The dawning of bookmaking in Iceland


Book making starts in Iceland around the year 1000. No manuscripts are however preserved from this time, as the oldest ones are from the twelfth century. 

Points of view

The Sjónarhorn (Points of view) exhibition in the Culture House on Hverfisgata 15 contains contributions from six different cultural institutions, the Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies among them. The manuscripts on display were chosen because of their illustrations and decorative artwork. Seven manuscripts of the law code Jónsbók (Jón’s book) are on display at the exhibition, including one of the oldest, dating from the late 13th century, and one of the most recent, which is a paper manuscript from the 17th century. Also, among the manuscripts is the beautifully written and visually depicted Skarðsbók Jónsbókar (1363). In addition to the manuscripts, detailed copies of the medieval Icelandic Book of Drawings and of seven illustrated pages from the biblical manuscript Stjórn (c. 1350), can be seen in the exhibition.