The world I'm crafting is an extension of human mythology and I am drawing a blank on mythological gods who wielded a hammer and represented the earth element. And if possible the water element.

I have Thor for wind and Vulcan for Fire, but totally blank on possibilities for Earth. Help would be appreciated, please find mythological references for hammer wielding gods who either are or could be associated with those elements.

EDIT: preferably craft oriented.

The Sucellus answer is pretty good though I did not expect agrarian wine gods to carry mallets (I guess it helps with the mashing). The ultimate idea is that this is like a divine forge for weapons, armor, and other equipment.

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    Grammar question: do these multiple gods wield A hammer, or do they each wield a hammer? – RonJohn Nov 8 at 0:32
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    @RonJohn For water I agree but I feel Earth is perfectly reasonable especially since thor is wind which is a further stretch imo. – anon Nov 8 at 0:36
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    @RonJohn Earthquakes would be a reasonable association. – anon Nov 8 at 0:39
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    @RonJohn My plumbing disagrees! Water hammer is totally a thing! – Cort Ammon Nov 8 at 0:45
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    You might want to try mythology.stackexchange.com – rek Nov 9 at 2:02

10 Answers 10

No help to offer regarding water, but for Earth:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sucellus

In Gallo-Roman religion, Sucellus or Sucellos was a deity depicted as carrying a large mallet (also described as a hammer) and also an olla and/or barrel. Originally a Celtic deity, his cult flourished not only among Gallo-Romans, but also to some extent among the neighbouring peoples of Raetia and Britain. He has been associated with agriculture and wine, particularly in the territory of the Aedui.

Agriculture, wine... hence Earth, at least in its fertility "Mother-Earth" aspect.

  • Eh he could also go for water, alchemically speaking aqua vita is also known as hard alcohol. – anon Nov 8 at 0:59
  • @anon, true. And even at the more basic level, water is a necessity of agriculture. I found another site that suggests the mallet/hammer is tied to his "trade" as a cooper (just as Vulcan's is tied to smithing). earthandstarryheaven.com/2017/05/31/hammer-gods – JDM-GBG Nov 8 at 1:04
  • Carrying a mallet/hammer doesn't make sense. OTOH, given that he carries a cooking pot in one had, "a beer barrel suspended from a pole" would make a lot more sense. – RonJohn Nov 8 at 2:16
  • @RonJohn, a cooper -- a barrel-maker -- needs a hammer to do his job. – JDM-GBG Nov 8 at 22:23

Aulë

Not sure if fictional mythologies count, but the Valar Aulë of Tolkien's legendarium came to mind right away for me.

Aulë was an Ainur, one of the Aratar and a Valar, who was responsible for fashioning and crafting the substances of which Arda, the world, was composed.

lotr.wikia.com

He does indeed wield a hammer, although it's more of a craftsman's tool than a weapon of war.

Then Aulë took up a great hammer to smite the Dwarves; and he wept. But Iluvatar had compassion upon Aulë and his desire, because of his humility; and the Dwarves shrank from the hammer and they were afraid, and they bowed down their heads and begged for mercy.

The Silmarillion, "Of Aulë and Yavanna"

  • Ya know, simply cuz it's widely accepted like Tolkien, Ill consider it. Though missing the elemental link, ill still upvote since its closer than some of the other answers. – anon Nov 8 at 12:25
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    @anon The answer doesn't make this very clear but Aule is defeniteley a good fit for the earth element. Aside from creating the dwarves, he has/had a very prominent role in the shaping of Middle-Earth (actually all of Arda), which was mainly a joint project of Aule and Yavanna: Aule made the landscapes, earth and mountains, whereas Yavanna created animals and plants to live there. – Nicolai Nov 8 at 12:45

Many Hindu and Buddhist deities carry a vajra, a kind of hammer-club representing indestructibility and ultimate power and often related to protection. The root of the word is thought to be Proto-Aryan word, as a distant Finnish word for "hammer" relates to the Sanskrit.

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For example, Mahakala, the terrifying consort of Hindu deity Kali, becomes a protector in Buddhism, and is sometimes seen wielding a vajra, as in the statue below

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Ogun He's a blacksmith, the Loa of Iron and Earth and a powerful warrior. As a deity it has many manifestations in Afro-American religions like Vodoun, Santeria and Brazilian Candomblé. Is the god of:

  1. Earth.
  2. Iron.
  3. Smiths and craftments but also warriors.
  4. It mixes the concepts of war and tech (Not unlike Athena)
  • I didn't think about the Loa because I was trying to keep roughly in the western occult theme. But thanks to slavery the Loa do trickle into that theme so this candidate does work pretty well, thanks. – anon Nov 10 at 3:53

Not positive that this is a great question for Worldbuilding.

