Are Iceland and Greenland’s Names Mixed Up? 🏞️

3 min read

Morning travelers!

Let's just get into this.

Iceland looks like this:

And Greenland looks like this…

Are we sure we haven't got their names mixed up?

What’s the story behind this?

Well, according to the Icelandic book of settlement, a Norwegian viking dude called Flóki Vilgerðarson and his family decided they didn’t want to live in Norway any more.

So they loaded all their worldly possessions and some livestock onto a boat.

Then they set sail to find lands that had been reported by explorers long ago.

It's said that, once far into the sea, Flóki released 3 Ravens into the air to fly off and locate these new lands.

But annoyingly, the first of his Ravens flew towards the already discovered Faroe Islands.

And the second flew into the air, circled around for a bit, then came back to the boat.

So, he released the final Raven, and luckily it started flying north, eventually leading Flóki and his family to the coast of the not yet named Iceland.

But things weren’t all good.

In fact, the opposite.

See, Flóki’s daughter had drowned in the travels.

And once they got to the island, literally all the livestock they took with them perished in the harsh winter.

Depressed and frustrated, Flóki climbed a mountain to discover some icebergs floating in a nearby valley.

And this is the name that stuck…

As the years went on, Iceland grew and became more populated.

Eventually becoming the home to a Norwegian born Icelandic Viking known as Eric the Red.

Eric grew up an angry young man, due to his father being exiled when he was just 10 years old.

This anger, plus his red hair and beard led him to be named Eric the Red.

Anyway, one day Eric killed 3 guys in a feud.

So, Eric was banished from Iceland.

And he decided to go out and search for land that had been rumored to exist further east.

Eventually, he found it.

And he decided to call it Greenland!

Not because it was green.

I mean, there was a little green in the south during summer, but let's be real Greenland is 99% Ice.  

The real reason he called it Greenland was because he hoped this name would give the idea of a rich land of vegetation and greenery.

So people might actually want to come and live there.

Nice try Eric.

Stay Cute,
Reece, Henry & Dylan 🌈

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