A direct descendant of the sheep brought to Iceland by the Vikings in the 9th and 10th centuries. As the result of the harsh environment, an exceptionally intelligent and hardy breed developed. The Icelandic sheep is a triple purpose breed, a supplier of milk, meat, and fiber. This breed has retained many of its primitive characteristics but has become larger in size over the centuries. Considered to be genetically the same as it was when first evolved making the Icelandic one of the oldest and purest domesticated sheep in the world.