Sunday, April 5, 2009

What is Your Icelandic Name?

One little oddity that we will run into in Iceland is the fact that they do not use surnames there. Rather than a family name the Icelanders retain the centuries earlier practice of patronyms (identifying a person with the name of their father). Makes it a tad more difficult to keep track of who is married to who, obviously! William Howard also tells me that finding someone in the local telephone book is a bit more of a challenge until you figure out that record-keeping is based on the FIRST name, not the last. But at least that explains why all the names I have been reading about in Iceland have such similarities. There are only 2 possible endings. If I were from Iceland my name would be Linda Everettsdottir (literally, Linda daughter of Everett) while Jimmie would be Jimmie Jaspersson.

So what would YOUR name be in Icelandic?

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