Icelandic Elf School

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The Icelandic Elf School (Icelandic: Álfaskólinn) is an organization located in Reykjavík, Iceland, that offers lectures and guided tours about Icelandic folklore.[1][2][3]

The organization teaches about the hidden people and the 13 different kinds of elves that the organization believes inhabit the country of Iceland.[4] According to the organization's headmaster, hidden people "are just the same size and look exactly like human beings, the only difference is that they are invisible to most of us. Elves, on the other hand, aren’t entirely human, they’re humanoid, starting at around eight centimetres".[5]

The organization is headed by Magnús Skarphéðinsson. Magnús has a full curriculum, and certificate programs for visitors that can be earned in as little as half a day. However, the organization also publishes texts on hidden people, partly for its own use in the classroom.[6] Magnús organizes five hour long educational excursions for visitors, and finishes the tour with coffee and pancakes.[7] Since opening in 1991, over 9,000 people, most of them foreigners, have attended the organization.[8] The Álfaskólinn also provides "aura readings" and "past-life explorations".[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Alfar og huldufólk flutt út". Alþýðublaðið (in Icelandic). 1997-07-09. p. 1. Retrieved 2009-06-07.
  2. ^ Gruber, Barbara (June 2007). "Iceland: Searching For Elves And Hidden People". Deutsche Welle. Retrieved 2009-10-31.
  3. ^ Heijnen, Adriënne (2005). "Dreams, Darkness and Hidden Spheres : Exploring the Anthropology of the Night in Icelandic Society". Paideuma: Mitteilungen zur Kulturkunde. 51: 203. Retrieved 2010-02-11.
  4. ^ "VIDEO: Belief in Elves Strong in Iceland". National Geographic News. 2008-12-11. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
  5. ^ Vincenz, Marc (2009-05-27). "To Be or Not to Be; Álfar, Elves, Huldufólk, Fairies and Dwarves: Are They Really All the Same Thing?". The Reykjavík Grapevine. Archived from the original on 2010-04-04. Retrieved 2009-06-14.
  6. ^ McArthur, Douglas (1996-03-13). "Elfschool tries to make a believer out of everyone". The Globe and Mail (Canada).
  7. ^ "Ferðast um huliðsheima". Morgunblaðið (in Icelandic). 1997-06-15. Retrieved 2009-05-30.
  8. ^ Honoré, Carl (2005-07-01). "The Hidden Beings Of Iceland". American Way. Archived from the original on 2009-02-20. Retrieved 2009-06-14.
  9. ^ Rakoff, David (2002). Fraud: Essays. New York, NY: Broadway Books. p. 85. ISBN 978-0-7679-0631-9.

Further reading[edit]

  • Rakoff, David, Fraud: Essays (Broadway Books: 2002) pp. 85 ff.
  • Baldacchino, Godfrey, Extreme Tourism: Lessons from the World's Cold Water Islands (Elsevier Science: 2006) pp. 121–122
  • Sullivan, Paul, Waking Up in Iceland (Sanctuary Publishing: 2003) p. 117
  • Baedeker: Iceland, (Mairs Geographischer Verlag: 2009) p. 246
  • Packard, Mary, Ripley's Believe It or Not!: Strange School Stories (Scholastic: 2010)

External links[edit]