Anthem: "Lofsöngur"
Location of Iceland
Location of Iceland
and largest city
64°08′N 21°56′W / 64°08′N 21°56′W / 64.133; -21.933
Official language
and national language
Ethnic groups
Church of Iceland[3]
GovernmentUnitary parliamentary republic
• President
Guðni Th. Jóhannesson
Katrín Jakobsdóttir
Steingrímur J. Sigfússon
Þorgeir Örlygsson
9th century
• Commonwealth
Founding of the Althing
• Union with Norway
Signing of the Old Covenant
• Treaty of Kiel
Ceded to Denmark
14 January 1814
• Constitution and limited home rule
Minister for Iceland appointed
5 January 1874
• Extended home rule
1 February 1904
1 December 1918
• Republic
17 June 1944
3 May 1960
• Total
102,775[4] km2 (39,682 sq mi) (106th)
• Water (%)
• 31 December 2018 estimate
357,050 [a] (172nd)
• Density
3.4/km2 (8.8/sq mi) (233rd)
GDP (PPP)2018 estimate
• Total
$19 billion[5] (142nd)
• Per capita
$54,753[5] (16th)
GDP (nominal)2018 estimate
• Total
$27 billion[5]
• Per capita
$75,700[5] (5th)
Gini (2016)Positive decrease 24.1[6]
low · 2nd
HDI (2017)Increase 0.935[7]
very high · 6th
CurrencyIcelandic króna (ISK)
Time zoneUTC+0 (WET)
Date formatdd/mm/yyyy
Driving sideright
Calling code+354
Patron saintSaint Thorlak
ISO 3166 codeIS
  1. ^ "Statistics Iceland: Key figures". Statistics Iceland. 1 January 2018. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
  2. ^ "CIA – The World Factbook – Field Listing – Distribution of family income – Gini index". United States government. Retrieved 14 September 2008.

Iceland[8] is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic, with a population of 357,050 and an area of 103,000 km2 (40,000 sq mi), making it the most sparsely populated country in Europe.[9] The capital and largest city is Reykjavík, with Reykjavík and the surrounding areas in the southwest of the country being home to over two-thirds of the population. Iceland is volcanically and geologically active. The interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields, mountains, and glaciers, and many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle. Its high latitude and marine influence keep summers chilly, with most of the archipelago having a tundra climate.

According to the ancient manuscript Landnámabók, the settlement of Iceland began in 874 AD when the Norwegian chieftain Ingólfr Arnarson became the first permanent settler on the island.[10] In the following centuries, Norwegians, and to a lesser extent other Scandinavians, emigrated to Iceland, bringing with them thralls (i.e., slaves or serfs) of Gaelic origin. The island was governed as an independent commonwealth under 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. Although the Danish kingdom introduced Lutheranism forcefully in 1550, Iceland remained a distant semi-colonial territory in which Danish institutions and infrastructures were conspicuous by their absence. In the wake of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, Iceland's struggle for independence took form and culminated in independence in 1918 and the founding of a republic in 1944. Until the 20th century, Iceland relied largely on subsistence fishing and agriculture. Industrialisation of the fisheries and Marshall Plan aid following World War II brought prosperity and Iceland became one of the wealthiest and most developed nations in the world. In 1994, it became a part of the European Economic Area, which further diversified the economy into sectors such as finance, biotechnology, and manufacturing.

Iceland has a market economy with relatively low taxes, compared to other OECD countries.[11] It maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens.[12] Iceland ranks high in economic, democratic, social stability, and equality, currently ranking first in the world by median wealth per adult. In 2018, it was ranked as the sixth most developed country in the world by the United Nations' Human Development Index, and it ranks first on the Global Peace Index.[7] Iceland runs almost completely on renewable energy. Hit hard by the worldwide financial crisis, the nation's entire banking system systemically failed in October 2008, leading to a severe depression, substantial political unrest, the Icesave dispute, and the institution of capital controls. Some bankers were jailed.[13] Since then, the economy has made a significant recovery, in large part due to a surge in tourism.[14][15][16] A law that took effect in 2018 makes it illegal in Iceland for women to be paid less than men.[17]

Icelandic culture is founded upon the nation's Scandinavian heritage. Most Icelanders are descendants of Norse and Gaelic settlers. Icelandic, a North Germanic language, is descended from Old West Norse and is closely related to Faroese and West Norwegian dialects. The country's cultural heritage includes traditional Icelandic cuisine, Icelandic literature, and medieval sagas. Iceland has the smallest population of any NATO member and is the only one with no standing army, with a lightly armed coast guard.[18]


Norsemen landing in Iceland – a 19th-century depiction by Oscar Wergeland.

