Iceland (Icelandic: Ísland; [ˈistlant] (listen)) is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic, with a population of 358,780 and an area of 103,000 km2 (40,000 sq mi), making it the most sparsely populated country in Europe. The capital and largest city is Reykjavík, with Reykjavík and the surrounding areas in the southwest of the country being home to over two-thirds of the population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active. The interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields, mountains, and glaciers, and many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle. Its high latitude and marine influence keep summers chilly, with most of the archipelago having a tundra climate.
The word "Ísland/Island" in Nordic languages is literally translated to English as its name "Iceland" and should not be confused with the word island.
's island") is a volcanic island
off the southern coast of Iceland
. At 63°18′N 20°37′W / 63.30°N 20.62°W
it is also the southernmost point of Iceland
. It was formed in a volcanic eruption
which began 130 metres below sea level
, and reached the surface on 14 November 1963. The eruption may have started a few days earlier and lasted until 5 June 1967, when the island reached its maximum size of 2.7
km². Since then, wind and wave erosion has seen the island steadily diminish in size: as of 2005 it is only 1.4 km² in size.
The new island was named after the fire giant Surtur from Norse mythology, and was intensively studied by volcanologists during its creation and, since the end of the eruption, has been of great interest to botanists and biologists as life has gradually colonised the originally barren island. The undersea vents that produced Surtsey are part of the Vestmannaeyjar (Westmann Isles) submarine volcanic system, part of the fissure of the sea floor called the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Vestmannaeyjar also produced the famous eruption of Eldfell on the island of Heimaey in 1973. The eruption that created Surtsey also created a few other small islands along this volcanic chain, such as Jólnir and other unnamed peaks. Most of these eroded away fairly quickly.
Jón Sigurðsson (June 17, 1811 – December 7, 1879) was the leader of the 19th century Icelandic independence movement. He is often referred to as President (Jón forseti) by Icelanders. The main reason for this is that since 1851 he served as President of the Copenhagen Department of Hið íslenska bókmenntafélag (the Icelandic Literature Society). He was also the president of Althing several times, for the first time in 1849. He is currently pictured on Iceland's 500 krónur bill, and has been honoured on Icelandic postage stamps on the centenaries of his birth and death, the 150th anniversary of his birth, and on the creation of the Republic of Iceland (on his 133rd birthday).
- 29 December 2018: 3 Britons died and 4 Britons are seriously injured after a car crash on a one lane Icelandic bridge.(BBC)
- June 5 2018: The Icelandic national football team qualified for World Cup for the first time.(espn)
- April 12 2018: A Greenlander is sentenced for killing a 20-year old Icelandic woman.(the guardian)
- November 30 2017: A government consisting of parties both to the right and left is formed after instability.(the guardian)
Did you know...
Surrounding Mývatn are the calderas Gæsafjöll, Krafla, Vinderbelgjarfjall, Hverfjall, Búrfell, and Bláfjall.
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Wikipedia in Icelandic
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