Icelandic Alphabet and Keyboard

Icelandic is a north Germanic language, descended from old Norse.  Vikings used old runic letters during the settlement period and it was only after their Christianization that they adopted the Latin alphabet.

 

Today the Icelandic Alphabet contains 36 letters and is a combination of the Roman Alphabet (without the c, q, and w) and with a few Runic characters.  Each vowel can be normal or have an accented over it  (á, é, í, ó, ú, ý). ) The letters æ or Æ and ö  or Ö are also vowels and considered letters in their own right. There are two additional letters, eth (ð  or Ð), the runic letter thorn (Þ  or þ).  C, Q, and W are only used in words of foreign origin. The alphabet contains the following letters (in alphabetical order)

 

a, á, b, c, d, ð, e, é, f, g, h, i, í, j, k, l, m, n, o, ó, p, q, r, s, t, u, ú, v, w, x, y, ý, z, þ, æ, ö

 

The normal Roman characters are pronounced as they are in English. the letter j is pronounced like the letter y in yes. The letter r is trilled. The following table shows how the special characters are usually translated into English and how they are pronounced.

 

Click on the keyboard for detailed information

Icelandic Roots is a non-profit, educational, heritage organization specializing in genealogy, history & traditions of our Icelandic ancestors.

Icelandic Roots
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