Thurisaz: Rune of Thor, Strength, and Jotuns

Thurisaz is a rune that comes up from time to time, but that I found I’ve never written about. I always associate it with a thorn just from the looks of it, and therefore with things that may not feel the best, things that may poke and sting. Turns out my research on this Rune tells me I’m not the only one who associates it with a thorn. But there are many more things to associate with this rune.


For example, Thor. Thurisaz is apparently the rune of Thor. According to Thorsson, this rune “represents pure action, potency, raw power, and strength on the physical plane” (from Taking Up The Runes by Diana L Paxson). All of those are things also associated with Thor. However, my personal associations with “prickly things” isn’t off base. This is in fact a rune that can signal conflict, especially those involving aggression. It warns you not charge head first into anything, and instead to procede with caution.

It can also be a great source of protection, wrapping the runecaster up in a thicket of thorns that tear enemies to shreds when they try to barrel through.

Not only is Thurisaz associated with Thor, but also with the Jotuns that He battled. Jotuns, like Thurisaz, are raw power ready to rend and tear into anything in their path…save for those they deem worthy of their friendship and aid. If you’ve been reading runes for more than five minutes, then you’ve probably heard about “blooding the runes”–basically offering the runes a few drops of your blood. Most of the runes you can get away with not doing this, but Thurisaz is one that will demand it of you if you want it to respond best.

Don’t invoke Thurisaz likely, especially if you’re asking it to tell someone (or something) to “back off”. It will do it’s job, and if you change your mind you will find yourself not having much luck taking it off the trail. It is a fierce rune, one of great force and dedication. It is not a rune to be played with or toyed with. In a way “proceed with caution” is a good phrase for working with this rune as well, though it does prefer when you aren’t weak and instead gather your own strength and focus it, just as Thurisaz does with it’s strength.


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