Deciphering the Runes Book in Disney’s Frozen

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Well, I’m currently up to some weird thing like trying to decipher Old Norse text in the Runes Book in Disney’s Frozen film. I have fairly good progress so far though got stuck on some words. Check it out below, any help/correction is appreciated.

Book Cover

runes of knowledgeable

It looks like they are long-branch Younger Futhark runes. Written “ᚱᚢᚾᚬᛦ ᚠᛁᚢᛚᚴᚢᚾᛁᚴᛦᛅ” or “runąR fiulkunikRa” which should represent “Rúnar Fjǫlkunnigra” in Old Norse, translatable as “Runes of Knowledgeable(in magic)”.
(Chrome browser may not render runic font properly. If you don’t see runic characters in the line above, try other browser)

Book Inside

runes text

Apparently the lengthy runes in the page above and other pages are just repeated text of

1: ᛋᛏᛅᛁᚾ ᚠᚢᛏᚢ ᚢᛅᛚᛏᛅᛦ ᛏᚢᚴᛚᛅᚼᛁᛘᛁᚾᛋᛁᛋ ᚦᛅᚢ
2:     ᛏᚱᚢᛚᛁᚾ ᛅᚠ ᛋᚢᛅᚱᛏᛅᚠᛁᛅᛚᛅᚱᛁᚴᛁ ᛅᛁᚴᚢ
3: ᛚᛅᚴᚾᛁᛋᚼᚬᛏᛦ ᛋᚢ ᚬᛏ ᛁᛋ ᛅᚠ ᚴᛅᛚᛏᚱᛁ ᛋᛅᚱ
4: ᛘᚾ ᚴᚱᚢᚦᛅ ᛁᚠ ᚠᚢᚱᚦ ᛅᛚᛒᚱᛅᚦᛚᛁᚴᛅ ᛏᛁᛚ
5: ᚢᛅᛚᛅᛦᛁᛋ ᚦᛅᛁᛦᛅ ᛏᚱᚢᛚ ᛅᛁᚴᚢ ᚦᛅ ᚾᚬᛏᚢᚱᚢ
6: ᛅᛏ ᚦᛅᚢ ᚠᛅ ᛅᛚᚬᚾ ᚴᛅᛚᛏᚱ ᛅᚠᚦᛁᚱᚦᚬᚾ[ᛚ]
7: ᚢᛦ ᚴᚢᚴᚢᛚᛁᚴᛁ ᚾᛁᛘᚬ ᛅᛁᚾ ᚦᚢᛁ ᛏᛅᚦ ᚴᛅᚱ
8: ᛁ ᚢᛚᚢᚴᛁᚾᛁ ᛅᛋᛏ ᛁᛋ ᛋᚢ ᛅᛁᚾᚬ ᛁᛋ ᚠᛅᛦ
9: ᛅᚠᚦᛁᚱᚦᚬᚾ[ᛚ] ᚼᛁᛅᚱᛏᛅ ᚴᚱᚢᛏ ᛅᛚᛒᚱᛅᚦᛚᛁᚴᛅ

And here is my attemp to translate.

