Learn Icelandic #14: Volcanoes

So there’s this volcano in Iceland called Bárðarbunga (Cowabonga according to some) that has been grumbling for the past few days and people are somewhat concerned that it’s just about to erupt. Remembering Eyjafjallajökull people are understandably worried that this will cause the same havoc when it comes to air travel and I for one have got e-mails from worried customers that are wondering whether or not they are going to catch their flight. . At this point there’s no need to worry because nothing has actually happened yet and we don’t know whether it will. Hekla, another volcano in the south of Iceland, also raised some concerns earlier this year and then nothing happened. Granted, the events now are a bit different from that (there seems to be a lot of activity in the volcano, scientists just don’t know whether it will reach the surface) but why waste a lot of energy on worrying about something that may or may not happen and if it happens it might not even cause any disruptions to flights or your travel plans. It also might but you might also get hit by a bus today but are probably not biting your nails in anticipation over that, now are you?

Anyway, I got a request  on Twitter where I was asked to help you learn how to pronounce Bárðarbunga so I decided to dedicate a whole podcast to the pronunciation of Icelandic volcano names. I apologize for the bad quality of the audio, I need to buy a proper microphone for this.


The words covered in today’s lesson:

  • Bárðarbunga
  • Eyjafjallajökull
  • Grímsvötn
  • Vatnajökull
  • Hekla
  • Katla
  • Keilir
  • Þríhnjúkagígur

Spread the word


4 thoughts on “Learn Icelandic #14: Volcanoes”

  1. Joram says:

    Þetta reddast, Auður 😉

  2. Jem says:

    Takk fyrir Auður

  3. Yves says:

    Oh that’s going to be hard to pronounce all those names in the face of locals when I’m there in autumn… Very nice series, your podcasts. It’s always good to hear the words and names actually pronounced instead of studying the Wikipedia page on how to pronounce things (which still doesn’t seem to lead to accurate results). Icelandic seems to have a lot of letters that sound differently depending on the letters surrounding them.

    Just a note on the sound quality: I have lots of pops, clicks and other noise in the recording. Especially right during the interesting words. Also, some noise seems to pull the gain control far down and you slowly return to normal level afterwards. All that reduces my listening comprehension somewhat unfortunately. I also need to set my speakers to maximum volume to hear you where my music runs around 10 %. Do you use an internal notebook microphone? I guess so from the aurora forecast video you made. I think a simple external microphone with a table stand, or also a headset, would definitely improve things.

    1. mm Auður says:

      This was never supposed to be anything serious and I just use my mobile phone. I’m sorry if this bothers you but I probably won’t change the way I do this 🙂

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