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Icelandic Online Dictionary and Readings

Carry On Icelandic: Culture [selections] (2004)

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SjßlfstŠ­isbarßttan - A Struggle for Independence

SjßlfstŠ­isbarßttan

┴ fyrri hluta 19. aldar fˇr ■jˇ­erniskennd a­ vakna me­ ═slendingum Ý kj÷lfar stjˇrnmßlahrŠringa su­ur Ý Evrˇpu. Aukinn ßhugi ß Ýslensku mßli og fornbˇkmenntum var­ til a­ glŠ­a ■jˇ­erniskenndina enn frekar og ═slendingar hˇfu a­ berjast fyrir endurreisn Al■ingis og sjßlfstŠ­i ■jˇ­arinnar.

Skßld tˇku virkan ■ßtt Ý sjßlfstŠ­isbarßttunni og eru m÷rg ■ekktustu ■jˇ­skßld ═slendinga frß ■eim tÝma. Mß ■ar helstan nefna Jˇnas HallgrÝmsson, eitt ßstsŠlasta skßld Ýslensku ■jˇ­arinnar.

Color photograph

Fßnar vi­ h˙n ß Ůjˇ­hßtÝ­ardaginn 17. j˙nÝ (Flags flying at the Independence Day, June 17).

MikilvŠgt skref Ý ßtt til sjßlfstŠ­is var stigi­ er ═slendingar fengu stjˇrnarskrß ßri­ 1874. Af ■vÝ tilefni var efnt til fyrstu ■jˇ­hßtÝ­ar ß ═slandi. HßtÝ­in var haldin ß Ůingv÷llum Ý ßg˙st ■a­ ßr og voru ■ar saman komnar ■˙sundir manna til a­ fagna ■essum merkilegu tÝmamˇtum Ý s÷gu ■jˇ­arinnar.

═ kj÷lfar stjˇrnarskrßrrÚttindanna jukust ßhrif Al■ingis smßm saman me­ ■vÝ a­ ■a­ ÷­la­ist l÷ggjafarvald og fjßrveitingavald.

NŠsta skref var heimastjˇrn, en hana fengu ═slendingar ßri­ 1904. Heimastjˇrn fˇl ■a­ Ý sÚr a­ ■jˇ­in fÚkk rß­herra b˙settan ß ═slandi. Fyrsti Ýslenski rß­herrann var Hannes Hafstein sem auk ■ess a­ vera stjˇrnmßlama­ur var ■ekkt ljˇ­skßld.

┴ri­ 1918 er merkilegt Ý s÷gu ═slands fyrir ■ß s÷k a­ ■ß ÷­la­ist ■jˇ­in fullveldi. Me­ ■vÝ var­ ═sland fullvalda rÝki en stˇ­ ■ˇ Ý konungssambandi vi­ Danm÷rku. ┴fram var barist og ßri­ 1944 var efnt til ■jˇ­aratkvŠ­agrei­slu um sambandsmßli­. 97,86% kosningabŠrra manna greiddu atkvŠ­i um mßli­. 97,36% greiddu atkvŠ­i me­ ni­urfellingu sambandslaganna.

Lř­veldi var stofna­ Ý kj÷lfar ■essa ß Ůingvelli vi­ Íxarß ■ann 17. j˙nÝ 1944. Me­ ■vÝ a­ velja ■ß dagsetningu hei­ru­u ═slendingar helstu ■jˇ­frelsishetju sÝna ß 19. ÷ldinni; Jˇn Sigur­sson (1811-1879) en 17. j˙nÝ er fŠ­ingardagur hans. Fyrsti forseti hins nřja lř­veldis var Sveinn Bj÷rnsson (1881-1952).

Ůannig lauk langri og strangri barßttu Ýslensku ■jˇ­arinnar ß farsŠlan hßtt.

A Struggle for Independence

In the first part of the nineteenth-century, in the wake of the political movement to the south in Europe, national sentiment began to stir amongst Icelanders. The increased interest in Icelandic and in earlier Icelandic literature worked to stimulate this nationalism still more, and Icelanders began to push for the restoration of the Al■ing (Parliament) and for national independence.

Poets took an active part in the struggle for independence, and many of the best-known of Iceland's national poets come out of this period. The most notable is Jˇnas HallgrÝmsson, one of Icelander's most loved poets.

An important step on the road to independence was made in 1874, when Iceland gained a Constitution of its own. The first national holiday in Iceland was given to mark this occasion. The celebration was held at Ůingvellir in August that year: thousands of people came to join in the celebration of this significant turning point in the nation's history.

Following on from these constitutional rights, the influence of the Al■ing grew alongside the acquisition of legislative authority and control of the nation's appropriation bills.

The next step came in 1904, when Iceland gained home-rule. Home-rule meant that the nation got a Minister who was resident in Iceland. The first Icelandic Minister was Hannes Hafstein who, as well as being a politician, was a well-known poet.

Black and white photograph

Jˇn Sigur­sson (1811-1879) var helsti lei­togi ■jˇ­arinnar Ý sjßllfstŠ­isbarßttunni ß 19. ÷ld (Jˇn Sigur­sson (1811-1879), Iceland's greatest national hero, was the most prominent leader in the independence struggle with Danmark in the nineteenth century).

The year 1918 is important in the history of Iceland for the reason that the nation then obtained its sovereignty. With that Iceland became a sovereign nation, although it retained its allegiance to the Danish crown. The struggle was maintained, and in the year 1944 a referendum about the link to Denmark was held. 97.86% of eligible voters cast their vote on the issue, with 97.36% voting to end the laws maintaining the connection to Denmark.

Following this, the Republic was established at Ůingvellir, by the river Íxarß, on 17 June 1944. Icelanders chose this date in honour of their greatest nineteenth-century nationalist, Jˇn Sigur­sson (1811-1879), who was born on June 17. Sveinn Bj÷rnsson (1881-1952) was the first president of the new republic.

So the Icelandic people's long and severe struggle came to a successful end.

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