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Memorial built by Egill Ólafsson and Kristinn Thor Egilsson in 1998 at Hnjotur to honour the sailors who lost their lives in the seas around Látrabjarg and westernmost cliffs and fjords of Iceland in the twentieth century, as well as the brave locals who selflessly battled to save them from the clutches of the cold seas. Some seamen did survive their ordeal, but many perished in the unforgiving waters, or at the foot of the sea cliffs.
The combination of simple, respectful memorial plaques to crews from Fleetwood, Grimsby, Hull and other UK fishing ports (as well as unknown ships ) is strikingly moving. Short descriptions on each plaque outline the sobering story of each trawler and its fate, reminding visitors just how perilous a journey these fisherman undertook in order to bring home a catch for people like me.
Standing here at 1.30 in the morning, at the very western extremes of Europe, under a almost psychedelic multi-hued sunrise as lenticular clouds formed in the distance, was an intensely emotive experience which will stay with me for many years. Thought-provoking, and yet extremely peaceful and calm. Truly extraordinary.
[This is one of the panoramas from my June 2013 trip to Iceland. You can explore the other views of this incredible country here. https://www.360cities.net/sets/iceland-june-2013 ]
Europe is generally agreed to be the birthplace of western culture, including such legendary innovations as the democratic nation-state, football and tomato sauce.The word Europe comes from the Greek goddess Europa, who was kidnapped by Zeus and plunked down on the island of Crete. Europa gradually changed from referring to mainland Greece until it extended finally to include Norway and Russia.Don't be confused that Europe is called a continent without looking like an island, the way the other continents do. It's okay. The Ural mountains have steadily been there to divide Europe from Asia for the last 250 million years. Russia technically inhabits "Eurasia".Europe is presently uniting into one political and economic zone with a common currency called the Euro. The European Union originated in 1993 and is now composed of 27 member states. Its headquarters is in Brussels, Belgium.Do not confuse the EU with the Council of Europe, which has 47 member states and dates to 1949. These two bodies share the same flag, national anthem, and mission of integrating Europe. The headquarters of the Council are located in Strasbourg, France, and it is most famous for its European Court of Human Rights. In spite of these two bodies, there is still no single Constitution or set of laws applying to all the countries of Europe. Debate rages over the role of the EU in regards to national sovereignty. As of January 2009, the Lisbon Treaty is the closest thing to a European Constitution, yet it has not been approved by all the EU states. Text by Steve Smith.