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Archive for October, 2012

The winter is here. Posted by on Oct 27, 2012

Happy New Year to all of you who use the old Nordic calendar! Today’s the first day of Gormánuður (= the month of half-digested hay) which is the first month of winter, and at the same time the first month of the year. This is when in times of old animals were slaughtered for the…

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The heartbroken girl who became a legend. Posted by on Oct 23, 2012

As far as obsessive love that goes on to death and beyond, the Djákninn á myrká isn’t actually even close to being the worst of his kind. The crown of Iceland’s most horrifying ghost goes instead to a young lady called Solveig, who used to live in a place called Míklabæ, giving the name to…

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Don’t let them see you. Posted by on Oct 18, 2012

By now you may have noticed that the October posts follow a certain… theme. Let’s now continue with more scary creatures fit for the season – Icelandic cat-fox monsters skuggabaldur (= shadowbaldur: the origin of the name seems to be a mystery) and skoffín. Of these the skoffín had a fox as its father and…

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Tilberi. Posted by on Oct 15, 2012

A notable thing about witchcraft in Iceland is that it used to be more common for men to practice it than women. Yet there is one Icelandic magical creature that could only be created by a woman – the tilberi. To make one she would have to dig up a dead body in secret and…

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Here, there, trolls everywhere! Posted by on Oct 12, 2012

Tröllið er þar / tröllið er þarna; tröllið er hér / tröllið er hérna: which sentences do you think should make you react faster? What about the difference between tröllið kemur héðan as opposed to tröllið kemur hingað? Of the first two examples both translate as “the troll is there” and the latter two as “the troll…

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