Iduna originated from the Northuldra tribe, north of Arendelle. As a child, her mother would share stories with her about the all-knowing river Ahtohallan. Iduna was also good friends with the elemental spirits, most notably the wind spirit. When a war broke out between the Northuldra and the Arendelle guards under the command of King Runeard—thus causing the spirits to turn against humanity— Iduna rescued the king’s only son, Agnarr, and led him to safety. In doing so, both Agnarr and Iduna were able to escape the spirits’ wrath, and the curse that befell the forest and its inhabitants.
Now a resident of Arendelle, Iduna and Agnarr became acquainted. Due to the bad blood between their people, Iduna kept her heritage a secret from Agnarr, and never revealed that she was the girl that rescued him in the forest. Over time, Iduna and Agnarr would fall in love and marry, having two daughters. Because of Iduna’s selfless act of heroism in rescuing Agnarr, nature gifted her eldest child, Elsa, with magical powers—the ability to control ice and snow—as a reward. Iduna was unaware of the origins of Elsa’s powers, but nevertheless accepted her daughter’s uniqueness.
In her youth, Iduna was a free-spirited and energetic girl. She was physically active, running through the Enchanted Forest and playing in the air with the wind spirit. She was also peppy, as she would randomly pop in during Agnarr’s reading sessions with a beaming smile. Despite her fun-loving attitude, Iduna also had a strong sense of justice. Despite the belief that the Arendellians were villainous, she rescued Agnarr from the spirits’ wrath and later befriended him, and the people of Arendelle.
At adulthood, Iduna matured greatly, and appeared to be passive, gentle, and openly emotional, though with the crucial motherly nature needed to raise Anna and Elsa. The novel A Frozen Heart shows that Iduna was something of a peacekeeper in the household, as whenever Agnarr would lose his temper, Iduna was able to calm his nerves. This carried over to other occasions, such as Elsa's training to control her powers; the queen was an advocate for momentary breaks, in hopes of preventing Elsa from becoming overwhelmed.
The Queen's name was not in the film's credits but is seen written in the Runic alphabet on their memorial stone markers. According to those, the name of the queen is Iðunn (English: Idun/Iduna).
- The Queen's Name: Iðunn can be anglicized as Ithunn or Idunn/Idun. Iðunn means 'youthful', 'eternal youth' 'again to love'. The name Idun is a popular name in Scandinavia, the setting of Frozen. The name Idun also means 'rejuvenation'.
In the books Frozen: 5-Minute Frozen Stories and A Frozen Heart, the Queen's official name is roughly the same as the translation, though slightly anglicized as Iduna. Iduna's name was finally confirmed by the filmmakers in Frozen II, when she is shown popping into Agnarr's reading session, and Agnarr calls her Iduna.
Iduna first appears after Elsa accidentally strikes Anna in the head with magic. Iduna rushes into the room alongside Agnarr, and fearfully comments on Anna's low temperature. Agnarr uncovers a map that leads to the Valley of the Living Rock, home to Grand Pabbie and the trolls. Grand Pabbie is able to heal Anna, who remains fast asleep in Iduna's arms throughout the entire meeting. Before departing, Pabbie explains that Elsa must learn to control her powers. Agnarr ensures that his daughters and the kingdom will be safe by closing the castle gates, limiting Elsa's contact with people, and keeping her powers hidden from everyone—including Anna.
Over the years, Iduna and her husband assist Elsa in controlling her abilities, though most attempts are unsuccessful. When Agnarr tries to comfort his daughter during a mild panic attack, Elsa recoils and demands not to be touch, which nearly brings the Queen to tears. Several years later, Iduna and Agnarr leave for a two-week voyage at sea. In during which, they are caught in a maelstrom and are lost to the ocean depths. In Arendelle, a funeral is held in honor of the monarchs (which Elsa does not attend) and a portrait of Iduna and Agnarr is draped over by Kai and another servant to signify their passing. Iduna and Agnarr are indirectly mentioned when Kristoff asks Anna during their argument over Anna getting engaged to Hans after just meeting him, "Didn't your parents ever warn you about strangers?" to which Anna replies (rather uncomfortably), "Yes, they did." while slowly moving away from him.
Iduna and Agnarr briefly appear in Elsa's flashback during the reprise of "Ring in the Season". When Anna asks Elsa if their family has any holiday traditions, the only instance that Elsa could recall was the annual ringing of the Yule bell, although Anna pointed out that the Yule bell ceremony was more for the kingdom, rather than something personal to their family.
Iduna returns in the sequel. She is revealed to be a Northuldra who lived in The Enchanted Forest as a young girl. During the conflict between the Northuldra and the people of Arendelle, she saved the young Arendellian prince Agnarr, the two of them escaping the forest while everyone else was trapped by an enchanted mist.
When they were young, she and Agnarr told Elsa and Anna the story of the Enchanted Forest and the elemental spirits that lived within it. Iduna sang "All Is Found" to her daughters as a lullaby, telling them of the river connected to the forest and the magic within it.