Rune Transliterate Old Norse English Part of Speech
Line 1
ᛋᛏᛅᛁᚾ stain stein (to) stone noun. m. sg. acc.
ᚠᚢᛏᚢ futu fœðu brought forth (by) verb. 3rd. pl. past.
ᚢᛅᛚᛏᛅᛦ ualtaR valdar powers ? noun. n. pl. nom.
ᛏᚢᚴᛚᛅᚼᛁᛘᛁᚾᛋᛁᛋ tuklahiminsis tungla himinsins of moon sky noun. m. sg. gen.
ᚦᛅᚢ þau þau they pron. 3rd. pl. nom.?
Line 2
ᛏᚱᚢᛚᛁᚾ trulin trollinn The trolls noun. m. pl. nom.
ᛅᚠ af af from prep.
ᛋᚢᛅᚱᛏᛅ suarta svarta dark
ᚠᛁᛅᛚᛅ fiala fjalla mountain
ᚱᛁᚴᛁ riki ríki realm noun. m. sg. nom.?
ᛅᛁᚴᚢ aiku eigu have verb. 3rd. pl. pres.
Line 3
ᛚᛅᚴᚾᛁᛋᚼᚬᛏᛦ laknishątR læknis hendr healing hands noun. pl.
ᛋᚢ su A det. f. sg. nom.
ᚬᛏ ąt ǫnd ? soul noun. f. sg. nom.
ᛁᛋ is es (er) which
ᛅᚠ af af from prep.
ᚴᛅᛚᛏᚱᛁ kaltri kaldri cold adj. f. sg. dat.
ᛋᛅᚱ sar sárr wounded
Line 4
ᛘᚾ mn mun will verb. 3rd. sg. pres.
ᚴᚱᚢᚦᛅ kruþa grœða heal verb. inf.
ᛁᚠ if ef if conj.
ᚠᚢᚱᚦ furþ fœrð brought verb. 3rd. sg. past.
ᛅᛚᛒᚱᛅᚦᛚᛁᚴᛅ albraþlika allbraðliga very quickly adv.
ᛏᛁᛚ til til to prep.
Line 5
ᚢᛅᛚᛅᛦᛁᛋ ualaRis vallarins the field noun. m. sg. gen.
ᚦᛅᛁᛦᛅ þaiRa þeira of them pron. n. pl. gen.
ᛏᚱᚢᛚ trul troll Trolls noun. pl. nom.
ᛅᛁᚴᚢ aiku eigu have verb. 3rd. pl. pres.
ᚦᛅ þa þá those det. m. pl. acc.
ᚾᚬᛏᚢᚱᚢ nąturu náttúru nature adj. f. sg?. dat.
Line 6
ᛅᛏ at at that
ᚦᛅᚢ þau þau they pron. 3rd. pl. nom.
ᚠᛅ fa get verb. 3rd. pl. pres.
ᛅᛚᚬᚾ aląn allan all
ᚴᛅᛚᛏᚱ kaltR galdr sorcery noun. m. pl.
ᛅᚠᚦᛁᚱᚦᚬᚾ[ᛚ] afþirþąn af þíðnar ?? un? thaw?
Line 7
ᚢᛦ uR úr out of prep.
ᚴᚢᚴᚢᛚᛁᚴᛁ kukuliki gǫngu líki ? approached body
ᚾᛁᛘᚬ nimą nema to save verb. inf.
ᛅᛁᚾ ain einn one pron. sg. acc.
ᚦᚢᛁ þui því Such
ᛏᛅᚦ taþ dáð action noun. f. sg.
ᚴᛅᚱ kar gerr ? done
Line 8
i í in prep.
ᚢᛚᚢᚴᛁᚾᛁ ulukini óloginni ? true ?
ᛅᛋᛏ ast ást love noun. f. sg.
ᛁᛋ is es (er) is verb. sg. pres.
ᛋᚢ su an det. f. sg. nom.
ᛅᛁᚾᚬ ainą eina only
ᛁᛋ is es (er) which
ᚠᛅᛦ faR fær can
Line 9
ᛅᚠᚦᛁᚱᚦᚬᚾ[ᛚ] afþirþąn af þíðnar ?? un? thaw?
ᚼᛁᛅᚱᛏᛅ hiarta hjarta heart noun. n. sg.
ᚴᚱᚢᛏ krut grýtt ? stoned adj. sg. pp.
ᛅᛚᛒᚱᛅᚦᛚᛁᚴᛅ albraþlika allbraðliga very quickly adv.

