Nidhogg is a name for the huge mundane snake of the ancient Scandinavian cosmogony. It is represented as gnawing at the root of the ash Ygdrasill, or the mundane tree. In its ethical import, as Mr. Gross alleges, Nidhogg, composed of nid, which is synonymous with the German neid, or envy, and hoygr, to hew, or gnaw, signifying the envious gnawer, involves the idea of all moral evil, typified as the destroyer of the root of life. See Thorpe, Northern Mythol. vol. i; Keyser, Religion of the Northmen.