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Faðir várr
Old Norse

ᚠᛆᚦᛁᚱ ᚢᛆᚱᚱ᛫ ᛋᛆ ᛂᛋ ᛂᚱᛐ ᛆ ᚼᛁᛘᚿᚢᛘ᛬
Faðir várr, sá es ert á himnum.
Our Father, who art in Heaven,
ᚼᛂᛚᚼᛁᛋᚴ ᚦᛁᛐᛐ ᚿᛆᚠᚿ᛫
Helgisk þitt nafn,
hallowed be Thy Name.
ᛐᛁᛚ ᚴᚮᛘᛁ ᚱᛁᚴᛁ ᚦᛁᛐᛐ᛬
til komi ríki þitt.
Thy Kingdom come,
ᚢᛂᚱᚦᛁ ᚢᛁᛚᛁ ᚦᛁᚿᚿ᛫
Verði vili þinn,
Thy Will be done,
ᛋᚢᛆ ᛋᛂᛘ ᛆ ᚼᛁᛘᚿᛁ ᛋᚢᛆ ᚮᚴ ᛆ ᛁᚮᚱᚦᚢ᛬
svá sem á himni svá ok á jǫrðu.
on Earth, as it is in Heaven.
ᛒᚱᛆᚢᚦ ᚢᛆᚱᛐ ᚼᚢᛂᚱᛋᛑᛆᚼᛚᛂᚼᛐ ᚵᛂᚠᚦᚢ ᚮᛋᛋ ᛁ ᛑᛆᚼ᛬
Brauð várt hversdaglegt gefðu oss í dag.
Give us this day our daily bread,
ᚮᚴ ᚠᛦᚱᚼᛂᚠᚦᚢ ᚮᛋᛋ ᛋᚴᚢᛚᛑᛁᚱ ᚮᚱᛆᚱ᛫
Ok fyrgefðu oss skuldir órar,
and forgive us our trespasses,
ᛋᚢᛆ ᛋᛂᛘ ᚢᛂᚱ ᚠᛦᚱᚼᛂᚠᚢᛘ ᛋᚴᚢᛚᛑᚢᚱᚢᛘ ᚮᚱᚢᛘ᛬
svá sem vér fyrgefum skuldurum órum.
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
ᚮᚴ ᛅᛁᚼᛁ ᛚᛅᛁᚦᛁᚱ ᚦᚢ ᚮᛋᛋ ᛁ ᚠᚱᛅᛁᛋᛐᚿᛁ᛫
Ok eigi leiðir þú oss í freistni,
And lead us not into temptation,
ᚼᛂᛚᛑᚢᚱ ᛚᛅᛦᛋᛐᚢ ᚮᛋᛋ ᚠᚱᛆ ᛁᛚᛚᚢ᛬
heldur leystu oss frá illu.
but deliver us from evil.


This Norse version of the Lord’s Prayer has been reconstituted by the scholar Haraldur Bernharðsson from the Icelandic Homily Book (Íslensk hómilíubók), which was written around 1200. The prayer is indirectly attested in a homily in which each line of its Latin version is glossed, explained and commented.

The translation is a traditional English version from the 1928 Book of Common Prayer, still used by the Catholic Church. This must have been the version familiar to Tolkien.

The fifth petition is expressed differently in Old Norse and English. The Old Norse version follows the gospel of Matthew and literally reads “Forgive us our debts, as we also forgive our debtors.” The current English versions speaking of trespasses rather follow the gospel of Luke.

The text is transcribed in Gemanic runes or futhark, in a late form used in Scandinavia from the 13th century onwards. It is influenced by the Latin alphabet and allows for a rather precise representation of Old Norse. We especially rely on the uses seen in the Codex Runicus. This runic mode is admittedly quite atypical: long texts have been written only after the Christianization of the North, and usually in the Latin alphabet, while runes mostly remained in use for short inscriptions. We made use of Robert Pfeffer’s typeface Pfeffer Mediæval.  Open this mode in Glaemscribe

Bernharðsson, Haraldur. Icelandic: a historical linguistic companion. Third draft. Reykjavík: The Árni Magnusson Institute for Icelandic Studies, 2013. 464 p.

The works of John Ronald Reuel and Christopher Tolkien are under the copyright of their authors and/or rights holders, including their publishers and the Tolkien Estate.
Quotations from other authors, editors and translators mentioned in the bibliography are under the copyright of their publishers, except for those whose copyright term has ended.
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