Perthro – Rune Meaning

“The beginning and end are set. What’s in between is yours. Nothing is in vain, all is remembered.”

Perthro – “Per-throw” – Literally: unknown – Esoteric: The Norns, Fate, Lot-Cup

Rune of fate and the unmanifest. Rune of probability and the role of luck in the evolutionary process of the all things. Universe at play.

co-incidence, living with the unknown, the art and magic of guessing, pattern recognition, prophecy

Energy: evolutionary force, luck, nothingness, the unborn, the unmanifest

Mundane: gambling, random occurrences, guessing

Good omen, knowledge of örlög, fellowship and joy, evolutionary change; or doom*, psychological or emotional addictions, stagnation, loneliness, delusion, fantasy, unknowability.

*Doom is the way in which the uncontrolled aspects of our self conspire in our destiny. It does not necessarily mean death.

Perception of the layers of örlög and wyrd
Manipulation of cause and effect
Placing runic forces in the stream of Nornic law
Alteration of probability and dependence on luck
The creation of favorable circumstances
Chance, gambling, divination and the art of guessing

My Notes:

It is important to remember that the true meaning of Perthro is unknown to scholars, as it is not a recognized word, and though many have agreed that the idea of a ‘lot cup’ seems fitting, I think that this ‘unknown’ or ‘nameless’ quality is extremely significant.

A ‘lot cup’ is an ancient dice box from which ‘lots’ were cast by warriors seeking knowledge of their fate before a battle. Perthro represents orlog, a concept of the larger matrix of the universal law of cause and effect. It encompasses the fixed and unalterable law of action and reaction. Wyrd is the working out of the law of cause and effect on a personal level. It is not unalterably fixed, like orglog is. A person can move about within the web of their wyrd in accordance with their degree of conscious development (and using the rune Nauthiz).

There is a large portion of our unmanifest future that rests on an element of chance. This awareness must be incorporated into the lore of Perthro and divination is a way to discern the parameters of that element of chance. Divination through casting of lots using dice or runes provides conscious indicators of unconscious ‘lay’ or pattern of cause and effect as it pertains to any specific future happening.

Of all the runes, this one is the most mysterious, perhaps next to Eihwaz before it, because Perthro deals with the mysteries within the runes themselves and the birth of the universe. On one hand this allows you to intuit original knowledge about the runes that may have been suppressed, destroyed or incompletely passed on over the centuries. On the other hand, the ‘how to’ techniques are less defined than with other runes, for we are dealing with fundamental mysteries of the universe. Orlog plays out as the consequences of the cosmic and primal laws themselves unfold from beginning of the universe until the end. All patterns are interdependent and interwoven, throughout all existence.

The proper relationship between Perthro and Nauthiz is that Perthro allows you to become aware of the hidden and relatively fixed workings of the deep law of cause and effect, which in turn give us the ability to see into the unmanifest and peer into the unknown. This is wyrd, and lay within our influence if we have knowledge of how our personal fate can be manipulated. Nauthiz helps you get around the workings of orlog, using the forces of resistance to change direction of the flow of wyrd. Together, these two runes govern the magic of ‘the Wyrding Way’.

All the records of all events are stored here, so Perthro’s power helps the recollection of knowledge that is hidden within the collective unconscious of humankind, especially human lore lost over the course of the centuries. The same process is responsible for prophecy. Perthro will assist the birthing of a great idea into your environment by raising awareness of the forces arrayed against its manifestation. Co-incidence and deja vu play an enormous role in the recognition of the fundamentals of this rune.

Other topics: quantum probability, Akashic records.

For more in-depth exploration, read Perthro – Rune Meaning Analysis.

26 thoughts on “Perthro – Rune Meaning”

  1. This is an interesting discussion on the mystery of Perthro. You are both right! Perthro when viewed from a male perspective is different from a female one.Perthro is the witches cauldron and the warriors game cup and the deeper mysterybehind both. Same, but different.Often we confuse the “practical” use of the rune with that practicalities deeper meaning. Often we do not consider our sex when trying to read the web of eyed, and this is a fatal flaw when divining what ” should come about. How a man interprets a mystery will be different than how a woman interprets the same mystery. This is a great clue to the deeper mystery of Perthro!

  2. I believe people have Pertho wrong. The symbol resembles a hearth, forge, or oven. It would be a place for warmth or creation. A full Inguz rune would fit perfectly in the gap left in Pertho. Pertho also shares the same position as Kenaz and Inguz in their own aetts. I guess the concept of Pertho being a gaming piece comes from some verse where people sound as if they are having fun in its presence. Would not people have fun gathered around the hearth or women around an oven socializing as they worked?

