Mapping Medieval Iceland

This interactive map displays the world of medieval Iceland (c.870-1537), bringing to life the landscape of Iceland’s medieval prose epics: the sagas. (As well as providing a picture of the world that produced them).

The purpose of this map is to help people learn about Iceland’s history through a visual and interactive experience. It is also meant to spread awareness of Iceland’s rich historical landscape, encouraging people to visit these sites if they happen to be visiting Iceland (so keep this map in mind when planning trips!)

Each saga site includes a brief summary of the events that are said to have happened there, as well as references (by chapter) to the sagas that include them. Other historical locations provide citations to historians by last name and relevant page number. See below for full citations of these sources.

To search for locations relevant to a specific text, search the map for the following (without quotations):

“Land.” — Landnámabók
“Lax.” — Laxdæla saga
“Njal.” — Njáls saga

For those who seek a map for more academic purposes, see the Icelandic Saga Map being worked on by Emily Lethbridge and the University of Iceland:

 Landnám-Saga Map

Primary Texts (Without Any Particular Order)

Hermann Pálsson and Paul Edwards trans., The Book of Settlements: Landnámabók (repr., 1972; Winnipeg, Canada: University of Manitoba Press, 2012).
Keneva Kunz trans., The Saga of the People of Laxardal and Bolli Bollason’s Tale (London: Penguin Books, 2008).
Robert Cook, trans., Njal’s Saga (London: Penguin Books, 2001).

Secondary Texts (Alphabetical by Author’s Last Name*)

Byock, Jesse L. Viking Age Iceland. London: Penguin Books, 2001.
Gunnar Karlsson. The History of Iceland. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2000.

*Icelandic authors are listed by their first name.