Loki is one of the most popular characters in the Marvel Comics universe, mostly due to his schemes and his status as the God of Mischief that often clashed with Earth’s mightiest heroes. We know that Thor and Loki are adoptive brothers, and it really shows both in regard to their powers and their personalities, as eternal rivalry is what fuels most of Loki’s rage and bitterness. But if Loki is actually adopted, where is he really from? This is what we’re going to analyze today, so let’s see when and where Loki was born and why Odin adopted him in the first place.
In the comics, Loki was born in Jotunheim to King Laufey and Queen Farbauti at an unknown time, but we know that it was during the Asgard-Jotunheim War. Odin adopted Loki out of a sense of duty and obligation, but it later turned out that Loki tricked Odin into adopting him. In the MCU, Loki was likewise born to King Laufey in Jotunheim in the year 965 A.D. After the Frost Giants were defeated, Odin discovered Loki by accident, as the child had been cast aside to die due to its unusually small size that wasn’t fitting for a Frost Giant.
Now that we’ve given you the main answer, it’s time to explain it in a bit more detail. How come Odin adopted Loki despite being at war with his kind? When did Loki find out that he was adopted? You’ll find out all this and more if you keep reading!
In the MCU, Odin happened upon Loki by accident
The story of how Loki joined the royal Asgardian family begins with the Asgard-Jotunehim war. It’s common knowledge that Asgardians and Frost Giants were the most bitter enemies for a long time. Both races were ambitious and wanted to rule the nine realms, but Frost Giants were especially known for their monstrosity and cruelty. At one point, King Laufey, the ruler of Jotunheim, planned the conquest to finally bring the nine realms to its knees.
He took the Casket of Ancient Winters, a powerful artifact that contains the powers and might of the Frost Giant, and planned on starting another icy apocalypse in Tønsberg, Norway. The Asgardian forces, fortunately, saved Tønsberg, and the battle moved to the heart of the Frost Giant territory, Jotunheim, a monstrous place of eternal darkness inhabited by various nightmarish creatures, including the Frost Giants.
Frost Giants lost this battle, and as a final blow, Odin took the Casket of Ancient Winters with him. The catch was that taking the artifact away from Frost Giants would eventually lead to the destruction of their realm. The casket of Ancient Winters was likewise not the only thing that Odin took from Jotunheim that day.
Odin ventured deep within the temple of Jotunheim, where he came across a small child, more similar in size to humans than to Frost Giant. It turned out that this was the son of King Laufey, who Laufey left in the temple to die because Loki was smaller than the rest of the Frost Giants.
Odin decided to adopt the boy, but before he could present it to the Asgardians as his own son, he had to modify Loki’s appearance. Even if Loki was smaller than the rest of his race, he still had blue-tinted skin.
Following Frost Giant defeat, the war went cold, and an uneasy truce was formed. If we take into account that the start of the Asgard-Jotunheim war was in 965 A.D., this would mean that Loki was born sometime in 965 A.D. as well, since he couldn’t have been more than a few months old when Odin found him in the temple.
How did Loki find out that he was Frost Giant?
Loki found out that he was a Frost Giant while fighting Raze. As soon as Loki made contact with Frost Giant, he realized that instead of getting hurt, his skin simply turned blue, which meant that he was no true Asgardian. Loki confirmed his suspicions, and following Thor’s banishment, he ventured into Odin’s vault and located the Casket of Ancient Winters. Upon contact with the artifact, Loki turned blue all over, and this is the state in which Odin found him.
Loki was naturally furious with Odin because he kept his true heritage from him. It also confirmed Loki’s suspicions that Thor was Odin’s favorite all along. Odin tried to make excuses for why he took him in, but Loki wouldn’t listen, coming to the conclusion that he was among other spoils of war that Odin took from Jotunheim that day and that he was kept around Asgard only to be used as a tool in case Odin needed something to negotiate over.
Odin was hurt by Loki so much he was forced to enter Odinsleep, leaving the throne of Asgard temporarily to Loki.
In the comics, Loki tricked Odin into adopting him
In the comics, Loki was likewise born in Jotuheim during the Jotunheim-Asgardian war, and the means through which Odin acquired him are similar. Loki was likewise born too small, which led to his mother, Queen Farbauti, committing suicide (or Laufey killing her; the accounts differ). Laufey kept his son hidden from the world due to his small size, but one major difference is the fact that Loki was much older in the comics when he was adopted.
However, it’s only later that we find out that Odin would have never adopted Loki if it weren’t for the “future” Loki meddling in the course of events that would take place. On the battlefield during the Asgard-Jotuheim War, Loki took on the guise of Odin’s father Bor.
Once presented to Odin as Bor, Loki tried to talk Odin into adopting Loki, but Odin refused his requests.
Loki continued haunting Odin as Bor until the Asgardian King relented. Loki then manifested to his future self, a child still in Jotunheim, and explained to him what to do and how to trick Odin and become the King of Asgard.
Future Loki and child Loki then joined forces and killed King Laufey to take vengeance for all the mistreatment that Loki went through due to his size. When Odin ran into child Loki in the snow that day on the battlefield, he decided to adopt the boy despite other Asgardians protesting.
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