Irish monks in Iceland

Some people state that it wasn’t Norsemen (Swedes, Danes, and Norwegians) who founded Iceland, but Irish monks. Even though it might sound nationalistic I have to contradict this assertion.

The evidence we have on the settlement of Iceland that would have had predated the Nordic settlement (Sweden, Denmark, Norway, and from the Nordic settlements in the Hebrides and the Danelaw area of nowadays Scotland and England) are very very scarce. There are the old Nordic chronicles written by Snorri Sturlasón and we’ve found some archaeological find. But all this is as stated before very scarce and the archaeological “proofs” can just be loot and other stolen goods by the Vikings that they brought to Iceland with them.
And even IF the Irish were there before us they didn’t form a society of any kind or any form of civilization. If any, there were a few monks who left Ireland to be able to pray in peace and solitude.
It is true however that the Norsemen (Swedes, Danes, and Norwegians) brought with them thralls from Ireland and Scotland. But to say that this would count the Icelandic nation to be a Gaelic one and not a Nordic country is just far too far-fetched. But it sure is interesting to think that some Irish erimites were living here already in the 7th century. Honor to them, if that’s the case.


About tegis

This blog belongs to Carl-Mikael A. Teglund - tegis. Swedish emigrant with a heart for languages, philosophy, history, and politics (classical liberalism in the European tradition). Go ahead and look, read, or listen. I'm sure you will find it interesting.
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