Thor: God of The Common People

Thor often referred to as the God of Thunder and Lightening, is a protector and known for his fighting ability.

Widely popular historically and today, Thor makes us feel safe. He is God of the Common Man.

In fact, Thor was the main antagonist, if you will, to Jesus during the period of conversion and conquering. Thor is a strong protector and champion for all people.

Thor’s Family

There is some discrepancy about Thor’s children and their mothers. I’m giving you what’s commonly believed as far as his marriage and children. What we do know about Thor is that he loved his family and sought to protect them.

  • Thor is the son of Odin and Joro.

  • Thor married Sif and they had two sons (Magni and Mooi) and a daughter Pruor.

  • He may have also had an affair with the jötunn Járnsaxa and had Magni with her

  • Step-father to Sif’s son Ullr

  • He has two human servants as well named Pjalfi and Roskva who he loves as family

  • He values his friendship with Loki and Tyr.

Thor’s Characteristics

Thor’s characteristics are based on what we know from the Prose Edda and Poetic Edda.

  • Red hair and red beard

  • Staring eyes

  • Burly

  • Easily angered, a fighter, tales of triumph

  • Was often made fun of by his friends, the giants, and his own father

  • Good husband, father, son

  • Brash but reliable

  • Occasionally displays great wisdom

Why is Thor called the Peasant’s God?

Thor is known as the God of the Common Man or Peasants God. He interacted with and protected humans. We see this positive relationship with Pjalfi and Roskva, and the compassion he had for their parents.

Thor gives us an example of a man who protects his friends and family, is loyal and shows compassion for others. Sometimes he is quick to lose his temper but the other Gods know they can rely on him.

Thor rides in a chariot which seems kingly but his chariot is pulled by goats (versus horses) a common livestock animal. His goats can be eaten and will then come back to life.

I love this statue of Thor because he is so approachable even though it appears he has just slain Jörmungandr, the sea serpent of Midgard. Marble figurine of Thor resting on his hammer (ca. 1827-1829) by Hermann Ernst Freund. NATIONAL GALLERY OF DENMARK / PUBLIC DOMAIN

God of Agriculture and Fertility

Thor is also the God of agriculture and fertility. His wife Sif represents earth. He was a very relatable figure to farmers and people who worked the land. In him, they had someone who could bring rain to nourish the earth and their crops.

Thor’s hammer was used to bless the earth and crops.

In the Poetic Edda we see how Thor was taunted about this by Odin:

The story “Greybeard’s Song” has a stanza where Odin ridicules Thor about war, saying “I was in the south making battles. I turned princes against one another, I never made peace. Odin receives the powerful men who fall in battle, and Thor receives their servants”

In his book The Viking Spirit: An Introduction to Norse Mythology and Religion, Daniel McCoy states that Iceland was founded by people fleeing the mainland and an oppressive “Odin-like king”. When they built their new settlement they worshipped Thor as the prominent god.

Who Were Thor’s Spirit Animals?

Thor has two goats named Tanngrisnir and Tanngnjostr who pull his chariot. These magical goats can be eaten and will come back to life the next day.


Jörmungandr, the sea serpent of Midgard, was not one of Thor’s spirit animals, but rather his nemesis. However, we see much symbolism surrounding their battles.

Jörmungandr was a child of Loki, who was thrown into the ocean by Odin shortly after his birth.

Read more about Norse Spirit Animals here.

Calling On Thor

Hail to Thor
Who gives us strength and courage
You inspire me to be brave and
protect humanity.
When thunder rolls and
lightning flashes, I honor you.
Hail to Thor, may you ever protect us.
— Erik Olsen

Ways To Honor Thor

  • Go out into a rainstorm and give thanks and praise to Thor

  • Beat a drum and chant his name

  • Learn about weather

  • Lift weights and ask Thor for strength (physical and emotional)

  • Take your children to a petting zoo or farm to see the goats and learn about the importance of agriculture

  • Sit under an oak tree or better yet plant one

  • Write down your needs for Thor on a piece of paper and burn it in the fire

  • Light a red candle for Thor

  • Make an offering of mead, mutton, or lamb. You can pour a beer out under an oak tree.

  • Place a statue or picture of Thor on your altar.


I find it calming to talk to Thor. He is a God that “gets me” and I find it both spiritual and restorative to communicate with him.

Special Holidays for Thor

You can honor Thor at any time that it feels right for you

January 13th is Thorrablot

Thursday is his day

Yule Season - while we often associate Yule with Odin, it is also a family time and a time to honor Thor.

How Do We Know of Thor’s Popularity?

It was common to carve messages on stones both big and small and pieces of wood. Many artifacts have been found from people seeking to communicate with Thor.

We can follow their example and call upon Thor

Several large runestones have been found with the letters “May Thor Hallow… followed by the name of the place where it is located. These show communities in Denmark and Sweeden that saught to honor Thor.

Today we often wear the Mjolnir for the same reasons. To connect us with Thor and the greater Norse community.

Thor’s Mighty Hammer

His hammer is named Mjolnir and it was forged by dwarves. Thor used it to fight the Jotuls.

It is also used to bless couples with fertility at their wedding. It was a Norse custom to place a hammer on the bride’s lap during the ceremony.

Archaeologists have found multitudes of “Thor’s Hammers” from the Viking Age (793 AD – 1066) as pendants, wall hangings, and artwork from Northern Europe and Scandinavia. However, stone carvings of a man and a woman with a hammer above them date back much farther.

These stone statues date back to the Bronze Age (3300 BC to 1200 BC) which attests to the fact that the Nordic religion was around for many years before the Vikings carried it with them on their explorations.

Well done video on Thor (part of a series) from the YouTube Channel “Wisdom of Odin”

God For Environmentalists

In my opinion, Thor and his wife Sif, are wonderful gods for environmentalists to honor and emulate.

Thor is the god of weather, controlling storms and the tides. As we honor Thor we show that we respect nature, and the elements, and wish to preserve the wildness of nature.

Sif supports the earth for cultivation and wild natural areas. Include her when you honor Thor and give praise to her for the earth that brings forth life.

How Does Thor Die?

Like many of the Gods, Thor dies in the battle at Ragnarök. However, before he dies he kills Jörmungandr, the great serpent with Mjollnir.

His sons Magni and Modi are of a few who survive. They inherit his hammer and use it to help restore order to the new world.

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Author, Erik Olsen, recently graduated from college with a degree in Anthropology. While in school he completed an internship with the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History which led him to his current museum position.

Erik desires to be a Viking when he grows up and has worked in Outdoor Adventure leading hikes and rafting trips. A solitary Wiccan and Norse practitioner, Erik writes about Wicca, Norse religion, and making altars.