Loki's Vial of Serpent Poison


After that Loki was taken unconditionally and put into a cave. Taking three flat stones, the gods set them up on end and bored a hole through each. Then Loki’s sons were captured, Vali and Nari or Narfi. The Æsir changed Vali into a wolf and he tore asunder his brother Narfi. The Æsir took his entrails and with them bound Loki over the edges of the three stones – one under his shoulder, the second under his loins, the third under his knee-joints – and these bonds became iron. Then Skaði took a poisonous snake and fastened it up over him so that the venom from it should drop on to his face. His wife Sigyn, however, sits by him holding a basin under the poison drops. When the basin becomes full she goes away to empty it, but in the meantime the venom drips on to his face and then he shudders so violently that the whole earth shakes – you call that an earthquake. There he will lie in bonds until Ragnarök.

—Snorri Sturluson, “The Prose Edda”

Soon after Uriel’s Crusade ended, Oðin freed Loki. Loki took the last basin of poison to the dwarves. He threatened and promised until the dwarves, already declining in skill and power, agreed to his demands and made him a reliquary.

It is in the form of a small silver vial, about 2.5" high. A serpent carved in high relief winds its way around the outside, and a silver stopper is held by its gaping fanged jaws. The vial still contains the serpent’s poison.

Granny, Malakim Friend of Protection, cut the reliquary from Loki’s neck shortly before his vessel was destroyed and he was sent back to wander in the Far Marches. It is now held by Zadkiel, Archangel of Protection.

Loki's Vial of Serpent Poison

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