I think Line 1 is telling that someone (the guy with Arendelle heraldry in the picture) was accidently caught stone or frozen by nature force (powers of the moon sky).
He probably was a royal ancestor of Arendelle. His head was hit by an ice magic dropped from the moon (Imagine a sunny magic dropped from the sky in Tangled).
Then Line 2, next paragraph, continues on how icy wound get healed by the troll and they might have told about stoned heart could only be thawed by an act of true love.
After troll had removed that icy magic, there’s still some magic flow in his blood (like Rapunzel still has ‘healing magic’ in her). And one day, someone in his lineage (it’s Elsa) just born with ice powers. Voila! That’s my totally guess!

runes book picture

The Map

troll map

Clearly the runic script found in here is “ᛏᚱᚢᛚ” or “trul” which is simply for “Troll”. Also notice the map compass rose somewhat resembles the Ægishjálmr, a Viking’s protection symbol.

map direction
Map compass rose

With the Elhaz runes (ᛘ) replaced by (clockwise from the north) ᚴ, ᛁ?, ᛋ?, ᛒ, ᛚ?, ?, ᚼ?, ᚬ?. It is unknown runic order to me. The closest meaning I can find is from Nigel Jackson’s Rune Chart which shows the relation between each futhark and direction though I can’t find it from other resources. Anyway, this seems not the case.

nigel jackson runechart
Rune chart by Nigel Jackson

BTW. Might be some errors. I’m no expert. Just researched them from the internet.

27 Mar 2014 Update: Got to know Ægishjálmr and Nigel Jackson’s Rune Chart, so I update the Map section.

7 Apr 2014 Update: After watching Frozen for uhh… 32nd time, maybe. I found more rune on the Troll’s code. Nothing so special except it is a left-to-right rune on the right-to-left paged book (if that is the front cover).
troll code

10 Apr 2014 Update: Correct the “Book Inside” section according to most suggestions from Brian M. Scott. It is now 80% readable.

19 Apr 2014 Update: Rewrite the conclusion of the “Book Inside” section.
But people; Please beware of what runes are actually read and what is my just-for-fun theory.

16 Sep 2014 Update: Note that the runes writings and Old Norse dialog in Frozen movie are the works of Dr.Jackson Crawford. Thanks to his works for greatly inpired me to learn Futhark and Old Norse and write this blog.


30 thoughts on “Deciphering the Runes Book in Disney’s Frozen

    Brian M. Scott said:
    27 March 2014 at 06:24

    What you’ve transcribed as á is actually ą, originally a nasalized a, though it’s used in one place where I wouldn’t have expected it. The first word in line 4 appears to be mn, not ma, in both occurrences.

    It appears to me that one really does have to look at each line in its entirety and figure out which words must be struck out: the repetitions aren’t exact, and sometimes the end of the line is important. I think that the following two sentences are present:

    þau trulin af suartafialariki aiku laknishątR
    Þau trollin af Svartafjallaríki eigu læknishendr.
    The trolls of Blackfells Realm have healing hands.

    sú ąt er af kaltri sar
    Sú ǫnd er af kaldri sár.
    That soul is wounded by cold.

    Then we seem to have this:

    mn kruþa if furþ albraþlika til valaRis þeirra
    … grœða ef fœrð allbráðliga til vallarins þeirra.

    If mn can be read as munu, this can be understood as ‘[They] will heal if conveyed very quickly to their fields’.

    I think that I can also identify the following fragments, though the last two seem to involve unattested words:

    trul aiku þau nąturu at þau fa aląn kaltR
    troll eigu þau nátturu at þau fá allan galdr
    trolls have that nature, that they get all magic

    taþ kar i ulukini ast is su
    dáð gǫr í óloginni ást er
    a deed done in true love is

    nimą ain
    nema ein(n)
    save one

    ualtaR tuklahiminsis
    valdar tunglahiminsins
    wielders of the starry sky

    uR kukuliki
    ór gǫngulíki
    from a walking-body(?)

    Here valdar is the plural of valdi or the poetic valdr, both meaning ‘wielder, ruler’, and tungl has its oldest sense, making the compound ‘stars’ sky, starry sky’, presumably referring specifically to the night sky.

