The Icelandic Horse

Where does the Icelandic horse come from?

The Icelandic horse has remained pure for centuries since the Nordic Vikings brought him to the country. The Icelandic horse is therefore amongst the purest breeds in the world. The Icelandic horse is from Norway but originally he comes from the Mongolian horses from Asia. Some of the Vikings who brought horses along to Iceland stopped in Scotland and there the horses were mixed with the Scottish horses as well. From the 10th century, the horses have remained pure and have grown and evolved to the horses we know today.

The Icelandic horse has many great qualities, the Vikings are said to have brought only their best horses along to Iceland. Because the Icelandic horse was not mixed with another breed it has kept some of their qualities that other breeds in Europe have lost like the diversity of colors amongst the breed and their special gait Tölt. The Icelandic horse is very strong and healthy because throughout the centuries the law of ‘survival of the fittest’ is we suited for the Icelandic horse. It survived harsh winters with no much to eat for a long period of time.

The Icelandic people have honored the Icelandic horse since it was first brought to Iceland and the Vikings thought of the horse as a holy animal. After Icelanders took Christianity they were not allowed to eat horses and they would rather starve to death than going to hell for eating these honorable creatures they owned. The horses were amongst the best gifts the Vikings could give one another and some were buried along with their owners when they passed.

These strong and hardworking animals helped the Icelandic people thrive in Iceland, they carried them from one place to another and helped with all the hard work around the farm. Some say that if it were not for these amazing animals then the Vikings and later Icelandic people would not have survived here in Iceland.