What Does a Germanic Sacrificial Site Look Like?

Written by Dyami Millarson

Dom-ring, or sacrificing ring, Blomsholm, Boruslan.

It is practical to ask: What does a Germanic sacrificial site look like? What objects can be found in the Germanic sacrificial environment?

To answer this, I will treat the most traditional Germanic sacrificial environment.

The following objects along with the functions with which they should be equated may be found in the Germanic traditional open air sacrificial environment:

  • Trees as natural idols or images
  • Stones as natural altars or tables
  • Heads (turned into skeletons) and hides hung in trees from previous blood sacrifices
  • Residue on sacred wood from blood and fat with which idols have been annointed
  • Ropes which are hung around trees

The Germanic idols were usually wooden. The wood from which idols were made was sacred material; for the idols were identified with the Gods. Anointing the idols with blood and fat was Germanic tradition. Therefore, it is to be expected tgat there is residue on the sacred wood from previous blood sacrifices. At sacrificial sites, there are traces from previous sacrifices. The longer such offerings have been made at a place, the more special that place is for Germanic paganism; a long tradition of blood sacrifices only makes a site more sacred, while such a local sacrificial history means from a Germanic religious perspective that the place has been dedicated to the Gods to a very high degree. Building up such a history is costly, and therefore considered highly valuable from an ancestral Germanic point of view. It is truly an investment in the relationship with the Gods.

The alternative to an open air sacrificial site is a site with a sacrificial house (Old Norse: blóthús), which is a synonym of temple (Latin: templum) — the concept of blóthús is as genuinely pagan as the related concept of hörgr. Instead of trees which are natural idols, idols made from carved wood may feature at such sites.

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