Stories of Iceland is a podcast that focuses on the history, culture and folklore of this strange little island.
A Runaway Slave in Iceland
This is the story of Hans Jónatan, (1784-1827) Born in St. Croix in the Caribbean and died in Iceland. His life and legacy shows us that we often have misconceptions of the past and how we often forget people who are out of the ordinary.
The Dog Days King
In the summer of 1809 Iceland had a revolution. It has become a bit of a joke here. Here is a deeper dive that tries to put the story into the larger context of the life of an adventurer, a continent at war and an island that had not found its place in the modern world.
The Hauntings at Yuletide
A section of the saga Eyrbyggja set in the year that Christianity became law in Iceland tell of supernatural occurrences that in many way reflect the old ways are moving out while the new ways are coming in.
Coal Bottom Poker Riding
A typical wonder tale with a few Icelandic motifs. But the story has ingrained itself into Icelandic culture. The Icelandic band Bellatrix was originally named "Kolrassa Krókríðandi" because of this story. Another band, Þursaflokkurinn, had a song "Í gegnum holt og hæðir" based on a line from the tale.
Blue is the Old Black
I chatted remotely with my friend Dr. Arngrímur Vídalín about his research and writings on "Blámenn". In the sagas and folklore there are characters called "Blámenn" who represent the strange ideas that Icelanders of yore had about black and brown people.
The Ghost of the Scorned Woman
One of the most famous ghost story in Iceland is based on real life events that occurred less than a century before the tale was published. We have the tale but also more grounded accounts. Though the story is quite short it does reveal much about Icelandic society, the class system and the religious authority. The story also lingers in the consciousness of the people and a century and a half after the events took place there were still people searching for justice.
This is an awesome podcast. I really love Óli’s style and how the episodes are structured. Support him on Patreon so we can hear more Stories of Iceland!