The island was governed as an independent commonwealth under the native parliament, the Althing, one of the world's oldest functioning legislative assemblies. Following a period of civil strife, Iceland acceded to Norwegian rule in the 13th century. The establishment of the Kalmar Union in 1397 united the kingdoms of Norway, Denmark, and Sweden. Iceland thus followed Norway's integration into that union, coming under Danish rule after Sweden's secession from the union in 1523. The Danish kingdom forcefully introduced Lutheranism to Iceland in 1550. (Full article...)
Debut received critical acclaim from British music critics, though United States reviews were mixed. It exceeded sales expectations, charting at number two in Iceland, three in the United Kingdom, and 61 in the US. It was certified gold in Canada and platinum in the US, where it remains Björk's best-selling album. (Full article...)
Icelanders established the country of Iceland in mid 930 AD when the Althing (Parliament) met for the first time. Iceland came under the reign of Norwegian, Swedish and Danish kings but regained full sovereignty and independence from the Danish monarchy on 1 December 1918, when the Kingdom of Iceland was established. On 17 June 1944, the monarchy was abolished and the Icelandic republic was founded. The language spoken is Icelandic, a North Germanic language, and Lutheranism is the predominant religion. Historical and DNA records indicate that around 60 to 80 percent of the male settlers were of Norse origin (primarily from Western Norway) and a similar percentage of the women were of Gaelic stock from Ireland and peripheral Scotland. (Full article...)
Genetic studies in Iceland have found that many of the women who were the founding stock of Iceland came from England and what is now France. Some were probably captured and carried off in Viking raids only 40 generations ago.
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