    If stainfutu can be read as two words, it may be stein fœðu, making stein fœðu valdar tunglahiminsins ‘the wielders of the starry sky give birth to stone’.

    The biggest puzzle for me is the word that appears twice as afþirþąnl and once without the final rune. Were it not for that last rune, I’d be tempted to read it as eptir þann, but I can’t quite make that work.

    By the way, though I’ve not seen the movie, all of this is more or less compatible with what I’ve read about it.

      panya responded:
      28 March 2014 at 00:45

      Just Wow! My attempt looks like a mess. I’ll take sometime to correct my article. Many thanks for sharing!

        Brian M. Scott said:
        28 March 2014 at 01:25

        My pleasure! It was actually a lot of fun to play with.

    […] from Deciphering the Runes Book in Disney’s Frozen, I’ve been trying to decipher the runes on King & Queen of Arendelle’s gravestones […]

    Annahu-Akbar said:
    1 April 2014 at 18:19

    Hello, I am Annahu-Akbar of DCinside, Korea :
    who am student of old norse,
    the world-first-finder of name of king and queen.
    I tried to translate that bookpage, too.
    Could I reinforce and add some opinion on thy post?
    I want to take feedback with thou.

    If thou hast interest in it, please e-mail to me.

      panya responded:
      2 April 2014 at 09:30

      Yes, sure! Any discussion is very welcome.

    Annahu-Akbar said:
    3 April 2014 at 19:54

    My honourable friend.
    May I post thy translation on Korean website DCinside?
    I’m sure about it : that I must link thy blog.

      panya responded:
      5 April 2014 at 15:38

      You may. 🙂

    Redrocer said:
    5 April 2014 at 18:16

    I have a question.

    Line 7: “ᚢᛦ ?ᚴᛅᚱ ᚴᚢᚴᚢᛚᛁᚴᛁ”
    is this just
    “ᚢᛦ ᚴᚢᚴᚢᛚᛁᚴᛁ”?

      panya responded:
      5 April 2014 at 20:40

      Right. There are two occurrences of this word. One is “ᚢᛦ ᚴᚢᚴᚢᛚᛁᚴᛁ” another is “?ᚴᛅᚱ ᚴᚢᚴᚢᛚᛁᚴᛁ”. At first I don’t know which to choose so I just put them there two. Hopefully there’ll be someone can figure it out.

    Annahu-akbar said:
    13 April 2014 at 11:18

    all braett li’ka

    all melt live-skin

    how about thy thinking?

    Danny said:
    16 April 2014 at 00:52

    Thanks for this. I was tempted to just try and look up some alphabetic translations, and just got really confused. A start is a start though. But, thanks.

    Roy said:
    1 June 2014 at 11:07

    I think Line 1 is not the first line but the last line, Line 2 is the first line of the paragraph. So maybe you should start reading from Line 2 and stop at Line 1 under the red line you drawed.
    (Sorry, My English is too bad.)

      panya responded:
      1 June 2014 at 21:47

      I was thinking the same thing. But still could not understand what the whole sentence means. So I left it there first line and make it tend to support my theory (watch out). 😛

    […] also the inscription of the memorial stones of the King and the Queen, I found two good ones here: The runes in the book // The runes on the stones. Also the bishop talks in Old Nordic during the coronation, which fits […]

    […] a message on Facebook or Twitter if you think you’ve figured it out. (Update: One reader has deciphered the runes […]

    […] a blogger has already translated the book and the stones from Younger Futhark to Old Norse and into English.  It’s due to her work and […]

    frederic said:
    19 October 2015 at 21:28

    I see your post because i search some caring sentence in runic. And i think “of moon sky” is maybe full moon.

