Reykjavík ( RAYK-yə-vik, -⁠veek; Icelandic: [ˈreiːcaˌviːk] ) is the capital and largest city of Iceland. It is located in southwestern Iceland, on the southern shore of Faxaflói bay. Its latitude is 64°08′ N, making it the world's northernmost capital of a sovereign state. Reykjavík has a population of around 140,000 as of 2023 (up from 121,822 in 2015). The Capital Region has a population of around 248,000.

Reykjavík is believed to be the location of the first permanent settlement in Iceland, which, according to Landnámabók, was established by Ingólfr Arnarson in AD 874. Until the 18th century, there was no urban development in the city location. The city was officially founded in 1786 as a trading town and grew steadily over the following decad...Read more

Reykjavík ( RAYK-yə-vik, -⁠veek; Icelandic: [ˈreiːcaˌviːk] ) is the capital and largest city of Iceland. It is located in southwestern Iceland, on the southern shore of Faxaflói bay. Its latitude is 64°08′ N, making it the world's northernmost capital of a sovereign state. Reykjavík has a population of around 140,000 as of 2023 (up from 121,822 in 2015). The Capital Region has a population of around 248,000.

Reykjavík is believed to be the location of the first permanent settlement in Iceland, which, according to Landnámabók, was established by Ingólfr Arnarson in AD 874. Until the 18th century, there was no urban development in the city location. The city was officially founded in 1786 as a trading town and grew steadily over the following decades, as it transformed into a regional and later national centre of commerce, population, and governmental activities.

Reykjavík is the centre of Iceland's cultural, economic, and governmental activity, and is a popular tourist destination among foreigners. It is among the cleanest, greenest, and safest cities in the world.

 A painting by Johan Peter Raadsig of Ingólfr commanding his high seat pillars to be erected Reykjavík in the 1860s

According to legend, the first permanent Norse settlement in Iceland was established at Reykjavík by Ingólfr Arnarson circa AD 870, as described in the Book of Settlement. Ingólfr is said to have decided the location of his settlement using a traditional Norse method: when land was in sight, he cast his high seat pillars overboard and promised to settle where the gods decided to bring them ashore. Two of his slaves then searched the coasts for three years before finding the pillars in the bay which eventually became the site of Reykjavík.[1]

Etymology

The name is of Old Norse origin, derived from the roots reykr ('smoke') and vík ('bay'). The name is said to be inspired by steam rising from hot springs in the region. The original name was Reykjar-vík,[2] with an "r" suffix for the genitive singular of reykr; the modern version reykja- uses the genitive plural. The name's meaning is still transparent in modern Icelandic, and in modern Norwegian (røyk + vik). The name originally referred to both the bay on the northern shore of the modern city centre, between Örfirisey [is] and Laugarnes, as well as the estate and farm of Ingólfr Arnarson. This form of the name fell out of use shortly after settlement, and the estate was referred to as Vík á Seltjarnarnesi until the name Reykjavík was revived when urban development began centuries later.[2]

The name has been translated as Bay of Smoke in English language travel guides, or variations thereof, such as Smoky Bay, Smoke Cove, Steam Bay, etc.[3][4]

Urban development

The site of the modern city centre was farmland until the 18th century. In 1752, King Frederik V of Denmark donated the estate of Reykjavík to the Innréttingar [is] corporation. The leader of this movement was Skúli Magnússon [is]. In the 1750s, several houses were built to house the wool industry, which was Reykjavík's most important employer for a few decades and the original reason for its existence. Other industries were undertaken by the Innréttingar, such as fisheries, sulphur mining, agriculture, and shipbuilding.[5]

The Danish Crown abolished monopoly trading in 1786 and granted six communities around the country an exclusive trading charter. Reykjavík was one of them and the only one to hold on to the charter permanently. 1786 is thus regarded as the date of the city's founding. Trading rights were limited to subjects of the Danish Crown, and Danish traders continued to dominate trade in Iceland. Over the following decades, their business in Iceland expanded. After 1880, free trade was expanded to all nationalities, and the influence of Icelandic merchants started to grow.

Rise of nationalism  Reykjavík in 1881 Reykjavík in the 1920s

Icelandic nationalist sentiment gained influence in the 19th century, and the idea of Icelandic independence became widespread. Reykjavík, as Iceland's only city, was central to such ideas. Advocates of an independent Iceland realized that a strong Reykjavík was fundamental to that objective. All the important events in the history of the independence struggle were important to Reykjavík as well. In 1845 Alþingi, the general assembly formed in AD 930, was re-established in Reykjavík; it had been suspended a few decades earlier when it was located at Þingvellir. At the time it functioned only as an advisory assembly, advising the king about Icelandic affairs. The location of Alþingi in Reykjavík effectively established the city as the capital of Iceland.

