The House of Parliament was built in 1880 - 1881.
It was constructed from hewn
blocks of the gray basaltic rock (dolerite) upon which a part of the capital
rests. The architect was the Dane F. Meldahl, the director of The Academy of
Art in Copenhagen and the Danish mason Bald. The first assembly of the
parliament in the new building took place on July 1. 1881.
The National Library, The National Archives and the
National Museum were housed there for a while until the museum building was ready. The
University was housed there from its establishment in 1911 to 1940, when its
was ready. The Danish governor's office was there between 1941 and 1944, when
the Icelanders proclaimed the republic in the Parliamentary Plains
in 1944. The garden behind the building was named after one of the
members of Parliament,
prime minister and a renowned
entrepreneur, Tryggvi Gunnarsson, who lies buried there.