The Norns in Norse mythology are female beings who rule the destiny of gods and men. Not to be confused with The Fates in Greek mythology.
The three most important norns, Urðr (Wyrd), Verðandi and Skuld, come out from a hall standing at the Well of Urðr (well of fate). They draw water from the well and take sand that lies around it, which they pour over Yggdrasill so that its branches will not rot. These three norns are described as powerful maiden giantesses (Jotuns) whose arrival from Jötunheimr ended the golden age of the gods.
There are many other norns who arrive when a person is born in order to determine his or her future. In the pre-Christian Norse societies, norns were thought to have visited newborn children. There were both malevolent and benevolent norns: the former caused all the malevolent and tragic events in the world while the latter were kind and protective.