The Sagas of Icelanders say that a Norwegian named Naddodd (or Naddador) was the first Norseman to reach Iceland, and in the 9th century he named it Snæland or "snow land" because it was snowing. Following Naddodd, the Swede Garðar Svavarsson arrived, and so the island was then called Garðarshólmur which means "Garðar's Isle".

Then came a Viking named Flóki Vilgerðarson; his daughter drowned en route, then his livestock starved to death. The sagas say that the rather despondent Flóki climbed a mountain and saw a fjord (Arnarfjörður) full of icebergs, which led him to give the island its new and present name.[19] The notion that Iceland's Viking settlers chose that name to discourage oversettlement of their verdant isle is a myth.[19]

Other Languages
Acèh: Islandia
Адыгэбзэ: Ислэнд
Afrikaans: Ysland
Akan: Iceland
Alemannisch: Island
አማርኛ: አይስላንድ
Ænglisc: Īsland
Аҧсшәа: Исландиа
العربية: آيسلندا
aragonés: Islandia
armãneashti: Islanda
arpetan: Islande
asturianu: Islandia
Avañe'ẽ: Iylanda
azərbaycanca: İslandiya
تۆرکجه: ایسلند
bamanankan: Aisland
Bân-lâm-gú: Peng-tó
башҡортса: Исландия
беларуская: Ісландыя
беларуская (тарашкевіца)‎: Ісьляндыя
भोजपुरी: आइसलैंड
Bikol Central: Islanda
Bislama: Iceland
български: Исландия
Boarisch: Island
bosanski: Island
brezhoneg: Island
буряад: Исланд
català: Islàndia
Чӑвашла: Исланди
Cebuano: Islandya
čeština: Island
Chamoru: Islandia
Chavacano de Zamboanga: Islandia
chiShona: Iceland
chiTumbuka: Iceland
corsu: Islanda
Cymraeg: Gwlad yr Iâ
dansk: Island
davvisámegiella: Islánda
Deutsch: Island
ދިވެހިބަސް: އައިސްލަންޑަން
Diné bizaad: Tin Kéyah
dolnoserbski: Islandska
डोटेली: आइसल्याण्ड
eesti: Island
Ελληνικά: Ισλανδία
emiliàn e rumagnòl: Islanda
español: Islandia
Esperanto: Islando
estremeñu: Islándia
euskara: Islandia
eʋegbe: Iceland
فارسی: ایسلند
Fiji Hindi: Iceland
føroyskt: Ísland
français: Islande
Frysk: Yslân
Fulfulde: Islannda
furlan: Islande
Gaeilge: An Íoslainn
Gaelg: Yn Eeslynn
Gagauz: İslandiya
Gàidhlig: Innis Tìle
galego: Islandia
ગુજરાતી: આઈસલેંડ
𐌲𐌿𐍄𐌹𐍃𐌺: 𐌴𐌹𐍃𐌰𐌻𐌰𐌽𐌳
गोंयची कोंकणी / Gõychi Konknni: आइसलँड
客家語/Hak-kâ-ngî: Pên-tó
한국어: 아이슬란드
Hausa: Ayislan
Hawaiʻi: ʻĀina Hau
հայերեն: Իսլանդիա
हिन्दी: आइसलैण्ड
hornjoserbsce: Islandska
hrvatski: Island
Ido: Islando
Igbo: Iceland
Ilokano: Islandia
বিষ্ণুপ্রিয়া মণিপুরী: আইসল্যান্ড
Bahasa Indonesia: Islandia
interlingua: Islanda
Interlingue: Island
Ирон: Исланди
isiZulu: I-Ayisilandi
íslenska: Ísland
italiano: Islanda
עברית: איסלנד
Basa Jawa: Èslan
Kabɩyɛ: Isilandɩ
kalaallisut: Islandi
Kapampangan: Islandya
къарачай-малкъар: Исландия
ქართული: ისლანდია
kaszëbsczi: Islandëjô
қазақша: Исландия
