Editors Choice – Best Icelandic Language Books

Iceland is a place of fierce natural beauty and warmly hospitable people, and has seen surge in tourism in recent years. The nation’s language is unique as the glaciers, fjords, and hot springs that make up the island. The Icelandic literary tradition is a large part of the nation’s culture and understanding the language is a necessity to learning more about Iceland. Ideal for students and travelers, Beginner’s Icelandic with 2 Audio CDs contains 14 lessons honed from years of Prof. Helmisdóttir’s experience teaching Icelandic at universities in Finland, Iceland, and Canada. It includes:

  • 14 lessons with dialogues, vocabulary and grammar instruction
  • Review exercises with answer key
  • Icelandic-English and English-Icelandic glossaries
  • Glossary of unique words and colloquialisms
  • Two audio CDs of dialogue and vocabulary with correct pronunciation by native speakers

Due in large part to Iceland’s remote location, the linguistic changes that occurred in other Scandinavian languages are not seen in Icelandic, which still has complicated grammar systems. In fact, the Icelandic Sagas in Old Norse can be read by Icelanders today with little difficulty as the written language is largely unchanged in over 800 years!

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Why is Icelandic an important language to learn?

Did you know that Iceland is one of the most popular vacation destinations nowadays? That alone should be reason enough for you to learn this fascinating language! Imagine walking through the streets of Reykjavik, soaking in the hot springs at the Blue Lagoon, and immersing yourself into the culture of this country easily since you can communicate with the locals in Icelandic. There are currently more than three hundred and forty thousand people that can speak Icelandic in this world, and while many of them live in Iceland, others can be found in Denmark, Canada, and the United States. This is one of the ancient languages in the world, which is usually reason enough for many people like yourself to learn it. After all, isn’t history important to bring into the future? Plus, as a Germanic language, Icelandic will help you become fluent in many other languages, including English, Dutch, German, Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, and Faroese. Once you have become fluent in this language, you will find that you have a skill set that is quite popular and sought after. That means that you may find yourself pondering some of the new possibilities that will come your way in the future.

Learn to speak Icelandic

Colloquial Icelandic provides a step-by-step course in Icelandic as it is written and spoken today. Combining a user-friendly approach with a thorough treatment of the language, it equips learners with the essential skills needed to communicate confidently and effectively in Icelandic in a broad range of situations. No prior knowledge of the language is required.

Whether you have a trip to Iceland coming up and you’re not sure quite where to begin with the language, or you need to study Icelandic for any other reason, this guide will provide everything you need to make your trip to Iceland a comfortable one. With the most frequently heard Icelandic words and phrases, all grouped by topic, plus fascinating details about its culture make this book a must for any traveler to Iceland.

Although you can get by in Iceland without speaking the language, knowing just a few phrases can help you make friends, enjoy service with a smile, and discover richer, more rewarding experiences. Get invited to watch an up-and-coming band with Reykjavík locals, book dinner at a buzzing new restaurant, or ask for a glass of the country’s best craft beer.

This classic book on the Icelandic language was written to aid the military, the businessman, the traveler, or any foreign resident in Iceland. Originally published in 1945, the grammar gives reliable information on pronunciation, inflections, and syntax of the language. The texts are partly grammatical exercises for the beginner, partly colloquial dialogues, or descriptions of customs and manners in Iceland―town and country.