Iceland is an island. It is part of Europe. It is the 18



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Coat of arms of Iceland or Skjaldarmerki Íslands is a cross of silver on a sky-blue shield, with a fire-red cross inside the silver cross (similar to the Icelandic flag). The shieldbearers are the four protectors of Iceland (landvættir) standing on a pahoehoe lava block. The bull (Griðungur) is the protector of southwestern Iceland, the eagle or griffin (Gammur) protects northwestern Iceland, the dragon (Dreki) the northeastern part and the Rock-giant (Bergrisi) is the protector of southeastern Iceland. Great respect was given to these creatures of Iceland, so much that there was a law during the time of the Vikings that no ship should bear grimacing symbols (most often dragonheads on the bow of the ship) when approaching Iceland. This was so the protectors would not be provoked unnecessarily.

The landvættir also decorate the obverse (front) of the Icelandic króna coins but animals of the ocean (fish, crabs and dolphins)


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The Viking ship "Icelander" based on a style of boatbuilding over 1,100 years old. This working replica built between 1994 and 1996 using traditional methods and tools to the Viking era, is similar to the Gokstad ship found in Norway in 1880.

Viking ships were primarily of two types 1) the Longship was used for shorter voyages, coastal excursions and warfare. 
2) the knörr used to carry cargo and longer trips such as voyages to Iceland.

Fully manned a ship like the "Icelander" would have had a crew of around 70. It is 23m (75 feet) long, 5.25m wide and gross weight of 80 metric tons. The mast is 18m tall with sail area of 130 m2.



In 2000 Captain Eggertsson and crew of 9 sailed the Icelander to America via Greenland, following the path of the Icelandic Viking explorer Leifer Eiríksson. The 4,200 nautical mile journey took 110 days.

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