Between our toddler’s semi-regular viewings and Once Upon a Time, I have Frozen on the brain. It’s nice to know that, while I might be paying a little too much attention, I’m neither alone nor even particularly noteworthy. This week I ran across some interesting stuff about the runes and Old Norse used in the movie.
It’s all perfectly translatable. Dr. Jackson Crawford, then at UCLA, wrote the runes that appear on Anna and Elsa’s parents’ memorial stones and in the king’s book. They’re Younger Futhark, a runic alphabet from the 9th century.
And 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 that of a Korean fan that we know the names of the former King and Queen of Arendelle.
The stones translate as, “Idun queen she died in the sea,” and “Adgar king he died in the sea.”
The engravings on the memorial stones in Once Upon a Time are different. As far as I know, no one’s made an effort to translate them. However, the individual was able to shed some light on Queen Idun’s diary which Elsa finds in the season 4 premiere.
It’s apparently Act 3, Scene I, of The Tempest, beginning partway through Ferdinand’s first lines:
I must remove
Some thousands of these logs and pile them up,
Upon a sore injunction: my sweet mistress
Weeps when she sees me work, and says, such baseness
Had never like executor. I forget:
But these sweet thoughts do even refresh my labours,
Most busy lest, when I do it.
And so on. It’s an odd choice for a diary, perhaps, but it’s certainly on theme: love, shipwreck, magic, healing a kingdom. If it was chosen simply for the superficial parallels, it’s still inspired. However, it’s difficult not to suspect that it has particular resonances with the Frozen arc of Once Upon a Time. I’ll have to think about that.