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Introduction to the runes

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The following are excerpts from the first part of a five-part article on the runes. You can read the whole thing here

"The first systems of writing developed and used by the Germanic peoples were runic alphabets. The runes functioned as letters, but they were much more than just letters in the sense in which we today understand the term. Each rune was an ideographic or pictographic symbol of some cosmological principle or power, and to write a rune was to invoke and direct the force for which it stood. (...)

Each rune had a name that hinted at the philosophical and magical significance of its visual form and the sound for which it stands, which was almost always the first sound of the rune’s name. (...)

The runic alphabets are called “futharks” after the first six runes (Fehu, Uruz, Thurisaz, Ansuz, Raidho, Kaunan), in much the same way that the word “alphabet” comes from the names of the first two Semitic letters (Aleph, Beth). There are three principal futharks: the 24-character Elder Futhark (...); the 16-character Younger Futhark (...); and the 33-character Anglo-Saxon Futhorc (...). (...)

Runes were traditionally carved onto stone, wood, bone, metal, or some similarly hard surface rather than drawn with ink and pen on parchment. (...)

Much of our current knowledge of the meanings the ancient Germanic peoples attributed to the runes comes from the three “Rune Poems,” documents from Iceland, Norway, and England that provide a short stanza about each rune in their respective futharks (...)."

The other four parts of the article:
Part II: The Origins of the Runes
Part III: Runic Philosophy and Magic
Part IV: The Meanings of the Runes
Part V: The 10 Best Books on the Runes

Happy reading! :)

Not sure where to get one set of these rune tiles.

You can make one yourself (see this article: Making Your Own Rune Set) or you can buy it from Amazon (see this random wood set and this random black obsidian set). :)

This one looks good

Yes, it does. For some reason i like wooden runes best. ^^


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