Borg á Mýrum Reisgids
Borg á Mýrum is a farm and church estate just west of the town of Borgarnes in Iceland.
The estate is especially rich in settlement history and is home to a famous church built in the 1800s, as well as a monument of Egill Skallagrímsson of Egils Saga.
Explore this area while on a self drive tour in Iceland.
Photo from Wikimedia, Creative Commons, by Christian Bickel. No edits made.
The recorded history of Borg á Mýrum dates back to the Age of Settlement. Skallagrímur Kveldúlfsson was one of the country's very first settlers, and as he arrived, he claimed this area as his land. His son, the famous Viking-age warrior and poet Egill Skallagrímsson, was born there and called the farmstead his home, as did his many descendants after him. The life and times of the Viking were recorded some 300 years after his demise in the epic of Egils Saga. A possible author of the saga is the medieval scholar Snorri Sturluson, who also resided in Borg. Some scholars suggest that Snorri is a possible descendant of Egill. An abstract monument of Egill, made by local sculpture artist Ásmundur Sveinsson, stands where his historical homestead once did. The sculpture represents Egill mourning for his two sons, Gunnar and Böðvarr.
About the Church
Shortly after the death of Egill, around the year 1000, Iceland went through a conversion to Christianity. That is when the first church at Borg got built. The church that stands on the land today dates back to 1880 and boasts of unusual qualities; it stands separated from its churchyard and faces north-south, which in Iceland is not according to church-building traditions. Another noteworthy trait of the church is its altarpiece, built by English artist W. G. Collingwood as he travelled to the country to visit the locations of the sagas in 1897. The altarpiece is the only one in Iceland painted in the Pre-Raphaelite style and depicts Christ as he blesses three children.