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The lcelandic Weekly
Lógberg Stofnað 14, januar 1888
Heimskringla Stofnað 9. september 1886
110. Argangur
11 Oth Year
Publications Mail Registration No. 1667
Inside this week:
Learning lcelandic....................3
Seal meat on Saturday.............8, 7, 6
Upcoming events.....................2
Föstudagur 6 september 1996                   Numer 30
Friday, 6 September, 1996                    Number 30
President visíts
New World
Olafur Ragnar Grímsson,
President of Iceland, visit-
ed the New World Muse-
um at Hofsós recently while on a
trip to Skagafjörður. The presi-
dent and his wife, Guðrún Ka-
trín, looked at the museum and
the show "Another Land, Anoth-
er Life" which depicts life in Ice-
land in the latter part of the nine-
teenth century. The president and
his wife were impressed with the
display which they felt was a
new way of displaying historic-
cultural material in Iceland. The
display was set up by the Open
Air Museum at Skagafjörður and
the Cultural Museum at Akureyri
on behalf of Snorri Þorfinnsson
ehf. Besides historians, many
trades-people worked on the
show. The co-operation between
the museums and the Tourist Bu-
reau is exceptional and has been
very successful. The show and
the whole setting have drawn de-
served recognition and atten-
dance has been good. According
to Valgeir Þorvaldsson, manager
of Snorri Þorfinnsson ehf., close
to five thousand people have vis-
ited the museum in the five
weeks since it opened. The Mu-
seum's Information and Service
Bureau has received many in-
quiries about the West-farers and
their descendants. The library
has books on history and geneol-
ogy. Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, past
President of Iceland, recently
gave the center books on the set-
tlement of Icelanders in the New
Icelander worked
on Mars research
Scientists NASA recently
claimed that living organisms
may have existed on Mars at one
time. A few years ago scientific
tests showed that at one time
there was water on Mars; water
is a basic element for the exis-
tence of living organisms. Haral-
dur R. Karlsson, a geologist, is
one of the scientists who has
worked on this project. After
completing his geology studies
at the University of Iceland, Har-
Continued on page 2.
Hunting out
tHe Huldufolk
By Svava Simundsson
During the time I was living in
Iceland a number of years ago,
I spent a summer working on a
farm in Nordur Thingeyarsaysla, in
north-central Iceland. The farm was
situated in a valley with the heath
(heidi) rising up on both sides of a
river. The river ran from the moun-
tainsdown , down along the valley just
below the farmstead.
This is a storybook setting. This is
the kind of place that is described in
all the huldufolk folktales I have heard
and read. This farm, like so many in
Iceland, had a álagablettur (enchanted
spot) where on some bygone occasion
a spell had been cast. These small
plots belong to the hiddn ones and are
not be be desecrated of made use of in
any way by humans.
The farmer at the farm in Northur
Thingeyjarsysla was a sheep farmer
and an extraordinarily talented man.
He was gifted with the power of heal-
ing and he also had an amazing grasp
and understanding of many of the
wonders of our world, among them,
the huldufolk.
I had the opportunity to discuss the
phenomenon with this farmer one
night as we were moving the sheep to
the interior highland pastures. As we
talking during the trip I asked my
straightforward, but stupid, question
directíy to him: "Are there huldufolk
His answer was, "Yes, of course,
they hve here!"
He went on to say that it was
very distressing that some peo-
ple chose to disbeheve that the
huldufolk are here. There are so many
accounts of how they have worked
with people and helped them. There
are so many stories of how they have
sheltered people in bad weather, pro-
tected them and looked out for them,
as well as stories of how the hudulfolk
have called on us to help them.
There are so many kinds of encoun-
teres and so many stories, it is hard to
believe that there are yet people who
say they don't believe in them.
To illustrate his point, he wei
According to folklore, huldufolk traditionally live within the earth.
to relate an incident that had occurred
in the district we were in. There was a
midwife in the area who was roused
from her sleep one night by a man
who bade her to accompany him. He
his wife was in need of her help.
She was bearing a child and was hav-
ing a difficult delivery. The midwife
slipped on her sheepskin shoes and
cloak and followed the man.
Continued on page 4.
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