After that first blissful night in an Icelandic nightclub, the next thing you’ll want to do is have an Icelandic baby. This is perfectly understandable, but be warned: you’ll have to give it an Icelandic name. It’s the law.
You might frown at a rule dictating what you may or may not name your child, muttering something about freedom of choice, but you’ll soon find the rules helpful. After all, the more interesting your child’s name, the more interesting you yourself appear to be, so naming your kid Aðalbjörg will give you all sorts of cool cache. Plus it will prove to your friends and family that you’re finally shacking up with an Icelander.
But some Icelandic names sound disappointingly English, so avoid “Jón”, “Davið”, “Anna”, “María” and “Nóvember” at all costs. Instead, how about “Snjólaukur” for a boy, or “Grettisgata” for a girl? Whatever you do, do not name your baby “Björk” — it’s just trying too hard.
Hopefully you already understand about the Icelandic last-name conventions, which dictate that boys take their father’s first name and stick a “son” on the end of it and girls have to do the same with “dóttir”. And if you’re really, truly traditional you’ll give your son both his father’s first name and last name as a special treat — which is how the world was blessed with the likes of Magnus Magnusson.
But try to be original: there are many beautiful Icelandic names to choose from - some more pronounceable than others. Luckily, nearly all Icelanders are given nicknames that are shortened, easier versions of their birth-names at some point, which means that no matter what you choose to name your child, it will inevitably be known as either Siggi or Sigga in the end anyway. So much for cool cache.