Alternative Names
Anglo-Friesian/Germanic: Ihwaz
Norse (Viking): Eihwaz
Old English: Eoh
Other Names/Spellings: Eihwas, Eihwaz, Eo, Erwaz, Ezck, Ihwar, Ihwas, Iwar, Iwaz, Yr

Eye – warz

English Letter Equivalent
Y as in YEW, or long I as in SIDE

Yew tree

Yew tree. Archer’s bow, weapon. Magic. Deflection, prevention.

Ihwaz is the symbol of rune magic. Avertive, deflective or defensive power is yours. Patience, perseverance, foresight and protection against unexpected attack. Wisdom in adversity.

The Yew tree has mistakenly been linked with death because of the ancient practice of planting yew hedges around graveyards. Because Ihwaz is rune number 13. That is the origin of the “unlucky thirteen”superstition of Anglo-Saxon culture.

But the real reason the Yew was planted was to keep out unwanted scavenging animals – the evergreen Yew is both poisonous and impenetrable year-round. These Yews – now grown to huge gnarled old trees – are still to be found in many early British churchyards.

Ihwaz should not be feared, because it also means continuity and endurance. The best longbows were always made from yew trees. As well as being strong, long-lasting, and flexible, they contained protective magic. Thus, Ihwaz also represents safety from attack and a weapon of defense.

Ihwaz has no reverse.

Your defensive abilities are dormant and must be realised. What appears as a danger will be easily averted through patience and concentrated effort.

Personal Interpretation
This is a time of transformation, a time to let go of the old and embrace the new, new beginnings, new life and new dreams. The only constant is change, and quick progress requires an acceptance of change, not resistance to it. Don’t be afraid. Change is scary, but if you remain true to yourself and stick to your path, you will soon achieve your goal.

Runic Number


Earth, Air, Fire and Water


Associated gods

Astrological Correspondence