Icelandic is supposed to be one of the hardest languages in the world. I deconstruct Icelandic compound words and illustrate them.

Many of these words are very literal, yet somehow poetic at the same time. Other times they can be rather random and a little humorous!

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#1 Penguin (Mörgæs) = Fat + Goose

Penguin (Mörgæs) = Fat + Goose

Mör (fat) + Gæs (goose) = Mörgæs (Penguin)

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FatihYüksel 3 years ago

dubsla.com

#2 Zoo (Dýragarður) = Animal + Garden

Zoo (Dýragarður) = Animal + Garden

Dýr (animal) + Garður (garden) = Dýragarður (zoo)

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#3 Raccoon (Þvottabjörn) = Washing + Bear

Raccoon (Þvottabjörn) = Washing + Bear

Þvottur (washing) + Björn (bear) = Þvottabjörn (raccoon)

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JennyGrobelny 3 years ago

same in german.

#4 Echo (Bergmal) = Rock + Language

Echo (Bergmal) = Rock + Language

Berg (rock) + Mál (language) = Bergmal (echo)

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#5 Planet (Reikistjarna) = To Wander + Star

Planet (Reikistjarna) = To Wander + Star

Að reika (to wander) + stjarna (star) = Reikistjarna (planet)

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#6 Wedding (Brúðkaup) = Bride + To Buy

Wedding (Brúðkaup) = Bride + To Buy

Brúður (bride) + Að Kaupa (to buy) = Brúðkaup (wedding)

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Satoshi Ketsuban 1 year ago

That is exactly what men in Ancient Greece did.

#7 Hippopotamus (Flóðhestur) = Flood + Horse

Hippopotamus (Flóðhestur) = Flood + Horse

Flóð (flood) + Hestur (horse) = Flóðhestur (hippopotamus)

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KristianYang 3 years ago

river horse in Chinese

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#8 Rainbow (Regnbogi) = Rain + Arch

Rainbow (Regnbogi) = Rain + Arch

Regn (rain) + Bogi (arch) = Regnbogi (rainbow)

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JennyGrobelny 3 years ago

well. just like in german egain ;)

#9 Arm (Handleggur) = Hand + Leg

Arm (Handleggur) = Hand + Leg

Hand (hand) + Leggur (Leg) = Handleggur (arm)

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#10 Placenta (Legkaka) = Womb + Cake

Placenta (Legkaka) = Womb + Cake

Leg (womb) + Kaka (cake) = Legkaka (placenta)

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JennyGrobelny 3 years ago

again :D

#11 Quotation Marks (Gæsalappir) = Goose + Feet

Quotation Marks (Gæsalappir) = Goose + Feet

Gæs (goose) + Lappir (feet) = Gæsalappir (quotation marks)

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JennyGrobelny 3 years ago

well, icelandic ist closer than I thought...

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#12 Nice Weather To Look At Through The Window (Gluggaveður) = Window + Weather

Nice Weather To Look At Through The Window (Gluggaveður) = Window + Weather

Gluggi (window) + Veður (weather) = Gluggaveður is weather that's nice to look through a window, but not so nice to be in. Like when it looks lovely and sunny but then you go outside and it's actually blistering cold!

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RebekkaElisabetar 3 years ago

Nice weather to look at through the window? Window weather actually means that the weather looks nice through a window and only through a window (as it might for example be bone chillingly cold outside, but sunny)

#13 Match (Eldspýta) = Fire + Piece Of Wood

Match (Eldspýta) = Fire + Piece Of Wood

Eldur (fire) + Spýta (piece of wood) = Eldspýta (match)

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#14 Bra (Brjóstahöld) = Breast + To Hold

Bra (Brjóstahöld) = Breast + To Hold

Brjóst (breast) + Að halda (to hold) = Brjóstahöld (bra)

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Anna Lára Si 1 year ago

I don't think anybody uses the word Brjóstahöld, we use Brjóstahaldari but the meaning is basically the same

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#15 Inspiration (Innblástur) = Inn + Breeze

Inspiration (Innblástur) = Inn + Breeze

Inn (inside/into) + Blástur (breeze) = Innblástur (inspiration)

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#16 Skeleton (Beinagrind) = Bone + Frame/structure

Skeleton (Beinagrind) = Bone + Frame/structure

Bein (bone) + Grind (frame/structure) = Beinagrind (skeleton)

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#17 Turtle (skjaldbaka) = Shield + Back

Turtle (skjaldbaka) = Shield + Back

Skjöldur (shield) + Bak (back) = Skjaldbaka (turtle)

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AndriKlausen 3 years ago

Baka can also refer to a pie. Shield Pie.

