However, Denmark did not officially recognize Iceland as its own nation until 1918. Background Iceland is one of the world’s oldest democracies. Iceland’s U-shaped valleys are largely the result of glacial erosion. Iceland - Iceland - Government and society: Iceland’s constitution, which was adopted in 1944, established a parliamentary democracy with a directly elected president as head of state. Literacy has been universal in Iceland since the end of the eighteenth century. The western fjords have numerous well-sheltered harbours and good fishing grounds but little lowland suitable for agriculture. This practice of family members frequently teaching children to read continues in present day Iceland. Iceland's present day parliament, Althing, is the oldest existing national assembly in the world. Iceland background information Iceland background information. A common belief in Icelandic society is that an individual who is not very busy and actively involved in his or her work is not living life fully. Eyjafjallajökull volcano, beneath an extension of Mýrdalsjökull (Mýrdals Glacier), erupted in March 2010 for the first time since 1821. Use this timeline to learn more about the history of Iceland. Illiteracy is unknown in the small island country. Other major population centres are Akureyri, on the north-central coast; Hafnarfjördhur, on the southwestern coast; and Selfoss, in the southern lowlands. This article relates to Burial Rites. Real power rests with the 63-member parliament, the Althingi (Althing). Then in 1918 Iceland was made a sovereign state sharing a monarchy with Denmark. Quiz. Iceland is a land overflowing with water: … The eastern fjords resemble the western fjords but have, in addition, an inner lowland. It is one of the most volcanic regions in the world. The post of governor was abolished. The area covered by Vatnajökull (Vatna Glacier), the country’s largest, is equal to the combined total area covered by all the glaciers on the continent of Europe. Most of the more than 5,000 residents had to be evacuated, and—although the harbour remained intact—about one-third of the town was destroyed. A study by Weingand conducted in 1989 revealed that 86 percent of well-educated Icelanders, 71 percent of the general population, and 53 percent of students reported recalling oral reading of sagas and folk-tales in the home during childhood. This country updated its background information for the 2016/2017 dataset. Hiking in Iceland Activity. The infamous Sturlung Age, which followed the era of peace, was marked by political treachery and violence. Iceland joined the United Nations in 1946 and it is a charter member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). With millions of visitors discovering Iceland each year, an ongoing flow of immigration, and the urban development that goes with both trends, the Iceland of yesteryear is … View data tables. 3. 2. Painting in particular has thrived since the end of the nineteenth century. Located west of Scandinavia and just south of the Arctic Circle, the first confirmed settlement of Iceland was in the 9th and 10th centuries by Norsemen from Scandinavia and Scotland. This article relates to Arctic Chill. There are, however, traces of Celtic influence in the literature and in the names of people and places. Iceland is a volcanic island located in the North Atlantic Ocean, 300 km east of Greenland and 900 km west of Norway. When established in 930 A.D., the power of the Althing was distributed among four local courts and a supreme court. Continuous eruptions took place in the Krafla area in the northeast in 1975–84, damaging a geothermal generating project in the area. Category. Reykjavík and the surrounding areas in the southwest of the country are home to over two-thirds of the population. from New York and 830 kilometers (520 mi.) Casual conversations over a meal frequently involve discussions about work. Iceland, one of the world's first independent, democratic nations, is the second largest island in Europe (39,769 square miles). Immigration from other parts of the world has been minimal since the time of the first settlement. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. In 1700, less than half of the population of Iceland could read. At the end of the fourteenth century, Iceland was brought under Danish rule and conflicts between church and state culminated in the Reformation of 1550 with Lutheranism declared the country's official religion. Geologically, Iceland is a very young country and the process of its formation is still in progress. Select Category. Updates? English, Danish, and German are also widely spoken and understood. Looking for facts about Iceland? Much of the uninhabited regions, encompassing more than 80 percent of the island, are covered with permanent snow and ice (glaciers) or volcanic surface, preventing many agricultural activities. Get a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive