(Medium Kingdom) -- The red haired Vanir are isolated in the northwest
and their mailed swordsmen perforce must vent their warlike natures
on their Asgardian kin to the east, the savage Picts to the south, or
often upon grim Cimmeria to the southeast. Many a hero of the
Hyborian Age was of the Vanir and warriors of Vanaheim are known to
be utterly fearless in combat.
Listen, young warrior, son of countless kings. Listen to thy heritage, to the story of thy people, of Vanaheim!
Once, long, long ago, thy people inhabited a land far to the north. It
was the land of the gods, where days were counted in weeks and nights
would last a month or more. Our people had no name for themselves then,
and lived in peace, hunting and fishing for their livelihood. Then the
great Snow Apes came upon us from the north, mad, hungry, raging
animals. Great was the battle, and when it was done the snow lay red
for a year! Greatness grew from such an event, and we were never to be
Within a generation we were invaded yet again, this time by Hyborian
warrior tribes from the south. Great men of war, they seemed as gods in
battle! We fought them too, and in time overcame them. And from their
survivors we heard tales. They were tales of strange lands to the
south, of war and glory; they stirred our blood. We could not stay!
Our people began the long trek south, where they met more Hyborians. At
first their bright swords and axes drove us back in great slaughter,
but in time we too learned to wield sword and axe. They came to
call us the Nordheim, and having none for ourselves we accepted the
name. For a thousand years we warred with the Hybori, and we honor
their heroes among our own. At last they were betrayed by their own
kin, the Hyperboreans, who fell upon them even as we struck from
the north yet again. The northern Hyborians were driven south, in
time driving their southern neighbors even farther, thus beginning the
great southern migrations of the proud Hyborian people.
But we are not Hybori. We are the Vanir. And thou must know of thy
cousins, for it was at this time that the Nordheim split, and became
the Aesir and the Vanir. The blond-haired Aesir ruled in Asgard, while
we Vanir of the red manes fought our way westward, slaying all before
us, to stop only when we reached the western ocean.
It is a hardy land which fortune has granted us, worthy of our people.
We hunt the cold reaches and fish the icy western ocean. And of course,
we war. We war to the south, on the bear Picts, and farther still we
war beyond the Eiglophian Mountains on the Cimmerian northern clans.
Such battle, fit to lift the heart of any man of war! But most of all
we war with the Aesir, our cousins. Where else can we better test our
steel and cleanse our souls in battle than with our own blond-haired
Know, great warrior, that our prophets tell us a great age comes
to this world, an age of empire and red raging war! Further know it is
said that we will one day rule a great nation and be kings of a foreign
people, or we will die, amid the rending of glaciers and the cold
silence of the northern world. Our fate, as always, rests with the
strongest arm in the tribe. Rule well, young warrior and father of
kings! Now listen well to the unfolding of thy new kingdom.