Os is yet another Rune which ended up interpreted in different ways in the medieval period.
The form it takes in the various alphabets is as follows:
The Eldar Futhark has been reconstructed as *Ansuz “(a) God; this is the forerunner of the Anglo-Frisian Ós, Macromannic Óss and Younger Futhark Áss. So far so God — sorry, good.
However, in Old English os meant “mouth” while óss also carried the meaning “estuary.”
Hence this rune’s slightly bizarre duality exhibited in the ancient rune poems.
In one, its divinity is stressed.
In another, where the meaning “mouth” is understand, stress is placed on the mouth as the vehicle of language, and therefore of the transmission of wisdom, joy and happiness.
Lastly, the word is interpreted as meaning “estuary,” and thoughts turn on estuaries as places where journeys inland begin — with a curious comparison of swords and scabbards. Both rather carry the understanding of journeying inward, and returning home.
To those who use the runes today, one of Os’s principal associations is with the notion of journeying inward in order to communicate with the Divine within.
Estauries and Gods aren’t quite such separate entities as might initially be thought…
Emphasis is also placed on Os as a symbol of communication.
With the excpetion of Áss, I think Ansuz, Os and Oss all have interesting name potential. But there are many other interesting options to incorporate the spirit of this rune.
Hundreds — if not thousands — of names include an element meaning ” a God.”
- The Hebrew el — usually translated as “God” (i.e. the Judeo-Christian one) — originally meant “a God” and there’s no reason not to interpret it that way still. Among this vast source of names are well-known favorites such as Daniel, Elijah, Gabriel, Joel, Michael, Nathaniel and Samuel as well as biblical oldies which are increasingly dug out of the grandfather’s chest, such as Eleazar, Elihu, Lemuel, Ozias, Raphael, and Reuel, and rarities like Abdiel, Gamaliel, Jophiel, Mahalalel, Mehetabel, Othniel and Uriel.
- The Greek theos also meant “a God” rather than “God” in Pagan times. Names which feature it include well-known classics such as Dorothy, Thea, Theo, Theodora, Theodore, Theophilus, Tiffany, Timothy, and lesser known glories such as Panthea, Theano, Theoclea, Theona and Theoxena.
- Likewise, the Roman deus was used in Pagan times to mean “a God” and “God” from the Christian period. Names which feature it include Amadeus and Deodatus.
- The Sanskrit dev “a God” is also cognate withtheos and deus. In India, Dev (feminine: Devi) is used as a name in its own right, as well as featuring in compounds like Devdan and Devdas.
- Old English god “a God” originally, as well as “God”, just like all the others. Names which feature it include Godbert, Godfrey, Godiva, Godric, Godwin and Goodeth.
- Our feature Os was also popular in Anglo-Saxon names: Osbert, Osborn, Osgar, Osmund, Oswin and Osyth.
- Its Norse cognate Áss was equally popular: Ásbjorn, Ásgeirr, Ásketil and Astrid.
As for the Rune’s other associations, here ‘s just a small selection of other options:
- Benedict ♂ — Latin bene “well” and dico “to speak”; usually translated as “blessed.” Fem: Benedicta.
- Campbell ♂ ♀ — Anglicized form of the Gaelic Caimbeul “crooked mouth.”
- Cato ♂ — Latin catus “wise” and “clear-sighted.”
- Enigma ♀ — the origin of “enigma” is the Greek ainissomai “to speak in riddles.”
- Eulalia ♀ — a name of Greek origin, meaning “sweetly-speaking.”
- Fatua ♀ — the name of a Roman Goddess; her name means “speaking by inspiration” from fatuor “to be inspired.”
- Frodo ♂ — Old Norse fróðr “wise.”
- Geneva ♀ — the name of this Swiss city may derive from a Common Celtic word meaning “mouth” and “estuary.” The Italian city of Genoa may share the same source.
- Keen ♂ ♀ — in the eleventh century, keen meant “wise,” “learned,” “powerful” and “strong.”
- Metis ♀ — one of the Titans, Goddess of wisdom, and mother of Athena. Greek: mêtis “good advice” and “widsom.”
- Ninkasi ♀ — the Sumerian Goddess of beer and brewing; her name means “the lady [who] fills the mouth up.”
- Panya ♀ — Thai name meaning “knowledge” and “widsom.”
- Phineas, Phinehas ♂ — one interpretation of this ancient name derives it from the Hebrew for “mouth” and either “serpent” or “oracle.”
- Prophecy ♀ ♂ — derives from the Greek: prophêteia “prophecy” from pro “before” + -phêtês “speaker.”
- Sage ♀ ♂ — “sage” meaning “wise” derives ultimately from the Latin sapio “to be wise.”
- Snotra ♀ — the Norse Goddess of Wisdom; Old Norse snotr “wise.”
- Sophia, Sophie ♀ — Greek sophia “wisdom.”
- Sophocles ♂ — a famous Greek playwright, whose name means “wise-glory.”
- Yeshe ♂ ♀ — Tibetan name meaning “wisdom.”
- Zaqar ♂ — the Mesopotamian God of dreams, and messenger of the moon-God Sin; his name comes from the Akkadian for “to speak.”