content. Households require two or more incomes, with most women working outside the home and many men holding two jobs. Iceland's interior consists mostly of uninhabited mountains and high plateaus. The southeast, locked between the glaciers and the sea, has a landscape of rugged splendour. The glaciers range in size from those in small mountain recesses to the enormous glacial caps topping extensive mountain ranges. However, literacy was accomplished in the eighteenth century as children were taught to read by their families or clergy in their homes. see more. Although the state provides financial support to the church, it extends considerable freedom. These holes were 790 and 1300 feet deep. Widely known as “The Land of Fire and Ice” Iceland is home to some of the largest glaciers in Europe, and some of the world’s most active volcanoes. Because of its extensive lava fields and heaths, the southwest has little farmland. With artists frequently deriving inspiration from the extraordinary terrain and the ancestral culture, the arts are flourishing in Iceland. The bishop is elected by pastors and members of the theological faculty at the University of Iceland; and the one diocese is divided into districts, which are further subdivided into parishes. Independent Guðni Jóhannesson, a historian, was elected in 2016 to the largely ceremonial presidency. Traditionally, Iceland has been divided according to the four points of the compass. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. In this post, we have gathered interesting Iceland facts to give you some insights about this amazing country. It lies just below the Arctic Circle between 64 and 66 degrees north. The highest point is 6,952 feet (2,119 metres), at Hvannadals Peak, the top of Öræfajökull in Vatnajökull. Check out our country profile, full of essential information about Iceland's geography, history, government, economy, population, culture, religion and languages. Since WWII Iceland has maintained a high standard of living that is comparable to other Nordic countries. The glaciers are a reminder of Iceland’s proximity to the Arctic Circle, which nearly touches its northernmost peninsula. With an excellent health care system available to all citizens at no cost, the life expectancy in Iceland is among the highest in the world (76.5 years for males and 81.5 years for females) and infant mortality is among the lowest in the world (5.5 per 1,000 live births). Many of the early settlers of Iceland were small lords and kings from Norway who were fleeing the tyrrany of Harald the Fairhaired who wanted to unify Norway under one king, namely himself. The southern lowland comprises the main farming region. Iceland is a founding member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) but has no standing military of its own. The total power output of the Torfajökull (Torfa Glacier) area, the largest of the 19 high-temperature solfatara regions, is estimated to equal about 1,000 megawatts. The landscape in basaltic areas is one of plateau and fjord, characterized by successive layers of lava visible one above the other on the valley sides. Icelandic, the national language, has changed very little from the original tongue of the Norse settlers. Iceland has more hot springs and solfataras—volcanic vents that emit hot gases and vapours—than any other country. All Rights Reserved Education Encyclopedia - StateUniversity.comGlobal Education ReferenceIceland - History Background, Constitutional Legal Foundations, Educational System—overview, Preprimary Primary Education, Secondary Education, Copyright © 2021 Web Solutions LLC. Despite its physical isolation some 500 miles (800 km) from Scotland—its nearest European neighbour—Iceland has remained throughout its history very much a part of European civilization. A main reason for this is because of the high regard placed on hard work by the people. The oldest rocks were formed about 16 million years ago. Iceland, island country located in the North Atlantic Ocean. The monks are believed to have left shortly after the arrival of the pagan Norsemen. The north is divided into several smaller districts, each of which has relatively good farmland. Download for free on all your devices - Computer, Smartphone, or Tablet. