Walk slowly through the door of mirth

In the original – Gakktu hægt um gleðinnar dyr. An Icelandic proverb found on the back of an amazing new Icelandic gin that still hasn’t made its way out of the country, Eyland Spirits’ Ólaffson Gin (named for an 18th century explorer and writer, Eggert Ólafsson). The bottle itself explains as ‘these cautionary words hark back to the old days when opportunities to socialise and let off steam were few and, literally, far between. Farm dances could get raucous.’ But that sounds more like a warning against violence than explanations I find elsewhere which point to use of low doorway height in traditional turf homes as a means of keeping in the heat. The idea then becomes the clearer one of ‘mind your head on the way in/out of the party.’ Here is an illustrative picture of some houses near Selfoss:

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