Fossil Plants of Iceland

Miocene plant fossils from Iceland form an important part of Caenozoic high-latitude plants housed at the Department of Palaeobotany. The Neogene age sets them apart from the much older plant remains from Spitsbergen and Greenland, and makes them enormously important for understanding North Atlantic biogeography and climate evolution during the Neogene.

The Iceland collection consists of 3028 specimens of which 1577 have been identified to genus level. A total of 68 taxa have been recorded. The following sections list all the specimens from Iceland housed at the Department of Palaeobotany and identified to genus level and below. In addition, information about collectors and age of the localities is provided. Four hundred and fortyone specimens figured in various publications are listed under the ‘specimens by publication’.

A large number of specimens were figured by the Swedish artist Carl Hedelin (1861-1894), who worked as a scientific illustrator for A. G. Nathorst from 1885 on. Nathorst never published these plates, as was the case with another set of plates with Palaeogene plant fossils from Spitsbergen (see Kvacek & Manum, 1997). The specimens illustrated are listed under ‘Carl Hedelin, unpublished plates’. They will be published in 2005.

Questions concerning the database should be directed to

Department of palaeobotany

Latest update: 15 Nov 2004
Responsible for this page: David cantrill