Who Is Jorundr in Vikings: Valhalla, and Is He Based on a Real Person?

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The story of Vikings: Valhalla continued with the events of season 2 of the series as the trio of Leif, Freydis, and Harald are now in the middle of a new adventure in their lives. Of course, Freydis decided to follow her own path in life as she is now an important figure in the Viking community due to her religious significance to her people. That was when she met a Viking named Jorundr, who became an important part of her journey. So, who is Jorundr in Vikings: Valhalla?

Jorundr is a Jomsviking from the hidden settlement of Jomsborg. He was the one who helped Freydis, Leif, and Harald escape Olaf’s forces in the beginning. Jorundr was eventually framed for Freydis’s “death” and was exiled. He was the one responsible for bringing Olaf’s forces to Jomsborg.

The story of Jorundr in Vikings: Valhalla is one that is a bit complicated yet very relatable as he lived in a world that he thought was better than the one that he and the other Jomsvikings left behind. However, the truth was that he was also living in a world that wasn’t exactly different from the one that he and the other Jomsvikings hated. Now, let’s look at who Jorundr is and what his role in Vikings: Valhalla is.

Who Is Jorundr In Vikings: Valhalla?

One of the things that we know is that Vikings: Valhalla includes a lot of different characters that are useful to the storyline of the main characters as they allow their storylines to progress. In that regard, the trio of Leif, Freydis, and Harald all meet new characters that play important roles in their lives, and that held true during the events of season 2 of Vikings: Valhalla.

Back in season 1 of Vikings: Valhalla, we saw that Olaf was captured by King Sweyn’s forces and that Freydis and Harald had made their way out of Kattegat. Meanwhile, Leif went back to Kattegat in the hopes of watching Olaf’s execution in person, as that was when he met a mysterious man that seemingly knew who he was. Nevertheless, this man didn’t introduce himself or make his intentions known.

However, in season 2, Olaf managed to get on the good side of Sweyn and ended up convincing the people of Kattegat and the new king of Norway that Freydis and Harald needed to be captured and killed because of the threat that they posed to Kattegat. That was when Leif reunited with Freydis and Harald to try to find a way to escape Olaf and his men.

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During the time when the trio was trying to look for a way out of their predicament, a man followed them and eventually tried to reach out. Leif tried to kill him, but Freydis wanted to learn more about what he wanted to say. This very same man was the one who spoke to Leif during Olaf’s supposed execution. His name was Jorundr.

Jorundr bore a unique mark that Freydis said was quite familiar to her as she believed that this man had been sent to them for a good reason. The man introduced himself as one of the few remaining Vikings that were actually loyal to the traditional ways and that he could help the trio escape Olaf and the men that he led.

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That was when Jorundr was able to help the trio escape by making use of the weapons that he and his men had. These men were called the Jomsvikings, who resided in a mysterious settlement called Jomsborg, which was supposed to be the second version of Uppsala and was meant to be a safe haven for those who still worshipped the old Norse pagan gods.

What Happened To Jorundr In Vikings: Valhalla?

While Freydis and the others escaped Olaf, Harald and Leif decided to travel together. Freydis remained with the Jomsvikings and even became their new priestess due to how important she was to them as the Last Daughter of Uppsala. As such, after Harekr, the leader of the Jomsvikings, left Jomsborg to go looking for people who wanted a safe haven, Freydis became the de facto leader of Jomsborg and even allowed the Jomsvikings and the regular Vikings to commune together.

That was when Jorundr thought that what Freydis was doing was for the best of everyone in Jomsborg. But when Harekr returned, he was surprised that the Jomsvikings were communing with all of the other Vikings that they had brought to Jomsborg. His original reason for rescuing people from the mainland was to put them to work as slaves in Jomsborg as they saw them impure compared to the other Vikings.

As such, Harekr regarded Jorundr as a traitor but gave him a chance to redeem himself by feeding Freydis poisoned food. Instead of killing her, Jorundr tried to escape with Freydis and her son, only for them to be discovered by Harekr and the other Jomsvikings. Freydis, however, was able to escape from the Jomsvikings.

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As for Jorundr, he was captured and tried in front of the elders of Jomsborg for the “murder” of Freydis, as Harekr made everyone believe that he had killed their priestess. Instead of killing Jorundr, the elders decided to have his hand cut off and exile him away from Jomsborg.

While Jorundr was out in exile, Freydis returned to Jomsborg and regained her position as the leader of the Jomsvikings by defeating Harekr. However, Jorundr was fished out of the sea by Olaf and his men and was convinced that he could become the new lord of Jomsborg if he would help them find where Jomsborg was.

In that regard, Jorundr did indeed help Olaf get to Jomsborg, only for him to find out that Harekr was already dead and that Freydis was now the one leading the Jomsvikings. Jorundr’s mother called him a traitor but secretly gave him a message that would help the Jomsvikings in their defense against Olaf and his men.

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As such, when Jorundr was given the task of weakening Jomsborg’s defenses, he secretly conspired with the Jomsvikings to trick Olaf into a trap. However, Jorundr suffered a mortal wound at the hands of one of Olaf’s men. Still, he redeemed himself by proving that he was not a traitor to his people.

Is Jorundr Based On A Real Person?

One of the things that we know about Vikings: Valhalla is that this series has characters that are inspired by real-life people that were chronicled in the Vinland sagas. So, does that mean that Jorundr is based on a real person?

Jorundr was also a real person, just like a lot of the other characters of Vikings: Valhalla. However, the way that his story was told was different because, according to history, Jorundr was a Swedish king, son of Yngvi of the House of Yngling. 

According to Snorri Sturluson, Jorundr traveled the seas to plunder with his brother. He eventually became the ruler of Sweden and Uppsala but still lived as a pirate that pillaged the seas. Nevertheless, he eventually lost a battle against Gylaug of Halogaland and was killed after the fight.

In that regard, the real version of Jorundr has nothing to do with Jomsborg or the Jomsvikings. After all, Jomsborg and the Jomsvikings are said to be legendary entities that may or may have existed.

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