Origin: Old Norse
Meaning: “to frighten; sea; ocean.”
The name may be related to the Old Norse verb aegja, meaning, “to frighten.” In modern Icelandic, it is used as a poetic term for the ocean.
In Norse mythology, he was a minor sea god and husband to Rán
. He was feared by sailors because if angered, Aegir was the one responsible for horrific sea storms. He was believed to have pre-dated the Aesir and the Vanir and was indestructible, (unlike the other gods), being able to survive the prophetic days of Ragnarok.
He shared his hall with his wife Ran on the Isle of Hlesey where he brewed ale for the gods. It was in his hall where Loki had murdered the beautiful god Baldur.
Aegir was known by other names such as, Oegis (EW-gees); Hler and; Gymir (the Blinder).
He was often depicted as a skinny old man with long white hair and crab claws for fingers.
The name is not used as a name in Iceland, (it is not on the approved list), probably due to its close sound to the word aegja. However, the female spin off name of Aegileif is a very common name. In Old Norse Aegileif meant “life of Aegir” however in modern Icelandic it literally means, “the fear of leaving food uneaten.” Aegir, however, is usable in other Scandinavian countries, but is rare. It is possible that he may catch on with the revival of other pre-Christian Nordic such names as Viking, Loki, Frejr and Odin.
Update: As of 2010, Ægir was the 8th most popular male name in the Faroe Islands. Contrary to what was written a few years back, my research has shown that the name is used in Iceland, and it is fairly common.
Other forms of the name include:
- Ægir (Danish/Faroese/Icelandic/Old Norse)
- Æge (Norwegian)
- Egir (Norwegian)
- Aegir (Swedish)
- Ägir (Swedish)