Iðnaðarsafn Industry Museum
The Iðnaðarsafn Industry Musem, in Akureyri, is a fascinating place to find out about Iceland’s manufacturing and industrial past.
Iceland had a strong local manufacturing industry. That was before the globalisation of manufacturing and the rise of cheaper imports almost destroyed it.
The Icelandic language is derived from Old Norse, and still retains many features such as the letters “eth” ð and “thorn” Þ. So their printing equipment had these extra letters.
Icelandic is the only living language to still use the thorn (Þ) letter.
Middle English used the thorn letter, with it pronounced like “th”. Since the 14th century it was gradually replaced by the digraph “th”. So the spelling of “Þe” and “Þt” became today’s “the” and “that”. The demise of Þ was greatly accelerated by 15th century technology: the newly invented movable type from Germany did not have the letter Þ, so printers replaced Þ with the letter y. Which is why archaic forms such as “ye olde curiosite shoppe” should be pronunced “the” and not yee. Another example is “hear ye” which really represents “hear Þe” or “hear thee”, which means “hear you”.
Answer: claws for attaching onto shoes to climb power and telephone poles.