Elsa would remember her song and was guided by a magical voice to seek the Enchanted Forest after the spirits of the forest drained the resources of Arendelle. While there, Elsa’s magic combines with Gale to create frozen statues depicting moments of the past. One statue depicts a Northuldran girl rescuing Agnarr. Upon closer inspection, Elsa and Anna would discover that Iduna was the girl that rescued Agnarr the day the forest fell. With this new knowledge regarding their heritage, Elsa and Anna are welcomed into the Northuldran tribe by the other tribesmen.
Later in their journey, Elsa and Anna are led to the shipwreck of Iduna and Agnarr. They find a scroll revealing that their journey was an attempt to find Ahtohallan to learn more about Elsa’s powers. Elsa eventually made her way to Ahtohallan herself, where the memory of her mother preserved within the water revealed to her the dark truth of the conflict between the Northuldra and those of Arendelle - that Elsa and Anna's paternal grandfather King Runeard had secretly conspired against the Northuldra by building a dam which was claimed as a gift of friendship, but was actually intended to drain their magic and weaken their connection with the forest.
Together, Elsa and Anna are able to reveal the truth and destroy the dam, thus righting the wrongs of the past. The Northuldra and Arendellians reconcile, and to symbolize the unity between the two, a statue of a young Iduna and Agnarr is erected in Arendelle’s square.
The Queen appears in live-action form in the first episode of the fourth season, which has the backstory of the events happening in Arendelle prior to Frozen. Here, she is called Gerda (a character named "Gerda" does appear in Frozen, but she is one of the servants, not Elsa and Anna's mother).
Ingrid fears hurting her sisters with her powers, but her sisters promise to help conceal the powers and continue to sustain their unity. Years later, on the night of their father's birthday celebration, Gerda and Helga attempt to convince Ingrid into coming with them, but her fear of ruining the party overshadows her sisters' pleads. At the party, Helga introduces a new admirer, the Duke of Weselton, to their father.
After the party, the sisters arrive home to find Ingrid packing up as she believes with herself gone, they can have normal lives, fearing she won't be able to control her powers. Gerda mentions Rumplestiltskin, who may help. In exchange for their ribbons (which the sisters used to symbolize their sisterhood), Rumplestiltskin gives Ingrid a pair of gloves to conceal her powers, as well as an urn to entrap her if she becomes too dangerous. Later, in the royal garden, Gerda comes across Ingrid crying over the frozen and crumbled body of Helga. Realizing Ingrid, whether intentionally or not, killed Helga, Gerda entraps her in the urn. She then seeks out Grand Pabbie and asks him to erase her sisters' existences from everyone's memories, even though he implies a magical price will be extracted at her expense.
After marrying her husband, they rule as Queen and King of Arendelle and give birth to Elsa and Anna. When Elsa exhibits powerful and dangerous ice powers (presumably as the price of magic), the couple travels to the nearby land of Misthaven to find a wizard to get rid of her magic. On the return trip home, the ship is caught in a maelstrom. Realizing they might not make it out alive, Gerda hastily writes a note, places it into a bottle and throws it overboard in the hopes Elsa and Anna will find it one day and set things right. Soon after, the ship capsizes and sinks, drowning them.
Gerda's message winds up on the beach of Storybrooke 35 years later. A recently thawed out Anna finds the note and brings it to the Snow Queen's cave. There she reads it to Ingrid, Elsa, and Emma. It explains that the couple was wrong to hide Elsa's powers from the world. Gerda also explains that she feels guilty for what she did to Ingrid and wishes that she could take what she did back. Ingrid, forgiving her sister for her actions, then sacrifices herself to repent for her villainous deeds after being released from the urn. Following Ingrid's death, she, Gerda, and Helga reunite in the afterlife.
- Iduna's character model, upon closer look, is simply a recolored and customized version of Elsa's coronation appearance, such as her wearing her hair in a crown-twist bun (only with brunette hair instead of platinum blonde). There have been several differences, including her clothing and dark brown hair, and her face is thinner than both of her daughters, but her face and eyes resemble both girls.
- In Once Upon a Time, Iduna's name is Gerda, which was the original name of the heroine in the original "Snow Queen" fairy tale, who was the inspiration for her daughter Anna.
- According to the read-a-long book "Anna and Elsa's Winter End Festival", the queen had quite a sweet tooth and believed in fresh air and exercise. Her birthday is said to be "at the end of winter, right before spring."
- After her death, Iduna's belongings were stored within the castle passageways.
- In Frozen: Live at the Hyperion, Iduna briefly returns as a spirit watching over her reunited daughters, during the finale.
- The name for Iduna’s siren-like call is “kulning”, an ancient Scandinavian song form that has traditionally been used to herd livestock.
- Both of Iduna’s daughters inherited their mother’s eyes.
Olaf's Frozen Adventure
Once Upon a Time