That said, what about Hephaestus, the Greek god of blacksmiths? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hephaestus

I think he'd make a good Earth god.

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    The Romans were convinced that Hephaestus was the Greek name of Vulcanus... – AlexP Nov 8 at 5:13
  • @AlexP I mean I wouldn't directly mix the Greek and Roman pantheons as they are similar but different... I would argue that Hephaestus is the better known of the two anyways. – IT Alex Nov 8 at 13:23
  • How is he an Earth god though? He is clearly associated with crafting and forging. – Alexis Nov 8 at 15:15
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    mining/forging is literally extracting/working with the bowels of the earth – theRiley Nov 8 at 17:12
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    Just to clarify: Hephaestus is not the god of mining. He is the god of fire though, from whom Prometheus stole the fire to bring to humans. – Alexis Nov 9 at 7:52

Daikokuten, would be a good choice for your Earth god. He is another agricultural deity and, on his Wikipedia entry, is specifically categorized as an Earth god.

That would free up Sucellus for use as your Water deity, given his strong association with drink. Also, I would consider the Finnish god Ukko as your Air deity rather than Thor, as Ukko is a full-fledged Sky deity with Weather and Thunder just being amongst his aspects.

The Finnish god Ilmarinen would be another option for Air, as he is a Smithing god who is supposed to have crafted the dome of the sky.

  • Erg this answer has some good points. But I want Thor because hes widely recognizable, but IImarinen has some good fun lore points. Ukko's lore doesn't really reinforce the hammer or crafts aspect near as much as IImarinen. Daikokuten is interesting and dangerous. Hes interesting because he could also relate to a new dark element. But hes also dangerous because he belongs to a popular set of gods of an actively worshipped faith. Not that I was to concerned with public opinion so much as this would require having to feign some mention of the other 6 fortune gods. – anon Nov 10 at 3:46
  • Meant to add, unlike most pantheons where the gods have larger degrees of independence the 7 fortune gods are a more tightly bundled set for the simple fact that they are the 7 fortune gods. They are rarely mentioned independently even though they may act independently. – anon Nov 10 at 3:49
  • You could also use this to add a directional aspect to your setup. With Air being Thor/Ukko/Ilmarinen it could be North and imply Cold/Frost/Ice aspects to oppose Fire in the South down in Italy with Vulcan, while Sucellus, being Gallo-Roman, would make Water the element of the West, appropriate for the Atlantic coast, opposed by Earth, coming out of Asia in the East. – Cadrac Nov 10 at 9:11

Egyptian god Seker may be a stretch...

Seker, possibly through his association with Ptah, also has a connection with craftsmen. In the Book of the Dead he is said to fashion silver bowls.... While these festivals took place, devotees would hoe and till the ground, along with driving cattle, which showed that Seker could have had agricultural aspects about him. ... Also, the god was depicted as assisting in various tasks such as digging ditches and canals.

Relatively little seems to be known about Seker, you could reshape him into the form you need.

Just a thought:
What if mother earth is a goddess (gaia?)
She and Volcan are having a son, call him what you like.
This son is the god of forging as he is the son of metal and fire.
I hope this helps still :)

  • Hephaestus and Gaia actually had an accidental son, who was adopted by Athena and became an Athenian ruler. The hammer does not seem to be part of his attributes – Alexis Nov 9 at 7:54

Athena seems a decent option, war and crafting both use hammers even though she isn't particularly associated with them.

  • Athena was the goddess of wisdom and a war god (battle strategy). She is often depicted with a shield and spear. So not in the ballpark. – anon Nov 8 at 12:22
  • @anon Wisdom, the arts, crafts, and skill and more. I agree she's normally depicted with shield and spear but hammers were used in both crafts and warfare so it could be stretched to fit. – Tim B Nov 8 at 12:33

The root deities for most Indo European cultures was the P.I.E. (Proto Into European) culture, which existed probably in modern Ukraine in the fourth millennium BC. Their god of thunder and lightning was known as Perkwunos, and this is considered the source of gods of thunder in later mythology (such as Thor).

H2epom Nepōts is the P.I.E god of the waters

Dyḗus Ptḗr is the sky god, and chief deity.

Some searching did not turn up a specific deity for "Earth", although there are two ways to go about this if you are using P.I.E: Yemo, the first man to die, and who's body was used to create the Earth, or perhaps reconstruct an Earth goddess who is the consort to the sky god.

While P.I.E. has no direct answers to your question, it should provide some alternative paths, especially since the language and culture are the roots of most Indo European languages, mythologies and cultures that exist today.

  • Well this is definitely a tangent, Ive never heard of an acknowledged underlying PIE faith before now. Especially one traced back as far as potentially 8000 BC. Its tangentially interesting ill grant. – anon Nov 10 at 3:25

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