The ancient Germanic peoples were polytheists, meaning they believed in multiple gods. The gods feature prominently in their mythologies and worldview. Because of this, believing the gods are real and have influence over our lives is an important part of being a modern Heathen. The specific names and aspects of the gods of Heathenry vary by regional tradition, but regardless of which influences you choose for your own reconstructed modern Heathenry, worshiping the gods can be handled in the same general manner.

Like with the ancestors and house/land wights, many modern Heathens feel it is helpful and/or appropriate to set up shrines or altars in honor of a god or several gods. While forming a close personal relationship with one or all of the gods is something that will be up to each individual Heathen (it is not a requirement of being Heathen), giving offerings and or sacrificing to the gods during a blót or other ritual celebration is considered a standard practice. How and when you worship, pray to, honor, and/or offer to the gods is an important part of establishing your own hearth cult.

Some common gods

While it is not possible to list every single god of the varied Germanic pantheons, a few common ones are listed below, starting with the Proto-Germanic reconstructed word and its descendants. New Heathens are encouraged to research the other gods in the regional traditions that interest them.

Proto-Germanic: *Wōdanaz
Old English: Wōden
Old Frisian: Wēda
Old High German: Wotan
Old Norse: Óðinn
Old Saxon: Wōdan
Modern English: Odin

Proto-Germanic: *Tiwaz
Old English: Tīw
Old Frisian: Tii
Old High German: Ziu
Old Norse: Týr
Old Saxon: —
Modern English:

Proto-Germanic: *Ingwaz
Old English: Ing/Ingui Frēa
Old Frisian: —
Old High German: Inguin
Old Norse: Yngvi Freyr
Old Saxon: —
Modern English: Ing/Freyr

Proto-Germanic: *Þunraz
Old English: Þunor
Old Frisian: Thuner
Old High German: Thonar/Donar
Old Norse: Þórr
Old Saxon: Thunar
Modern English: Thor

Proto-Germanic: *Frijjō
Old English: Frīg
Old Frisian: —
Old High German: Friia
Old Norse: Frigg
Old Saxon: —
Modern English: Frigg/Frigga

Proto-Germanic: *Frawjō
Old English: Frēo
Old Frisian: Frouwe/Frowe
Old High German: Frouwa
Old Norse: Freyja
Old Saxon: Frūa
Modern English: Freyja