Bretskur konsul í Føroyum
In 1898 the great invasion of
British steam trawlers came to the Faroese fishing grounds. It was a shock for
the Faroese who felt that their livelihood was threatened. The British often
fished right up to the shoreline and on the fishing grounds which the Faroese
fishermen had made use of for centuries.
The anger towards the British
was so strong that a Danish military vessel was sent to the Faroes to intercept
British trawlers. The relationship between Britain and Denmark was good in
other respects and it is clear that the Danish authorities were taken aback by
this sudden crisis. The Danish representatives in the Faroes were caught
between Danish political interests - i.e. good trade relations with Britain which
was the largest market for Danish agriculture - and the anger of the Faroese.
On 1 April 1901 Henry Montagu
Villiers was appointed consul to the Faroes and Iceland and came to Tórshavn
with his wife, two children and two attendants. He was not welcome at all. The
Faroese did not allow him to step onto shore. He was forced to leap into a
small boat to get onto land, while his following remained onboard. No one was
willing to provide any lodgings for him until a grateful young baker, who had
been an apprentice in Scotland, gave him a place to rent. The Danish officials
were just as unkind, as he was their opponent and they had to be careful not
become friendly with an emissary whom the Faroese perceived as an enemy.
These dramatic events in the
Faroes just after the turn of the century are the main theme of the book.
Cover: Heft bók