Búri (or Buri) was the first god in Norse mythology. He had neither father nor mother, but was created by a cow named Audhumla. As she licked the salt blocks of Ginnagagap, the shape of a man, Búri, was formed. Búri had a son named Borr. Borr, through his wife Bestla, had three sons who were gods: Odin, Vili and Vé.
Even though he is said to have been created by the divine cow, his exact origin is blurry, with multiple versions being:
- According to the legend, he was delivered from the ice by the magic cow licking it, the hair the first day, the head the second day, and Búri itself the third.
- Other accounts state he emerged from the ice by himself.
- Another legend states Amdula licked his form from an ice block.
- According to the book "A guide to Norse Religion", Búri was born at Ginnungagap the same way and along Ymir.
He was succeeded by Borr after his son bested him in combat, and his other son Njord left to found Vanaheim and sire the Vanir. Borr in turn took a wife (the giantess Bestla) and fathered his sons. Búri went to live recluse in the northern reaches of Scandinavia, in Nastrond, living among ephemerous servants he created by sculpting ice and animated with life.
During the Aesir-Vanir War, Búri witnessed from afar the death of Mimir (a peace hostage given by Odin), decapitated by the Aesir, and the eventual annexation of the Vanir to Asgard. He was eventually forgotten by the Asgardians.