Sowilo Rune pendant displayed against a book.


Sowilo is the rune for the sun. The Vikings were very aware of the sun as a powerful force, especially during the long summer months where the sun never truly sets. They believed that the sun was pulled across the sky in a chariot pulled by two horses, Árvakr and Alsviðr. The symbolic meaning of Sowilo – light, hope, positivity, and success – are all drawn from this association with the sun.

Understanding Sowilo: Examples from History

Sowilo appears in all three rune poems, Old Norwegian, Old Icelandic, and Anglo-Saxon. Each reference focuses on the sun’s importance, power, and central role in the Viking’s life.

From the Old Norwegian:

Sun is the light of the world;

I bow to the divine decree.

In the Old Icelandic:

Sun is the shield of the clouds

and shining ray

and destroyer of ice.

From the Anglo Saxon:

The sun is ever a joy in the hopes of seafarers

when they journey away over the fishes’ bath,

until the courser of the deep bears them to land.

Sowilo is the Runic Letter S.

Yes, Racists Ruin Everything

Historically, the Sowilo rune was adapted into a pair used as the insignia for the German army’s SS. Subsequently, far-right hate groups have used the rune in their messaging, either paired or individually. For this reason, it is illegal to display Sowilo in Germany and some other regions. 

What Does It Mean When Sowilo Appears in a Rune Reading?

Sowilo represents the sun’s bright and fiery energy. If Sowilo appears in your work, it can be a sign that you’re seeking guidance or clarity. Wisdom has the ability to change lives. This Norse Rune reminds us to look for what is true and correct as we move forward building our lives. Sowilo is also strongly associated with confidence and victory. 

Sowilo is also a favorite rune of travelers, especially sailors. Remember that the Vikings didn’t have access to all of the high-tech navigation equipment available to us today. The Norse sagas mention Sunstones, which may have had some compass-like properties allowing them to be used to stay on course even when the sun wasn’t visible.

To carry Sowilo with you on your journey toward greatness, you can wear the rune as a pendant.

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