    Best regards

    Frozen: Plot Holes – Greenetree said:
    13 January 2016 at 12:30

    […] Deciphering the Runes Book in Disney’s Frozen […]

    Wesley Chow said:
    7 February 2016 at 16:36

    I would like to ask another question to frozen’s bishop’s proclamation in the coronation scene.
    Someone have tried to transcript the words in the scene like this:

    Sem hon heldr inum helgum eignum ok krýnd í þessum helga stað, ek té fram fyrir yðr…

    But I am learning old Norse, that I think this transcription is weird, because heldr was in strong MASCULINE nominative singular, which does not make sense as Elsa was a woman.

    So can you guys help me to transcript it again or explain to me why this was transcript like this?
    (The video clip of the scene:

    Also, I think that the word “inum” was misheard. It should be “inna”, which means within.
    Furthermore, Sem means nay in English, as I know, means “Not only this but that” whatsoever.

    So should the translation of “Sem hon hald inna minum helgum eignum” (my transcription) be
    Not only she holds within her holy assets, but …

    Can anyone give me an answer for this, any advice will help thanks everyone! 🙂

    Lilith Caracurt said:
    2 June 2016 at 00:14

    Reblogged this on Demonessy's notes and commented:
    да-да, я нашла даже такое…

    Manuel Juan said:
    21 May 2017 at 17:03

    Congratulations, Panya! I’m a lover of norse culture, myths, history, etc, from Spain. I don’t have deep knowledge about old norse, but I’ve learned something about runes (Elder and Younger Futhark, and derivations like Dalecarlian, Hälsinge, etc). Frozen is mi little daughter’s favourite Disney film, and I noticed the runic text in the book. What I didn’t know is the fact it wasn’t attrezzo text, but lines with real old norse words and sentences, with sense linked to the plot of film. Amazing!! One point I don’t understand (not about your explanation) is why they have chosen the symbol of Aegishalmur in the map (a symbol linked to war and fight), instead of Vegvisir (a symbol more linked to good luck in travel and ways). I repeat, Panya. Amazing!!!
    PD: My apologizes for my awful english. XD

    Manuel Juan said:
    21 May 2017 at 17:07

    By the way. I’m member in a facebook community about symbolism, myths and magical lore all over the world. Can I put a link of this research in our group? Thank’s again.

    Eiliv Ulvestad Henschien said:
    28 June 2017 at 08:09

    That movie is just a random mix of Norwegian culture. The books are written in Proto-Norse used from year 200 – 500 but they’re using bunads from after year 1900. The architecture there isn’t even Norwegian.
    The names arn’t that Norwegian either. Hans is German, Anna is Latin, Elsa is a short version if Elizabeth. Olaf comes from Old Norse Ólafr but the name Olaf is most popular in German and I think it derives from there. Olav is the most correct Norwegian version and it has the same pronounciation as Ólafr because the f was pronounced as v in Old Norse. The Norwegian king in 1015 as an example, was named Ólafr Haraldsson but in modern Norwegian, it’s Olav Haraldsson. Kristoff isn’t Norwegian in any way. It’s so far from Norwegian as it could have been.
    There’s so many much better Norwegian name they could have given them. I like Gerda and Agnarr though. They’re real norwegian names.

      Brian M. Scott said:
      29 June 2017 at 02:09

      ON Ólafr is a distinctively North Germanic name, from Proto-Norse *Anu-laiβaR. The prototheme is from *anuR ‘ancestor’, and the deuterotheme is etymologically identical to *laiβaR ‘heir, descendant’. I’m not aware of any West Gmc. cognate.

    Frozen: Plot Holes - The Amelia DeWitt said:
    23 September 2017 at 01:14

    […] Deciphering the Runes Book in Disney’s Frozen […]

    Vik said:
    13 February 2018 at 18:50

    […] few recent examples include Athelstan’s Insular gospel-book in the Vikings television show, a book written in runes in Disney’s Frozen, and ancient manuscripts in The Last Jedi. In these and other media, it’s always exciting […]

    Delmore Saorsa said:
    22 June 2018 at 21:06

    This is actually very interesting, thank you. I just recently became interested in Norse culture and runes, so it was quite a victory to me when I deciphered a single line on the page and found it was the same that you had found, too.

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