Nordri, Sudri, Austri and Vestri are mentioned in Völuspá 11 and Gylfaginning 8. In the first, they are part of the ‘dwarves list’, in the second, they are said to support the sky, which is made from Aurgelmir’s skull (Ymir). Beyond mere directions, their order of appearance – always north, south, east and west – and within the dwarf list, may indicate a hidden meaning. For example,
Nýi and Nidi, Norðri and Suðri, Austri and Vestri,
Alþjófr, Dvalinn, Bífurr, Báfurr,
Bömburr, Nóri, Án and Ánarr,
Ái, Mjöðvitnir, Veigr and Gandalfr,
Vindalfr, Þráinn, Þekkr and Þorinn,
Þrór, Litr and Vitr, Nár and Nýráðr,
Reginn and Ráðsviðr –
now I have numbered the Dvergar aright.
The Dvergar list is divided into three sections; the first (listed above), represents an order of creation and, possibly, a system of self-development. The second list, is as yet determined, and the third is an ancestral line. Notable, the four directions immediately follow New Moon and Waning Moon (Nýi and Nidi), and preceed All-Dweller and Entranced-One (Alþjófr, Dvalinn). Further emphasizing the importance of this order is that Dvalinn is the discoverer of the Runes for his tribe. So that Dvalinn found and gave the Runes to his tribe – akin to how Wodan discovered the runes for humans – just as the Jotans have their own runes.
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Except: Aurgelmir and the Four Dwarves:
The Sacred Center and Four Directions
By: Yngona Desmond, 2009