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Magnus the Red, the True Viking Primarch

This is half a thought I had about Magnus the Red being more of a Viking Primarch than Leman Russ. I never quite had time to research the idea, but I thought I'd share the half-finished idea with you all now for discussion. Why? Because it's blog post day, I still have 5 hours of school work to do and it's already 9pm.

Enjoy the idea, and see if you can flesh it out a bit more than I have!

Whilst everyone considers Leman Russ to be the quintessential Viking primarch due to his reputation fo heavy drinking and general combat demeanour (a fancy way of saying he likes to hit stuff with a sword), Magnus is actually a much better candidate to represent the Norse in 40K.

You might be thinking that he much more clearly represents the Egyptians. Well, there's a difference between visual aesthetic and plot themes. Everything about Magnus hints at a far more Northerly inspiration than Ra or others in the Egyptian pantheon.

In fact... he's Odin.

Let's start with some gentle, visual similarities.

Odin is a one eyed man, usually depicted with a spear. Magnus is famously the giant red Cyclops, having given up his eye to stop the Flesh Change afflicting his legion. Odin was said to have done a similar thing, mirroring Magnus' trade for knowledge of the warp for Knowledge of the Ages.

Odin is also said to be the god of Sorcery, again mirrored by Magnus being one of the most psychically potent characters in 40K... and hands down the most powerful in the game. He is said to have a love of knowledge above all else.

Now you can say that Russ has two wolf pets, and the aesthetic and language similarities to go with it. But I think Magnus fits Odin's character more than Russ, and thus makes for a more fitting Viking Primarch.

It's interesting that these two characters are linked in the fluff though, and that they are opponents. You could say that their mythic similarities lead to some natural tension in their own stories.

Well, like I said; half thought through and definitely incoherent as an idea. But I'm unlikely to have time to take it further. Let me know how wrong I am in the comments below.

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  1. I completely see what you are getting at. Odin had Huginn and Muginn, two ravens who went out into the world and told Odin what was going on. Bird/Ravens and hidden secrets falls right into Tzeentchs wheelhouse.

    1. I knew there was something I was forgetting about the themes! Thanks for commenting and pointing that out.

    2. Russ is probably more of a Thor character. As far as I remember, Thor is more of the hard drinking kind of guy who hits people with his hammer when he gets into trouble.

  2. A lot of Mystery School mythos is interwoven into the Warhammer realms. The more you look the more connections you’ll see which in turn has real world reflections as well. The same story telling itself over and over.


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