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#18 Idea (Hugmynd) = Mind + Picture

Idea (Hugmynd) = Mind + Picture

Hugur (mind) + mind (picture) = Hugmynd (idea)

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#19 Cello (Knéfiðla) = Knee + Violin

Cello (Knéfiðla) = Knee + Violin

Kné (knee) + Fiðla (violin) = Knéfiðla (cello)

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#20 In Love (Ástfanginn) = Love + Captured

In Love (Ástfanginn) = Love + Captured

Ást (love) + Fanginn (captured) = Ástfanginn (in love)

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#21 Aquarium (Fiskabúr) = Fish + Cage

Aquarium (Fiskabúr) = Fish + Cage

Fiskur (fish) + Búr (cage) = Fiskabúr (aquarium)

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ChristianWehde 3 years ago

Same as in german - what else is it? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OxIi9bob3X4

#22 Volcano (Eldfjall) = Fire + Mountain

Volcano (Eldfjall) = Fire + Mountain

Eldur (fire) + Fjall (mountain) = Eldfjall (volcano)

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#23 Earring (Eyrnalokkur) = Ear + Curl

Earring (Eyrnalokkur) = Ear + Curl

Eyra (ear) + Lokkur (lock of hair/curl) = Eyrnalokkur (earring)

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#24 Avalanche (Snjóflóð) = Snow + Flood

Avalanche (Snjóflóð) = Snow + Flood

Snjór (snow) + Flóð (flood) = Snjóflóð (avalanche)

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#25 Lightbulb (Ljósapera) = Light + Pear

Lightbulb (Ljósapera) = Light + Pear

Ljós (light) + Pera (pear) = Ljósapera (lightbulb)

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#26 Computer (Tölva) = Number + Prophetess

Computer (Tölva) = Number + Prophetess

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IðunnGrétarsdóttir 3 years ago

Actually a portmanteau/blend word of the Icelandic words for number/s (tala/tölur) and prophetess (völva), not a compound word like the rest

#27 Honey Bee (Hunangsfluga) = Honey + Fly

Honey Bee (Hunangsfluga) = Honey + Fly

Hunang (honey) + Fluga (fly) = Hunangsfluga (honey bee)

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#28 Customer (Viðskiptavinur) = Business + Friend

Customer (Viðskiptavinur) = Business + Friend

Viðskipti (business) + Vinur (friend) = Viðskiptavinur (customer)

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#29 Chickpeas (Kjúklingabaunir) = Chicken + Beans

Chickpeas (Kjúklingabaunir) = Chicken + Beans

Kjúklingur (chicken) + Baunir (beans) = Kjúklingabaunir (chickpeas)

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RebekkaElisabetar 3 years ago

Beans is the word used for peas as well... so chicken peas.

#30 Music (Tónlist) = Tone + Art

Music (Tónlist) = Tone + Art

Tón (tone) + List (art) = Tónlist (music)

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QuinnEnestvedt 3 years ago

Favorite one so far

#31 Cauliflower (Blómkál) = Flower + Cabbage

Cauliflower (Blómkál) = Flower + Cabbage

Blóm (flower) + Kál (cabbage) = Blómkál (cauliflower)

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#32 Handshake (Handaband) = Hand + String/yarn

Handshake (Handaband) = Hand + String/yarn

Hönd (hand) + Band (string/yarn) = Handaband (handshake)

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#33 Computer (Tölva) = Number + Prophetess

Computer (Tölva) = Number + Prophetess

Tala (number) + Völva (prophetess) = Tölva (computer)

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#34 Constellation (Stjörnumerki) = Star + Sign

Constellation (Stjörnumerki) = Star + Sign

Stjarna (star) + Merki (sign) = Stjörnumerki (constellation)

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#35 Saliva (Munnvatn) = Mouth + Water

Saliva (Munnvatn) = Mouth + Water

Munnur (mouth) + Vatn (water) = Munnvatn (saliva)

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#36 Midwife (Ljósmóðir) = Light + Mother

Midwife (Ljósmóðir) = Light + Mother

Ljós (light) + Móðir (mother) = Ljósmóðir (midwife)

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#37 Scallop (Hörpuskel) = Harp + Shell

Scallop (Hörpuskel) = Harp + Shell

Harpa (harp) + Skel (shell) = Hörpuskel (scallop)

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#38 Rocket (Eldflaug) = Fire + To Fly

Rocket (Eldflaug) = Fire + To Fly

Eldur (fire) + Að fljúga (to fly) = Eldflaug (rocket)

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#39 Donut (Kleinuhringur) = Icelandic Fried Pastry + Circle

Donut (Kleinuhringur) = Icelandic Fried Pastry + Circle

Kleina (Icelandic fried pastry) + Hringur (circle) = Kleinuhringur (donut)

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#40 Cookie (Smákaka) = Small + Cake

Cookie (Smákaka) = Small + Cake

Smár (small) + Kaka (cake) = Smákaka (cookie)

