What To Name The New Lava Field

What To Name The New Lava Field

Published September 2, 2014

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by

As the Holuhraun eruption has spead lava over a wide swath of the country, Icelanders now ask themselves: what should we name the new lava field?

As reported, magma pouring from the kilometres-long fissure in Holuhraun has now spread over an area comprising some 4 km2. When all is said and done, a new lava field will be born, which raises the important question of what to call it. Numerous suggestions have been brought up in the Icelandic media lately.

MBL reports a number of suggested new names for the lava field. On the more obvious end of the scale, some have suggested Bárðahraun, as a portmanteau of the Bárðarbunga volcano and “hraun” (the names of lava fields in Icelandic end with the -hraun suffix, literally meaning “lava”) as well as Dyngjuhraun, after the Dyngjujökull glacier where the magma eruption was initially spotted. Another popular choice has been Ómars­hraun, named after the popular Icelandic journalist and environmentalist Ómar Ragnarsson.

However, many Icelanders are taking the lava-field-naming business to more unorthodox levels. For example, the MBL article mentions the suggestion Eng­inn-má-taka-mynd­ir-nema-fjöl­miðlar-hraun (“No one-may-take-pictures-except-the media-hraun”), presumably suggested by amateur photographers who were forbidden from getting near the eruption.

Vísir reports hundreds of suggestions for their part. Amongst the more entertaining suggestions are the following:

Fjölmiðlahraun, or “media lava”, given the decidedly photogenic nature of the eruption from whence the lava sprung.

Míluhraun, after the ISP which provides a live feed of the eruption, Míla.

Lekahraun, as a play on the word “leak”, referring both to the relatively steady flow of lava from the eruption and a certain popular news story involving the Interior Minister.

Litlahraun, literally “little lava”, which also happens to be the name of a prison.

Góu Hraun and Hraun-Æði, both which are names of popular Icelandic candies.

For the moment, Drekahraun (“dragon lava”), Litlahraun and Ómarshraun are the most popular choices amongst Vísir readers.

Support The Reykjavík Grapevine!
Buy subscriptions, t-shirts and more from our shop right here!

Show Me More!