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"You should carve victory-runes if you want to have victory. Carve some on the hilt of your sword, carve some on the middle of the blade also, some elsewhere on the sword, and name Tyr twice."
— Sigerdrifa, Sigrdrifumal, the Poetic Edda

Tyr is a deity of the Norse pantheon. He is the son of Odin and Frigga, and has a seat on the council of twelve at Asgard.[1]

Tyr also has worshipers in the worlds of Toril.

DescriptionEdit

Appearance and personalityEdit

Tyr is a strong, bearded man with a missing right hand.[2]

He is the bravest and most honorable of the Aesir gods. [3]

His trustworthiness is legendary; Tyr allowed the wolf Fenrir to bite off his right hand rather than break his word.[4] To this day is the only god Fenrir shows any trust in.[1] Tyr has never broken his word.[3]

Tyr is Lawful Neutral in alignment. In some worlds, such as Toril, he is considered Lawful Good.

TitlesEdit

Tyr is called the God of Courage and Strategy.[2] He is called God of War.[1]

AbilitiesEdit

As a deity, Tyr is immortal and cannot fumble. He is an exceptional fighter as well as a master of divine magic. Among his many abilities, Tyr can alter his size, shape and form at will; see, hear and speak directly to anyone within 15 miles, and discern lies with perfect accuracy (although not against more powerful deities, including Odin and Loki).[2] He can also see the invisible and the presence of thieves.[4]

Tyr can inspire a berserker rage in his followers.[1]

He can create magic weapons and armor, and magic items which improve morale.

PortfolioEdit

Tyr rules over the concepts of courage, law, protection, trust, strategy, tactics, war, and writing.

He automatically senses whenever someone prepares for battle or make a courageous decision.[2]

Tyr watches over the valkyries and ensures only the bravest warriors are taken to Odin at Valhalla.[3] He can dictate the winners of battle.

WorshipEdit

DogmaEdit

Tyr's followers teach the value of courage in all things, though not to the point of foolhardiness, and self-sacrifice, but not for personal gain.[2]

WorshipersEdit

Tyr is popular in most civilized lands, but especially among warriors (fighters, monks, paladins and rangers), sages (who respect his position as a god of writing) and dwarves, whose ancestors crafted the chains that bound Fenrir.

One of Tyr's most powerful champions is the human fighter Sigurd, who was elevated to divine status by Tyr.[3]

ClergyEdit

Tyr's priests follow a militaristic strictness in their everyday duties, as fitting the followers of the god of law. They do not tolerate lateness or laziness, but happily support those who can follow their rules.

The priests often train themselves to fight left-handed in honor of their deity.

RitualsEdit

Warriors invoke the name of Tyr before battle.

The priesthood of Tyr holds its ceremonies on fixed dates announced in advance. While conducting religious ceremonies, the priests emulate their deity by covering their right arm with a closed leather sleeve.

Holy sitesEdit

Tyr's temples are strictly organized militaristic fortresses. They train the local population in the use of weapons and fighting in groups.[2]

Holy symbolEdit

Tyr's holy symbol is a sword.

Favored weaponEdit

Tyr favors the longsword.

RelationshipsEdit

FamilyEdit

Tyr is son of Odin and Frigga. He is a brother of Balder and half-brother to Thor via his father.

Another story says that his maternal grandmother is nine hundred headed wife of the frost giant Hymer.[1]

EnemiesEdit

Tyr lost his hand to the wolf Fenrir. He and the wolf Garm are destined to slay each other at Ragnarok.

AlliesEdit

Tyr is the third highest ranking of the Aesir after Odin and Thor, and commands great respect from the other gods of the pantheon.[2]

ArtifactsEdit

Tyr wields an exceptionally powerful longsword. It is exceptionally deadly and especially harmful to evil extraplanar beings and chaotic creatures.

RealmEdit

Tyr's home plane is Asgard, though the name of his hall is unknown.

HistoryEdit

Long ago, the Aesir decided to bind Fenrir the wolf, son of Loki, with bindings crafted by the dwarves so that could not be broken. Fenrir would only allow the bindings if one of the gods placed his hand in his mouth and promised not to move. Tyr thrust his hand in without hesitation, and, when the bindings appeared, Fenrir bit his hand, wrist and a good part of forearm off. Tyr kept the stump of an arm as a mark of pride.

Publication historyEdit

Original D&DEdit

Tyr is first referenced in Gods, Demi-Gods & Heroes (1976), p.27.

AD&D 1st editionEdit

Tyr appears in Deities & Demigods (1e) (1980), p.108. He is described as having the abilities of a 13th level druid, 25th level paladin, 10th level illusionist, 15th level thief, 10th level monk and 10th level bard. He has 380 hit points, more even than Demogorgon, who had 200.

AD&D 2nd editionEdit

Tyr is detailed in Legends & Lore (2e) (1990), p.183 and the Planescape sourcebook On Hallowed Ground (1996), p.148-149.

D&D 3rd editionEdit

Tyr appears in Deities and Demigods (3e) (2002), p.195-197.

D&D 4th editionEdit

The Norse pantheon does not appear in D&D 4th edition.

D&D 5th editionEdit

Tyr is listed in the Player's Handbook (5e) (2014) in both the Forgotten Realms pantheon (page 294) and the Norse pantheon (299).

Creative originsEdit

Tyr, also written Týr, is a major god of the Norse mythology of Scandinavia. In the Younger Futhark alphabet of Norse runes, his name is written ᛏᚢᛦ. In modern times, his name is the origin of the weekday Tuesday, originally "Tiw's day" or "Tyr's day".

According to the poem Hymiskvida, Tyr's father is not Odin but Hymir, the giant, whose house he visits to borrow the world's largest cauldron.

In Lokasenna, Loki taunts Tyr for his missing hand, which was bitten off by Loki's son, the wolf Fenrir. He accuses Tyr of being poor at settling disputes between men, perhaps because he is not even-handed. Finally, Loki claims to have fathered a son with Tyr's wife. The Aesir subsequently chain Loki up in a cave.

In Sigrdrifumal, the valkyrie Sigerdrifa advises the hero Sigurd to carve the name of Tyr on a sword to ensure victory.

In the later Prose Edda, Snorri Sturlson describes Tyr as daring, stout-hearted, wise, intelligent, and the most brave of the Aesir. He lost his hand to the wolf Fenrir. Snorri says that Tyr can sway the result of battles if warriors call on him, and that he is called a peacemaker among men.

According to Old Norse specialist Jackson Crawford, the name Týr has the same root as Zeus and Jupiter.[5]

Reception and influenceEdit

Tyr's inclusion in the AD&D 1st edition Deities & Demigods inspired its appearance in roguelike computer RPG NetHack, where he is the god of lawful valkyries. NetHack Twitch streamer Matt Colville made a catchphrase of that game's introductory exhortation for players of lawful valkyrie: "Go bravely with Tyr!"

The Norse god Tyr is the primary inspiration for the god Tyr in the Forgotten Realms.

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Gods, Demi-Gods & Heroes (1976), p.27.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Deities and Demigods (3e) (2002), p.195-197.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 On Hallowed Ground (1996), p.148-149.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Deities & Demigods (1e) (1980), p.108.
  5. Who is Týr?, Jackson Crawford, Youtube
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