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The Deacon of Dark River *)

A deacon at Dark River had a relationship with a servant girl at a nearby farm. After one of his visits to her, he told her he would be back the day before Christmas to take her to a Christmas party. Unfortunately, on his way home, a bridge collapsed from under his horse's feet and the deacon was ki ... more



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Bukolla, The Canny Cow *)

Once upon a time there was a man and a woman that lived in a cottage. They had one son but they did not love him. They had one cow, called Bukolla.

One day the cow disappeared. After a fruitless search the man and the woman angrily ordered the boy to go and search for the cow, not to ret ... more



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The Foolish Brothers of Bakki

The brothers of Bakki had been told that it was good for one‘s health to intermittendly dip one‘s feet into warm water. However, because of their ongoing low firewood supply they didn‘t want to spend it on warming up water.

Once they came across a small pool or hot spring on their journe ... more



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Gilitrutt *)

Once upon a time there was a hard working young and a well-to-do sheep farmer. He had just married a young shiftless woman. She was lazy and did not respond well to her husband‘s requests to process wool. This annoyed the man.

One day an old woman appeared and asked the wife a favor. „Can ... more



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Redhead *)

In ancient times it was common to go by boat to a remote skerry to catch birds and eggs. This journey was dangerous and could only be done in calm weather. On one such occasion a man had to be left behind because the weather suddenly turned for the worse. This also proved to be the last time that su ... more



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A Crow's Tale *)

A farmer‘s daughter had the custom of feeding a crow outside her home at meal time. At one time the raven did not take what she handed to it from the window. This surprised the girl and she went outside to feed it. Although always likely to eat the raven retreated further and further from the house. ... more



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The Convent of Kirkjubær *)

A convent of nuns was formed at Kirkjubær (Churchtown) in 1186. It was situated below a somewhat steep mountain that had a lake on top. One day two sisters made their way to the lake and it is said that they saw a golden comb reaching from the water. One of the nuns tried to reach it but drowned. Th ... more



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The Sorcerers of Westman Islands *)

When the Black Death plague raged in Iceland a group of sorcerers decided to escape death by moving to the Westman Islands.

When they expected the plague to have passed they needed to know if there were any survivors. So they appointed one of them to go to the mainland and find out. He ... more



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Jora of Jorakleif *)

Jora was a promising but short tempered young woman, the daughter of a farmer. One day she watched her fathers stallion, of which she was very fond, humiliated in a competition. She became so mad that she ripped one leg off the other horse and ran away with it. When she reached a nearby river she g ... more



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Crossroads

Some say that crossroads are, e.g. on hilltops or mountains, from where four churches can be seen. Old belief is that men should spend Christmas Night outside because then a new year begins and still today one counts his years by the numbers of Christmas Nights. A man having lived 15 Christmas Night ... more



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The Origin of Lake Myvatn

Having created the heavens and the earth, God reflected on his creation and felt he had done a good job. But Old Nick did not agree. He resented the beauty of the world. In his anger he decided to urinate at the sun to darken this glorious gem of creation.

This did not turn out as planne ... more



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God Bless You!

„God bless me!“ is commonly used when one sneezes or „God bless you!“ when someone else does. This custom originated during the plague in the begining of the 15th century. It had spread to yet another province continuing to claim lives. Eventually it reached a farm where two siblings lived. They ha ... more



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The Lake Lagarfljot Worm *)

Long ago, in a cottage near Lake Lagarfljot, a woman gave her daughter a gold ring. “How can I benefit the most from this ring, dear mother?”, asked the daughter.

“Place it under a heather worm”, the woman replied.

So the girl puts the gold ring inside a box with the worm on t ... more



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