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The word love survived in the language, certainly, but only as a relic from a distant unknown age when words meant something quite different from now; perhaps it had been used about horses.” [Translation by Magnús Magnússon].
Old Laxness may have been exaggerating somewhat, for evidence suggests that romantic love never really made it to Iceland at all, and contemporary texts seem to agree.
Surprisingly, he seems to broadly reach the same conclusions as our Nobel poet.
(Disclaimer: In no way is this an endorsement of the politics or worldview of Roosh V).
Perhaps this is, then, a belated middle finger to our former king, in the same way that Americans still carry guns to spite George III.
A thousand years since the end of the Viking Age and we still have not mastered the art of conversation.
A Strange Kind Of Paradise In his novel ‘Paradise Reclaimed,’ (‘Paradísarheimt’) Iceland’s Nobel Laureate Halldór Laxness writes of the time romantic love came to Iceland.
He suggests this happened sometime around the year 1874, on the 1000-year anniversary of settlement, and describes it thusly:“That which we now call love had not yet come to Iceland.
People mated without romance, according to the wordless laws of nature and in conformity with the German pietism of the Danish king.
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Alda further describes the natural course of an Icelandic relationship as: sex, a movie, kids, moving in, and perhaps marriage, pointing out that everything here is done in a different order than it is most other places. She further noted that on mainland Europe, it was quite normal for a man and a woman to strike up conversation when, say, waiting for a bus.