Word of the Day

hrafntinna (n)


Corvus_corax_(Common_Raven),_Yosemite_NP,_CA,_US_-_DiliffA combination of “hrafn” meaning “raven” and “tinna” meaning “flint,” rendering the idea of obsidian as “raven flint.” A raven’s wings gleam against light just like a slab of obsidian.

This also brings me to a favorite song of mine by Sigur Rós. It’s called “hrafntinna” as well, and it was actually a coincidence thats I stumbled upon it. I was searching the online dictionary for words that pertained to certain types of crystals and minerals, and the first one with a dictionary definition was obsidian. Then I realized, hey! Sigur Rós!

Even if you couldn’t translate the lyrics to this song, it still feels like obsidian. It’s beautiful and it flows like a current, yet the sharpness of the percussion reminds me of stones clashing or forcing their way into collision with one another. It has this dismal, melodious dark side that just screams obsidian. I can’t quite translate all the lyrics, but with a little help, I have an approximate first verse for you:

Himininn brennur
Eldur og brennisteinn æðir yfir allt
Hjörtun steinrunnin, úti er orðið kalt


The sky burns
Fire and brimstone rush across all
The heart becomes petrified/like stone, becoming colder

The lyrics are cold and the song could make anyone shiver:

And for those who fall in love with the song, here is a version where the band plays underneath the city of Paris. The acoustics in this one make the song twice as intense and intimate:

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