SF short story I read as a kid in Galaxy or similar mag, I read it in late 60s/early 70s but story may have been older.

A guy is transported, via some means which I don't recall, into Asgard at the time just preceding the beginning of Ragnarok. He is an engineer or scientist and understands the principles and technologies of manufacturing atomic weapons and heavy artillery and instructs the Norse gods in how to create the weaponry, which is then used by the Norse gods to win Ragnarok.

  • Hi, welcome to SF&F! This is a good question! But still, you might be able to improve it if you check out the suggestions that might help you remember more details to edit into the question. Any visuals you recall associated with the story?
    – DavidW
    Apr 30, 2019 at 19:16
  • Nope none whatsoever.
    – ucnick
    Apr 30, 2019 at 21:23

1 Answer 1


This could be Day of the Giants by Lester del Rey, from 1964. Apparently it is an expansion of a short story published in Fantastic Adventures (December 1950, and again in 1970), called When the World Tottered. I'm not familiar with the short story, so I'm unsure what story elements were in it.


(Note, the cover illustration has absolutely nothing to do with the story)

Takes place in modern times. The Fimbulwinter begins, and during it, an American farmer of Norse descent, along with his mercenary brother, are taken by Valkyries to Valhalla, where they help the gods with their Ragnorok problem. The farmer is an engineering or science student, so comes up with ways to help the gods and dwarves modernize, including the creation of an atomic weapon.

The Goodreads page is here

  • 3
    Text (page scans) available online at archive.org: archive.org/details/Fantastic_Adventures_v12n12_1950-12_unz.org/…
    – DavidW
    Apr 30, 2019 at 20:46
  • That may be it, it sure does sound like it, although I don't recall a brother. Now I;m going to have to buy it to see. Thanks!!
    – ucnick
    Apr 30, 2019 at 21:24
  • @ucnick Click the link in DavidW's comment, you can read the entire short story there.
    – LAK
    Apr 30, 2019 at 21:25
  • I just did - I think it is the story - thanks guys!!!
    – ucnick
    Apr 30, 2019 at 21:37
  • @ucnick Awesome, very glad to help - and this has made me want to re-read it as well :-). Don't forget to accept the answer!
    – LAK
    Apr 30, 2019 at 21:43

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