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5 Kronur 1957, Iceland

in Krause book Number: 37a
Years of issue: 21.06.1957
Edition: --
Signatures: Vilhjálmur Þór, Jón G. Maríasson
Serie: 21 June 1957 Issue
Specimen of: 21.06.1957
Material: Cotton fiber
Size (mm): 110 х 70
Printer: Bradbury, Wilkinson & Company Limited, New Malden

* All pictures marked magnify are increased partially by magnifying glass, the remaining open in full size by clicking on the image.

** The word "Specimen" is present only on some of electronic pictures, in accordance with banknote images publication rules of appropriate banks.

5 Kronur 1957




5 Kronur 1957

Ingólfur Arnarson

Statue of the Norwegian Viking Ingólfur Arnarson by Einar Jónsson, located on the top of Arnarhóll in Reykjavík.

Arnarhóll hill is a small hill in the center of Reykjavík. On top of the hill is a statue of Ingólfur Arnarson, the first settler in Reykjavík. The statue was opened at 24 of February 1924, by icelandic beloved sculptor, Einar Jónsson.

The reason why Ingólfur Arnarson chose to settle here, in Reykjavík, in the year 874 (give or take a few years) is that his wooden Chieftain poles landed here. He had thrown them overboard from his Vikingship and decided on following them and settling where the poles landed. So that is the start of residence here in what was to become Reykjavík.

In the olden days (around 1534) there was a farm, called Arnarhóll, on the spot, where the statue is now located.

This hill is mainly used for festivities, especially our National holiday on the 17th of June and on Gay Pride as it serves as an excellent audience area.

Next to the hill is our Central bank and above it is The Cultural house and some ministries. (Arnarhóll Hill and Settlement)

Ingólfur Arnarson and his wife Hallveig are recognized as the first permanent Nordic settlers of Iceland. According to Landnáma he built his homestead in (and gave name to) Reykjavík in 874. Although recent archaeological finds in Iceland suggest settlement may have started a little earlier, the date is probably not too far off.

The medieval chronicler Ari Thorgilsson said Ingólfr was the first Nordic settler in Iceland, but mentioned that "Papar" - i.e. Irish monks and hermits - had been in the country before the Norsemen. He wrote that they left because they did not want to live amongst the newly arrived Norse pagans.

Landnáma (written two to three centuries after the settlement) contains a long story about Ingólf's settlement. The book claims he left Norway after becoming involved in a blood feud. He had heard about a new island which Garðarr Svavarsson, Flóki Vilgerðarson and others had found in the Atlantic Ocean. With his step brother Hjörleifur Hróðmarsson, he sailed for Iceland. When land was in sight, he threw his high seat pillars (a sign of his being a chieftain) overboard and promised to settle where the gods decided to bring them ashore. Two of his slaves then searched the coasts for three years before finding the pillars in the small bay which eventually became Reykjavík (located in South Western Iceland).

In the meantime, Hjörleifur had been murdered by his Irish slaves because of his ill-treatment of them. Ingólfur hunted them down and killed them in Vestmannaeyjar (Westman Islands). The islands got their name from that event, but vestmenn (west men) is a name that Norse men at this time sometimes used for Irishmen.

Ingólfr was said to have settled a large part of southwestern Iceland, but after his settlement nothing more was known of him. His son, Þorsteinn Ingólfsson, was a major chieftain and was said to have founded the first thing, or parliament, in Iceland. It was a forerunner of the Althingi.

The name Ingolf, similar to the name Adolf that means "aristocratic wolf", would be translated as "royal or kingly wolf."

Denominations in numerals are in top right and lower left corners.


5 Kronur 1957

Bessastaðir Bessastaðir

Bessastaðir (the Presidential Residence).

The history of Bessastaðir has been closely associated with the history of Iceland since the times of the settlement in the 9th century AD. Archeological excavations have shown that the first inhabitants of Bessastaðir settled there before AD 1000, and ever since the site has been inhabited. In the 13th century the great writer Snorri Sturluson had one of his farms there. After Snorri's death, the king of Norway confiscated the property, and during the remainder of the middle ages it was used by top representatives of the foreign rulers of Iceland. In the 17th century Bessastaðir was the residence of the most powerful representative of the Danish monarch in Iceland.

The main building at Bessastaðir was built in 1761-1766. In 1805 the only secondary school in Iceland moved there. It was attended among others by the 'Fjölnismenn' and other students who later became leaders of the campaign for national independence. The school moved to Reykjavík in 1846. In 1867 the farm was purchased by the poet and statesman Grímur Thomsen, who lived there for almost two decades. Among later owners were editor and parlamentarian Skúli Thoroddsen, and his wife, Theodóra Thoroddsen, who was well known for her literary works. In 1940 Sigurður Jónasson bought Bessastaðir and donated it to the state in 1941 as a residence for the Regent and later the President of Iceland. (The President of Iceland).

In top left corner is the seal of Landsbanki Islands.

coat iceland

It was used coat of arms of Iceland as seal of Bank.

The coat of arms of Iceland displays a silver-edged, red cross on blue shield (blazoned: Azure, on a cross argent a cross gules). This alludes to the design of the flag of Iceland. The supporters 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) protects 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

Denominations in numerals are in three corners.


Designer: Halldór Pétursson (1916-1977).

Issued in circulation in 1960.


An article in an Icelandic newspaper, issued in 1970, about a series of banknotes.