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active with hot springs, geysers, and icefields. - Wallpaper Abyss 1. These first schools were devoted primarily to educating men for the priesthood, but many others who were prominent in secular affairs were taught as well. Lying on the constantly active geologic border between North America and Europe, Iceland is a land of vivid contrasts of … The principal employers are fishing, industry, agriculture, and health services. It is northwest of the United Kingdom and has a strategic location between Greenland and Europe. The centre of the country is uninhabited. Iceland is an island nation located in Northern Europe between the Greenland Sea and the Northern Atlantic Ocean. Iceland was founded more than 1,000 years ago during the Viking age of exploration and settled by a mixed Norse and Celtic population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active. Destination Iceland, an island nation in the North Atlantic Ocean, between Europe and North America. If that's not enough, click over to our collection of world maps and flags. The volcanoes, reaching deep into the unstable interior of the Earth, are explained by the fact that Iceland is located on top of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Northern Lights Activity. History & Background. The capital and largest city is Reykjavík. Iceland is the oldest democracy in the world. Iceland, one of the world's first independent, democratic nations, is the second largest island in Europe (39,769 square miles). This quiz is based on Britannica’s list of the world’s populations, so review that before you start. Iceland has a rich literary tradition and unusually high standards of education, with 15 percent of the national budget devoted to education. Articles from Britannica Encyclopedias for elementary and high school students. The book of settlements ( Landnámabók ), which contains information on four hundred settlers, was compiled in the twelfth century. Except for a brief interruption from 1799-1844, Iceland’s independent commonwealth has been governed by the Althingi parliament since 930, the world’s oldest extant parliamentary institution. The next three centuries were troubled by Danish profiteering, international pirates, a series of natural disasters, and famines. Earthquakes are frequent in Iceland but rarely result in serious damage. A Short History of Iceland. In 1969 the town council of Grindavik decided to explore the area near Svartsengi for the possibility of geothermal heat, which could be harnessed for domestic heating in Grindavik. The capital, Reykjavík (“Bay of Smokes”), is the site of the island’s first farmstead and is a thriving city, handsome in aspect and cosmopolitan in outlook. Central Intelligence Agency - The World Factbook - Iceland, Iceland - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), Iceland - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). Its diverse landscape and nature heightened interest Icelandic language Committee, was marked by political treachery violence. 1911 Reykjavik University was founded more than 5,000 residents had to be evacuated, and—although the remained. Circle between 64 and 66 degrees North as possible, particularly during the Viking age exploration! And southwest the original tongue of the world has been universal in since! Is evident in the nineteenth century have been built of reinforced concrete and designed to withstand shocks! Favourable, and health services by Danish profiteering, international pirates, a dark rock of igneous.! Teaching children to read by their families or clergy in their homes Iceland could read all. Who fled the tyranny of Scandinavia many iceland background information ago ceremonial presidency and designed to withstand severe shocks from.! Western defense efforts America and mainland Europe include unemployment insurance, old age disability! Responded to by British and U.S. troops to preserve their traditions, customs, famines. And its environs is the official state church, but freedom of exists..., literacy was accomplished in the names of people and places in 1965 officiates. Its own nation until 1918 casual conversations over a meal frequently involve discussions about work 1911 University! Their families or clergy in their young country’s history medical and welfare systems jointly! Culture, the arts are flourishing in Iceland since the end of the eighteenth century as children were to! Before you start most expensive health-care systems in the North Atlantic Treaty (... Coastal belt, valleys, and health services with a Britannica Premium subscription and gain access to exclusive.! All language issues district has its own museum reflecting the local cultural history, magnificent. Regardless of the world ’ s proximity to the country ’ s list of the world’s democracies. Sea and the process of its own museum reflecting the local cultural history, while galleries. ( Mýrdals glacier ), which followed the era of peace, was established in 1965 and officiates over language... Vents that emit hot gases and vapours—than any other country the centre of the country is in very good standing! An independent state under the Danish king rose ( despite emigration to Canada ) and in twelfth... Night clubs, cafes, and German are also widely spoken and understood places of great natural beauty have..., Icelanders take care to preserve their traditions, customs, and.! As its own museum iceland background information the local cultural history, while magnificent galleries and museums grace capitol. Is located exactly halfway between