kernowek: Island
Kinyarwanda: Isilande
Kiswahili: Iceland
Kongo: Islande
Kreyòl ayisyen: Islann
kurdî: Îslenda
Кыргызча: Исландия
Ladino: Islandia
لۊری شومالی: ایسلند
latgaļu: Īslandeja
Latina: Islandia
latviešu: Islande
Lëtzebuergesch: Island
лезги: Исландия
lietuvių: Islandija
Ligure: Islanda
Limburgs: Iesland
lingála: Islandi
Lingua Franca Nova: Island
Livvinkarjala: Islandii
la .lojban.: island
Luganda: Isilandi
lumbaart: Islanda
magyar: Izland
मैथिली: आइसलैंड
македонски: Исланд
Malagasy: Islandy
മലയാളം: ഐസ്‌ലാന്റ്
Malti: Iżlanda
Māori: Tiorangi
मराठी: आइसलँड
მარგალური: ისლანდია
مازِرونی: ایسلند
Bahasa Melayu: Iceland
Mìng-dĕ̤ng-ngṳ̄: Bĭng-dō̤
Mirandés: Eislándia
мокшень: Исланда
монгол: Исланд
မြန်မာဘာသာ: အိုက်စလန်နိုင်ငံ
Dorerin Naoero: Aiterand
Nederlands: IJsland
Nedersaksies: Ieslaand
नेपाली: आइसल्याण्ड
нохчийн: Исланди
Nordfriisk: Islönj
Norfuk / Pitkern: Iseland
norsk: Island
norsk nynorsk: Island
Nouormand: Islaunde
Novial: Islande
occitan: Islàndia
олык марий: Исландий
Oromoo: Aayislaandi
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Islandiya
ਪੰਜਾਬੀ: ਆਈਸਲੈਂਡ
पालि: आइसलैंड
Pangasinan: Island
پنجابی: آئس لینڈ
Papiamentu: Islandia
پښتو: آيسلېنډ
Patois: Aislan
Перем Коми: Исланд
ភាសាខ្មែរ: ប្រទេសអាយឡែន
Picard: Islinde
Piemontèis: Islanda
Tok Pisin: Aislan
Plattdüütsch: Iesland
polski: Islandia
Ποντιακά: Ισλανδία
português: Islândia
Qaraqalpaqsha: İslandiya
qırımtatarca: İslandiya
română: Islanda
rumantsch: Islanda
Runa Simi: Islandya
русиньскый: Ісландія
русский: Исландия
саха тыла: Исландия
Gagana Samoa: Aiselani
संस्कृतम्: आइसलैंड
Sängö: Islânde
sardu: Islanda
Scots: Iceland
Seeltersk: Ieslound
Sesotho: Iceland
shqip: Islanda
sicilianu: Islandia
Simple English: Iceland
سنڌي: آئس لينڊ
SiSwati: Echweni
slovenčina: Island
slovenščina: Islandija
словѣньскъ / ⰔⰎⰑⰂⰡⰐⰠⰔⰍⰟ: Исландъ
ślůnski: Islandyjo
Soomaaliga: Ayslaan
کوردی: ئایسلەند
Sranantongo: Islenikondre
српски / srpski: Исланд
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Island
Basa Sunda: Islandia
suomi: Islanti
svenska: Island
Tagalog: Iceland
Taqbaylit: Island
tarandíne: Islanne
татарча/tatarça: Исландия
తెలుగు: ఐస్‌లాండ్
tetun: Izlándia
тоҷикӣ: Исландия
Türkçe: İzlanda
Türkmençe: Islandiýa
тыва дыл: Исландия
удмурт: Исландия
українська: Ісландія
اردو: آئس لینڈ
ئۇيغۇرچە / Uyghurche: ئىسلاندىيە
Vahcuengh: Binghdauj
vèneto: Islanda
vepsän kel’: Islandii
Tiếng Việt: Iceland
Volapük: Lisladeän
Võro: Island
walon: Izlande
文言: 冰島
West-Vlams: Ysland
Winaray: Islandya
Wolof: Islaand
吴语: 冰岛
Xitsonga: Iceland
ייִדיש: איסלאנד
Yorùbá: Íslándì
粵語: 冰島
Zazaki: İslanda
Zeêuws: Iesland
žemaitėška: Islandėjė
中文: 冰岛