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#41 Cell Phone (Farsími) = To Go + Telephone

Cell Phone (Farsími) = To Go + Telephone

Að fara (to go) + Sími (telephone) = Farsími (cell phone)

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RebekkaElisabetar 3 years ago

to go phone? .... how about "mobile phone"

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#42 Grape (Vínber) = Wine + Berry

Grape (Vínber) = Wine + Berry

Vín (wine) + Ber (berry) = Vínber (grape)

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#43 Graffiti (Veggjakrot) = Wall + Scribble

Graffiti (Veggjakrot) = Wall + Scribble

Veggur (wall) + Krot (scribble) = Veggjakrot (graffiti)

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#44 Internet (Veraldarvefurinn) = World + Web

Internet (Veraldarvefurinn) = World + Web

Veröld (world) + Vefur (web) = Veraldarvefurinn (Internet)

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#45 Dinner (Kvöldmat) = Evening + Food

Dinner (Kvöldmat) = Evening + Food

Kvöld (evening) + Matur (food) = Kvöldmat (dinner)

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#46 Furniture (Húsgögn) = House + Data

Furniture (Húsgögn) = House + Data

Hús (house) + Gögn (data) = Húsgögn (furniture)

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RebekkaElisabetar 3 years ago

gögn is not meaning data there.. it´s a much older than that and comes from the word gagn (singular : Husgagn) and derives from something being "of use" So something that is of use within the house would be the translation here.

#47 Breakfast Cereal (Morgunkorn) = Morning + Grain

Breakfast Cereal (Morgunkorn) = Morning + Grain

Morgun (morning) + Korn (grain) = Morgunkorn (breakfast cereal)

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#48 Pirate (Sjóræningi) = Sea + Robber

Pirate (Sjóræningi) = Sea + Robber

Sjór (sea) + Ræningi (robber) = Sjóræningi (pirate)

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#49 Journalist (Blaðamaður) = Page/newspaper + Man

Journalist (Blaðamaður) = Page/newspaper + Man

Blað (page/newspaper) + Maður (man) = Blaðamaður (journalist)

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#50 Reflection (Spegilmynd) = Mirror + Picture

Reflection (Spegilmynd) = Mirror + Picture

Spegill (mirror) + Mynd (picture) = Spegilmynd (reflection)

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#51 Necropants (Nábrók) = Corpse + Pants

Necropants (Nábrók) = Corpse + Pants

Nár (corpse) + Brók (pants) = Nábrók (necropants)

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#52 Omelet (Eggjakaka) = Egg + Cake

Omelet (Eggjakaka) = Egg + Cake

Egg (egg) + Kaka (cake) = Eggjakaka (omelet)

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#53 Airplane (Flugvél) = Flight + Machine

Airplane (Flugvél) = Flight + Machine

Flug (flight) + Vél (machine) = Flugvél (airplane)

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#54 Eggplant (Eggaldin) = Egg + Fruit

Eggplant (Eggaldin) = Egg + Fruit

Egg (egg) + Aldin (fruit) = Eggaldin (eggplant)

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#55 Menu (Matseðill) = Food + Note/leaflet

Menu (Matseðill) = Food + Note/leaflet

Matur (food) + Seðill (note/leaflet) = Matseðill (menu)

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#56 Cafe (Kaffihús) = Coffee + House

Cafe (Kaffihús) = Coffee + House

Kaffi (coffee) + Hús (house) = Kaffihús (cafe)

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#57 Skateboard (Hjólabretti) = To Cycle + Board

Skateboard (Hjólabretti) = To Cycle + Board

Að hjóla (to cycle) + Bretti (board) = Hjólabretti (skateboard)

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RebekkaElisabetar 3 years ago

To cycle? Was this done on google translate? Hjól means wheel, this is a wheel board. "að hjóla" is the term to cycle, but would never be used as a noun. As Reiðhjól refers to Riding wheel (bycicle)

#58 Panorama Or Openmindedness (Víðsýni) = Wide + View

Panorama Or Openmindedness (Víðsýni) = Wide + View

Við (wide) + Sýn (view) = Víðsýni can mean panorama or openmindedness

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#59 Refrigerator (Ísskápur) = Ice + Closet

Refrigerator (Ísskápur) = Ice + Closet

Ís (ice) + Skápur (closet) = Ísskápur (refrigerator)

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#60 Pancake (Pönnukaka) = Pan + Cake

Pancake (Pönnukaka) = Pan + Cake

Panna (pan) + Kaka (cake) = Pönnukaka (pancake)

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#61 Toothpaste (Tannkrem) = Tooth + Cream

Toothpaste (Tannkrem) = Tooth + Cream

Tönn (tooth) + Krem (cream) = Tannkrem (toothpaste)

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