    1. You’re free to assume people have a rune ‘wrong’, if that is of course possible. However, my research has led me to the position that the symbols are not pictographic (as in they do not ‘represent’ visually the objects they refer to). Also, I have the strong inclination to suggest to you that Kenaz represents the contained fire and kinship of the hearth, the craftsmen of the forge, or the central oven of the home, as well as the torches of the keep or castle. Ken and Kin are old phonemes that have essentially meant the same thing for a very long time amongst Germanic and Scandinavian people, thus an etymological study is your best bet.

      An etymological study of Perthro, however, reveals little or nothing. I propose that Perthro’s meaning is not merely unknown, but literally ‘the unknowable’, or luck/chance and the unmanifest. This is where we find the basis of the ‘game’ or gambling. And don’t think of Perthro as necessarily representing ‘fun’. Could it not be the universe ‘at play’ in an uncompromisingly playful sense. It’s a game, perhaps a high stakes game, even if you don’t want to play along. This is in keeping with the ‘inimical’ nature of each of the second Aett’s runes.

      Inguz also has two forms, an elder and a younger version. Which do you mean?

  3. Hello,

    I have been reading your notes and discussion about Perthro and doom and samsara, etcetera and I found it very interesting because lately I am using runes quite often, not very often… it is like if something would let me know when I can read them. By the way it is interesting this “control” over an oracule, in other time of my life I would have been addicted to it but something tells me that runes work a bit like that -and it is an impression because this is really the first time I read something about them-. Well, as I was saying, you were talking about this enlightening -for me- concept of “doom” and I felt very attracted to it because I feel that “conditioning” you refer to very absurd if there is no way to overcome it. So, what I missed in your notes was how actually Perthro helps you in this situation, I mean, when you are conscient of it but the pattern keeps manifesting itself and mess you and your life up. Sorry for my English.

  4. Exactly! That’s how addicton is related to Perthro, and that is why, as you say, some authors include this term. Because, we all are, or have been, addicted to somehting, that is why we repeat, as you well say, patterns, relationships, mistakes, lives… the samsara. From that point of view, doom can also be understood as Karma, or at least that’s the way I see that this Rune is related to my specific reading. How interesting… This was useful!!! And, Tyriel, your notes ARE perfect, there is nothing to forgive. I would love to post some of Fabiana Daversa´s thoughts on Runes. Promise that, as soon as I have some time, I will. Thanks again, and have a great day (well, here, the day has just begun).


  5. I don’t mean any offense either, and maybe there is something I haven’t looked at hardly enough, I don’t know… but in this very article, in Divinations, you use the word addiction:

    “Divinations: Good omen, knowledge of örlög, fellowship and joy, evolutionary change; or addiction, stagnation, loneliness, malaise, delusion, fantasy”

    I take it that the meanings after “or” are applied to the reversed position of the rune, which is, in this case, Perthro. Your thoughts on my “Not meant to be” option really help. Thank you. And, please, do know that I’m aware of the complexity of the divination process, and that I also seek a deeper understanding of myself and the world around me in every “encounter” I have with this “set of keys”, as you wisely refer to them, and that they have also “served me so well in unlocking this life’s secrets and miracles”.

    1. Well how about that, I could have sworn I was going nuts… I even used the find tool to comb through the document for it.

      Now that’s a little embarrassing to miss that in my own notes. My apologies.

      I’ve been going through these notes for a couple of years as I compile something more substantial out of them, and they’re not perfect yet, or crystal clear.

      The divination section on ALL the runes could use a lot of improvement. In some cases I’ve taken meanings that several authors seem to agree on, but which I can’t explain for myself. In this case, addiction would be an example of that.

      Maybe you can post a little more from what Fabiana Daversa says about Perthro and addiction and ‘excess’ and I’ll order her books from the local library, as I’ve not looked over that author’s work at all. That would be a big help!

      And I’m honored that you are putting these notes to good use in your studies and that you can forgive some of my work’s flaws at this point. Please don’t hesitate to comment wherever you have questions or insight, even if it’s only a few words.

    2. Ah… after reflecting a few minutes on this ‘addiction’ part, I think I’ve connected it usefully to the rest.

      In this context, addiction refers to the parts of ourselves we can’t quit, that shape our destiny. These are things like bad habits, conditioning, anything that we seem to repeat in our pattern. If for instance we have an emotional addiction to abuse… a pretty serious scenario… that addiction, and any other we have, will shape our future.

      So in this case, addiction, excess connects with DOOM. Doom is a destiny in which parts of us which we cannot control, or which we are addicted to, or parts of our personality that are excessive, conspire to shape our future in such a way that we meet our end because of it.

      I have added doom to the interpretations… thanks for drawing this to my attention, it’s an important thing to discuss when talking about Perthro, Wyrd, Orlog, etc.

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