Site hosted by Build your free website today!

The First Settlers


I. The first people to live on Iceland were the Irish monks. They founded the Irish monasteries which were the chief repositories of religion, learning, and culture in Europe. After the collapse of the Roman Empire, many Irish monks left to spread Christianity. Saint Brendan was one of them and he eventually found the island of Iceland in 759 A.D. Like the Vikings, he too didn't have any instruments to guide him. Therefore, he used the stars in the sky to lead him. Eventually, the Vikings came and the monks left because they refused to live with people who believe in heathen gods. 

Here is a drawing of Saint Brendan.

II. Naddoddur is the first Noridic from the Faeroe Islands, north of England, to actually stop in Iceland and live there for a while in 850 A.D. Since there was no name to this island, Naddoddur called it Snowland before he left.

III. Later on, a Swedish Viking, Garoar Svavarsson, arrived in Snowland and he became the first person to stay there for the winter. He left the island under the name of Garoars-islet, and three people stayed there permanently.


IV. A Norwegian Viking, Hrafna Floki (Raven-Shag), came next with people and animals to Garoars-islet. By coming to Garoars-islet, he made one fatal mistake, he forgot to bring food for the livestock and the animals and they eventually perished during the wintertime. He was then forced to go back to Norway, but before he did, he named the island Iceland.


V. The first man to get the credit for actually starting the Settlement of Iceland is a man called Ingolfur Arnarson who landed in 874 A.D. The reason that Ingolfur Arnarson left was because he killed the 2 sons of the powerful earl in Norway. The reason that he is considered the first settler is because he was the first person to lived there for the rest of his life. He came to Iceland with his family, some people, and his blood brother, Hjorliefur, who had problems with the chieftains in Norway. He eventually died at the hands of his slaves when he came back a second time. Ingolfur eventually settled down and built his farm which eventually became the capital of Iceland which is Reykjavik. The settlement of Iceland was part of the Viking and Nordic expansionist movement which occurred between the eighth and eleventh century. Most of the settlers came from Norway and some came from Ireland and Scotland.




A statue of Ingolfur Arnarson                        Route that Ingolfur Arnarson took

in Reykjavik                                                    to Iceland


Here is another picture of the route that Ingolfur Arnarson took to Iceland.