Cognate to German Adel ('nobility'), to Old English ešel ('homeland'). The German "Adel und Edel", which means 'nobility of birth and nobility of soul' helps us to get the full meaning of Othala.
The classic form of Othala is . In Scandinavia, two forms are found, and , with the first one being prodominate between 200 and 700. From 400 to 700, we also find these variants occasionally : . On the continent, the only one found is .


Texts linked to Othala

Old English Rune Poem

The family land is very dear to every man,
provided that there in his own house
he may enjoy everything that is right
and proper in constant prosperity.

Old English Rune Poem, as translated by Marijane Osborn

Home to the heart of her is dearest
who there by right and reason
enjoys frequent harvest
in a house of her own.


Thurs rist ek ther
ok thria stafi ergi ok oedhi ok othola

Thurse I engrave for you three times
And three letters ergi and oedhi and othola.

Note that scholars do not link 'Othola' to rune Othala. They translate o-thola = im-patience.


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