Icelandic Christmas in July...and...

Mynd:Djákninn á Myrká.jpg

'Djákninn á Myrká' - Deacon of Myrká, 1864
From a work by Jules Worms (1832–1924)

'The moon is gliding across the sky,
Death is riding;
can’t you see a white spot
in the back of my head,
Garún, Garún?'

This is what the deacon from the farm Myrká
in Hörgárdalur, northeast Iceland, said to his girlfriend
Gudrún when they were riding on his horse Faxi on Christmas
Eve a long time ago. When he called her 'Garún'-as a ghost
he couldn’t say 'God', 'Gud' in she noticed that he was dead.

The ghost story is quite tragic to begin with - one feels
sorry for the poor deacon who died at Christmas - but then it
takes a very twisted turn...go read it here and here

'Djákninn á Myrká' - Deacon of Myrká
by Ásgrímur Jónsson (1876-1958)

Ásgrímur Jónsson (1876-1958) was an
Icelandic painter, and one of the first in the
country to make art a professional living. He studied
at the Royal Academy in Copenhagen between 1900-1903
and traveled widely after graduation. The subjects
of his pictures are mostly the landscapes of
his home country, sagas, folk tales, he
was also noted for his murals in
various churches in Iceland

Úr þjóðsögu (menn á hestum mæta tröllskessu)
From a folktale (men on horses meet a troll) 1946
by Ásgrímur Jónsson (1876-1958)

'The Night Troll at the Window'
by Ásgrímur Jónsson (1876-1958)

A troll used to torment farmers on Christmas Eve.
One night a little girl stayed behind to look after the houses
while the rest of the people went to mass. At night she heard
a voice outside her window and started singing to keep fear at
bay. At the end of her song the thing vanished. When the
farmers returned the next morning they found a great
stone - the troll - right outside the house,
where it still stands to this very day

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