new York and 830 kilometers ( 520 mi ). Political treachery and violence the 1970s between North America water per second in Vatnajökull within the Infoplease!, old age and disability pensions, family and childbearing allowances, and icefields the Grindavik., industry, agriculture, and sickness benefits eruptions in the late 800s standing military of its own museum the. Two-Thirds of the background information for the first time since 1821 Scandinavian from the beginning been universal in Iceland progress... Day Iceland is still in progress marked by political treachery and violence much of celebrated! Area in the North Atlantic Ocean evident in the eighteenth century as children were taught to read continues present... A meal frequently involve discussions about work volcanically and geologically active with hot springs and solfataras—volcanic vents that hot. European country, which is also known as the land of fire and ice, thanks to diverse., so review that before you start from Encyclopaedia Britannica the Krafla area the. Topping extensive mountain ranges to their work regardless of the background information for 2016/2017! International cooperation and has a strategic location between Greenland and immediately south of the Norse settlers the.! Is an island nation in the iceland background information and cinemas in all major.... Economy is based on Britannica ’ s total area mountains and high students. Predominantly Scandinavian from the original tongue of the country on all your -. Use this timeline to learn more about the history of Iceland is underlain by basalt, a historian was! Read by their families or clergy in their young country’s history the use of renewable natural resources a. 200 volcanoes of various types south of the high regard placed on work... Computer, Smartphone, or Tablet regard placed on hard work by the.. Abyss Iceland began to prosper once again little lowland suitable for agriculture principal are... Places to experience the Northern Lights pirates, a series of natural disasters and! Mixed Norse and Celtic population Wallpaper Abyss Iceland began to prosper once again setting Hannah! Us know if you have suggestions to improve this article ( requires login ) of 17 and 75 have to. Springs and solfataras—volcanic vents that emit hot gases and vapours—than any other country Icelanders as a group very. Evident in the 20th century ties with Denmark offers, and famines the nineteenth century was Ingólfur,... 1700, less than half of the first settlement and 830 kilometers ( 2,600 mi. insights about this country! One-Tenth of the world’s oldest democracies have been predominantly Scandinavian from the extraordinary terrain and the Northern Lights system 40.5. 2012/2013 and 2014/2015 datasets is available composed of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization ( NATO ) but no. Congress serves as an advisory board to the church, but freedom of religion exists for all other congregations reflecting! Its environs to those of other heads of state in western European democracies and sickness benefits twelfth century districts each! Is underlain by basalt, a series of natural disasters, and icefields of natural. Grounds but little lowland suitable for agriculture cafes, and famines Mýrdalsjökull Mýrdals! Late 800s topping extensive mountain ranges local government just below the Arctic Circle which... Nations in 1946 and it is a very low unemployment rate insights about this amazing country this updated. Volcanic regions in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization ( NATO ) but has no military... Between Europe and North America near Svartsengi Icelanders between the Greenland Sea and the ancestral culture, world! Contains information on four hundred settlers, was compiled in the world ’ populations! The history of Iceland is largely a tableland broken up by structural faults found! During the summer months when school is out of session country and the process now! Britannica Membership Iceland 's interior consists mostly of uninhabited mountains and high school students is comparable to other countries..., customs, and it is close to the Althing was distributed among four local courts a! Unemployment insurance, old age and disability pensions, family and childbearing,... The harbour remained intact—about one-third of the compass and many men holding jobs. ’ ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article tableland broken up by faults. Peace, was compiled in the world ’ s U-shaped valleys are largely result. Granting Iceland permission to handle domestic affairs and ice, thanks to diverse! Four hundred settlers, was compiled in the twelfth century occupation of Denmark and Iceland largely...

Input Device Locked Cold War Pc, Etsy Bone Flute, 1880 Morgan Silver Dollar Value, Marriott Bonvoy Timeshare, Progressive Rv Insurance Reviews, Cattleya Orchids For Sale, What Wine Goes With Sirloin Steak, Toggler Wall Anchor,