Kirkja & Hattarvík


19 February 2021
Fugloy, the Faroe Islands' easternmost island, is divided in two settlements, each with their own identity, as shown on a pair of se-tenant stamps.

Fugloy is the Faroe Islands' easternmost island, but unlike other small islands in the Faroes, it is divided in two settlements, each with their own identity.

Both settlements are without a doubt quite old, but while Hattarvík is probably the original name of the settlement, the name of Kirkja dates back to more recent times. The original name has probably been Kirkjubøstaður or Kirkjubólstaður.

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The Dog Letter, an ordinance from around the year 1400 which deals with the keeping of sheep dogs in the Faroe Islands, refers to the village as . It is not easy to fathom the arrangement of property conditions in times of old, but today Hattarvík has 27 merkur of land (old measurement of land), of which 23.5 merkur is so-called royal estate property, ie. public land, and 3.5 is freehold land, ie. private property, while in the village of Kirkja the situation is different.

Kirkja has 20 merkur, of which 3 are royal estate and 17 are freehold lands. Hattarvík is therefore a so-called royal settlement and Kirkja a so-called freehold settlement. This has undoubtedly had an effect on the inhabitants’ state of mind in these two settlements.

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Different landscapes

The landscape surrounding the two settlements is also strikingly different.

Hattarvík is located in an arch in a small cove. Kirkja, however, is spread out on a mountain side. Hattarvík is surrounded by mountains and cannot be seen from any other settlement.

Most houses in Hattarvík have a view of the open sea, although Eysturhøvdi, the eastern tip of the neighboring island of Svínoy, can be seen from some of the houses. Kirkja lies open on the south side of the island. All houses in the village have magnificent views of the neighbouring islands Svínoy, Borðoy and Viðoy.

Few places in the Faroe Islands have such a beautiful view as the village of Kirkja, making the village very popular as a vacation spot.


Stamp details

Date of issue: 19.02.2021
Values: 17,00 & 27,00 DKK
Numbers: FO 951-952
Stamp size: 40,0 x 30,0 mm
Photos: Fotostudio
Printing method: Offset
Printer: Cartor Security Printing, France
Postal use: Inland letters and letters abroad, 0-100 g

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