Correct Answer: In Norse mythology, the spellbinding lights were thought to be fairies casting enchantments and dancing through the sky.
Explanation: In Norse mythology, the lights were believed to be the glimmers of armor and gleams of shields belonging to the Valkyries—women warriors on horseback. They were tasked with leading fallen warriors on the rainbow bridge Bifröst to the realm of the gods. In Finland, legends tell of Arctic foxes racing across snowy mountain peaks, their bushy tails igniting sparks that cause the blazing aurora borealis. Aptly, the Finnish call the aurora “revontulet,” which translates to “fox fires.” In this sparkling Finnish Lapland, the indigenous Sámi people have a belief that water spray from the spouts of whales creates the shining illuminations. The Makah Tribe of Neah Bay, Washington, tells stories of how the lights are the fires of dwarves in the far north, who catch whales and boiled their blubber. Another hunting story stems from Inuit tribes in Alaska, who see the lights as the spirits of animals they have hunted, such as seals, salmon and deer. In Estonia, the brilliant lights were believed to be horsedrawn sleighs carrying celestial guests to a magnificent wedding feast.
Photo Credit—Brad Josephs