The Futhark runic alphabet is used from the second century AD It was mainly used by Germanic peoples and Scandinavian (commonly referred incorrectly Vikings) during the migration of the II in the fifth century. Ornamental engravings can be seen on jewels, amulets and weapons from this period. It was also used on stones erected in northern Europe. Finally, it serves as a support in certain divination practices.

Dates in brief

The first runic signs traced back to about the year 160. They were found on a comb at Vimose on the island of Fyn, Denmark. To date, these are the oldest known runic inscriptions. There are written traces, mostly engraved for ornamental purposes, on many everyday objects or on period weapons. The Scandinavian Runic Stones appear around the year 700 and announce the transition to the recent Futhark. This will give rise to several runic alphabets: Hälsinge runes (10 th to 13 th century), medieval runes (12 th to 16 th century) and Dalecarlian runes (16 th to 20 th century). It serves essentially as divinatory support today.

Origins and variants

The invention of this writing is generally attributed to merchants who came into contact with Roman culture. Its primary use was clearly nornemental and epigraphic. This writing certainly finds its sources in an imitation or appropriation of the Roman alphabet. The first corpus of inscription being basically simple. The origin of the use in magic and divination are attested only from the fifth century, on epigraphic traces of Roman Iron Age. In Riendatal, a section of the poem Havamal, the discovery of the runes is attributed to Odin. Suspended for 9 days in Yggdrasil and pierced with his own spear, he seizes them before acquiring knowledge of the hidden things and power over the 9 worlds.

Codex Runicus

Divinatory value


The runes used for divination are the letters of the old Futhark, to which we added a white rune, WYRD. The word rune means secret, mystery. So they have a strong connection with divination and magic. The symbols represent concepts that we can think about to help us in our life journey. The understanding of Nordic cosmogony is very important to understand the deep symbolism of runes. To draw the runes is to question oneself with the help of a codified reference system.


Each engraved symbol brings us back to a concept, to a part of our past, present or future history. More than a tool for exploring the future and interrogating oracles, the runes are a medium of reflection for us to explore ourselves. There are many forms of prints, each one is more complete than the previous one. In the end, what matters is not the method, but the questioning it creates in the individual. This site tries to bring the rudimentary bases in the understanding of the runes.

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Do you want to test the symbolism of runes by querying the 3 Norns? Clear your mind, ask your question and click on the button.

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