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Ancient Germanic goddess. Tacitus refers to her as Mother Earth and says she was worshiped by seven tribes. Her worship centered on a temple in a sacred grove on an island in the Baltic Sea. She was believed to enjoy visiting her people. Her presence was discerned by her priest, and while she was among them her people lived in peace. Her identification with the god Njörd suggests that she may have been a hermaphrodite.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Nerthus, visit Britannica.com.
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