Viking Ghostbusters: The Icelandic Style of Exorcising Spirits


Betra er einn að vera, en illan stallbróður hafa (“Better to be alone than in bad company”) – Icelandic Proverb

iceland_ghosts We may be Vikings, but we have a healthy respect for the law when we’re dead.

The Icelandic governing assembly called the Althing is the oldest extant parliamentary body in the world (founded around 930 A.D), and consisted of a gathering of the most powerful chieftains  before any free man who wished to attend in order to decide on laws and dispense justice.  Icelanders were seriously concerned about fair and equitable jurisprudence while the rest of Europe was mucking about in the Dark Ages.  Not that everything was always rainbows and unicorns in Iceland.  Around 1000 A.D., Christianity was adopted by consensus, although flavorings of Norse paganism persisted, but neither of these trumped the legal approach when it came to expelling unwanted ghosts, according to the Eyrbyggja Saga (The Saga…

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