Feature:Wagner references

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This page contains a list of likely references to the works of Richard Wagner present in Legend of Galactic Heroes.

Richard Wagner (1813–1883) was a German composer and conductor who was known primarily for his operas, many of which were based on earlier European legends and mythologies. He is perhaps most recognisable to English speakers as the composer of The Ride of the Valkyries, a climactic orchestral piece which was used notably in the film Apocalypse Now.

The Legend of Galactic Heroes series contains many references — intentional and unintentional — to Wagner and his works, primarily in the form of Imperial character and vessel names.


Legend of Galactic Heroes (OVA)


Reinhard's flagship, the Brünhild, gets its name from Brynhildr, a shieldmaiden and valkyrie from Norse mythology. She appears prominently in the Völsungasaga and its German analogue, the Nibelungenlied (as Brünhnhilde), both of which were the basis for Wagner's four-part Der Ring des Nibelungen opera cycle.

Freyà Starzone

Freyà Starzone, the location of Geiersburg Fortress, is named after Freyja, a Norse goddess who rules over Fólkvangr (akin to Valhalla). She appears, in somewhat altered form, as Freia in Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen opera cycle.


Müller's flagship, the Perceval, is named after the Arthurian knight Perceval. The character was created by the 12th-century French poet Chrétien de Troyes, who was also the originator of the Arthurian romance genre. Chrétien's story was adapted approximately half a century later into the romance of Parzival by the German poet Wolfram von Eschenbach. (In doing so Eschenbach also created the character of Lohengrin, the son of Parzival.) This story in turn was adapted by Wagner into the operas Parsifal and Lohengrin.


Reinhard's Operation Ragnarök is named after Ragnarök, a series of future events in Norse mythology which are similar to the concept of the Last Judgement in Christianity. The Japanese kanji used to refer to the operation — 神々の黄昏 (meaning Twilight of the Gods) — are a literal translation of the German name for the event, Götterdämmerung, which is in turn the name of the fourth and final opera in Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen series.

Reinhard von Lohengramm

Reinhard's adopted surname, Lohengramm, is similar to and likely derived from Lohengrin, the name of a character from German Arthurian legend. This legend was created by German poet Wolfram von Eschenbach, and was based largely on the earlier story of Perceval, a character developed by the French poet Chrétian de Troyes; Lohengrin's character was inserted into the story as the son of Perceval. Lohengrin's tale was adapted into an opera (also called Lohengrin) by Wagner in 1850.

Siegfried Kircheis

Although Siegfried is a common Germanic name, Kircheis does share it with another hero of Norse mythology, commonly called Sigurd today. Sigurd appeared as Siegfried in the German Nibelungenlied, upon which Wagern's Der Ring des Nibelungen opera series was based. The third opera in particular, Siegfried, is, as the name suggests, particularly relevant. The valkyrie Brünnhilde also figures into the story of Siegfried.


Reinhard's former flagship, the Tannhäuser, is named after Tannhäuser, a legendary 13th-century German poet. His story was adapted by Wagner into the opera Tannhäuser in the 1850s.


Reuenthal's flagship, the Tristan, is named after Tristan from the tale of Tristan and Iseult. The original legend was adapted by Wagner into an opera called Tristan und Isolde. (It should be noted that Reuenthal himself shares many similarities with Tristan as a character.)

Valhalla Starzone

Valhalla Starzone gets its name from Valhalla, the majestic hall ruled over by the god Odin in Norse mythology. Valhalla is analogous to the Christian concept of Heaven — a place where the chosen dead, carried there by angel-like beings (valkyries), remain until the apocalypse. It is referenced and depicted in Wagner's four-part Der Ring des Nibelungen opera cycle.


Valkyrie fighters are named after the valkyries, female figures from Norse mythology who carry the chosen dead to Valhalla, the hall of Odin. The valkyrie Brünnhilde features prominently in Wagner's four-part opera cycle, Der Ring des Nibelungen. (The German spelling Walküre is used both in the name of the second opera, Die Walküre, and in the subtitles which accompany the appearance of Valkyries in the OVA.)

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