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Iceland Mag

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Pagan temple in Öskjuhlíð, Reykjavík, to be completed in 2017

By Sara McMahon

  • Pagan blót The Ásatrúarfélag applied for a plot of land to construct a temple in 2006 and was allotted a piece of land in Öskuhlíð in 2008. Photo/Stefán

The pagan temple being constructed in Öskjuhlíð hill, Reykjavík, is well on its way, according to the building’s architect, Magnús Jensson. The building is the first central pagan temple to be built in the Nordic countries since the Viking age. Construction of the temple’s foundation began last autumn.

Read more: Anyone can practise the heathen Ásatrú

The temple will be built into the surrounding cliffs and overlooks the beautiful Nauthólsvík beach. Its design is timeless; being neither contemporary nor reminiscent of the Viking era. Magnús expects the project to be completed next year.

Ásatrú is a polytheistic religion, meaning it has a range of gods and goddesses. Its source is the old Norse religion practised by Iceland´s early pagan settlers. Ásatrú literally means "having faith in the gods" and membership has grown from a mere 12 in 1972 to around 3,000 today. It became an officially recognized religion in Iceland in 1973.

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