In 1874, Iceland was given a constitution; with it, Alþingi gained some limited legislative powers and in essence became the institution that it is today. The next step was to move most of the executive power to Iceland: Home Rule was granted in 1904 when the office of Minister for Iceland was established in Reykjavík. On 1 December 1918, Iceland became a sovereign country, the Kingdom of Iceland, in personal union with the Crown of Denmark.

By the 1920s and 1930s, most of the growing Icelandic fishing trawler fleet sailed from Reykjavík; cod production was its main industry, but the Great Depression hit Reykjavík hard with unemployment, and labour union struggles sometimes became violent.

World War II

On the morning of 10 May 1940, following the German occupation of Denmark and Norway on 9 April 1940, four British warships approached Reykjavík and anchored in the harbour. In a few hours, the allied occupation of Reykjavík was complete. There was no armed resistance, and taxi and truck drivers even assisted the invasion force, which initially had no motor vehicles. The Icelandic government had received many requests from the British government to consent to the occupation, but it always declined on the basis of the Neutrality Policy. For the remaining years of World War II, British and later American soldiers occupied camps in Reykjavík, and the number of foreign soldiers in Reykjavík became about the same as the local population of the city.[6] The Royal Regiment of Canada formed part of the garrison in Iceland during the early part of the war.

The economic effects of the occupation were positive for Reykjavík: the unemployment of the Depression years vanished, and construction work began. The British built Reykjavík Airport, which remains in service today, mostly for short haul flights (to domestic destinations and Greenland). The Americans, meanwhile, built Keflavík Airport, situated 50 km (31 mi) west of Reykjavík, which became Iceland's primary international airport.[7] In 1944, the Republic of Iceland was founded and a president, elected by the people, replaced the king; the office of the president was placed in Reykjavík.

Post-war development

In the post-war years, the growth of Reykjavík accelerated. An exodus from the rural countryside began, largely because improved technology in agriculture reduced the need for manpower, and because of a population boom resulting from better living conditions in the country. A once-primitive village was rapidly transformed into a modern city. Private cars became common, and modern apartment complexes rose in the expanding suburbs.

In 1972, Reykjavík hosted the famous world chess championship between Bobby Fischer and Boris Spassky. The 1986 Reykjavík Summit between Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev underlined Reykjavík's international status. Deregulation in the financial sector and the computer revolution of the 1990s again transformed Reykjavík. The financial and IT sectors are now significant employers in the city.

The city has fostered some world-famous musicians and artists in recent years, including musicians Björk; Múm and Sigur Rós; writer Sjón; and visual artist Ragnar Kjartansson.

^ Jon Gunnar Jørgensen. "Ingólfr Arnarson Bjǫrnólfsson Ingolv Ørnss" (in Norwegian). Norsk biografisk leksikon. Retrieved 20 April 2022. ^ a b "Er eitthvert örnefni á höfuðborgarsvæðinu eða vík eða vogur, sem heitir Reykjavík?". Vísindavefurinn (in Icelandic). Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. ^ "Google.com". Archived from the original on 4 September 2015. Retrieved 25 July 2012. ^ "Google.com". Retrieved 25 July 2012. ^ Hvaðan kemur nafnið "Innréttingarnar" á fyrirtækinu sem starfaði hér á á 18. öld? Archived 10 September 2016 at the Wayback Machine. Vísindavefur. (in Icelandic) ^ Clifford, Kenneth J., ed. (1970). "The United States Marines in Iceland, 1941–1942" (PDF). Washington, D.C.: Historical Division Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps. ^ "About KEF airport". www.isavia.is. Retrieved 30 November 2023.
Photographies by:
Bjørn Giesenbauer - CC BY-SA 2.0
Zones
Statistics: Position
879
Statistics: Rank
122520

Add new comment

Esta pregunta es para comprobar si usted es un visitante humano y prevenir envíos de spam automatizado.

Security
125684937Click/tap this sequence: 3514

Google street view

Where can you sleep near Reykjavík ?

Booking.com
489.475 visits in total, 9.196 Points of interest, 404 Destinations, 113 visits today.