A Stainless steel pendant showing one of Odin's ravens, carved into the metal. Raven are smart creatures, said to be Odin's familiars.
Ravens may be the animal most associated with the Vikings. This is because Ravens are the familiars of Odin, the Allfather. Odin was a god of war, and ravens feasting on the slain were a common sight on the battlefields of the Viking Age. The connection is deeper than that, however. Ravens are very intelligent birds. You cannot look at the eyes and head movement of a raven and not feel that it is trying to perceive everything about you – even weigh your spirit. Odin was accompanied by two ravens – Huginn (“Thought”) and Muninn (“Memory”). Huginn and Muninn fly throughout the nine worlds, and whatever their far-seeing eyes find they whisper back to Odin. Odin is often called hrafnaguð – the Raven God – and is often depicted with Huginn (HOO-gin) and Muninn (MOO-nin) sitting on his shoulders or flying around him.