Katla's Homepage

<Katla> is my IRC nickname since 1992.

...and everybody want to know,

How I happen to have that strage nick?

One day before i logged in for IRC to get to Channel #Wicca, I was thinking about a name that would suit a witch. I thought of the witch namend Katla from an old Iceland Saga.

The name Katla, where does it come from?

I've found the name Katla in a number of different places:

Index: The Brothers Lionheart  / The Saga  / The Volcano on Iceland  / In Arab  / A place in Norway  / The name in Old Norse

Astrid Lindgren's "The Brothers Lionheart".

In that story, Katla is the terrible monster who is controlled by the evil tyrant Tengil. She has to obey his orders to work havoc on the inhabitants of Thornrose Valley, who live in fear of her. Later then, being freed by the two heroes of the childrens novel, she turns against them to be totally free therafter. She inflicts deadly wounds upon the elder brother, who lead to the deaths of the two heroes. There, the book ends, but the story goes on, it started with the heroes deaths and in consequence doesn't end with their deaths again.

Katla from Icelandic Eyrbyggja Saga.

In the Saga, Katla is a sorceress, a witch who at first with wit and smart magick hides her child from the men who want to kill it.

But the magick isn't all perfect: the men always return after having had to give up the search in Katla's place at Holt. Each time they return, they will look exactly in the very spot the child was hidden before.

Katla expects that to happen and hides her child in a different place and in a different manner every time and she knows to work a different magick too. Thrice her strivings succeed, but the fourth time the men learned to expect magical illusions and brought with them another witch for help. This time, Katla didn't see them coming soon enough to prepare another new perfect hideaway for her child, the magick doesn't work this time. The men find and kill her child.

In her grief and anger Katla curses the men, they should stay in bad luck from now on. After that, the men kill Katla too.

The case is brought to the Thorsnes-Thing. All who parttook in the murders are taken away their property, and banned from the country for the rest of their lives. The buy a ship and sail away from Iceland, and there is no trace left of them after that.

The Volcano Katla on Iceland.

The third story is not that evil, but no less forceful. Their are a number of volcanoes on Iceland, one of them is covered by the icefields of a glacier: that's Katla.
Katla is still active, she will usually errupt every 50 years, pretty regularly as far as people record history: she will hurl masses of ice far out into the sea on the southern coast of the island. The next erruption is expected to happen sometime in the very near future.

In Arab

In Arab, I was told, "Katla" means "Death". That wasn't the motivation to chose that name.

A place called Katla in Norway

Bjørn Ivar Katla [mail] from Bergen, Norway sends me mail saying:
You´ll find a place called Katla on the Norwegian West Coast, on the Goddo Island in Bømlo kommune.

The name Katla in Old Norse

Bjørn Ivar Katla [mail] from Bergen, Norway sends me mail saying:
Katla is an Old Norse word for Ketil (a boy name in Norway) Ketil means kettle.

The place has it´s name from a scenic specialty, a "jettegryte" eller "trollgryte" nearby.

A "jettegryte" is a hole in the mountain which was carved by sea-water and maybe stones over a long time.

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