Nidhogg (or Nidhögg) is a frightfully long snake that lives and writhing constantly in the roots of the mythological holy ash of Yggdrasil. It lives in the land of Hel, the seat of death, practically at the very bottom of the Norse universe, where eternal darkness and cold prevails. The beast feeds on the blood of the dead, which it sucks out of the bodies of the misfortunes who could not find their way to Valhalla, a paradise for warriors.
Hel, of which the goddess Hel is a lady, is one of the nine worlds in the Norse mythology. This darkest mythical land is located at the very bottom of Yggdrasil. According to a mythological description, those who did not die in the glorious death, that is, in the Viking sense of the word, in the struggle against the sword in their hands, come to this land.
It can be said that Nidhogg lives in the worst part of the Hel, in a place called Náströnd, which can be translated as “the coast of the dead”. The ghosts of perjurers, murderers and other people who have committed terrible crimes reach this necropolis. A huge palace built of tangled snakes spitting venom reigns over the omnipresent fire. It is here that Nidhogg, who not only sucks the blood out of the bodies of misfortunes condemned to eternal stay in Náströnd, but also bites at the roots of Yggdrasil in order to destroy the world, made his nest here.
The origin of the name of this terrible mythological creature is also interesting. The name Nidhogg probably derives from the expression “níð”, which in the Old Norse language meant a loss of honor. The name Nidhogg can now be translated as “Biting Fear”, which reflects the character of this mythological animal very well.