It may be noted that even the Loki of Snorri’s tales is a mischievous rather than a wicked being. Sometimes his actions cause inconvenience and suffering to the gods, as when he helps a giant to steal the apples of immortality, or, in his desire to steal a salmon, kills an otter who has powerful relations to avenge him. Yet on other occasions it is Loki who rescues the gods from serious predicaments, as when he helps to regain Thor’s hammer by dressing him up as a bride. Sometimes Loki acts under compulsion, either because the giants get him into their power or the angry gods insist on his righting some wrong he has done them. There is no doubt however that many of his acts, like the cutting off of Sif’s hair, are the doings of a naughty boy rather than the crimes against the righteous gods. While he is both cunning and ingenious, it may be noted that his plans do not by any means always succeed. GODS AND MYTHS OF NORTHERN EUROPE, H. R. ELLIS DAVIDSON (via aomiarmster)