his bait. This really irritated Hymir although he still hoped God Thor would be helpful during the fishing trip.
As the ship moved toward the usual fishing zone of Hymir, the giant caught two whales and he was happy for that. Thor, in the stern, made the ship to further zone.
This made Hymir worried because Hymirsaid the danger was lying out there. And the danger that Hymir was talkingabout was Jormungand Serpent who was out there waiting for some bait. Uponhearing the word “Jormungand”, Thor refused to get back to the shore and wasdetermined to catch Jormungand.
And the little Hymir could not do anything to change the determination of Thor but sitting on the boat and wishing luck.
Then at the zone far away from the shore,Thor dropped his line into the water. After a moment of silence, Thor felt something was tugging his fishing line violently.
Thor tried to hold it and lift the hook from the ocean, but the more he tried, the more his boat shook violently. The giant Hymir next to grew pale because of fear while Thor still persisted.
When the head of the monster finally revealed from the ocean, Thor reached for his mighty Mjolnir hammer. Hymir was so afraid that he cut the line, releasing the serpent back to the ocean. The giant explained that he was afraid that Ragnarok would happen when Jormungand raised itself above the ocean.
He would not let this happen so he cut the line. Thor was so frustrated because Hymir prevented him from ending the life of Jormungand. He heaved Hymir overboard and saild the boat back home.
With two whales on his shoulder, Thor went back to pick the cauldron of Hymir and travelled back to his home Asgard forthe feast.